This post is part of a series on our trip to Qatar in August 2012, approaching the end of Ramadan until the celebration of Eid Al Fitr. It was the height of summer, but the hot weather didn’t totally stop us from exploring Qatar as much as we can. 🙂
The Corniche, Doha tops my list of the “must do’s” in Qatar.
In fact, one big factor in choosing our accommodation was its proximity to the Corniche. I wanted it within walking distance to the Corniche, for easy access.
The Corniche is a remarkable 7 kilometer stretch of waterfront promenade along Doha Bay. It is parallel to Corniche Street, a main road highway going to the city center.
Significant landmarks can be seen / accessed from the Corniche, like:
1) Doha Port
2) Museum of Islamic Art (MIA)
3) Doha Souq
4) Fanar Islamic Center
5) The Emiri Diwan
6) Peal Monument
7) Rumeila (Al Bidda) Park
8) Heritage Village
9) Dhow cruises
10) Palm Island – with its lone tree
11) Sheraton Doha – pyramid shaped structure
12) West Bay skyline – stunning both day and night
The night we arrived I already wanted to go and see the Corniche, so we dropped our bags at the hotel and headed out immediately. I had my maps ready. 🙂
However, we somehow got lost in the souq, or maybe we’re just too hungry hehe. So, we had dinner first at one of the local restaurants along Souq Al Dira, then afterwards continued walking until we reached Fanar Islamic Center. It was lovely at night, located right at the heart of the souq.
I wanted to walk further, as the Corniche was just across the street. But my travel buddy asked to call it a night as we have 4 more days. KJ lang. Tse!
The following day, we went out to meet some friends, visited one who was in the hospital then had dinner at Shanghai Gardens @ City Center Doha.
We actually passed by the Corniche on the way and I definitely don’t want another night to pass without going to the Corniche, so after dinner we had the cab drop us in front the Museum of Islamic Art (MIA), which was located at the right end of the Corniche.
The Security approached us thinking we wanted to go inside MIA, and informed us that the museum remains closed until 20th Aug (2nd day of Eid Al Fitr), we replied that we just wanted to take pictures (outside premises) and went to stroll along the Corniche.
It was quite dark along the promenade area where we were and Doha’ lit skyline over the bay was just amazing. Btw, I don’t have a DSLR camera and only use my phone cam so forgive the photos’ quality. 🙂
We walked for about a kilometer along the Corniche before going back to our hotel. We agreed to wake up 4am the next day to complete our walk along the Corniche.
My body clock regularly wakes me up at 5am every day. Be it a work day or a week end. So 4am is something new for me. I felt really grumpy and had to force myself to get up, drink coffee and wake my brain cells up.
Before 5am we were already out and started our walk from the souq to MIA, up to Doha Port where we met the sunrise. 🙂
Going the other way, we saw the dhow boats better (it was dark the previous night) and some yachts. We also met walkers, bikers and joggers along the way.
We paused for pictures every now and then, of us and the landmarks along the way, plus noting the distance markers.
Seven (7) kilometers – this is an achievement for a notorious couch potato! 🙂
We saw a coffee shop or two along the Corniche, however they were still closed as it was still Ramadan, so we just went ahead.
Nearing Sheraton, we chose to cross the street and headed to the Business District (West Bay) instead. We were both looking for a cab as well as inspecting the skyscrapers. 🙂
The previous night, on the way to City Center, I was just awed by the lights like that of the Tornado Tower. I was staring until it was outta sight, and that I forgot to take a picture. Hehe.
By 730am, our leisurely stroll brought us finally near City Center where we got a cab to go back to our hotel. The walk was tiring but totally worth it!
We then had a hearty breakfast in the hotel and went to rest. We had a full “tour” sked later on in the afternoon starting with a visit to the Katara Cultural Village. 🙂
During our stay in Doha, we went to the Corniche at least four times, one time was for the Dhow Cruise and another time was to visit the MIA when it finally opened on the 2nd day of Eid.
I highly recommend the Corniche on your trip to Doha, be it an early morning walk or a night stroll, be sure not to miss it! I myself am looking forward to our next visit. 🙂