Monday, May 8, 2017

Souq Waqif in Doha, Qatar

It was impossible not to visit the Souq Waqif. To me, this was the center of the city and not just literally. When I was there about 6 years ago (click here for the post), it was close to midnight and all the stores were closed already. We sat down at a Shisha place and stayed for an hour. It was fun, but looking back it was a little torturous. I mean, it was right there, but behind closed doors and windows. Of course, I promised myself I would go back and do more than sniffing the air, window-shopping, and imagining talking to store sellers.

By the way, Qatar is the country of nice cars. Lots of nice cars. Kinda like how it is in Luxembourg. I guess it's probably because car gas is much cheaper here. I did hear, however, that the selling price of cars is a tad more expensive than in Europe.

I personally find that the Souq Waqif is simply amazing. It's historical, but also has been renovated. It's busy with people, but not oppressing. It's clean, super clean even! I was surprised at how meticulously clean the bathrooms were. It has an amazing Qatari architectural style and through the years, it has remained authentic and traditional.

The Souq Waqif is the home of heritage, culture, and shopping. I can't help but wonder how many more traditional souqs are left in the gulf.

The shopping:

Of course, yellow gold. And lots of it.
Too bad, I'm not a big fan of yellow gold. MR forgot about that little fact and surprisingly gave me a yellow gold jewelry box. Thank you, I guess.

I am however a big fan of that white lamp (not sure if it's a lamp though).
I didn't get it and yes, I do regret it immensely. Shoulda, woulda, coulda. I hate that feeling.

Perfume. MR picked up 2 roll-on perfumes for me.
This, I was really happy about. I love my perfumes from Qatar.

There seems to be a main road with lots of little alleys left and right. You probably guess it - it's a labyrinth! There's about everything you can find because if there's one thing I forgot to mention is that the Souq Waqif is not only visited by tourists, but also locals.

Locals who come to buy a new pet for example.
My sister-in-law brings her cat for a grooming here.

Anyone interested to buy a bird, or a rabbit perhaps?

Souq Waqif never ceases to amaze me. <3

As you can see in the photos, there were many people (tourists and locals), but we felt very safe.
This is one point that I really loved about travelling to Doha. There was never a problem of safety for ourselves and our things which is a big plus.

If I could have, I would have bought a little something from each store. But a nagging husband + limited baggage allowance reminded me that it was impossible. Huhu.

The spice stores were probably one of my favorites. In this one in particular, we purchased spices to make Qatari coffee which the seller grinded for us.

There was also art on display which apparently were handmade. Too bad there were no explanations in English to understand better what it was.

I highly recommend visiting the Souq Waqif. Like I mentioned earlier, this isn't a tourist trap as some may perhaps assume; it is also visited by locals daily. We ended up walking up and down the alleys for a couple of hours, eating dinner (a post will come up soon), enjoying a shisha, and coming back here for more. This may have been one of my favorite spots of the city.

By the way if you ever come here, don't hesitate to bargain for good deals!


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