Nestled in between the Persian Gulf and Saudi Arabia, the tiny country of Qatar is home to thriving world banking operations and oil reserves, but as a tourist destination, it is often forgotten about.

However, it’s also a country with some of the oldest history in the world, and with all-year-round hot weather, it is the ultimate destination if you’re looking for winter sun.

Qatar is also home to plenty of things to do whether you want a day full of adventure on a desert safari or fancy exploring the capital city’s art and culture scene.

But more famously, as we draw closer to the new year, Qatar is preparing to host one of its biggest sporting events yet, the FIFA World Cup 2022.

The country will see millions of fans flock to the country where over 64 adrenaline fulled matches will take place over 8 climate-controlled stadiums.

Despite the vast majority of the hotels and accommodation options being centrally located in Doha, finding where to stay in Qatar can be difficult. Especially as many of the options will be within a stone’s throw of the new stadium making it ideal for spectators.

To help you find the best place to stay in Qatar, we have created this guide on where to stay in Qatar. Here we will break down four of the best neighborhoods to stay in, including top tips for the upcoming World Cup along with the hotel’s distances from the tournament venues and other cool things you can do nearby.

Where to Stay in Qatar

In a hurry? No matter, here are the overall top places to stay in Qatar.

Mondrian Doha | Best Hotel in Qatar

Mondrian Doha Qatar

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Located in West Bay the Mondrian Doha is by far one of the coolest accommodation options to stay in Qatar. The hotel has a unique style with bold decorations, including striking rooms that evoke the look and feel of a modern design narrative of the Arabian Nights tale. Each of the rooms comes with custom-designed furniture & fixtures by Marcel Wanders including the bathroom fixtures, bedroom wall murals, crystal chandelier, bathtub, and step-in rain shower. There is also a separate work space for those who need to catch up on emails.

Marsa Malaz Kempinski, The Pearl | Best Luxury Hotel in Qatar

Marsa Malaz Kempinski Qatar

As a beautiful combination of Arabian and European design, the Marsa Malaz Kempinski is a luxurious hotel located in the prestigious ‘The Pearl’ Neighborhood. The hotel is home to spectacular views overlooking the Arabian Gulf and the Pearl-Doha, with some guests being lucky enough to be able to experience this from their private balconies. The hotel comes with a private beach, tennis court, outdoor pools, and spa. There are also 11 fine restaurants and lounges, a cigar lounge, and a jazz house.

Modern furnished 1 bedroom apartment w bills | Best Bed & Breakfast in Qatar

Modern furnished 1 bedroom apartment w bills Qatar

Situated in the Downtown Doha neighborhood, this modern apartment offers guests a sense of luxury without breaking the bank. The B&B is equipped with top-class facilities including a beautiful rooftop pool and sleek gym facilities all of which are located in a secured complex.

Qatar Neighborhood Guide – Places to Stay in Qatar

FIRST TIME IN QATAR
cityscape Doha Qatar
FIRST TIME IN QATAR

Downtown Doha

Downtown Doha is the commercial hub of Qatar’s capital city with prominent hotels and skyscrapers along with plenty of shops, restaurants, and bars.

FOR LUXURIOUS EXPERIENCE
Artificial Islands Qatar
FOR LUXURIOUS EXPERIENCE

The Pearl

Home to arguably the most luxurious experience in Qatar, the extravagant island district of The Pearl is the ultimate place to stay in Qatar if you like the finer things in life. Stroll along the spectacular harbor front for stunning views of the lavish yachts overlooking the Persian Gulf.

COOLEST AREA TO STAY
Skyscrapers Tower Qatar
COOLEST AREA TO STAY

West Bay

If you’re looking to be in a prime location to plenty of the stadiums then head to West Bay. The modern neighborhood is under 25 minutes to over four of the stadiums meaning you won’t have to fork out on transport costs.

FOR FOOTBALL FANATICS
Stadium Qatar
FOR FOOTBALL FANATICS

Al Sadd

All-year-round Al Sadd is notable for its spas, shopping, and art galleries, and with the upcoming World Cup, it has been a notable place to stay in Qatar for football fans.

The small nation of Qatar is one of the biggest transit hubs in the Middle East and attracts over two million visitors every year with its year-round warm weather and interesting culture and history. It is expected those numbers will flourish with the upcoming FIFA World Cup in 2022.

Luckily for travelers, the country has introduced specially extended train and metro systems that will link all 8 stadiums with another 30 new stops being added. So, to make sure you pick the right accommodation for your match, in each of our accommodation recommendations we have listed the closest metro station along with its distance from the stadium.

First-time visitors to Qatar will find that Downtown Doha is an excellent option. The neighborhood is home to a vibrant atmosphere and is located close by to some of Qatar’s top attractions including Souq Waqif and Aspire Park.

Alternatively, you have the swanky and exclusive man-made island development of The Pearl. The Pearl is an awesome place to stay in Qatar if you like the glamorous lifestyle. It’s home to a great selection of lavish waterfront hotels, restaurants, and bars, many of which overlook the beautiful Persian Gulf.

Next up we have arguably the coolest place to stay in Qatar: West Bay. The stylish Doha Neighborhood is typically known for its business culture, but over years it has become a hotspot for tourists looking to explore Qatar’s beautifully landscaped parks, fascinating architecture, and lavish waterfront promenade.

Finally, we have the ultimate neighborhood for those football fans: Al Sadd! Centrally located between plenty of the World Cup Stadiums, guests can choose from a great selection of accommodation options in this area – most of which have quick and easy transfers to the games.

It is important to point out that the country of Qatar follows strict Muslim rules. While they are more lenient with tourists, visitors to Qatar should respect, and are expected to respect, the Islamic faith of the country and its people and act appropriately. A few things to factor in is that Qatar does not permit dressing in a revealing manner, Western bathing attire is acceptable only at hotel pools and private beaches.

Along with this, alcohol can only be sold to you if you have a permit, however, there is an exception for hotels and restaurants where alcohol can be served in moderation to guests.

Please remember that this is not Wembley Stadium and if you don’t follow the law, the penalty is severe.

Anyway, if you’re still deliberating between Dubai or Qatar, then maybe this post will settle things!

4 Best Neighborhoods to Stay in Qatar

Let’s take a look, in more detail, at the four best neighborhoods in Qatar. Each caters to different interests along with different proximities to popular stadiums, so you can be sure to pick the neighborhood that’s right for you.

1. Downtown Doha – Best Area to Stay in for First Time Visitors

cityscape Doha Qatar

Downtown Doha is the commercial hub of Qatar’s capital city with prominent hotels and skyscrapers, along with plenty of shops, restaurants, and bars.

It’s home to an incredible selection of cultural landmarks including the Museum of Illusions, Jumaa & The Msheireb Mosques, and the markets of Souq Waqif. Downtown Doha’s central location to both the airport and key landmarks make it our top pick for places to stay in Qatar for your first time visit.

For those heading to Qatar for the FIFA world cup, staying in Downtown Doha will also give you easy access to three of the country’s stadiums: Education City Stadium, Al Thumama Stadium, and Ras Abu Aboud Stadium. So, before booking your accommodation, be sure to check out where your games are being played.

Green Garden Hotel | Best Budget Accommodation in Downtown Doha

Green Garden Hotel Qatar

The Green Garden Hotel is home to modern facilities in a central location at a steal of a price! It’s an awesome option if you’re looking at where to stay in Qatar on a budget. Guests have prime access to top landmarks including Diwan Emiri Royal Palace and Souq Waqif, along with only being a short distance to Ras Abu Aboud Stadium and Al Thumama stadium

Nearest Metro Station: Atakoy-Sirinevler Metro Station

Sharq Village & Spa, a Ritz-Carlton Hotel | Best Luxury Hotel in Downtown Doha

Sharq Village and Spa Qatar

Traditional, romantic, and secluded, guests describe staying at this luxury hotel as feeling like royalty. All guests have access to a private balcony, some of which offer spectacular views of Doha’s natural beauty. There is also a shared infinity pool and private beach. If you’re heading to Qatar for the football then Ras Abu Aboud Stadium is just a short distance away from the hotel.

Nearest Metro Station: Ras Bu Abboud

Modern furnished 1 bedroom apartment w bills | Best Bed & Breakfast in Downtown Doha

Modern furnished 1 bedroom apartment w bills Qatar

This stylish apartment is located centrally in the heart of downtown Doha. Guess also have access to a beautiful rooftop pool to cool off in after enduring the beaming Middle Eastern sun. There are also gym facilities in a secured complex. The nearest stadium to the apartment is Ras Abu Aboud Stadium along with a metro station just five minutes away that has excellent links to the other stadiums.

Nearest Tube Station: Al Doha Al Jadeda

Things to See and Do in Downtown Doha

Souq Waqif Qatar
  1. Explore the Msheireb Museums
  2. Visit the Museum of Islamic Art
  3. Make a trip to the famous landmark of Souq Waqif
  4. Learn history at the National Museum of Qatar
  5. Take a trip to Banana Island
  6. Wander around the natural beauty at Aspire Park

2. The Pearl – Where to Stay in Qatar for a Luxurious Experience

Artificial Islands Qatar

Home to arguably the most luxurious experience in Qatar, the extravagant island district of The Pearl is the ultimate place to stay in Qatar if you like the finer things in life. Stroll along the spectacular harbor front for stunning views of the lavish yachts overlooking the Persian Gulf.

The Pearl’s man-made environment has taken its influence from multiple different cultures, from the Italian feel in Qanant Quartiert, which models Venice’s iconic canals, to the Medina Centrale, which features a laid-back Mediterranean theme.

The Pearl is home to a plethora of apartments, villas, penthouses, and townhouses. We have listed three of our favorite places to stay in Qatar’s most glamorous neighborhood below.

Iconic view studio in pearl Qatar | Best Bed & Breakfast in The Pearl

Iconic view studio in pearl Qatar

This primely located studio apartment has one of the best views in The Pearl that overlooks the incredible harbor. Modern decoration encompasses the rooms. Guests staying at this studio also have access to top-class facilities including a beautiful indoor pool and gym. The studio’s nearest stadium is the Lusail, which is only a 15-minute drive away from the apartment. If you do need to rent a car may need to get a 7 day driving license for Qatar, so make sure to check this out first.

Nearest Metro Station: Legtaifiya

Marsa Malaz Kempinski, The Pearl | Best Luxury Hotel in The Pearl

Marsa Malaz Kempinski Qatar

Best described as an embodiment of both Arabian and European elegance, this luxurious hotel boasts breathtaking views over the Arabian Gulf and the Pearl-Doha. Home to an award-winning spa along with a private beach, tennis courts, and multiple outdoor pools, guests find it hard to leave this incredible accommodation in Doha. If you’re heading to Qatar for the football then the hotel is only 20 minutes away from both Lusail Stadium and Qatar Foundation Stadium.

Nearest Metro Station: Legtaifiya

Master Bedroom At Qanat Quartier the pearl Doha | Best Budget Accommodation in The Pearl

Master Bedroom At Qanat Quartier the pearl Doha Qatar

Finding budget accommodation in The Pearl can be extremely difficult and this is inevitably going to get even harder as the World Cup Approaches. This cute bedroom in a shared apartment provides guests with a prime location on a shoe-string budget. The room is just a stone’s throw away from the Qanat Quartier and Little Venezia along with being under 20 minutes away from Qatar Foundation Stadium. So hurry up and book, before it’s too late!

Nearest Metro Station: Legtaifiya

Things to See and Do in The Pearl

Doha Qatar Marine
  1. Immerse yourself in visual art at Anima Gallery
  2. Relax on Bahriya Beach
  3. Explore Little Venezia
  4. Go jet skiing from Bahriya Beach
  5. Take a boat trip to Al Safliya Island
  6. Visit Megapolis

3. West Bay & West Bay Lagoon – Coolest Area to Stay in Qatar

Skyscrapers Tower Qatar

If you’re looking to be in a prime location near to plenty of the stadiums, then head to West Bay. The modern neighborhood is under 25 minutes to over four of the stadiums, meaning you won’t have to fork out on transport costs.

Alongside The Pearl, West Bay is known for being one of the most luxurious places to stay in Qatar with it being home to beautifully landscaped parks, fascinating architecture, and a lavish waterfront promenade.

West Bay is also one of the most popular neighborhoods for tourists with it being close to lots of entertainment and attractions, including the famous West Bay Lagoon.

2BHK build timeless MEMORIES together | Best Bed & Breakfast in West Bay

2BHK build timeless MEMORIES together Qatar

Located in the heart of West Bay this modern and sleek apartment is the perfect place to stay in Qatar for families, with two large bedrooms fitting up to four guests. Staying here means you are just steps famous Lagona Mall along with being just a short walk away from the lagoon. The nearest stadium to the apartment is Lusail Stadium – the largest of the World Cup.

Nearest Metro Station: Katara Metro Station

Grand Hyatt Doha Hotel & Villas | Best Hotel in West Bay

Grand Hyatt Doha Hotel Villas Qatar

As luxurious and modern hotel by the famous Hyatt chain, guests can except top-of-the-range facilities and 5* luxury at this resort, including colourful gardens, a private beach, stunning city views, and beautiful spa facilities. Its conveniently located just a short drive away from Hamad International Airport and plenty of the Fifa World Cup Stadiums (the closest of which is Lusail Stadium).

Nearest Metro Station: Legtaifiya

Mondrian Doha | Coolest Accommodation in West Bay

Mondrian Doha Qatar

This uniquely decorated hotel is located just a short distance away from the bustling entertainment and shopping district of West Bay, near West Bay Lagoon. The hotel has a contemporary and sophisticated style with striking rooms that evoke the look and feel of a modern design narrative of the Arabian Nights tale. The hotel is also just a 10-minute drive away from Lusail Stadium, perfect for those who have a game being played there.

Nearest Metro Station: Legtaifiya

Things to See and Do in West Bay

West Bay Qatar
  1. Explore exhibits on Qatar’s history & growth at Msheireb Enrichment Centre
  2. Take in the views of the Palm Towers
  3. Wander around Al Abraj Park
  4. Relax at West Bay Lagoon
  5. Head into the cloud at Tornado Tower
  6. Visit the Museum of Illusions Doha

4. Al Sadd – Where to Stay in Qatar for Football Fanatics

Stadium Qatar

All-year-round Al Sadd is notable for its spas, shopping, and art galleries, and with the upcoming World Cup, it is also a notable place to stay in Qatar for football fans. Not only is the neighborhood located centrally to many of the stadiums, but it is also known for its local football club, which is consistently one of the top teams in the Qatar Stars League.

Along with football, Al Sadd is also known for its incredible food scene with a range of internationally-inspired cuisines including its famous Spaghetti which is tipped to be the best in the country.

Doubletree By Hilton Doha – Al Sadd | Best Luxury Hotel in Al Sadd

Doubletree By Hilton Doha Qatar

This hotel by Hilton offers guests luxurious onsite amenities including a fitness center, family-friendly outdoor pool, and three onsite restaurants serving up a ton of different cuisines. Guests also have quick access to Khalifa International Stadium, Qatar Foundation Stadium, and Al Rayyan Stadium (all of which are under 20 minutes away).

Nearest Metro Station: Joaan Metro Station (10 Minute Walk)

Superior Room Breakfast at Doha by Swiss-Belinn | Best Bed & Breakfast in Al Sadd

Superior Room Breakfast at Doha by Swiss-Belinn Qatar

The Swiss-Belinn provides a traditional and homely accommodation option with a welcoming atmosphere in central Al Sadd. Guests have plenty of options to choose from out of the many Arabian-styled guest rooms, including superior queen rooms, family rooms and romantic suites.

Nearest Metro Station: Joan Metro Station (5 Minute Walk)

Modern 1 bedroom – in a shared serviced apartment | Best Budget Accommodation in Al Sadd

Modern 1 bedroom in a shared serviced apartment Qatar

This modern and sleek two-bedroom apartment is centrally located in Al Sadd, close to a series of restaurants, cafes, and shops. Guests have a private en-suite bathroom along with shared access to a spacious living area. The nearest world cup stadiums to the apartment are Khalifa International Stadium and Qatar Foundation Stadium, both of which are under a 15-minute drive away.

Nearest Metro Station: Joaan Metro Station (10 Minute Walk)

Things to See and Do in Al Sadd

Public Beach Qatar
  1. Explore the indoor theme park of Quest
  2. Visit Qatar Art Centre
  3. Take a trip to Al Waab Family Park
  4. Wander around Al Muntazah Park
  5. Go on a tour around Jassim bin Hamad Stadium
  6. Take a dip at Public Beach
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What To Pack For Qatar

Pants, socks, underwear, soap?! Take it from me, packing for a hostel stay is not always quite as straightforward as it seems. Working out what to bring and what to leave at home is an art I have perfected over many years.

Product
Description
Don’t Let Snorers Keep You Awake!
Don’t Let Snorers Keep You Awake!

Ear Plugs

Snoring dorm-mates can ruin your nights rest and seriously damage the hostel experience. This is why I always travel with a pack of decent ear plugs.

Keep your laundry organized and stink free
Keep your laundry organized and stink free

Hanging Laundry Bag

Trust us, this is an absolute game changer. Super compact, a hanging mesh laundry bag stops your dirty clothes from stinking, you don’t know how much you need one of these… so just get it, thank us later.

Stay Dry With a Micro Towel
Stay Dry With a Micro Towel

Sea To Summit Micro Towel

Hostel towels are scummy and take forever to dry. Microfibre towels dry quickly, are compact, lightweight, and can be used as a blanket or yoga mat if need be.

Make Some New Buddies…
Make Some New Buddies…

Monopoly Deal

Forget about Poker! Monopoly Deal is the single best travel card game that we have ever played. Works with 2-5 players and guarantees happy days.

Reduce Plastic – Bring a Water Bottle!
Reduce Plastic – Bring a Water Bottle!

Grayl Geopress Water Bottle

Always travel with a water bottle! They save you money and reduce your plastic footprint on our planet. The Grayl Geopress acts as a purifier AND temperature regulator. Boom!

Check out my definitive Hotel Packing list for even more top packing tips!

Don’t Forget Travel Insurance for Qatar

ALWAYS sort out your backpacker insurance before your trip. There’s plenty to choose from in that department, but a good place to start is Safety Wing.

They offer month-to-month payments, no lock-in contracts, and require absolutely no itineraries: that’s the exact kind of insurance long-term travellers and digital nomads need.

SafetyWing is cheap, easy, and admin-free: just sign up lickety-split so you can get back to it!

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Final Thoughts on Where to Stay in Qatar

Whether you’re trying to decide where to stay in Doha to be close to the big games, or you’re just there to spend your days exploring its fantastic history, culture and landscapes, it’s important you choose the right neighborhood.

Despite its relatively small size, there are loads of great neighborhoods to explore and each one comes with something different and unique. So it’s understandable if you’re still unsure where to stay in Qatar!

If you’re there for the football make sure you check out which stadium your game is being played in before you book your accommodation. Remember, we’ve listed which stadiums and metro stations are closest to each accommodation to make your life that little bit easier. And of course, you’ll need an epic camera to capture the big games, so make sure you check out our camera guide.

Have you got any interesting information about where to stay in Qatar for the 2022 FIFA World Cup? Let us know in the comments.


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