Travelbiz E-Zine
24
November
2023

Qatar with Travelbiz. Souq Waqif

#Traveltradetogether

A world within a world, Qatar offers something for everyone. Visitors to the country can experience the cosmopolitan and bustling city of Doha and the contrasting awe-inspiring expansiveness of the desert within the same day. Safe and secure, the metropolis of Doha offers many world class and must visit attractions, including the traditional market Souq Waqif.

Nestled in the heart of Doha is the traditional market, Souq Waqif. With its mud-daubed buildings, winding alleyways and cobbled pathways, Souq Waqif transports travellers back in time for an immersive cultural experience. A visit to Doha would not be complete without a few hours spent getting lost in its labyrinth of shops and stalls and spectacular spice aromas. Hidden in the Souqs are several restaurants which offer the perfect place to settle down for a traditional dish whilst spectating the busy streets below.

Built on the site of Doha’s century old trading market, on the banks of the Wadi Musheireb, Souq Waqif feels like an anachronism, particularly against the backdrop of Doha’s dramatic modernist skyline.  With its mud-daubed buildings, the market harkens to a bygone era while remaining a hub of activity, where commerce and gossip collide.  Souq Waqif’s winding alleys offer a tableau of traditional street life.

Make like Midas at the Gold Souq

Gold jewellery remains widely popular throughout the Middle East, and wandering through the gold section of the souq one can get a sense of its continued importance in local traditions.  From intricate head pieces and multi-tiered necklaces to more everyday items, the Gold Souq has you covered, no matter your budget.

Hold a falcon in your hand

Falconry is a traditional sport in Qatar, and Souq Waqif is home to a Falcon Souq where you can see the majestic birds up close and, under the shopkeeper’s watchful eye, pose with a falcon perched on your arm.  It is also possible to buy falcons and accoutrements here, and a dedicated hospital cures whatever ails them.

Indulge in some retail therapy

The shops that line the alleyways of the souq beckon with all manner of goods both practical and fantastical.  From shoes to antiques to handicrafts, the souq rewards treasure hunters, with artefacts from around the region.  Fishing and pearl-diving equipment vie for attention with woven fabrics, rugs, wooden furniture, and glass ornaments that are made in adjacent workshops.  Aspiring musicians can delight in local varieties of drums, flutes and string instruments, including the melancholic oud.

Take in some art

Decorated with beautiful woodwork, hand-painted tiles, and colourful lanters, the Souq Waqif Art Centre showcases the works of local and visiting artists, all available for sale. Workshops surround the exhibition space, and it is possible to take an art class or watch artists at work.

Spice up your life

Follow your nose to the spices spilling out of jute sacks. From whole or ground spices, this is your spot for exotic Arabic aromatics like saffron, zater, sumac, dried flowers, dried black lemons, and endless varieties of dates, honey, tea leaves and coffee beans.

 

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