All photos by Reem Saad
Halfway through Qatar’s annual summer festival, Entertainment City is proving to be this year’s most popular attraction.
In its first week alone, the air-conditioned Doha Exhibition and Convention Center (DECC) attracted more than 40,000 visitors, the Qatar Tourism Authority (QTA) said.
According to many visitors, this year’s Entertainment City is a step up from last year’s offerings, due to new features like real-life Angry Birds and Candy Crush games, larger slides and the venue’s size, which is double that of last year’s.
But some young adults were disappointed to see that once again, the summer festival’s activities and events were only for children.
Speaking to Doha News, 20-year-old Palestinian expat Lana Yasser said that with Doha’s traffic congestion and soaring summer heat, opportunities for fun are very limited.
“We don’t usually travel during the summer and it gets boring. This is fun, but for my four- and seven-year-old siblings.
We want roller coasters and drop tower rides like they previously did a couple of years back. I really hope that for future purposes they host events that cater to both adults and children,” Yasser added.
EC’s various thrill rides, video games and food cost anywhere between QR5 to QR20, and prizes for winners include plush bananas, Minions, doughnuts, teddy bears and round furry monsters.
Additionally, an entertainment stage hosts several daily performances from 2pm to 9:30pm. This week’s lineup included a magic show and The Smurfs: A Most Smurftastic Day show, among others.
Meanwhile, a mini-food court of 26 different restaurants offered different cuisines, including Arabic, American, Chinese, Indian and Turkish meals.
During a recent visit this week, excited kids could be seen eagerly running around the venue and pointing at several games, yelling “I want this one!” at their parents.
Around town, there are also events going on at several malls.
Lots of fun during The Musical
Clowns roaming Show at Ezdan Mall among Qatar Summer Festival#Ezdanmall #QSF2016 pic.twitter.com/9WVipxfgvY
— Ezdan Mall (@EzdanMall) August 5, 2016
And at the Pearl-Qatar, roaming musical acts and parades at both Porto Arabia and Medina Centrale are taking place every Friday from 6:30pm to 9:30pm through August.
Last night on the island, several men dressed in colorful clown costumes marched around with drums, trumpets, saxophones and juggling balls, waving at passersby.
However, due to the humidity, not many turned up for the Pearl’s entertainment.