Doha Summer Fun Park, an exciting series of summer events organized by Qatar Tourism Authority (QTA), opened today at the Doha Exhibitions Center. Running through September 14, the 8-week festival is timed to offer families an incentive and invitation to visit during the summer holidays; in addition it coincides with the return of many local families just before Ramadan. The event is expected to attract over 250,000 visitors over the period from both Doha and other countries in the GCC region.
The Doha Summer Fun Park is just one of the activities for locals, residents and regional visitors organized by Qatar Tourism Authority as part of the overall tourism strategy for Qatar. Mr. Ahmed Al Nuaimi, Chairman of Qatar Tourism Authority, stresses that developing domestic tourism is just as important as international tourism for Qatar. "Building a strong domestic tourism base is a key element in any sustainable national tourism strategy," stated Mr. Al Nuaimi. "Relying on international tourism alone is not enough. As we have seen even in the last twelve months, there are many unforeseen circumstances – natural and economic – that can affect international tourism, reflecting a decline in foreign visitors." A strong culture of domestic tourism is important to Qatar Tourism Authority's long-term strategy, as locals and residents essentially become ambassadors to international visitors, promoting tourism in Qatar. "Domestic tourism stimulates pride in our country's culture and heritage," continued Mr. Al Nuaimi. "As residents spend more time in Qatar, they see and learn more about the country, reinforcing traditions and helping to build a stronger economic structure for tourism."
Through organizing new events such as the Doha Food Festival held in early 2010, and the Doha Motor Show scheduled for January 2011, Qatar Tourism Authority has been responding to comments and suggestions from residents looking for more activities to do in Qatar. "We are bringing new events to Qatar and promoting different cultural and leisure activities to encourage residents to take more holidays domestically. These positive steps will in turn stimulate regional tourism and help to accelerate our overall tourism strategy," stated Mr. Al Nuaimi.
In response to comments from residents about past summer events, Qatar Tourism Authority has made some significant changes to this year's Doha Summer Fun Park. The summer fun runs for nearly 2 months, through Ramadan and into the early days of Eid Al Fitr. There will be special programs and activities planned during Ramadan. This year, Qatar Islamic Center (Fanar) is the cultural sponsor of the event, in addition, the Skills Development Center will participate, giving away prizes for children. "This year's summer events feature a wide variety of culture-rich entertainment and fun leisure activities for kids and families over a longer period, which will make the summer holiday lively and unforgettable," said Mr. Al Nuaimi. "Doha Summer Fun Park will attract residents, offering safe, fun family entertainment close to home, encouraging more residents to spend their vacation in Qatar."
Breaking away from past events which were held in shopping malls, Doha Summer Fun Park takes full advantage of the space at the Doha Exhibitions Center, with the entire event occupying 12,500 square meters. Doha Summer Fun Park is offering many rides and attractions featuring for the first time in Qatar. These games and rides are appropriate for a variety of age groups from adult and teens to school children and children under six. For the duration of the festival, there are restaurants serving a variety of foods from different cultures including, Middle Eastern, Asian and Indian cuisines. There is also a section for shops offering family and household items for sale.
Organized by QTA and produced by SEQLIA Organizing & Building Exhibitions & Conferences Company, the wide range of activities and events at Doha Summer Fun Park will ensure there is something for everyone. Doha Summer Fun Park is open to families and visitors from the GCC region and has been promoted in order to attract record numbers of visitors. Doha Summer Fun Park welcomes fun-seekers from 3pm to midnight from Saturday to Wednesday and from 3pm to 1am on Thursdays and Fridays. Hours during Ramadan will be from 8pm to 2am and during Eid Al Fitr from noon to midnight. Entry is free for all. Game tickets start from QR5.