Dining in Souq Waqif

Road side restaurants at the souqBesides being a shopping paradise for tourists and locals, it is also home to dozens of restaurants serving all kinds of cuisines, together with Shisha lounges.  No matter you are tourists who stay in Qatar a few days to someone who has a few hours during transit, pop in to the souq to have a drink or a meal. Sit by the road to absorb the atmosphere of the souq. You won’t be disappointed.

Qatari Cuisine

Al Tawash – You are in Qatar. You’ve got to try Qatari cuisine. Al Tawash serves traditional Qatari food, including shisha. Ask the friendly waiters for recommendations if you have no idea what to order. Both indoor seating and Bedouin tent are available.

Mediterranean cuisine

Le Gourmet Restaurant – quality Mediterranean food and international cuisine. Perfect for group with different preferences.  Good seating (indoor, outdoor and rooftop). Shisha is served too.

Yemeni Cuisine

Al Bandar Aden Restaurant – It serves traditional and authentic Yemeni food like mandhi, ogdat, including fahsa and salta. Yemeni bread is fresh with crispy outside and soft and chewy inside.

General review online for it is: excellent food, fast and friendly service at a reasonable price, though it can be crowded and have to wait to be seated.

Opening Hours: 8am – 11pm, Friday 12:30pm – 11pm  (Website)

Souk Waqif Iraqi foodIraqi Cuisine

Al Adhamiyah Iraqi restaurant – Excellent Iraqi food including big starter selection, lamb tikka and Maskoof. Reasonable price with table on the street – perfect for people watching.

Syrian Cuisine

Damasca – Damasca is one of the biggest restaurants in Souq Waqif.  It has 2 floors including a roof terrace. Indoor is perfect for hot day while in the evening the outdoor roof terrace is a better choice. There are TVs for sport and live bands and dancers provide various entertainment in the evening.

There is a mix review online about the services – most people are happy while some have experienced indifferent waiters. Some people also find it pricey but food is generally good.  (Website)

Indian Cuisine:

Royal Tandoor – it specializes in the old Awadhi cuisine, and the decoration is superb too.

 

 

Shopping in Souq Waqif

Souq Waqif, literally means standing market in Arabic. This is the very site where the Bedouin, the nomads who inhabited in the Arabian deserts, sold their wool and animals.

Today, the souq is renowned for selling traditional Qatari garments, spices, handicrafts, and souvenirs. In recent years, people start to appreciate local Qatari artists and the souq has become a hot spot for art galleries and workshops too.

What can you buy in Souq Waqif

Carpet selling in Souq WaqifTraditional goods:

  • Pashimina
  • Bedouin weaving
  • Carpet
  • Abaya fashion
  • embroidery garment for men and women
  • Shisha
  • incense (including the famous oud aka agarwood or aloes wood)
  • pots

Food:

  • spices
  • dried fruit
  • nuts
  • honey

Pet shops in the souqPets and animals:

  • Bird market – you can find all kinds of birds, colored chicks, pet food and equipment here.
  • Rabbits
  • falcon souq

Art and crafts:

  • local Qatari artists’ works
  • wooden bridal chests
  • model dhows
  • gypsum handicrafts
  • other wooden crafts

Others:

  • tools
  • garden equipment
  • hardware

If your shopping is getting heavy, get a hamali (wheelbarrow porter) to help you.  For a small fee, he will help to put your shopping to your car.  Don’t want to carry the carpets, fabric and any other heavy shopping home? Just post them. See if there is a post office near you.

Still can’t find what you want? Or you want to see something different?  There are other souqs that are well worth visiting too!

 

 

Hotels Nearby

Hotels inside Souq Waqif:

Hotel Souq WaqifHotel Souq Waqif – Hotel Souq Waqif situated right inside Souq Waqif which makes it both good and bad.  Good thing is that if you room is on the souq side, you have a great view of the souq’s activities.  Down side is that taxi cannot drive you to the door of the hotel.

Arumaila Souq Waqif Boutique Hotel – Another wonderfully located hotel at the edge of the souq.  Friendly and attentive service.

Al Jasra Boutique Hotel – Yet another hotel that is located on the souq. Very spacious room and nicely decorated.

Al Najada Souq Waqif Boutique Hotel – Another small and comfy boutique hotel near the entrance of Souq Waqif.

Musheribe Boutique Hotel – One of the latest boutique hotels to add to Souq Waqif.

 

Other hotels:

One thing about staying inside the souq is that, some people may find the praying in the early morning too noisy. If you prefer a quieter stay, you may consider these hotels which are still nearby but quieter.

Mövenpick Hotel DohaSheraton Hotel Doha, Horizon Manor Hotel and Retaj Royale Hotel are all very near to the Corniche and the Museum of Islamic Art.  The Corniche promenade is an attractive boulevard lined with palm trees and greens which both tourists and locals love to have a stroll.

Other economic choice of hotel includes La Villa Hotel Apartments which is about half the price of the 4 and 5-star hotels in Doha.

 

Resorts and Conventions

If you come here for business or you want to bring along your family, staying near the city centre or West Bay is probably a better choice.

The Sheraton Doha Resort and Convention Hotel and Four Seasons Hotel Doha with marina are both by the sea.  While Hilton Doha, InterContinental Doha the City and W Doha Hotel and Residences are further inland but closer to office buildings and malls.

 

 

 

 

Location

Where is Souq Waqif

This is the address of the very original Souq Waqif in Doha, Qatar.  Please don’t confuse with the new Souq Waqif in Al Wakrah.

Address: Souq Waqif, Al Jasra, Doha, Qatar.

Located in the heart of Doha, between Al Asmakh street and Al Ahmed Street. The Souq is within walking distance from Doha Corniche.

It’s perfect for either a couple hours’ escape from your transit or casual browsing, dining or people watching.  A taxi ride from the Hamad International Airport takes about 12-15 minutes and costs from QR35.

 

 

 

 

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