Let's explore Wakrah port and Al Wakrah old souq

Let's explore Wakrah port and Al Wakrah old souq

Qatar Living
By Qatar Living

Al Wakrah began as a lovely fishing village and has now grown to become one of Qatar's largest municipalities. Its’ lovely beaches, traditional markets, and friendly gardens give off a calming vibe. The city has prospered as a result of modern advances, but inhabitants continue to cling to their heritage. 

Al Wakrah is a terrific place to visit because of its beautiful natural environment and fascinating local culture. Whether you want to marvel at the beach landscape or immerse yourself in the local culture, there's something for everyone.

Among many blissful destinations across Qatar, Al Wakrah Port is one that brings out the meaning of tranquility at its best. Walking around the port and feasting your eyes on the blue waters feels so surreal. Al Wakrah has a rich history as a fishing village. Here you can admire fishing boats docked at the marina and spot the ones patrolling the waters to supply the town with fresh seafood. Casting a net at Port Al-Wakrah is a timeless activity for many locals. You can always settle down by the water for some fresh catch.

The easiest way to get to Port Al-Wakrah is by car – take a turn off Al Wakra Main Street and venture towards the water until you reach Al Meena Street. When you arrive at the marina, you'll spot dozens of boats with their hooks in the water, waiting for the next catch.

Adjacent to the port, you can spot one of the famous old roundabouts, the Pearl monument that has since been relocated between Al Wakrah Old Souq and the Al Wakrah port after the upgrading works of the Al Wakrah main road. If you're walking along the seaside part of the souq, you surely won't miss this towering icon - a landmark of Al Wakrah city.

The next place to head over to is Al Wakrah Old Souq. It is a bustling market where you may buy souvenirs, eat at a local café, and stroll along the beach. The streets are also lined with coastal restaurants and local sellers. The rustic setting of the market, with locals and tourists buying homemade goods, takes you back in time.  

Because of the traditional architecture and layout of the squares, you'll have a more real souq experience. The relaxed atmosphere of Al Wakrah Souq makes it a pleasant spot to spend a day with family and friends. You're only a few minutes away from the coast's family-friendly beaches. 

Here’s some of the things you can do at the souq:

1) Try out various cuisines 

 

There are a number of restaurants and cafés situated along the seaside, facing the parking lot. The cuisine you can find is varied although seafood is the most popular here. For grilled seafood, try Danat Al Bahar BBQ Fish, try Yemeni cuisine at Al Fanar restaurant facing the beach, have Italian food at Mercato Antico, cool down with ice cream from Gharissa, or gobble down diner food at Bennigan's facing the spacious parking area. 

2) Enjoy a stroll in the alleyways 

Reminiscent of a traditional Arabian village and market, part of Souq Al Wakrah's charms is its winding alleyways which lead to the beach and corniche. Walk around the alleyways and courtyards and check out what hidden gems you can find. These passageways are popular with photographers and photography enthusiasts in Qatar. 

3) Abu Manaratain Mosque 

While there are a few mosques situated in Al Wakrah Old Souq, there's one you shouldn't miss out on. Abu Manaratain Mosque, one of the oldest mosques in the municipality, is located within the Old Souq. The mosque only has one minaret although 'Manaratain' means two minarets.

4) Swim or walk by the family beach

Dotted with old dhow boats along the sand, the Souq Al Wakrah Family Beach requires swimmers to adhere to proper swimwear. Pets, smoking, fire, barbeque, camping, photography are not allowed on the beach, and swimming shouldn’t be done after sunset.

Not a fan of swimming? There are plenty of seats along the beach where you can just sit down and gaze at the horizon. Grab a karak and a book and you’re set for a tranquil evening.

5) Fancy a snack, visit any café

Lined up across the promenade are a variety of cafés that you can visit for a small bite, tea, or coffee with your family or friends.

Each one of them has its own unique architectural beauty. Essair Café especially had a very earthy, rustic and traditional feel to it.

6) Kids play area

Children can always stop by here to play with their friends and enjoy their day. The Souq Al Wakrah kids’ play area is pretty well-spread and can entertain children for hours at an end. This play area has everything a child would love, such as slides, dozens of swings, a pirate ship, and even mini rock climbing equipment that help children stay active and have fun.

7) Hop onto a horse or horse-drawn buggy

To fully enjoy the evening Souq experience, feel free to hop on to a horse-drawn buggy for two and enjoy the ride. It is indeed a unique experience and gives you all those vintage-era feels. Little kids can also ride a pony within an enclosure for a nominal fee. Get your little one here and let them have a ride they thoroughly enjoy.

8) Stroll across the promenade

Enjoy the evening air while you walk and break in some fresh, oceanic air, while you feast your eyes on some picturesque views. The area is not usually very crowded so it is really a great place to be if you need some fresh air away from heavy crowds.

You can always enjoy a nice hot karak while you take your walk. 

9) Shop and buy local 

While the number of shops seems to be dwindling over the years, there are still markets and shops that you can check out. Out of the 10 zones of Al Wakrah Old Souq, 5 of them have dedicated markets/sections for different products such as dates, nuts, fish, cheese, flowers, sweets, women's accessories, perfume, gold, souvenirs, meat, vegetables, fruits, spice, handicrafts, utensils, swords, carpet, birds and animals, wood, and marine equipment.

Have you visited these two scenic spots in the south of Qatar? If you haven’t yet, now is the time. Spend quality time with your loved ones discovering heritage rich sites and enjoy the evenings. What is your favorite thing to do here?

Let us know in the comments below.

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