Stay... Budget Ramada Plaza: Some of Doha’s ‘budget’ hotels can be downright scary. For cheaper prices without any nasty surprises, head to the Ramada Plaza. Although not strictly a budget hotel, it’s one of the cheaper offerings in the city and has easy access to scores of restaurants, pubs and clubs. www.ramadaplazadoha.com
Luxury W Doha: It doesn’t get much posher than the swanky W Hotel, where the uber suites even come with your own life-sized horse statue! www.whoteldoha.com
Eat... Budget Thai Snack: Winner of this year’s Time Out Doha Restaurant Awards’ Best Budget Eats was Thai Snack, a hole-in-the-wall restaurant offering cheap and tasty Asian favourites. It’s so good there are some locals that are now 10 per cent water, 90 per cent Thai Snack. Al Nasr Street.
Expensive Paloma: Winner of this year’s Time Out Doha Restaurant of the Year, Paloma may be pricey but it’s worth it! On Qatar’s manmade island, it’s got one of the best views of the Pearl, with water at your feet and yachts moored next door. And its Mexican seafood fare doesn’t fail to satisfy either! Pearl-Qatar.
Must see... The museums Doha’s becoming a cultural hotspot ever since the Museum of Islamic Art first opened three years ago. Designed by I.M. Pei, the building itself is a masterpiece; inspired by Arabic architecture, it changes appearance as the sun casts different shadows around the building. Or head to the newly opened Mathaf: Arab Museum of Modern Art in Education City. With a massive collection, funky boutique and statue garden, it’s a modern twist on art that’s already making waves.
Must do... Take a dhow trip. The traditional boats are moored all along the corniche (head to the statue of the Pearl and walk down the jetty), and often will include a barbecue lunch after they’ve toured you round.
Flight time 40 minutes.
Getting there Flydubai operate between Dubai and Doha. You can get a return flight for around Dhs800. www.flydubai.com
Exchange rate* Dhs1= 1 QR * Approx exchange rate Time Out recommends Pick up a uniquely Qatari souvenir by checking out the many pearl vendors in the Gold Souk. Pearl diving was the way of life in Qatar for centuries, today you can find exquisite pearls for pennies. To get there, head towards Souk Waqif; the entrance to most of the shops is located across the street from the main bus terminal.