Souq Al Wakra Introduces Arab Heritage and Culture to World Cup Fans

Souq Al Wakra Introduces Arab Heritage and Culture to World Cup Fans By Aulia Silva - November 15, 2022
Souq Al Wakra Introduces Arab Heritage and Culture to World Cup Fans

Souq Al Wakra

Souq Al Wakra is one of the unique stories that tell the history of the State of Qatar and its journey to modernity while sensing the pride of the past, combining old architectural with new buildings and traditional identity with innovative modern solutions.

Located on the southeastern coast of the State of Qatar, Souq Al Wakra represents an extension of the open historical market of the City of Al Wakra, which was originally a small fishing and pearling village founded in 1828. At that time, Al Wakra was a lifeline of the country through the fishing and pearl trade.

After its development, renovation and rehabilitation, the old Al Wakra Souq was transformed into Souq Al Wakra, which was officially opened on Dec. 18, 2014 during the celebrations of Qatar National Day.

The Souq, which is 20 kilometers away from the capital, is considered one of the most famous tourist destinations with a charming view overlooking the beach and places for picnics and sitting. The Souq houses a variety of restaurants, cafes, shops and kiosks.

Located near Al Janoub Stadium, one of the FIFA World Cup Qatar 2022 stadiums, Souq Al Wakra will be an ideal destination for fans to witness festivals, events and activities, most notably the 2022 Camel World Cup Festival, which aims to introduce World Cup fans to the heritage and culture of the people of Qatar and the Gulf region.

Since its inception, the Souq has attracted citizens, residents and visitors alike with its intimate atmosphere, remarkable heritage view and low walls that tell a unique story about the history of the State of Qatar, where the ancient Souq directly overlooks the sea and contains many shops for heritage industries.

In its buildings, the Souq combines a contemporary approach with traditional architecture, which is embodied in the Qatari house built of stones and mud, while its walls are covered with a layer of plaster decorated with pebbles, and traditional houses are spread on the sides of the Souq, the layout of the Souq resembles an old fishing village, with houses with low-walled courtyards, a variety of shops and restaurants, and narrow alleys leading to the beach, some overlooking the sea.

With its architectural structure and its combination of various restaurants and cafes suitable for all nationalities, Souq Al Wakra is a copy of the traditional Souq Waqif located in the heart of Doha. It has also become one of the distinctive places for vacations and picnics, in addition to buying some supplies sold by several shops, especially for the people and residents of Al Wakra.

Souq Al Wakra includes many distinctive facilities, most notably Souq Al Wakra Hotel, which was opened in 2018, and consists of two historic buildings whose designs preserved the traditional heritage character to preserve the architecture that reflects the image of the original Qatari homes in the past.

The hotel includes 101 rooms and suites, with classic thatched roofs evoking ancient basketry making, the rooms are decorated with colorful decorations that reflect the joyful blue of the sea, while the earthy color symbolizes the desert sands inspired by the history of Al Wakra. The majlis across from the hotel provides an opportunity to enjoy Bedouin-style evenings.

Among the landmarks that added beauty and originality to the market is the famous Iconic Pearl Monument that was installed at the end of March 2021, after it was moved from Al Wakra Road to the old Souq Al Wakra, on the roundabout known as the former Al Fardah Roundabout adjacent to Al Wakra Port.

The Pearl Monument has great symbolism for the residents of the city of Al Wakra, which was famous for fishing and pearling. It was built in the late eighties of the last century and placed on Al Wakra Road to draw inspiration from the history of that coastal city with a calm nature.

It is worth noting that the city of Al Wakra won the United Nations Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organization (UNESCO) Award for Learning Cities for the year 2021, outperforming more than 60 cities around the world.

Al Wakra received the permanent membership of the Learning Cities Network in 2017, which is an organization that includes all the cities of the world affiliated with UNESCO, and believes that the future of the world lies in lifelong learning in all its forms. It includes more than 220 cities.

Al Wakra received this award after implementing its strategy to transform into a sustainable city, by implementing solar-powered lighting projects and launching national campaigns to raise awareness of sustainability and its importance throughout the year and in its various regions, in addition to achieving the fourth goal 'quality education' to serve the eleventh goal, which is 'building sustainable societies', based on Qatar's strategy in providing learning opportunities for all and global indicators of the quality of education.


By Aulia Silva - November 15, 2022

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