This blog post was updated on July 12, 2021.
Located in the Persian Gulf and neighbors with Bahrain, the tiny Gulf nation of Qatar officially gained independence from Britain on this day in 1971. Since its declaration for independence from Great Britain, Qatar has grown into a shining and booming independent state. Not only is its one of the wealthiest countries in the world, but Qatar is also becoming quite the tourist attraction, rivaling that of Dubai with its glistening skyscrapers in the desert and natural wonders. In honor of Qatar’s Independence Day, we are sharing some fun facts about the country that you might not know.
Qatar, The World’s Cup’s Smallest Host (Maybe): When Qatar was named the host of the World Cup for 2022, critics were a bit worried about the best players in the world competing in 120 degree heat. However, Qatar was named the host, making it the smallest country in the world to receive the World Cup nod. According to the CIA World Factbook, the population of Qatar as of July 2015 was 2,194,817 people, making it close to the population of Houston. If you think that sounds small, in terms of land area, Qatar is slightly smaller than Connecticut.
It Gets Toasty: The climate in Qatar might be a traveler’s first curiosity when planning a trip to the Gulf nation. Qatar boasts an arid climate in which the summers are very hot in humid and winters are mild. While you might think you can take the heat, think again. In the summer, especially in July and August, it isn’t uncommon to see temperatures stretching from 105 degrees to 122 degrees Fahrenheit with 90% humidity. Doha, the capital, in particular reaches such extreme temperatures. If you are plotting a trip to Qatar, you can dodge the heat by visiting from October to May when the weather is at its most pleasant.
Doha Has A Lot of Dough: Doha acts as the capital of Qatar and is the general point of reference in the country. It also happens to be one loaded capital. Doha resides on most of the world’s natural gas supply. As one would expect with such an accolade, Doha has the highest per capita income of any place on Earth.
Everybody is working for…Thursday?: Most of us have our eyes set on Friday for it marks the start of the weekend. And while we work for the weekend, people in Qatar work for Thursdays. Weekends aren’t your standard Saturday and Sunday here. Rather, people in Qatar set their sights on the weekend on Friday and Saturday. In fact, many shops and attractions are even closed on Fridays. The workweek generally spans from Sunday through Thursday.