It might not be promoted as heavily as its neighbours, but the small Gulf state of Qatar is fast becoming the next must-visit destination in the region.
Its capital Doha is becoming one of the world's most enticing cities and is perfect for a weekend city break or as a stop-over destination before travelling further afield to the likes of the Indian Ocean, Far East or Australia to name a few.
Alongside its modern attractions, Qatar remains a deeply traditional country and is one of the best places in the Middle East to experience Arabian culture at its best.
Here are five reasons why you should visit the destination for an experience like no other.
1 Rich history
The ancient world is never too far away in Doha. Explore Qatar's fascinating heritage at one of its many cultural attractions, which are plentiful. From the fabulous Museum of Islamic Art, which showcases 14 centuries of Islamic world history, to Al Koot Fort, one of the most stunning examples of early 20th century architecture in Qatar, built in 1927 and first used as a police station to protect the nearby Souq Waqif.
2 'Arabian Riviera'
The magnificent Doha waterfront promenade will definitely take your breath away. You can also discover Qatar's answer to Monaco, the Pearl Qatar, which is known as the 'Arabian Riviera' and is situated off the West Coast Bay. Mediterranean-style marinas sit next to internationally-renowned hotels with private beaches, and luxury shopping and high-end restaurants await you.
3 Shoppers' paradise
Whether you're after a spree at a shopping mall or a traditional trinket to take home, you will find what you're looking for in Doha. Head to the ancient Souq Waqif – which means 'Standing Market' in Arabic – to wander the labyrinthine alleyways lined with shops selling everything from Middle Eastern spices to ornate jewellery.
For a modern shopping experience, the Venetian-style Villaggio Mall is the place to be, offering top of the line luxury brands.
4 Unique amusements
Did you know that the world's first Angry Birds World opened its doors in Qatar's entertainment complex in July? Located in Doha Festival City, the theme park is teeming with thrilling attractions for the whole family.
5 The World Cup
With the 2022 World Cup being hosted in Qatar, all eyes will be on the country and its capital. In preparation for the sporting event, the country has seen lots of development, with shopping malls, five-star hotels and stadiums springing up at breakneck speed. Be one step ahead and discover the country before the crowds descend!