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Thursday, January 04, 2007


The beach at Al KhorOlder than Doha but far smaller in size (the whole municipality had a population of 31,000 according to the 2004 census) and importance, Al Khor is located an easy 50 kilometres from the capital city, to the North of Doha. This former pearl fishing centre is currently under renovation – beautifully manicured flower beds greet you as you drive in from the desert, but the road alongside the Corniche is shut off and half the city seems to be being dug up.

What to do

There’s not a lot to do in Al Khor, although I always find it a refreshing change to Doha. The harbour is worth a visit, and there’s a fish market just in front of the harbour. There’s mangrove swamps to look at, which should prove popular for birdwatchers. You can walk along the beach, where several play areas have been set up for children, baseball nets strung up and sun shelters erected. Between the beach and the harbour, there’s a small museum, although to be honest it’s currently pretty rubbish. Amazingly, I noticed two public libraries, and a department for the promotion of culture.There may be more things to do in the future, as half the town is being rebuilt, though its probably worth wandering round the town now to appreciate the older buildings and wind towers before they get knocked down.


Bull dozers at work in Al Khor on a dark and chilly December dayThere’s a Hamad Medical Corporation Hospital nearby, but most of the facilities available are in Al Khor community. This is a housing complex for employees of Qatar Gas and Ras Gas. The community has a population of four thousand and has a medical centre, a supermarket and several clubs for its inhabitants with swimming pools, tennis and basketball courts and so on. Al Khor International School was established at the behest of Qatar Gas and Ras Gas, and is a satellite school of Doha English Speaking School. Education is also available in French.

School contact details:

Doha English Speaking School Al Khor (DESS),
Address: Al Khor community, PO Box 22166, Doha, Qatar
Website: http://www.akdess.com/school.htm
Email: akisbs@qatar.net.qa
Tel: +974-4734666
Fax: +974-4734665


Despite being a small town with a population of 30,000, Al Khor has a 20,000 capacity stadium and a football team in the Q league.


Second course at a Turkish restaurant in Al Khor There’s a few restaurants strung along AL Khor’s main street – the vast majority of which seem to be Turkish. You can have some very good food here for very good prices – try asking them to put you together a platter of mixed food.


Al Sultan Beach Resort is a new and plush hotel with 224 rooms, all equipped with with wireless internet. It’s also the only hotel we could find. We were quoted a pricey 1200 riyals ($330) for a night in a standard room.

Contact: Tel: 4722666 Fax: 4724111 Reservation: 5766660

Around Al Khor

There's some public gardens just outside Al Khor, and at nearby Al Thakira there are salt marshes which provide a very different scene to the normally dry desert. If you are feeling brave, cross the salt marshes in search of the Al Thakira beach. Losail racing circuit is located halfway between Doha and Al Khor, and has a number of races throughout the year. If you have got a four by four you could also visit the rock carvings at Jabal Jassiya.

Getting there:

If you go along Suhaim Bin Hamad , carry along under the new underpass by Hamad hospital, and just keep going straight! You’ll drive into and through the desert, past Losail Racing Track, until you hit the town. You can normally head straight through town and then back along the Corniche, but currently you need to head through the centre of town, past two mosques, and take the third exit off the roundabout after the public library. This will take you to the fish market, museum and beach.

Also see: Messaieed Industrial City

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