Posted on February 03, 2018

As the Middle East continues to witness positive growth in tourism, especially in the Gulf region where tourism, investment and infrastructure receive great attention, according to a United Nations World Tourism Organization (UNWTO) report, Qatar is considered one of the fastest growing countries in this field.

This has been helped by the remarkable development and the establishment of tourism facilities and the giant urban development in Qatar. Tourism in Qatar is divided into several types, including cultural, historical, religious, maritime categories. The most prominent Qatari tourist attraction is Mathaf: the Arab Museum of Modern Art, which is one of the new museums, revealing the technical inventory of contemporary Arabs in an attractive and distinctive way. The museum contains many fine works of art and textiles that reflect the historical periods of the Arab and Muslim world. Hence, the museum has gained a distinguished position both internally and externally, and has become an important tourist destination for many visitors from around the world.

Aqua Park Qatar is a beautiful water park built over 50,000 square metres and contains many exciting water sports. It is considered one of the most beautiful places where families can spend enjoyable time. Doha Corniche is another beautiful destination boasting many distinctive and attractive architectural landmarks. From Doha Corniche, it is possible to take boats to Banana Island, which is a great tourist destination with its hotels and restaurants and entertainment places suitable for families and other different age groups.

Souq Waqif is a traditional market and one of the most important tourist attractions in Doha, combining heritage and originality with modern urban life. It is the most famous tourist and heritage destination for tourists and citizens. Souq Waqif is famous for selling heritage items and souvenirs, and concerts are also held there. It has many local, Arab, and international restaurants. Katara is a cultural district that aims to promote the cultural movement in Qatar and support creative energies through its various facilities and buildings. It is a meeting place for all intellectuals and artists and a centre for promoting cultural awareness through festivals, exhibitions, symposiums, concerts and all forms of artistic expression.

Qatar Ports Management Company, the exclusive operator of commercial and tourist ports in Qatar, announced on October 26 the launch of the cruise season for 2017-18 in Qatar in conjunction with the arrival of the tourist vessel Seabourn Anchor to Doha port, carrying more than 500 tourists of different nationalities. It is scheduled that this season will witness until April, 2018, the arrival of 21 cruise ships to Doha port, including five cruise ships to visit the shores of Qatar for the first time as part of tours in the Arab Gulf. 

Tourism is the world's third-largest source of income, accounting for 10 percent of the world's gross domestic product, according to UNWTO Secretary General Zurab Pololikashvili. Speaking during a press conference, the UNWTO secretary general said that the number of tourists in the Middle East region increased by 5 percent in 2017 compared to the previous year. The number of arrivals to the Middle East stood at 58 million tourists in 2017.