Wednesday, April 08, 2015

Doha layover

We had a 13 hour layover in Doha. For the first few hours we tried sleeping in one of their quiet rooms. 
Then we signed up for a free bus tour of the city and had breakfast in the food court while we waited for the tour start time.
A competent young women guided the ten of us through immigration and out of the airport without us needing visas for Qatar ($55 USD each for Canadians otherwise).

Our guide was a man from Nepal who told us a few astonishing facts about Qatar. It is 160 kms long and 80 kms wide, with only 2.5 million people. 85% are foreigners who do all the manual and service labour. No one pays taxes.

Behind us is new Doha which didn't exist at all five years ago.

The architecture is quite eclectic, but all boasts of the great wealth of the country which is derived from gas. Fuel for your car is 25 cents per litre, drinking water is 3 dollars per litre.

A close up of some of the buildings.

There is a real Disney feel to what we were shown. Even this ATM is picturesque.

The office of the photography society.

A mosque in the new old quarter.

Foreigners are only allowed to buy land or real estate on a man made island. It has a harbour and is very upscale.

Two pictures of the harbour for foreigners.

We were also taken to the old market, which was rebuilt ten years ago.

It was spotless, even with the horseman patrol.

It is very quaint, but we didn't buy a thing.
We managed to get back into the airport again and are heading to Cairo in a few minutes.