A souq is a traditional, open-air market place and Doha's most popular and biggest is without a doubt Souq Waqif, which is located just off the Corniche waterfront promenade on Al Souq Street. Souq Waqif was built on a traditional Bedouin market place site and has remained one of Qatar's busiest market places ever since. In 2004, it was completely restored according to traditional Qatari architectural techniques to give a more authentic feel.
Everything your heart desires
If there is something special you are looking for, chances are you will find it here. The winding streets in the souq are packed with shops selling oriental spices, fabric, perfumes, traditional crafts, pets, souvenirs, knick-knacks, and much more. The market is also home to a number of cafés serving both traditional Qatari food and specialties from all over the world. The Souqs are closed from noon to 4pm but you are still able to relax and enjoy a cup of coffee or the traditional shisha at one of the many cafes. Souq Waqif also has its own art center that combines art shops and an exhibition space making it a great stop on a cultural tour of Doha, which, naturally, should also include a stop at the nearby Museum of Islamic Art.
Shop to your heart's content
With so many tempting wares on display, there is a good chance that you will spend a long time here and end up buying too much. If that is the case, do not worry. You can always hire a "hamali," a wheelbarrow porter who will help you carry your goods for a small fee.
The Gold Souq adjoining Souq Waqif is a traditional gold market and the perfect place to do a spot of jewelry shopping.