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Cultural Treasures

From the golden desert sands to the gleaming skyline, there are centuries of history to explore in Doha. Explore the contrasting architecture of modern skyscrapers and traditional mosques between trips to museums filled with world-class art and ancient artifacts. And, of course, no trip to Doha would be complete without sampling the fresh, local cuisine. While considered one of the fastest-growing cities in the world, “The City of Balance” still manages to keep it’s Qatari culture and traditional customs close to its heart.

Day

1

MORNING
  • Jump to It.

    Start your day with an invigorating workout without leaving The Ritz-Carlton, Doha. The state-of-the-art fitness center offers several fitness classes including Zumba, Spinning and Pilates. If you prefer to move at your own pace, the open gym and Junior Olympic-sized, indoor lap pool are great alternatives.

  • Fuel Up.

    Head down to the Lobby Lounge for a light breakfast and specialty coffee before you set out to explore the city. The warmth of Arabic hospitality will set the perfect tone for the rest of your day.

MIDDAY
  • State of the Art.

    Begin your day at the Museum of Islamic Art. With hundreds of works spanning three continents and 1,400 years, it is safe to say this is the most expansive and thorough collection in the world. In fact, the museum itself is a masterpiece. The renowned architect I.M. Pei came out of retirement to design this building on an island that offers an unmatched view of the harbor and the skyline.

  • Pier Evaluation.

    Take a stroll along the water to appreciate the 80-foot-tall steel sculpture by American artist Richard Serra. The piece is titled “7,” in reference to the spiritual and scientific significance the number seven has in Islamic culture.

AFTERNOON
  • Market Days.

    Head to Souq Waqif for an authentic Bedouin shopping experience where you can browse countless stalls of rich embroidered fabrics, exotic perfumes and appetizing snacks. For a truly unique experience, explore the Falcon Souq and Arabian horse stables to discover the important role horses and falcons play in Qatari culture.

EVENING
  • Persian Dinner.

    Built in the traditional Islamic style, the Parisa restaurant inside the Souq Waqif serves mouthwatering Persian cuisine among a brightly colored, hand-painted décor. Since everything on the menu is delicious, order a variety of mezze plates to share — but be sure to save room for their signature saffron ice cream.

  • Stroll Along the Corniche.

    Take in the ultramodern skyline at night along Doha’s waterfront promenade. With over 4 miles of pedestrian walkways, it’s the perfect place to get a little exercise and some fresh air.

Day

2

MORNING
  • Sand Safari.

    Get an early start to discover the magic of the inland sea on a half-day desert safari adventure. Rent a vehicle to experience the thrill of “dune bashing” or book a serene picnic overlooking one of the few places in the world where dunes meet the ocean.

MIDDAY
  • Take a Dip.

    Cool off from your desert excursion by spending a few hours poolside at The Ritz-Carlton, Doha. Order refreshing drinks and light snacks without getting out of the water at Flamingos, the swim-up bar and grill.

AFTERNOON
  • History Lesson.

    With so much focus on new developments, the Barzan Towers offer a rare slice of Qatari history from before the flurry of modern construction. The castle-like fortresses were built in the late 19th century as watchtowers against the threat of incoming Ottoman soldiers.

  • New and Now.

    Founded in 2010 in a refurbished school building, the Arab Museum of Modern Art is a must-see for any traveling art enthusiast. Sheikh Hassan bin Mohamed bin Ali Al Thani began collecting modern art from the Arab region as a form of cultural preservation in 1990 and created the museum to share his collection with the public.

EVENING
  • Spirit and Traditions.

    The Katara Cultural Village offers a unique insight into Qatari traditions, theater, art and architecture. The area comprises an open amphitheater, opera house, cinema, conference hall and traditional souks. With an ever-changing list of programs, from photography festivals to jazz concerts, there’s always something new for visitors to uncover.

  • Let’s Eat.

    Before you leave, enjoy the flavors of fresh seafood at L’wzaar Seafood Market at the Katara Cultural Village. The restaurant allows you to pick your own fish and build a custom menu for a personalized dining experience.

Day

3

MORNING
  • Rise and Shine.

    Sleep in and enjoy a lavish brunch paired with stunning views of the turquoise gulf at The Lagoon restaurant in The Ritz-Carlton, Doha. Whether you choose to make your own omelet or try a traditional Arabic mezze breakfast, you’ll love waking up to a meal at this seaside oasis.

MIDDAY
  • Royal History.

    The Al Thani Museum houses Sheikh Faisal’s personal collection of over 15,000 artifacts. Created to preserve and promote the importance of his homeland’s culture, the three-building museum organizes the pieces into four distinct categories: Islamic art, vehicles, coins and currency, and Qatari heritage.

AFTERNOON
  • Food Lover’s Paradise.

    Head to the Omani Souk to browse the baskets of truffles, fresh dates, locally grown produce and cut flowers. The open marketalso has a wide offering of woven goods from straw hats to baskets, perfect for a unique souvenir.

  • Sea Rituals.

    Inspired by the abundant supplies found in the Arabian Gulf, The Ritz-Carlton Spa, Doha offers a variety of holistic treatments exclusive to Doha’s natural environment. The Signature Pearl Body Scrub blends crushed natural Qatari pearls and sea salt to exfoliate and rejuvenate your skin after spending time in the desert sun.

EVENING
  • All Aboard.

    Ask the concierge for help with booking a traditional dhow cruise for unforgettable views of the Arabic Gulf at sunset. When choosing an excursion, opt for a trip paired with a private dinner to enjoy one last evening in Doha.