I am by no means an Insta-Expert but as a platform it’s one I am slowly getting to grips with and even more importantly falling in love with. There is no channel like it for giving me Wanderlust. One of the things that I have found is that finding the perfect location is one of the keys to Insta-success. Whether it be sweeping landscapes, high footfall or detail shots for me Instagram is about location, location, location. Qatar is a beautiful country that offers a lot of diversity when it comes to photography from sweeping sand dunes to amazing urban architecture Qatar has you covered. So here is my instaqatar guide to the Ten Most Instagrammable Places in Qatar.
INSTAQATAR – QATAR’s MOST INSTAGRAMMABLE PLACES
SOUQ WAQIF PHOTOGRAPHS
This has to be Qatar’s most popular tourist destination. I know whenever I have visitors this is the one place that everyone wants to go. And it provides many amazing opportunities for photographs. From the social street life to detailed pictures I don’t think there is anywhere in the country that feels more Arabian. It is great to photograph by day and by night.
One of the things I love about taking photographs in the Souq is taking in the details and the social history. I love this pic of Arabic coffee (Gahwa) pots.I also love this picture of the wheelbarrows. The souq is full of men who will carry your goods to the car in wheelbarrows for tips. I think it really captures the social side of the souq. I also love taking pictures of all of the animals at the Souq from the Emiri horses, camels and visits to the falcon souq. All can create really interesting images.
Now Baby E is toddling I would love to take her down to the Souq to do a family friendly photo shoot!
MIA PARK & INSTAGRAM
This is truly one of my favourite places to shoot in Qatar.Close to the Souq, a trip to MIA can be combined for a day of photography shooting. I love the fact that the park offers great vistas of West Bay and has possibly the best café location in all of the city. And you can take photographs inside the museum too for a change of pace. We recently visited the Treasures of China exhibition but the permanent galleries also offer great photos opps! There are also some beautiful architectural features which make photographic gems. One of my favourite photographs I’ve taken at MIA is of the palm trees leading up to the museum at sunset. I also love taking pictures of the dhows nearby but in my opinion you can’t beat the view of West Bay from the museum. We recently did a family photo shoot at MIA and these were some of my most highly liked photos on Instagrams. The colors are amazing and there are some lovely angles to play with. The Baby loved playing for the photographs.
When you think of desert you can’t help but think of vast swathes of sand dunes. I have come to learn that not all deserts look like this but the Inland Sea is the most traditional looking desert in Qatar. If you take a desert safari in Qatar this is where you go. The desert safari makes for amazing desert action shots! Sure to be an insta-success!You can also take the obligatory shot amongst the sand dunes. I’ll be honest there are a lot of people out there who do this more artfully than me (Lux Life recently came to Doha and I think you’ll agree she did some great desert shots)!
Here is my attempt! I know I should be a billowy dress walking into the sunset but I’ll be honest – I was cold!There are also fun things like camels and ATVs if you want to get more action shots!
DOHA CORNICHE – Best spot for Photography
Another central Doha spot that offers great views. I love walking the corniche while the weather is good and there is so much to photograph. Other than MIA and the Souq, the Corniche offers many great photo opps.
From the Dhow port and watching the boats cruise round the inlet,to the Emiri Diwan and finally to the glories of the West Bay skyline.It is worth walking by day And by night!
There are also some great restaurants along the corniche – our favourite is La Veranda at the Sheraton which offers an amazing Friday brunch and one you’ll definitely need a walk after.
Further out of the city, just over an hour, is Qatar’s only UNESCO World Heritage Site Zubarah fort. This is the perfect place for adding an Arabian flair to your instagram account. The fort itself is a beauty to photograph and sometimes there are festivals and shows which provide unique photo opportunities.Last time we went there was a vintage nissan car rally there which meant I could play with mixing the old and the new.
A newbie on the Qatar scene, Oxygen Park only opened last year but is a photographers dream. The park itself is filled with waterfalls, green spaces and views of the beautiful Al Shaqab Equestrian Centre. But my favourite thing to photograph in Oxygen Park has to be the new Islamic Studies Centre. The building was nominated by the Royal Institute of British Architects for an architectural award and you can totally see why!
The detailing on the building and the modern style really make this a photography gem.
About a 45 minute drive from Doha, you will be award with a great array of photo oppurnitnities. From classic beach shots, to interesting mushroom rock formations, there is plenty for the natural history photographer.For art lovers out there you can take advantage of photographing the Richard Serra sculptural artwork East/West West/East. The size on the pieces in the flat and barren landscape is something to behold. There is also a film village in Zekreet which is also a great place to have fun taking snaps and film sets like this one. I have heard so many rumours what this was used for if anyone has a definitive answer I would love to hear it.
MALL OF QATAR
Now I am personally not one to take lots of mall photographs but obviously a lot of people are given that Dubai Mall is one of the most instagrammed sites in the world! Mall of Qatar, in my opinion is probably the most photogenic. I love the huge green pillars reminiscent of Singapore in my opinion.
It even has its own fountain artwork like Dubai but instead of diving men we have cranes!
I personally love going to the Pearl. It is a great place to go for a walk and it has an amazing array on restaurants. On top of that it provides lots of great photo opps.Each area of the Pearl is modelled after a different part of the World – the main Porto Arabia area is modelled on Cannes, while Medina Central has a definite Spanish vibe. However my favourite place to photograph on the Pearl is the Qanat Quarter which is modelled after Venice. I love all the vibrant colours and even the replica Rialto Bridge. Its a great place to have fun with photography
Qatar’s cultural village. Impressive architecture, great sea views and Coll public art make Katar a great place for photographers.
Qatar is also great for those who don’t have time to leave the airport
HAMAD INTERNATIONAL AIRPORT
The last one may come as a surprise but whether you are entering Qatar or just passing through there is a an opportunity for Insta-glory! Hamad International Airport is actually beautiful but on top of that has some amazing public art, including public art playgrounds.
I don’t think anyone who travels through this airport – expat, local or tourist can resist the obligatory photograph with the Hamad International Yellow Bear!
What do you think of my list? Is there anywhere else that you would add?
AL HAZM MALL
Not yet open but sure to be a sure-fire Insta-hit when it opens. The mall is modelled on the shopping arcade in Milan and is covered in marble and mosaics. Some people have been lucky enough to have tours and even a photography class in the mall while it is under construction. This sneak peek has proven to me that this place is going to become a photography icon in Qatar!
QATAR NATIONAL MUSEUM
Currently under construction, you can’t help but be impressed with the building as it goes up! Modelled on a desert rose, the Qatar National Museum, is definitely starcitecture at its finest. I can’t wait to get into the complex and have a proper close up look!
IMPORTANT QATAR HASHTAGS
My number one favourite Doha hashtag. Linked to the SeeMyDoha account which is a “project showcasing the best of Qatar mobile photography”. Images tagged with this hashtag may be featured in their stream. If you are looking for Qatar photography inspiration this hashtag and account is the one for you
Not to be looked at when hungry! This is a really popular hashtag among the vibrant and active food blogger community in Qatar. I like to go here whenever I am looking for restaurant and date night inspiration!
Looking for other Qatar grammars?
Why not check out some of my other favourite Qatar gram peeps
First up is Cheri Macleod – Cheri does a lot of mobile photography and takes some really interesting angles showing the beauty of modern and tradition Qatari landscapes.
Rachel Ann Morris at life on wedge mixes up some great foodie pics from the Doha foodie scene alongside some other Qatar photos.
Polly at Follow Your Sunshine offers an amazing lifestyle insta feed about life in Doha
For the best roundup of Doha photos then check out the feed of See my Doha
And why not check out my instagram feed for loads of great Qatar content.
Part of #farawayfiles