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  • Day2

    Day in Doha

    October 17, 2019 in Qatar ⋅ ⛅ 34 °C

    An early arrival for a stopover in Doha. 25 hours between connecting flights meant we had to collect and recheck-in luggage, A simple task except that Doha’s ‘policy’ meant that 6 hours was the maximum luggage could be checked-in before flying! Eleven bags in a hire car was not going to be possible, so after a little persuasion we were allowed to check in the bags with the risk that they might not arrive in Nairobi

    A tired drive to the hotel, a shower, a French breakfast in a patisserie and then we headed to the beach - it is hot - over 40 degrees, although apparently it gets to 50 degrees so today was fine! Katara beach was good and the water very warm - the best place to be as sitting on the beach was not really an option in the heat.

    After some ice cream to cool down we drove to Souq Waqif, the old traditional souq in Doha. A hive of busyness and trading, but not at all threatening with respectful traders who did not persist - perhaps reflecting the fact that Qatar is the richest country by GDP per capita. Much to Emma’s excitement there was a ‘Local Dates Exhibition’ where date producers brought their dates to be sampled - a welcome appetiser before dinner of local grilled meats and salads.

    Back to the hotel for a roof top swim. Qatar is a real mix of traditional and modern, with warm and friendly people. A night’s sleep and then to the airport to go to Nairobi, hopefully with our luggage...
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    Anna Burton

    Looks great hope you have a good flight today xxx Anna x

    David Burton

    What a really SUPER time you have obviously enjoyed in Doha and a fantastic experience for you all! The souk looked very interesting and especially the date exhibition. I don't think I would have managed to swim in that pool!! Have a great time xxxx

  • Day77

    Airport in Qatar

    November 13, 2018 in Qatar ⋅ 🌬 26 °C

    We just arrived in Qatar 🇶🇦 after a six hour flight. We had to wake up at 4:30 in the morning, and we had some bus trouble in the way to the airport...🚎🛫 now we have to wait three more hours until our next flight, to Chiang Mai 🇹🇭. Right now we are in the airport. The flight we just took was really fancy, (for us ;) ) and it had lots of tv shows and movies. 📺 For breakfast, we had the choice of a cheddar omelet, 🥚
    scrambled eggs, 🥚
    or pancakes 🥞 and porridge 🥣 (bleh). Lunch was chicken shawarma with a vanilla coconut sponge cupcake. I found out that I love shawarma!
    We will soon be in Thailand!!
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    So excited for you guys to get to Chiang Mai! We absolutely LOVED our time there a few weeks ago! The Bairds.


    That’s one big bear 🐻 I think. Blake

    Shiloh Knox


  • Day43

    To Souk Waqif

    November 5, 2019 in Qatar ⋅ 🌙 29 °C

    It's 16.15 so time to Uber over to the Souk to be there for sunset at 16.51. More than one person has said it's so much prettier in the evenings. The traffic is heavy; this is obviously normal.

    We have a good wander around the souk. They are very civilised with absolutely no heckling or trying to get you into their shops at all! Not that there was much we would've wanted to buy : loads of plastic junk, phone stuff, swathes of material, sweets, household stuff... I thought we could try local food, maybe support some of the local ladies out the front of the souk but, you know, flatbreads with crisps sprinkled over the top and then folded into quarters really wasn't doing it for me, even if they were freshly made!

    Later on we found the camel market and the falcon souk which were nice to see. We ran across the food section with all these items we either didn't know what to do with them or simply didn't even know what they were. The souk looks lovely all lit up in the dark.

    It's Syrian for dinner. The lamb sausages with potato were the best part. Then off to the hotel for some wine as it's not widely available. 20.30 and I'm drooping, can I make 21.00? No idea if I did...
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  • Day43

    Museum of Islamic Art

    November 5, 2019 in Qatar ⋅ ☀️ 29 °C

    We Uber to the Museum of Islamic Art and are amongst the first visitors of the day. We go to some of the upstairs galleries to enjoy them almost empty.

    The Museum is displaying Islamic art from the last thousand or so years from the many countries that it has touched. It is a lovely place with big, darkened galleries with pieces lit up on spot display. Space is a big feature and it's very calm.

    We share a chicken shawarma wrap and an almond croissant in the museum cafe, overlooking the city and sea. I discover the lovely outdoor space with lots of fountains. It's really warming up now, it's about 33C and there's some humidity.

    We both shattered now so Uber back to the hotel. John puts his head down and I go off for a swim. There's actually a definite chance of me falling asleep in the sun so I go back to the room to try to snooze. No chance.
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  • Day44

    Breakfast at Saravanaa Bhavan

    November 6, 2019 in Qatar ⋅ ☀️ 29 °C

    Thaxi drops us at Saravanaa Bhavan for breakfast; it's a favourite of his. It's off the main streets and my initial thoughts is that it's a bit dodgy. But I got over that: it's ok for the road to be rough with lots of stones on it, it's ok for traffic to be going in eight different directions at once, all hooting madly, it's ok to be on some strange back street in Doha by yourself. You know, it really is ok.

    On his recommendation we order the ghee roasted dosa with a spiced potato filling and some sauce accompaniments. It arrives in next to no time and is rather good. To follow, it's medhu vada, which are crispy lentil doughnuts, with the same sauces as before. John also goes for a frothy tea. This restaurant is a good choice. Breakfast has just cost us £6. We may be back tomorrow!
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  • Day44

    The Qatari Museum

    November 6, 2019 in Qatar ⋅ ☀️ 32 °C

    Our taxi drops us in the Qatari Museum car park but we wander around wondering if we're even in the right place. There are no signs at all and the ground is just unfinished. It was only opened a few months ago so we'll put it down to teething problems.

    Once we find our way in, this building details the history of Qatar over the millennia. It's quite nicely done but I prefer the Islamic Art one from yesterday. The light coloured beautiful rug in the photos is actually embroidered with about 1.5 million Basra pearls! Again, there are no signs, even for fire exits but we do run across the hidden away reproduced fort whilst we're trying to find our way out.

    After that it's a very slow taxi back to the hotel. We're sick of this traffic. It takes so long, there's so much of it, the traffic lights have lengthy waits. It's tedious and not that safe. Horns are used a lot here, and abs.

    I'm now sitting by the pool again, enjoying the sun on the final afternoon. We've got a nice infinity pool but it's a shame infinity finishes 15' away with a hedge. As the sun comes off the pool we move to the pool bar for a drink and a plate of hot meze.

    We're bored with fighting the traffic so spend our evening in the rooftop bar with snacks. But we're still on Oz time so it's early to bed for us again.
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  • Day2

    Wecome to Doha

    July 1, 2017 in Qatar ⋅ ☀️ 40 °C

    Arrived 5.30am, earlier than scheduled - all flights into Doha are currently only using a northern approach corridor so they don't cross Saudi, Bahrain or Dubai airspace, so we were expecting delays, but we landed at our original ETA.

    Met by our driver and quick trip to our hotel on deserted roads (Fri and Sat are the weekend here, so today is their Sunday). The hotel is not very full as our rooms were ready at 7am, so we moved our luggage in and went for a quick walk before it gets too hot (currently 36, heading for 47 degrees)

    Like all good walks, it included finding a few caches (our first international finds, and they were all micros!). We did a lap of the West Bay area, which is mostly government offices, hotels and embassies, so was very quiet today. Maybe that's how the security guards spotted us so easily! (turns out we were across the road from the Dept of Foreign Affairs offices, and the guards very quickly came across to have a chat. All ended well, and they happily left us to our search)

    Back for 9.30am buffet breakfast at the hotel, then a swim before an afternoon city tour.

    Stayed: Melia Hotel
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    sam and bruce

    great pics, hope you got a bit of rest too! Thanks for the spoiler, should save us a bit of time when we attempt that cache!

  • Day2

    Doha city tour

    July 1, 2017 in Qatar ⋅ 🌙 33 °C

    Late afternoon pickup for a 5 hour city tour (3pm to 8pm when the weather is a bit cooler - it got to 47 today, forecast to be 50 degrees tomorrow 😮).

    Driving around, it seems that every corner of Doha is under construction, with many new high rises buildings, road projects, a new rail project (8.2 billion US dollars being spent before the 2022 World Cup to create multiple lines with100 stations) and even a hanging restaurant under construction (whatever that is!)
    Visited the Katara Cultural Centre - touristy recreation of traditional buildings (not all their own, as it included a Roman ampitheatre!);
    Pearl Island - man made island with accommodation and shopping centre for non-locals... including a Rolls Royce and a Ferrari dealership;
    drive along the Corniche - 7km man made coast line with walking path and wide grassed areas;
    Museum of Islamic Art - widely touted as the number one attraction in Doha;
    then finished the night at the Souk Waqif - sprawling traditional market with streets selling gold, spices, horses, falcons and rows of clothing and material.

    Got back to the hotel just before 8pm with everyone tired and no set plan for tea, so while some went to the supermarket, we came back to the hotel and had room service (mixed vegetable pizza, and chicken fettuccine for the record).

    Early night ready for a 4am wake-up call.
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    John Kalaitzis

    Dromedary. or Bactrian?

  • Day23

    Return to Doha

    July 22, 2017 in Qatar ⋅ 🌙 33 °C

    Final morning in Jordan, so after a quick breakfast at the hotel we went for a walk down the street before our afternoon flight to Doha. As it's the last day of the weekend, the shops are just starting to open as we returned at 10am.

    Abed picked us up for the trip to the airport and on the way picked up the airport agent - once again he escorts us through the "Jordanian" queue at the airport to expedite our immigration experience!

    Nice flight to Doha, and arrived to another 45°C day! Settled into our room, then went for a walk as the sun was setting. Had tea in the Waqif Souk, then walked to the Arch of Swords, which was a popular meeting place on a balmy night.

    Dropped into a couple of shops and the supermarket on the way back to the hotel.

    Stayed: Horizon Manor Hotel, Doha
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  • Day24

    Jeep Safari in der Wüste im Süden

    November 11, 2019 in Qatar ⋅ ☀️ 28 °C

    Am Rande der Wüste angekommen, muss unser Fahrer Mayid erst einmal Luft aus den Reifen lassen, damit die Fahrt in den Sanddünen möglich ist. Manchmal behutsam, manchmal rasant geht es über die ersten Dünen. Nach 20 minütiger Fahrt sehen wir einen anderen Jeep im tiefen Sand feststecken. Offensichtlich kann der Fahrer aus eigener Kraft den Jeep nicht mehr freifahren und braucht Hilfe. Nach einigen arabischem Palaver steht fest, dass dies Chefsache ist. Und Mayid ist der Chef. Also wird ein breites Abschleppseil an beiden Autos festgemacht. Ohne uns darauf vorzubereiten, was nun auf uns zukommt, gibt er Vollgas und als sich das Seil spannt und das liegengebliebene Auto zieht, werden wir mit großer Kraft in unsere Sicherheitsgurte gepresst. Das war ganz schön schmerzhaft, aber der einzige Kommentar von Mayid dazu war: " Damit ist wohl geklärt, dass die Sicherheitsgurte ihre Funktion erfüllen!" 😬

    Da wir im ersten Auto des Konvois sitzen, ist es sehr spannend die Dünen hinauf zu fahren, ohne zu wissen, wie die Fahrt danach weitergeht. Das ist ein bisschen wie Achterbahn fahren. An einem solchen Kamm halten alle Autos an. Unser Jeep ist der erste, der die steile Düne senkrecht herunterfährt bzw. rutscht und da stockt einem schon mal der Atem.
    Immer wieder einmal halten wir an und haben atemraubende Ausblicke auf die Dünenlandschaft und sogar das Meer. Unser letzter Stopp ist direkt an der südlichen Grenze Qatars zu Saudi Arabien und danach haben wir eine kleine Pause in einem am Meer liegenden Wüstencamp.
    Zurück geht es durch die Wüste bis zu der Station, an der der Luftdruck der Reifen wieder auf Straßenverhältnisse angepasst wird. Auf der Autobahn geht es schnell zurück nach Doha. Das war ein unvergessliches Erlebnis und ein Adrenalin Kick der besonderen Art.

    Bei der Ausfahrt aus dem Hafen bewundern die die bunte Skyline von Doha, die schönste, die wir auf dieser Reise bisher bewundern durften.
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    Jürgen Frick

    Das sieht schön aus. Mir ist bei vergleichbarer Tour echt total seekrank schlecht geworden. Ist schon krass wenn das Auto oben über die Kante fährt, insb. wenn es schräg driftet. Also nix für mich. Euch weiterhin viel Spaß.

    Petra Hielscher

    Eine beeindruckende Kolonne!! 😁


You might also know this place by the following names:

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