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Discover why a stopover in Qatar is like adding an extra holiday to your trip

When is a stopover not a stopover? When you have more fun than you do at your final destination. A stopover in Qatar is more than just an excuse to shop, drink and eat, there's so much more on offer to all types of travellers that you might just be a bit sad when it time to head to your final destination.

When is a stopover not a stopover? When you have more fun than you do at your final destination. A stopover in Qatar is more than just an excuse to shop, drink and eat, there’s so much more on offer to all types of travellers that you might just be a bit sad when it time to head to your final destination.

A Qatar stopover is affordable, too, with a range of 4, 5 and 5 star luxury plus hotels available on a stopover from as little as AU$19pp per night. They are called World’s Best Value Stopover Packages for a reason, they are affordable, fun and action-packed.

But it is not all fly-and-flop. Qatar is full of things you have never thought of doing on an average stopover. Yes, there is luxury for miles with mega-hotels, mega-malls and mega-meals by celebrity chefs but there is also an undiscovered side to this part of the Middle East. 

You can learn about Islamic art at the I.M Pei designed museum, seek out the wildlife on a desert safari or spot whale sharks from along the Qatar coast. There is nature and architecture, culture and history, you simply have to stop and take a look.

Do you want to know how to get stopover ready? Follow these simple rules:

Get out of your comfort zone

Kayak through the Al Thakira mangroves and see an unexpected variety of birds, including flamingos
Kayak through the Al Thakira mangroves and see an unexpected variety of birds, including flamingos

There is an idea about stopovers that you don’t want to get too messy or active so you can save yourself for your final destination. But in Qatar you will be rewarded for packing your stopover with action you would not normally think of doing.

Qatar is home to migratory birds, fish and crustaceans as well as the tranquil waters of Purple Island Lake in the Al Thakira mangroves and one of the best ways to explore is by kayak.

Discover the remarkable desert landscape where sand dunes spill into the azure waters of the Inland Sea on the Discover the Dunes and Inland Sea tour
Discover the remarkable desert landscape where sand dunes spill into the azure waters of the Inland Sea on the Discover the Dunes and Inland Sea tour

On a four-wheel driving desert safari you can find yourself at Khor Al Adaid otherwise know as the inland sea, clear water surrounded by miles of desert. On the safari you can try to track down the Arabian oryx, a majestic antelope that can be found galloping through the sand dunes.

Dive in to local culture

Delve into the crowded laneways of Souq Waqif that are full of Doha treasures
Delve into the crowded laneways of Souq Waqif that are full of Doha treasures

If you do stopovers right you can learn a huge amount about your destination, but you need to be ready to delve into the crowded laneways of Souq Waqif that are full of Doha treasures.

Get wonderfully lost in the sprawling Souq Waqif or learn a few things at the Museum of Islamic Art.
Get wonderfully lost in the sprawling Souq Waqif or learn a few things at the Museum of Islamic Art

While at the souq make sure you do a food tour where a local guide will take you on a journey through the incredibly storied and delicious Qatari cuisine.

You can hire a traditional dhow, the handmade boats that have been sailing the waters of the Arabian Gulf for centuries.

Or pay a visit to the National Museum of Qatar where you can take in the political, social and historical journey of this amazing country.

Get your Zen on

Coax your senses into a state of complete serenity with unique pampering treatments at The Spa at Souq Waqif Boutique Hotels by Tivoli

Not all your stopovers need to be action packed, you can also use the time to take a look inward at the many wellness centres on offer.

At the Al Messila, a Luxury Collection Resort & Spa and the Souq Waqif Boutique Hotels by Tivoli you can experience cutting-edge spa treatments including traditional Moroccan Hammam treatments which can help you rest and relax before the next stop on your overseas holiday. Or you may be so relaxed you never want to leave!

Shop til you drop

The Pearl-Qatar offers a unique shopping experience in an upscale, yet relaxed atmosphere
The Pearl-Qatar offers a unique shopping experience in an upscale, yet relaxed atmosphere

If you are going to have a shopover you may as well have it in the place with one of the greatest concentrations of haute couture in the world.

Qatar shopping
Get insider access to the hottest shopping, buzzing nightlife and culinary experiences on offer in Doha

You can shop at French department stores like Galeries Lafayette or the new Place Vendome or the local luxury haunt of Pearl-Qatar, designed to mirror the Italian city of Venice.

Take to the skies

See Qatar from a breathtaking new perspective
See Qatar from a breathtaking new perspective

Seeing Doha from the skies is an incredible way to spend the morning. From the air you can really see that this is the place were the desert meets the ocean in a dramatic collision of sand and sea.

Sail on a majestic wooden dhow boat from the Dhow Harbour in Doha City to the Al Safliya Island
Sail on a majestic wooden dhow boat from the Dhow Harbour in Doha City to the Al Safliya Island

See how the new skyscrapers and the ancient souqs live side by side and have the most memorable breakfast ever.

Flying to Qatar with the world’s best airline

Qatar Airways

Flying to Qatar on the national airline, Qatar Airways, means you will be travelling on Skytrax’ “Airline of the Year 2021″ for the sixth year in a row.

Flying from Sydney, Melbourne, Brisbane, Adelaide and Perth up to Doha, where you can connect to over 140 destinations as part of the multi-award-winning Qatar Airways network.

Qatar Airways has also been setting industry benchmarks for COVID-19 biosafety and hygiene by being the first airline to receive Skytrax 5-stars COVID19 Safety ratings where 99.988% of its passengers travel COVID-19-free.

Connecting in and out of Hamad International Airport in Doha means you’ll also be flying out of the World’s Best Airport for 2021, as voted by Skytrax.

Its Doha airport hub, Hamad International Airport (HIA), has also earned the Skytrax 5-stars COVID-19 Safety ratings, making Qatar Airways the only Middle-Eastern carrier where both the airline and its airport secured the highest Skytrax safety ratings.

What’s more, Qatar Airways offer travellers the flexibility they deserve if their plans change, with extended guaranteed flexibility for travel completed by 31 May 2022*. *Terms and conditions apply.

Become Qatar stopover ready

Qatar Airways, in partnership with Discover Qatar, has launched the world’s best value stopover packages in the AU/NZ market. Read more here, here and here.

Register to the Discover Qatar booking system here.

Get your destination knowledge up to speed – become an expert with Tourism Qatar’s online training at www.tawashqatar.com

For more information visit www.qatarairways.com/tradeportal

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