All The Best Things to Do in Doha With Kids

Doha, the capital of Qatar, is a modern city with a desert backdrop, bringing with it an intriguing mix of surprising family-friendliness.

The Qatari’s themselves have large families, as well as a large expat community of families to serve, so it’s no surprise there are plenty of perfect places for visiting families to take their children.

We also recommend if you are planning a trip to Doha, check out

  • Our guide to Qatar with Kids, which has all the basic visitor information you will need,
  • How to Do aDoha Stopovers – if you have less than a day to explore Doha, is it worth leaving the airport for some sightseeing, or do you try to grab some shut-eye at the airport?

Now on with a deep dive into Doha with your kids! 

Cultural Activities in Doha With Kids

Museum of Islamic Art

All the guidebooks are telling you to go to MIA, but with kids? Yes! This is one of those occasions where building in a trip to an art & history museum will definitely work with the kids.

The magnificent MIA is worth visiting, even with kids

If the stunning views of the Doha skyline and amazing displays aren’t enough for them, head onward to the kid’s gallery. There are walk-in workshops held on a Saturday and a monthly storytelling session (English and Arabic). Check out their family tour idea on their site (like a scavenger hunt).

Entry is free for those under 16.

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Souq Waqif

Another very touristy suggestion but nonetheless plenty that the kids will enjoy strolling the fully restored marketplace, Souq Waqif. From shopping to dining and searching for knickknacks, get lost in the small laneways and enjoy the sights and smells. Don’t miss the falconry section for something unique.

Doha Souq Waqif
A little touristy, but definitely don’t miss Souq Waqif

National Museum of Qatar

Designed in the shape of a desert rose, this interactive museum has something for everyone. The smallest members of your party will be entertained with the immersive exhibits, and after strolling through the museum, there is the chance for the kids to blow off steam in one of the two playgrounds, including the Qatar TotalEnergies Playground*, which provides a unique experience for families to explore and discover the country’s rich energy history and future.

National Museum of Qatar

After all that, you can refuel in one of four separate dining establishments across the museum.

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*please note this playground is shut during the summer months

3-2-1 Qatar Olympic and Sports Museum

A hit with all ages, the 3-2-1 museum tells the story of both sports and the Olympics throughout the years. A member of the Olympic Museum Network, a range of immersive and interactive exhibits that include a global history of sport throughout the years.

This includes a full collection of Olympic torches and a hall of athletes covering a variety of sports with Historic and replica objects, including large-scale items, such as a bobsleigh and a Formula 1 car.

The highlight of the day, however, is the interactive sporting activities that are found on the ground floor; here, you can test (and challenge each other!) your physical aptitude against various different stations – could you push a car out of a sand dune?

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Katara Cultural Village

A great place to combine learning about the country’s culture, along with entertainment and a shopping opportunity.

Katara village in doha at dusk lit up

On site, you will find not only a heritage centre but also an opera house, library, amphitheatre, planetarium, art galleries, and a souk, as well as cafes and green spaces for the kids to run around.

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Take a dhow cruise

What better way to get the full Doha experience than heading out on the waters that surround Doha. These traditional boats leave from near the Museum of Islamic Art. You can either join a group tour or charter your own boat and have an Arabic BBQ lunch – plenty of choices.

You may want to try these tour options, which will also help you get between some of the sites above:

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Parks and Outdoor Spaces in Doha with Kids

The wintertime, when the weather is cooler is, of course, the best time for Qatar in the outdoors, here’s a selection of our favourite outdoor spots to try.

MIA Park

This wonderful green space is the most likely one that tourists will stumble upon with their kids. As the name suggests, you are outside the Museum of Islamic Arts, a beautiful green parkland overlooking the West Bay skyscrapers in the distance.

There’s a nice cafe on the waterfront, a couple of large playgrounds and on weekends, there’s also a pop-up souq (market) in the cooler months.

Aspire Park

This is the biggest parkland in Doha, near to Villaggio Mall and Hyatt Plaza. It’s also known as the Green Zone for its trees, fountains and gardens – a real oasis in the midst of city and desert and social hub with walking tracks, playgrounds and a cafe overlooking a large lake.

The Aspire tower in Aspire park in Doha with kids

You will also find here the Torch Tower, from the 2006 Asian Games – now a hotel! There’s even a rotating restaurant located at the top for stunning city views.

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Corniche Promenade

Walk along the city’s 4km shoreline on this multi-purpose promenade, with spectacular views of the city and the ocean. Nighttime views as the West Bay lights up in the distance are truly special on the Doha Corniche.

Doha Cityscape landscape skyline image

Lusail Boulevard

Near Lusail Stadium, home to the FIFA World Cup 2022 Final, strolling along Lusail Boulevard is the epitome of city life. With beautiful buildings, amazing architecture, and plenty of places to stop for a coffee, a walk down the Boulevard is like no other. 

Lusial Promenade in Doha next to the water

Cool Down at the Beach

There are plenty of public beaches to choose from in a country that’s pretty much surrounded by the sea! Family favourites include:

  • Katara Beach – a 1.5km beach line as well as attached gardens close to the city.  There is a small charge to use this beach, which changes depending on the day. There is also the option to purchase various watersport activities, including water skis, kayaks, and pedal boats. Please note that there are both family beaches and men’s only beaches, with separate entrances. Learn more
katara beach on a sunny day in Doha
  • Simaisma Family Beach – about a 25-minute drive, there are some beach shelters which can be used for free, as well as toilets and a playground nearby.
  • Khor Al Adaid Beach – in the Southeast region of Qatar, approximately 80km from Doha, you will find Khor Al Adaid Beach, where you will find the Inland Sea. Accessible only by 4×4, the ever-changing sand dunes provide an incredible backdrop. Don’t worry – you can use Waze to navigate your way out over the sand dunes!
  • Azerbaijani Beach – further north from the city, but known to be calm. There are no facilities here, and you will need to have a 4×4 vehicle to drive upon the sand, so go prepared with everything from food and beach toys to sunshades and chairs!

Alternatively, arrange your family stay to be at one of Doha’s top family resorts that include a private beachfront. Some of the best for their family facilities are The Intercontinental Doha Hotel West Bay, The Grand Hyatt & Villas, West Bay Lagoon or Marsa Malaz Kempinski on the Pearl.

Desert Falls Water Park

With 19 attractions with 30 rides and slides, Desert Falls includes everything you’re looking for from a family water park. From the classic wave pool to tube slides, with two separate children’s pool areas and family group rides.

Guests staying at the Hilton Salwa Beach Resort also get access to the water park as part of their stay.

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Lusail Winter Wonderland

An outdoor amusement park that suits people of all ages. With over 40 rides, including nine exhilarating thrill rides and 15 family-friendly rides, Lusail Winter Wonderland has it all. Not a thrill-seeker? Then you can participate in the carnival games that are spread out across the park.

With several food and beverage outlets available, you won’t be hungry in this wonderland. But please note you will have to top up and add credit to your wristband in order to make a purchase.

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Outdoor Leisure Trail at Doha Festival City

The area surrounding the giant Doha Festival City (read plenty more about what you’ll find inside below), has been set up for fitness fanatics to enjoy for free. You will find mountain bike courses for beginners through to advanced, as well as exercise stations and a walking track.

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Oxygen Park

Slightly further off the normal tourist trail, you will find this neat little park perfect for exercising, riding bikes and a shaded play park. It is in the Ar-Rayyan area of Doha and has previously played host to the Qatar International Food Festival (QIFF), one of the city’s most popular international events.

Here you will also find the Quranic Botanical Gardens, Qatar National Library, Torba Farmers Market and Minaretein building.

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Sheraton Hotel Park

Bringing some greenery to the West Bay business district side of town. You will find this one, as the name suggests, in front of the Sheraton. Beautifully laid out gardens with plenty of greenery, exercise stations, as well as a playground; and its bonus feature – water fountains!

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Al Khor Park

Enjoy aviaries to water fountains, and lovely green spaces to run around or take a picnic. Although technically not called a zoo, here you will find goats, zebra, oryx, emus and other exotic birds. There’s also a small train and a mini-golf course. Tuesday women & Children only.

Learn more here

Al Bidda Park

Rivalling Aspire Park in terms of size, Al Bidda Park is made up of three separate spaces: Al Bidda. Arumailah and Wadi Al Sail.

Al Bidda Park in Doha with trees and skyscrapers behind

Throughout the park, you can find various sporting facilities (football, tennis, volleyball, padel and basketball), eight separate play parks, winding walking trails and a chance to hire bicycles to explore at your leisure.

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Family Parks

When all else fails, there’s always a playpark, right?  Across Qatar, there are several play parks across each municipality – so wherever you stay, there will be a family park close to you. Each family park will have plenty of space for the kids to run around as well as play equipment

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The Pearl

Get a taste of modern Doha strolling the luxurious offshore development of The Pearl, Qatar. Luxury yachts in the marina to restaurants and cafes along the promenades.

A distinctly Venetian feel at the Pearl, Doha

Indoor Idea with Kids in Doha

Make no mistake, the summers in Doha can be HOT!  There are plenty of ways to keep your cool, though, with kids in Doha’s abundance of shopping malls and indoor play spaces. Here are some of the biggest and best you can check out during your stay in Doha.

Gondolania Theme Park

Located in Villaggio Mall, this is the city’s largest indoor entertainment centre.  You’ll find everything from roller coasters to a Ferris wheel in this indoor family entertainment centre – or take a gondola ride, skate on the ice rink, play bowling, laser tag, you name it!

This is the perfect place for your hot days in Doha when you still want to keep the family entertained. Don’t miss the 4D movie experience and a huge soft play for your smaller kids.

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Angry Birds World

Located in Doha Festival City, you will find everything from educational activities to rides for kids of all ages to enjoy. The park is partly indoors, partly outdoors to maximise year-round enjoyment.  Plenty of food on-site and opportunities to spend on Angry Birds merchandise, of course!

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Snow Dunes

Another spectacular new opening at Doha Festival City will take you on an Arabian-themed snowy wonderland (yes, apparently that is possible!) From Snow slides to racing rides and an icy-themed merry-go-round, they have truly brought sub-zero life to the desert.

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KidZania Doha

A real-life city where kids are in charge! They must work hard at different “jobs” and learn new skills in order to acquire kidZoos to spend on leisure activities. It’s hands-off for the parents as kids rule in Kidzania under the Zupervisor’s careful instructions. Best suited for your 4 to 11-year-olds. Found in Aspire Zone.

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CanDo Doha

Found in the Gate Mall at West Bay, the aim of this indoor play centre is to keep kids active with a new approach to digital games. There will be plenty of rowing, jumping, cycling and dancing to get them up and moving, not your average tech arcade!

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Kids entertainment for your littlest ones in a pleasant setting that encourages role-play through to climbing and small group activities. Caboodle can be found in Doha Festival City.

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Jungle Zone

Jungle Zone in Hyatt Plaza is an indoor jungle-themed playground with amusement-style arcade games and a mini fun coaster. Enjoy the 7D multisensory ride and even a zipline!

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Found in the Pearl, this is where you’ll get your fix of arcade-style entertainment perfect for older kids. There are plenty of indoor sports, too, including bowling, darts and billiards, or try your vocal cords in the Karaoke room.

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This giant indoor gaming centre is to be found in the impressively large Doha Festival City. Includes racing simulators through to escape tooms and arcade games, and not to miss the eSports arena. Best suited to your teens and adults.

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Doha Quest

With EpiQ Coaster – the world’s tallest indoor roller coaster and the world’s tallest indoor drop tower, Qatar’s first indoor theme park has over 30 rides and attractions that will cater to your kids’ sense of adventure!

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A giant 1000 square metre inflatable park, custom designed and based in the ground floor of City Center Mall.

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Trampoline Parks

When all else fails, there is no better way to blow off steam than to jump around on a trampoline, and Qatar has plenty of trampoline parks.

Trampo; based in Aspire Zone, Trampo has both trampolines and bounce bags, as well as a huge soft play area, climbing walls and a sky trail to allow your fearless adventurers to zipline above the bouncers,

Jumpino; based in Place Vendome Mall, Jumpino is the largest trampoline park in Qatar at over 25,000 square foot, a giant family playground of wall-to-wall trampolines.

Bounce; based in Tawar Mall, not only does Bounce feature trampolines, they also have a giant parkour run as well as an X-treme sports run for the more adventurous.

Jump – aimed at younger children, this trampoline park consists mainly of trampolines to allow them to jump to their heart’s content.

Doha Day Trip Ideas with Kids

We cover these in more detail in our guide to places to visit in Qatar – Beyond the City, but as a brief introduction, here are a few ideas to get you started:

Dune Bashing in the Desert

A fun experience for desert first-timers, and residents alike. A typical dune bashing experience will see you picked up from your city hotel and then whisked off to the desert dunes for a thrilling ride before being treated to a traditional Bedouin evening under the stars.

Some operators will throw camel rides and sandboarding into the mix, along with a traditional meal, henna painting and musical entertainment. Best done in the cooler winter months.

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Al-Zubarah Fort

Another tourist favourite is that this is a bit out of Doha city, so you’d best organise your own transport or see it as part of an organised tour.

This UNESCO World Heritage Site is now a museum in the ancient town of Zubarah, in the north of Qatar. This amazingly well-preserved building is a great place for kids to learn more about Bedouin life and Arabian trade from centuries past.

This guided tour of North Qatar will take you to the fort as well as Umm Salal Fortress and Al Khor Museum.

Al Zubarah Fort

Khor Al Udeid

The inland sea is another hugely popular attraction families love to add to a Doha itinerary. Where the desert meets the beach; perfect for camping and enjoying a night under the stars.

Check out these companies that operate tours to get you off-road and enjoying one of the country’s most spectacular sites bordering Saudi Arabia:

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Getting Around in Doha

Most attractions in Doha are too spread out to walk in between, so you will find yourself needing a taxi to get from place to place, unless you join a guided tour.

Many hotels will offer a shuttle service from the airport, so do check this when booking but expect to use a taxi in most cases to get around in Doha. They will not come equipped with car seats so bear this in mind if making a stopover and planning what gear you will need with kids.

Have you got any more suggestions of fun things to do with kids in Doha? We’d love to hear about them in the comments.

Read more here about Doha & Qatar

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Family Travel Middle East
Family Travel Middle East

The Family Travel in the Middle East team of travel writers are all parents based in the Middle East, sharing first hand experiences and reviews from across the region to help you plan your next family adventure.

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