Al Ruwais Park
[Photography: Kenneth Ta-asan]
What Makes It Special: Small town playground
[boxify cols_use =”1″ cols =”2″ position =”right” box_spacing =”10″ padding =”10″ background_color =”#3c3c3c” ]Type: Family
Hours: 6 am- 10 pm
✓ school age
✓ changing table
✓ stroller accessible bathroom
✓ water dispenser
✓ designated parking
✗ no kiosk
✗ small playground
Al Shamal Municipality
GPS: 26° 8’ 8” N; 51° 15’ 57” E
Please Note: From Doha it takes a bit more than an hour to drive to Al Ruwais Park.
• Drive north on Shamal Road.
• About an hour outside of Doha you will drive past the Shamal Stadium.
• Drive straight through Shamal Stadium Round About
• At next round about turn right
• Left at next round about
• First right
• Second left
Shamal City Park
Abu Dhalouf Park (link)
Plan a short trip here before heading further north east for a day at the beach.[/boxify]
Most people turn off Shamal Highway around the town of Fuwairit. Those who venture further north will see Shamal Stadium appear like a fortress in the middle of the dusty desert landscape. About a kilometre further along you reach the tip of Qatar and the small northernmost town of Ruwais.
Even though, like the rest of Qatar, Ruwais is growing, it is growing slowly and organically. This will likely change once construction of the World Cup football stadium begins. But for now small, specialist shops line one side of the main street while the rest of the town consists of mostly low buildings and outdoor majlis. An interior design book would say the buildings have patina—they’re old, well-used and sometimes dilapidated. In other words: perfect.
In addition to the aging Shamal City Park and the seaside Abu Dhalouf Park, another park recently joined the parks in Ruwais. Al Ruwais Park may be new but it is already well-loved by residents of all backgrounds.
While it sounds idealistic, and likely is, away from the noise of Doha one has the impression that in Ruwais the residents recognise their mutual reliance on each other and interact as equals regardless of nationality or religion. It feels like a mild-mannered neighbourhood party.
Ocean ions energise the air. Children enjoy the slides for under 3s and the bumpy slide for over 3s. Sand softens the ground under the play area. Shaded tables next to the play area are convenient for parents to play card games with friends or spread a picnic. Grass lawns are made for romping with some sheltered by surrounding bushes for privacy.
Come join the party.