What’s not to love about a long weekend? An extra day off after your busy weekly schedule of appointments, meetings and commitments just to reset and relax. For the well-heeled traveller, it’s a perfect opportunity to change scenes, explore new places and make friends with new faces.
With a few long weekends on the horizon, here are five things you should know if you’re planning one in Qatar:
If you’re the jet-set type, there are a number of daily flights to choose from. Just hop onto a plane and find yourself in a different country potentially in as little as 70 minutes!
UAE to Qatar - average 1 hour 5 minutes
18 daily direct flights connecting three of the UAE’s major cities
6x daily flights from Dubai
6x daily flights from Sharjah
6x daily flights from Abu Dhabi
KSA to Qatar – between 1 - 2 hours 20 minutes
13 daily direct flights connecting four of KSA’s major cities.
4x daily flights from Jeddah; 2 hours and 20 minutes.
4x daily flights from Dammam; 1 hour
3x daily flights from Madinah; 2 hours 10 minutes
2x daily flights from Riyadh; 1 hour 30 minutes
Oman to Qatar - 1 hour and 25 minutes from Muscat; 8 direct flights daily.
Kuwait to Qatar - 1 hour and 11 minutes; 7 direct flights daily
2. Where to Stay
There are plenty of hotels and hotel apartments for every budget. Here are some tips on what to expect in each of the capital city’s main districts:
Msheireb – the historical heart of the city where tradition sits effortlessly next to the bold and new. Stay in this area if you’re looking to stroll into museums, sip coffee in a traditional café, browse the Souq Waqif bazaar all within a metro stop or 10 minutes walking distance.
Nearby Metro stations: Msheireb, Al Bidda, Souq Wagif, National Museum
West Bay/AlDafna – The capital city’s business district where towering skyscrapers create a bold glittering skyline against the calm blue waters of the corniche. Stay here if you want to be in the heart of the action and enjoy the finer things in life. A host of international chefs have opened restaurants at the 5-star hotels and the spa experiences on offer are unmatched.
Nearby Metro Stations: West Bay, DECC, Al Gassar, Katara
Destination resort – kick back and relax at a resort where the hotel is the destination and all your needs are catered for. Check out Banana Island Resort by Anantara if you wish to stay relatively close to the city. If you can go further afield, discover the newly opened Zulal Wellness Resort by Chiva Som which effortlessly brings a piece of heaven to Earth.
3. Getting around
While a Karwa taxi or cab-hailing service is always at your fingertips, there’s also the well-connected metro service you can rely on. The capital city’s cutting-edge metro system not only connects the FIFA World Cup Qatar 2022™ stadiums, it makes many of the city’s attractions very accessible to visitors. A standard day pass costs as little as 6 QAR.
Visitors can download the Karwa Taxi app from Google Play or the Appstore.
For more on getting around via the metro visit www.qr.com.qa
4. What to do
From adventure to nature retreats, art and culture to culinary indulgences, visitors can find just about everything they need in one destination. Head to the VisitQatar.qa website or download the app for inspiration on how to tailor your holidays. You may also experience one of the many events and festivals that take place in Qatar throughout the year. To find out what’s on and plan your trip, check out the monthly calendar of events and activities, available on www.qatarcalendar.com which help visitors make the most of their stay in Qatar.
5. Health & Safety
Visitors from the GCC will be happy to know that getting into Qatar is fairly straightforward. GCC nationals and residents do not require a PCR test to travel to Qatar. Those who meet the immunity criteria of GCC authorized health apps (Tawakkalna, Al Hosn, BeAware Bahrain, Shlonik, Tarassud) will not need to pre-register on Qatar’s health app, Ehteraz. Visitors from the GCC will need to head to any authorized private clinic in Qatar for a Rapid Antigen Test within 24 hours of their arrival.