After a year of living in Qatar, I have some great and bad memories. But is it worth visiting? Yes, I believe it is. The West Bay area in Qatar has beautiful skyscrapers, malls, historical sites and more.
Qatar is attempting to be the second Dubai but has a great deal of work ahead of them. It’s a more conservative country, women do have to dress appropriately and cover-up when they go out.
Is it safe for an American? I know these questions do come to mind when you’re visiting a new place. From my experience, depending on where you go or who you talk to, they all have their own feelings about Americans.
Yes, I believe it’s safe for an American. Qatar has a big expat community in West Bay and the Pearl. I did have an encounter at a bar, where a man asked where I was from. As soon as I said I was American, his attitude changed and started being very disrespectful. No matter where you go, you’re always going to find someone that doesn’t like you over something you can’t help. Don’t let that stop you from traveling.
Is it safe for women? I believe it is safe for women, but Qatar is a dominantly male country. If you are alone, make sure to cover up and not to go out at night by yourself. If you want to experience Qatar at night, join a meetup group.
I’ve heard a few stories about expat women, getting hurt, burnt or raped, especially when they’re drunk. These are stories I’ve heard from Taxi drivers, so they may not be true. Just make sure to know your surroundings and trust the people you’re with.
Don’t risk drinking and driving! Qatar has a no tolerance rule, you will get fined, serve jail time and/or have to leave the country.
Best time to go: September – April. Since it’s not scorching hot, so you’re able to really enjoy your time.
What to visit? Museum of Islamic Art, W Hotel, Sand Dunes, Dhow boats, Villaggio Mall and The Pearl