Katara Cultural Village

Nestled between Asia and the Middle East, Qatar is a true crossroads where civilizations have crossed and mixed for centuries. A true emblem of this cultural melting pot, the Katara Cultural Village – located on the east coast of the country, between West Bay and The Pearl – embodies all the richness of Qatari history. With its cobbled souk-like streets, its Greco-Roman amphitheater, its mosques, and its many artistic venues, the Katara Cultural Village is a must for your next trip to Qatar, whether for a 2-day stopover in Doha alone, or a longer stay with family.

What is the Katara Cultural Village?

Katara Cultural Village

A little history 

The Katara Cultural Village was born from the vision of Sheikh Hamad Ben Khalifa Al Thani, the Father Emir of Qatar, who wanted to make his country the cultural epicenter of the region. As if to root the project in centuries of history, it is given the ancient name of Qatar: “Katara”, a term of which we find traces as early as 150 AD in the writings of the geographer Ptolemy.

The architecture of the Katara Cultural Village

Katara Cultural Village

In Katara, tradition and modernity combine harmoniously through architecture designed to reflect the richness of Qatari heritage. With its buildings and urban art inspired by the traditional Qatari architectural style, the village offers a true discovery of the cultural DNA of the country. 

The square of the Katara Cultural Village today 

The Katara Cultural Village is more than just a tourist spot and one of the good reasons to visit Qatar, it is a true crossroads of art and cultural exchange. It is home to many cultural organizations, including the Qatari Society for Engineers, the Visual Art Centre, the Theater Society, the Qatar Fine Art Society, and the Qatar Music Academy. It is an integral part of Qatar’s National Vision 2030 and aims to enlighten the Middle East through literature, visual art, crafts, music, and exhibitions.

What to see at Katara Cultural Village

Katara Amphitheater

Amphiteater At Katara Cultural Village

Completed in 2008, this amphitheater blends the concept of classical Greek theater with Islamic architecture. With a breathtaking view of the sea and a capacity of 5,000 people, it is the ideal location for high-level artistic performances.

Katara Mosque

Katara Mosque At Katara Cultural Village

The Katara Mosque, designed by Zainab Fadil Oglu, is a true architectural masterpiece, and undoubtedly one of the most beautiful buildings to see in Doha. Its blue and gold tiles are inspired by the Dolmabahçe Palace in Istanbul. A setting worthy of the Arabian Nights. 

The Golden Mosque 

Golden Mosque At Katara Cultural Village
The Golden Mosque

The Golden Mosque, also known as the Golden Masjid, is a striking representation of the Ottoman style. A sumptuous mirage covered in golden mosaics that sparkle with thousands of shards in the sun. 

The dovecotes

The Dovecotes At Katara Cultural Village
The dovecotes

Historically used in Arab villages to collect pigeon droppings and fertilize crops, earthen dovecotes now serve as a symbol of Doha’s rich cultural past amid its futuristic skyline.

Art galleries and exhibitions

Wall Art At Katara Cultural Village
The huge mural “Oryx going ahead” by Martín Ron

The village is home to several galleries, including the Katara Art Center, which regularly hosts workshops on art, sculpture, and calligraphy; and Al Markhiya Gallery , which exhibits art from Qatar and around the world. You will also find shops offering unique works.

Outside, don’t miss the various sculptures scattered around the village including “Gandhi’s Three Monkeys” by Subodh Gupta and “The Force of Nature II” by Lorenzo Quinn. The huge mural “Oryx going ahead” by Martín Ron, a tribute to the national animal of Qatar, is also worth a look.

The Drama Theater

Located in the heart of the village, the Drama Theatre is a true homage to traditional Arab theater. With a varied program ranging from classic plays to contemporary productions, there is always something interesting to see.

Katara Beach

Katara Beach At Katara Cultural Village
Katara Beach

Although quiet during the hot afternoons, Katara Beach comes alive when the day cools down thanks to the many water sports it offers speedboating, kneeboarding, parasailing, water skiing and even kitesurfing. With its 1.5 kilometers of fine sand and its breathtaking view of the Arabian Gulf, it is one of the most popular beaches in Qatar.

What to do at Katara Cultural Village?

Enjoy cultural activities

Katara Opera House At Katara Cultural Village

Whether you are a music enthusiast or simply curious, don’t miss the opportunity to attend a concert by the Qatar Philharmonic Orchestra at the Katara Opera House , an opera hall that can accommodate up to 550 people. For fans of philately, the Museum of Arab Postal Stamps is a must.

Take a walk in the park 

Katara Hill At Katara Cultural Village

The Katara Hills offer a green space to relax and enjoy panoramic views of the village and the sea. The ideal place for a picnic or to read a book.

Water activities

Katara Beach offers a variety of water activities such as parasailing, water skiing, and kayaking. If you prefer to stay dry, a walk along the beach is just as pleasant.

Activities for children

Playground At Katara Cultural Village

The village offers a multitude of activities ideal for kids, such as art workshops and puppet shows. 

For a space journey, go to the Al Thuraya Planetarium , the perfect place to explore the mysteries of the universe. 

You can also take a trip to the OliOli Museum, which is very different from other museums in Doha since it is aimed exclusively at children. It offers dozens of interactive experiences for children, all in a building shaped like a giant gift box.

Olioli Museum At Katara Cultural Village

Finally, Katara Beach, in addition to offering crystal clear waters, has a play area for children! 

Go to the cinema

Cinema At Katara Cultural Village

The brand-new Katara Cinema will offer you a little respite with its ultra-luxurious, air-conditioned rooms. With its state-of-the-art equipment, ultra-comfortable seats, and alcoves from which you can order food and drinks, the Katara Cinema is today considered the best in the country. 

Where to eat near Katara Cultural Village

Tasty Street

Do you want a quick and convenient meal? Tasty Street is the place for you with its 40 drive-in restaurants! The hardest part will not be parking the car but making a choice.

If you prefer oriental flavors, the Ard Canaan Restaurant will delight you with its authentic cuisine. 

To prepare your picnic, head to the Snan Food Hall , and its incredible glass roof with multicolored stained glass windows. A real Ali Baba’s cave for gourmets where you can find products from all over the world.

Finally, for a culinary experience with a focus on organic dishes, head to Boho Social Katara . As a bonus, a view of the Arabian Gulf! 

Where to shop

21 High Street At Katara Cultural Village

The shops of the Katara Cultural Village

With its multitude of shops offering traditional Qatari products, clothing, jewelry, and works of art, the Katara Cultural Village is the perfect place to bring back some souvenirs of Qatar before leaving. Don’t miss the Spice Market to take home a bit of the aroma of the Middle East.

 21 High Street 

Follow the countless sedans heading towards the very posh 21 High Street , a glitzy shopping center where the biggest luxury brands are concentrated. Also good to know during hot summers: the neighborhood’s outdoor area is fully air-conditioned.

Katara Cultural Village: Frequently Asked Questions

What are the opening hours of the Katara Cultural Village? 

Katara Cultural Village is generally open from 10 a.m. to 10 p.m., but opening times may vary between different attractions in the village.

Is entry to the Katara Cultural Village free? 

Entrance to the Katara Cultural Village is free. However, you may have to pay to explore some attractions like the beach or to attend Katara’s cultural events that are held from time to time.

What hotels are near the Katara Cultural Village? 

The Ritz-Calton Doha At Katara Cultural Village
The Ritz-Carlton, Doha

Nearby hotels include the Ritz -Carlton Doha , Intercontinental Doha and St. Regis Doha . These luxury hotels offer stunning views of the Arabian Gulf and are a short drive from Katara Cultural Village.