Sunday, April 28, 2013

Doha Chalets, Jahra

This weekend, I was invited to visit my regular Thursday Night Buddies at a chalet in Doha.  I hadn't been up to that area since (OMG) 1998.  I can't remember who I was visiting at that time, but I recall he was very very nice and welcoming and now I wish I had kept in touch.

Anyways, a LOT has changed in that area since 1998.  You used to be able to get up there by cutting by the Doha Power Plant and over.  I made the mistake of trying to go that way now, but you can't get there that way.  (It looked like you could on the Locator.)  You have to take 605 from 80 (it is the Amghara scrap yard exit.  Amghara is on the left, Doha chalets are to the right).

Yes, Doha is the area at the end of 7th Ring Road where Camp Doha used to be.  Well, it is actually still there, but the Kuwaiti military uses it now and not the US military.

 Camp Doha in the background.  
Some chalets in the foreground.

It looks like this now, but with quite a 
few houses already constructed.

Like a lot of areas in Kuwait (especially around the sea), Doha is being developed.  Where it used to be an easy little drive to get there, it is now a pain in the butt. They're building a new city, Jaber Al-Ahmad City, and I swear I went through 20 traffic circles.  There are no street lights up yet, so it was a crap shoot to see if I was going to run right  over one of those circles.  I had to keep it slow.  This is the plan for development (on Pan Arab Consulting Engineers' website).

This is the plan for development

When I finally got to the chalet, it looked as if the area hadn't changed much at all.  The chalets are still pretty low-level compared to their Southern cousins.  (Guess that is about to change.)  The one I visited was nice enough, but not a whole lot of beach frontage/sand.  The water is also very shallow (good for shrimp but not so great for swimming).  It is a very quiet area (unlike the Southern chalets). I think the owners choose to keep it like that.  Parties are seriously discouraged (the police show up immediately and it is serious).  It is a quiet family environment.

Doha is at the tip of the bay and where there are mud flats.  The area is actually a nature (wetland) preserve, Al Doha Reserve,  in the area which was established in 1988. I don't know how that will fare with the development.

I'm glad I'm seeing it before-and after.  I couldn't get over how the Khuwaisat area changed - and now this.  I should go take photos before everything becomes completely different.  It is happening. If you are into exploring like I am, you should drive out there and check it.  Kuwait fascinates me.  It changes every day.

1 comment:

American Girl said...

That's one of my favorite places in Kuwait! Jaber Al Ahmed is the other end of Sa'ad Al Abdullah (South Jahra) running parallel to the 6th Ring. And... built on top of a not so old landfill. Just a few short years ago I hated that part of 80 because the smell was overwhelming. Now it's a neighborhood that I absolutely LOVE!

So glad you're out and about, exploring and enjoying the ever changing Kuwait. I look forward to seeing all the changes when we visit in a few months.