A country located right in the center of the world and boasting of its priceless locations, Qatar is a gem of a tourist destination that amazes visitors at every step and is set to do so again as it gears up to host football's greatest competition, the FIFA World Cup 2022. 32 teams, 8 stadiums, over a million fans, and a month-long footballing carnival, the FIFA 2022 is set to be grander than ever.
But here's a thing, if you're planning a visit to Qatar for the world cup, knowing a thing or two about the host cities wouldn't be a bad idea. In fact, every city in Qatar has something special about it. So, we've brought you a round-up of the cities that are set to host the FIFA 2022 matches in Qatar.
But before we do that, let's discuss some of the interesting facts that make the upcoming world cup so special.
Facts Around FIFA World Cup In Qatar
Have a look at the notable facts and figures emerging around the world cup in Qatar.
- The FIFA World Cup in Qatar will be the first-ever winter world cup to be held in the Northern Hemisphere. Owing to the extremely hot temperatures in Qatar during June and July, the decision has been taken by FIFA to officially shift the world cup from its usual summer spot to November and December.
2. The Hamad International Airport and Qatar Airways are set to join hands to bring a record 1300 flights into the country in a single day for the whole month during the FIFA 2022. The efforts are being made in order to help visitors to book a flight to Qatar for the world cup without any sort of rushes.
In fact, owing to the central location of Qatar in the world, travel experts believe that the number of flights and visitors may even be higher than originally expected.
3. Being an Islamic country, Qatar has strict laws against the consumption of alcohol on streets and public areas. Only a few licensed hotels and bars can serve alcohol to the public. Hence, there are numerous question marks as to whether the alcohol would be made available in the stadiums or not.
In the recently hosted FIFA club world cup, Qatar banned the consumption of alcohol in the stadiums. However, the chief executive of Qatar 2022 World Cup, Hassan Abdulla Al Thawadi recently said in an interview that special permission would be granted to certain establishments to serve alcohol that would be set up as fan zones.
While this is the case, organizers are of the view that serving alcohol in the stadiums is not entirely off the agenda.
4. One of the things that is set to play a huge role in bringing the fans to Qatar, the country is perhaps the most commutable host nation for the FIFA World Cup. Not only this, but commuting from one venue to the other in Qatar wouldn't be a hassle for the fans, and here's why.
- The metro network in Qatar connects all the eight venues for the world together and is expected to ferry an estimated one million visitors during the FIFA 2022.
- Qatar's two most remote stadiums, Al Bayt and Al Wakrah are only 90 miles apart which goes to show how easy it is to travel from one location to another in the country.
- Bahrain is only 51 minutes away from the Education City Stadium through speed rail.
- The location of the country is central in the world which makes it easy for visitors to travel from all parts of the world.
5. Qatar has lined up only eight stadiums for the upcoming FIFA World Cup 2022. This will be the first time when a competition like a world cup will be played in just eight stadiums. In fact, out of all the eight stadiums seven will be newly built with world-class facilities.
The stadiums would even have cooling systems owing to the day temperatures in Qatar that can surge at distressing levels.
6. The Qatar world cup is set to be the most expensive world cup ever played with the host country spending an estimated $200 billion USD on infrastructural projects ahead of the world cup.
In fact, as per a report, Qatar is spending about $8-10 billion USD on each stadium including the development of roads and highways along with street lights and hotels.
Host Cities For The Doha FIFA World Cup 2022
Now we know about the facts and figures emerging around the world cup in Qatar. Let's talk about the cities that are set to host the FIFA World Cup matches in 2022.
Being one of the oldest and largest cities in the country, Al Wakrah is one of the host cities for the FIFA World Cup. Home to some scintillating historical sites and sandy beach, this is a city that has a rich past behind it.
As the history portrays, Al Wakrah was a famous pearl trade and fishing center. The city has seen many pearl chases over the years and is also a place where travelers can find the most number of dhows.
Speaking of what it offers, Al Wakrah is home to a scintillating sandy beach and a number of historical sites that clearly portray the traditional housing style of the city as well. Visitors coming here on their trip to Qatar can find a number of environmental and other archeological exhibits at the museums in the city.
Not only this, but the museums in the city also portray a whole history of the city, its art and architecture right from the early days. Besides, talking about the venue, the Al Wakrah is home to the Al Janoub Stadium that is one of the venues for the FIFA World Cup.
The stadium has been engineered with all modern facilities for the comfort of the fans and its design represents dhow boats that have a significant place in the city's history and are used by the city's inhabitants even today.
Al Wakrah is even home to one of the country's oldest and most significant sporting clubs, the Al Wakrah sporting club. Established about 60 years ago, the club has won promotion twice to Qatar's first division and holds a special place in the city of Al Wakrah.
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Now here's a thing, the FIFA 2022 World Cup is often being referred to as the Doha FIFA World Cup, and the reason behind this is simple to understand. Out of all the eight venues selected for the FIFA 2022 games, Doha has the majority of stadiums and is set to host the maximum number of games.
The city is located about 17 km from Al Wakrah and has a population of 2,382,000. Doha was established in the year 1686 and has a rich history behind it. From being a small village to becoming one of the wealthiest cities in the world, this is a city that is oozing with confidence today.
Visitors coming on their holidays here can find themselves spoilt for choices as the city offers a number of attractions like incredible desert landscapes, mesmerizing beaches, the finest shopping malls, and so much more.
Notably, so, the city has preserved its history in the form of its museums and forts. Sites like the Barzan Towers or the Doha Fort right at the heart of the city is a location like no other.
In fact, not just the forts and beaches Doha is home to a true man-made marvel like the Corniche which is one of the finest places when it comes to watching the sunset or the city's amazing skyline. What's more? Doha is home to another iconic location in Qatar like the Souq Waqif.
One of the finest and most historical locations in the city, visitors love coming to Souq Waqif during their travels in Qatar for a unique shopping experience. The place boasts of its traditional Qatari buildings and a number of traditional as well as International restaurants that give a blissful culinary experience to the visitors.
Talking about the venues, the city is home to six of the total eight venues for the FIFA World Cup 2022 and has already hosted a number of international sporting events over the years. Most notable ones being the 2006 Asian Games and the 2011 AFC Asian Cup which saw Japan crowned champions.
Home to one of the venues of the FIFA World Cup, Al-Khor is a city that has a history much similar to that of Doha. Although not as big as Doha in terms of its population which is about 31,547, Al-Khor was established in 1785 and well-renowned for its fishing industry and pearl trade.
The city is home to some popular Qatar tourist attractions like the Al-Thakira Natural Reserve, Purple Island, notable beaches, and a number of museums boasting of their archeological exhibits.
The city is rooted in a 3km long inlet and is a go-to pick for visitors who like Kayaking. In fact, the Al-Thakira Natural Reserve in Al-Khor is the finest site for kayaking as it offers a perfect blend of nature and wildlife experience.
Speaking of the world cup, the city is home to one of the eight venues for the FIFA World Cup which is the Al Bayt Stadium. Designed with modern facilities for the comfort of visitors and boasting of its design which has been inspired by Bayt al Sha’ar, this is a stadium that catches people's attention.
Bayt al sha’ar is the name used for traditional tents in which the nomadic people of Al-Khor used to live in older times. The design of the stadium has been inspired by it which makes it even more appealing and also passes on a message of historical importance amongst the youth of Qatar today.
Besides, the best part about Al-Khor is that it is located in very close proximity to the city of Doha. In fact, the newly opened Al-Khor road reduces the travel time between Al-Khor and Doha by up to 60%.
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One of the four cities to host the FIFA 2022 games in Qatar, Al Rayyan has a number of attractions, even though the city isn't as well known as the other cities of Qatar. It comprises of the largest population center outside the Doha proper in Qatar and is right in the thick of things as far as the FIFA 2022 is concerned.
The city is home to the Khalifa International Stadium that is one of the largest stadiums in the country and one of the venues if the FIFA World Cup. The stadium was established in 1976 in Al Rayyan but was later incorporated in the Aspire zones by the authorities in Qatar.
It originally had a maximum seating capacity of 50,000 which was later upscaled to 68,030 in accordance with the FIFA rules of minimum seating capacity requirement. Khalifa International Stadium has previously hosted many International level games.
The stadium was the venue where the 2011 AFC Asian Cup final was played. It has even hosted some major events like the International friendly between England and Brazil.
The FIFA World Cup in 2022 is getting close and the anticipation amongst the fans is unreal. With so much at stake and over $200 billion USD being spent, this World Cup promises some excitement. As for the cities set to host the games, well, every region has some history of its own and promises to fulfill the expectations of the fans set to arrive.
Whether you think of Doha, Al-Khor, Al Wakrah, and Al Rayyan, the beauty of their numerous landmarks, historical sites, stadiums, and other locations is telling to say the least. So, aren't you excited about the upcoming FIFA World Cup yet?
The 2022 World Cup will be hosted by Qatar. This will be the first-ever world in a middle eastern country.
FIFA officially postponed the World Cup 2022 qualifiers in wake of the Coronavirus outbreak. However, the finals are set to begin on schedule.
The cities set to host the FIFA 2022 games in Qatar are Doha, Al Wakrah, Al Rayyan, and Al-Khor. The majority of the venues are located in the capital city of Doha.
The FIFA World Cup 2022 will commence on 21st November 2022, and end with the final scheduled on 18th December 2022. This will be the first-ever winter world cup in the Northern Hemisphere.
The 2022 World Cup has already been moved from its usual summer slot of June and July to November and December owing to extreme heat conditions that Qatar bears during the world cup.
The infrastructural projects in Qatar are continuing with pace and the country is set to meet the deadline for completion of the venues of the World Cup. In fact, Qatar has already confirmed the completion of one of its eight venues, the Education City Stadium.
Although being an Islamic country, Qatar has strict laws against the consumption of alcohol on the streets and in public, the Chief Executive of Qatar 2022 World Cup bid, Hassan Abdulla al Thawadi said in an interview that the country would allow alcohol during the event. Specific establishments would be set up as fan zones where alcohol would be served to the fans.