1. Outdoor fitness
While living and working in Qatar you can participate in a number of fitness activities outdoors through clubs like Bootcamp Qatar.
As the name suggests, Bootcamp offers training exercises to groups of people in locations such as the Corniche, Museum of Islamic Art Park, Dahl Al Hammam and Education City. There are special sessions for ladies and a new kettlebells class too twice a week.
The Corniche also has a number of fitness equipment installed which visitors can use for free.
Places like Aspire Zone have special walking tracks where people can walk, run or ride their bicycles.
Go on a run with members of the Doha Bay Running Club every Friday morning at 05:30. Website
Among the places to visit in Qatar are a number of well-maintained parks, which make for excellent picnic spots, places where adults and kids can walk, run or play. There is usually at least one in any major neighbourhood, however there are a few major parks that are easily accessible and open to all.Something to keep in mind is, that some parks do have ‘family days.’
Museum of Islamic Art Park : A walk around the crescent-shaped walkway with a view of the sea on the side makes visiting this park worth the effort. Swings, monkey bars and a trampoline offer kids the opportunity to release all their restless energy, while parents and other adults can either enjoy snacks from the park’s café or sit in front of the sea and watch the Doha skyline light up as the sun goes down. (Hours: 10:30 to 23:00)
Aspire Park : Aspire Park offers more than just green grass and place to relax. An artificial duck pond, a long walking track and two restaurant cafés are its highlights. (Hours: 8:00 to 22:00)
Sheraton Park : This park is great place to take your kids to. While they play on the swings and make their way up and down slides in the sandpit, you can relax on the grass nearby. (Hours: 10:30 to 23:00)
Dahl Al Hammam Park : Located in Markhiya, this park is a spread of lush green walking paths and play areas for kids, making it a complete relaxing experience for families. (Hours: 07:30 to 24:00)
Al Rumaila Park : This park runs parallel to the Corniche and apart from being a great place for families and fitness enthusiasts, it also houses small shops selling traditional cultural artifacts and one of Qatar’s best Thai restaurants, Thai Smile. (Hours: 10:30 to 23:00)
If you are interested in sailing, a number of local operators offer sailing lessons while you live and work in Qatar. You could also rent sailboats if you choose.
Regatta Sailing Academy at the InterContinental Hotel Doha offers sailing courses for youth and adults. They also offer water activities for kids’ birthday parties. Apart from courses, the academy also organises races for adults, kids and ladies. If you would like to rent a boat, Regatta rents some out for a fee of between QR100 and QR200 per hour.
Contact: , Website, or call 4442 4577 for more information.
Doha Sailing Club offers sailing lessons to beginners every Saturday by trained club members. The club also provides boats and equipment free of charge or additions to the annual fee.
Contact: , Website, or call 4443 9840 for more information.
Entalek organises a number of outdoor activities and environmental education programmes in Qatar. Some of these popular ones include kayaking through the mangrove plantations in Al Thakhira marina near Al Khor. In the past, their offerings have included full moon paddles through the mangroves at Al Thakhira, an exploratory dhow ride by the Doha harbor to learn about the fishing and pearling cultures of Qatar as well as snorkelling in Fuwairit. These are just a few of the activities that Entalek organises and most of them are reasonably priced between QR150 and QR200.
Contact: Facebook, , 3023 3207
5. Desert trips and camping
A top place to visit while you live in Qatar is naturally the desert. The desert offers a challenging terrain for those seeking adventure in Qatar. There are a number of desert-centric activities that you can engage in. Some of them include renting a dune buggy on the beach near Sealine Beach Resort as well as dune bashing, which remains a popular sport with both Qataris and expatriates. A Toyota Land Cruiser or an SUV is commonly used for this sport.
Local tour operators such as Qatar International Adventures offers a number of tours, the desert safari is a popular offering.
If you own a SUV, you could drive there with some friends too.
The Inland Sea is a popular desert destination in the country.
Check out our list of beaches and its locations in this section.
7. Boat/Dhow rides or cruises
Those who live and work in Qatar are familiar with The dhow. It is a traditional Qatari fishing boat, which is anchored in many spots along the Corniche or the Doha harbour. Riding on a dhow in the Corniche is a popular activity. The dhow operators offer rides for about QR15 or QR20, but this is usually negotiable. Group discounts may be available too.
Also worth the experience is a ride on the BBQ Donuts at The Diplomatic Club, a ride which takes you around the West Bay. Breakfast, lunch or dinner is provided depending on the time of the day you ride in it. Call 4484 7450 or The Diplomatic Club formore information.
8. Rock climbing
For those who are serious rock climbers or would like to experience the adrenaline rush that comes from this adventurous sport, there are a number of options.
Flora Kitesurfing School which is run by Flora, a certified professional kitesurfer, offers kitesurfing lessons to adults and teenagers at beginner and advanced levels. Flora offers both week and weekend courses. Fees for these courses are between QR550 and QR2800. One kite is usually suitable for two persons. Most of these lessons are usually held at Simaisma Beach, Wakra Kite Beach, Fuwairit or Al Mafjar.
Qatar as a peninsular landmass is surrounded by the Arabian Sea on three sides, which makes diving and watersports a natural choice for people who are living in Qatar. There are a number of centres around Qatar, which offer lessons in scuba diving whether it’s for kids as young as eight years old or adults at the beginner, intermediate or advanced levels.
Some of them are: