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About Qatar Country from Oasina Roses

Qatar National Museum

Established in 1912, and first inhabited by Sheikh bin Abdullah bin Jasim Al Thani, the ruler's residence was renovated and turned into a national museum in 1975.

Al Kut Fort

Established in 1880, Al Kut Fort was renovated in 1978 and became a handicraft exhibition centre.

Folklore Museum

Being the only model of its kind in Doha, and established in 1935, the Folklore Museum is housed in a traditional building with a wind-tower (Badjeir) open from all sides. It was renovated in 1982.

Al Jussasiyah

A series of low rocky outcrops, overlooking the north-eastern coast, which bear hundreds of scattered engravings, some of which are thought to date back to prehistory times.

Murawab Fort

Qatar's oldest fort, ddates back to the Abbasid era in the third century AH and consists of a fort built on the remains of a even older one that had been destroyed by fire.

Al Zubarah Fort

Established by local builders during the era of Sheikh Abdullah bin Jasim Al Thani the, well preserved for its characterised by its high thick walls and decorated tower.

Rukayat Fort

Dating back to the late 1800s, it is considered as a model of military architecture in the Gulf.

Al Ghuwair Fort

A rectangular building, dating back to the early 1900s and characterised by its thick clay and stone walls.

Borj Bazann Tower

Built in late nineteenth and early twentieth centuries, this is a unique example of a surveillance towers in the region. It is characterised by its height, large size and decorated edges.

Al Wajbah Fort

Approximately 19 kms west of Doha, the oldest extant tower in Qatar, dating back to the nineteenth century, is the Al Wajbah fort. It was here that a famous battle took place in which Qatari people, led by the then ruler, Sheikh Qasim bin Mohammed Al Thani, defeated the Ottoman force in 1893.

House of Sheikh Mohammed bin Qasim

Situated at Umm Salal Mohammed, approximately 18 kms north of Doha, this is a fortified residence with two towers, serving both civil and defensive purposes, and containing a number of interesting architectural and decorative features.

Environment and Wildlife

The desert environment of the Qatari peninsula varies from low plains in most parts of the country to sand dunes in the south-eastern parts, with isolated sabkha, occasional pools, and well established trees such as sidr (Ziziphus nummularia), harm (Zygophyllum qatarense) and samr (Acacia tortilis) in the north. Its strategic location in the Gulf region, on the course of many north-south and east-west migrating birds, has made the Qatari Peninsula of particular interest to ornithologists and a focal point for a wide range of resident and visiting birdlife. Most of the recorded migrating species stopover in Qatar during their spring and autumn passages from Europe and Asia to Africa and Southern Arabia. The most famous Qatari bird is the houbara bustard, while Socotra cormorants breed on coastal islands and a wide variety of coastal birds may be seen throughout the year, including povers, herons, terns and gulls. Inland, larks are a feature of the local birdlife with hoopoe lark, crested lark and black-crowned finch lark all present. In autumn the list swells to include swallows, swifts, martins, warblers, shrikes, flycatchers, wheatears, wagtails and a number of falcons including kestrel and harriers. The Ministry of Municipality and Agricultural Affairs is paying special attention to preservation of endangered indigenous and migrating birds. A number of natural reserves has been established such as al-Wadhaihi in al-Shahaniyah, the gazelle reserve in Ras Ashairij and the ibex reserve on Halool island. Qatari are known for breeding camels, particularly in the southern area around al-Kar'anah, al-A'reek and al-Qaseerah, Arab thoroughbred camel races are held annually in Qatar. Coastal marine resources include important sea-grass beds, vital as shrimp, pearloyster and fish nurseries as well as providing feeding grounds for endangered dugong and turtles.

Economic Development

The economic policy of Qatar is based on diversification of national income resources through expansion of industrial and agricultural production, in combination with development of human resources. It also aims to provide a larger role to the private sector. A key objective is to achieve a surplus in the balance of payments through increasing exports and tightening budgetary control through implementation of essential reforms in financial policy. To this end, several joint stock companies have been established such as the Qatar Manufacturing Company with a capital of QR 400 million and the Qatari Water and Electricity Company at QR 1 billion. Incentives have also been offered to the private sector in order to encourage investment in industrial projects. Several laws have been passed in connection with this programme, including Law 25 of 1990 which deals with organisation of foreign capital investment in economic activity, and Law 11 of 1992 regarding income tax. So far as the hydrocarbon industries are concerned, Qatar has been able to maintain its oil production capacity, and oil production and exports have continued at levels which meet the country's financial requirements and development needs. On a worldwide basis Qatar now ranks as the third largest holder of natural gas reserves with estimates of more than 500 trillion cubic feet, and proven reserves of 350 trillion cubic feet. The first phase of development of al-Shamal gas field was opened in 1991 with a production capacity of 6 million tonnes of liquified gas per year. The Ras Laffan liquefied gas per year. The Ras Laffan liquified gas project, established in 1993, aims to produce 10 million tonnes of liquefied gas from Al Shamal gas field. Qatar has also paid special attention to development of the industrial sector and supported it through investment in manufacturing and quarrying industries. Several incentives were offered to the private sector to encourage investment in industry. A number of industries were established depending on local raw materials such as petrochemicals, chemical fertilisers, gas liquefaction, oil refining, cement, steel and iron. The private sector has also established several factories for manufacture of foodstuffs, textiles, garments, leather, wood, furniture, paper, chemicals, rubber, plastic, aluminum, machines and equipment. Particular attention is also paid to agricultural projects which aim at securing self sufficiency. The Qatar government has provided strong support to farmers and has encouraged local capital investment in this sector. The number of registered farms has recently risen to 1131, with 891 active farms, while the overall agricultural area has reached 285,018 donum. Significant agricultural developments include the Mushabiyah Date Palm Project, the Qatari Arab Company for Vegetable Production, the Qatari Arab Company for Poultry Production and the diary and sheep project in Abu Samrah area. Qatar has modern well-equipped communication and telecommunications networks, connecting it with the world through three earth-stations. Water and electricity are provided free to all citizens and the Qatar government remains committed to providing its citizens with a wide range of services and amenities.

Social Development

Education is free in Qatar at all stages, and students in government schools are provided with free books and transportation, as well as financial incentives. The standard of living in Qatar is considered one of the best worldwide, thanks to the comprehensive social care programme established two decades ago. Medical care and medicines are available for both citizens and residents, and hospitals and medical centers are equipped with the latest technological devices. Qatari women participate actively in several social service fields and have played an important role in women's social and charity activities. They have also penetrated all fields of work. Leisure time facilities are also provided for, including many local attractions such as the zoo, Doha Corniche, al-Wakra and al-Khor parks as well as the 'Alladin King' Fun City. Some might prefer to stroll along the Fourairt, Dukhan and Khor al-A'deed beaches, as well as Sileen resort and al-Nakheel island facilities. The General Authority of Youth and Sports supervises 13 sport associations and 14 clubs, of which nine are sport clubs, together with the Youth Centers Society.

Qatar at a Glance

Location: The main land-mass of Qatar lies on a peninsula of low-lying land that protrudes from the mainland of eastern Arabia, into the mid-western waters of the Arabian Gulf. It has a number of associated reefs and islands.
Area: 11,437 square kilometers
Climate: Desert temperature climate, characterised by long, hot summers and short winters with low rainfall.
Population: 600,000 people
Independence: 3 September, 1971
Accession Day: 27 June
Religion: Islam
Language: Arabic
Capital: Doha
Important towns: Misaiaeed (the primary industrial city in Qatar), Al Khor, Al Wakrah, Dukhan, Al Shamal, Al Zubarah and Ras Laffan.
Time: 3 hours ahead of GMT.
Currency: Qatari Riyal (Check Current price at xe.com).
Banks: 14 banks of which 6 are national.

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