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Weather no deterrent for desert camping


DOHA THE dusty weather prevailing in the country for a fortnight or so seems to have failed to deter the large number of young Qataris heading to the sealine every weekend to indulge in their favourite hobby- camping.

Come the weekend, and the enthusiasts start gathering on the beach in groups since early morning. They prefer heading to their favoured destination in fourwheel drive cars. To make the camping a satisfying experience, Qatari youths bring along appropriate tools such as tents, utensils and water tanks.

However, the enjoyment of the activity is marred by poor facilities in the Sealine area, rue the participants.

Talking to Qatar Tribune, Hamid al Shumari, one of the regular campers, complained that the level of services available at the place was very low. “Despite the opening of an al Meera outlet in the area, facilities remain inadequate,” Hamid said.

He particularly lamented about the small size of the mosque, which he said could not accommodate the worshippers, especially on Fridays.

For his part, Fahad al Madeed said the Ministry of Environment needed to monitor the organisation of the camp. “We don’t enjoy our time due to lack of the required public utilities at the place. I also observe that many campers do not maintain the standards laid down by the ministry regarding the tent size and maintaining cleanliness of the surrounding.” The Ministry of Environment’s guidelines state that the campers must be Qatari national using a tent that does not occupy a space exceeding 50 square metres. Besides, camping amateurs should pay QR10,000 as a refundable deposit. Campers should also ensure the cleanliness of the place before leaving.

Salim al Merri complained about the rapid increase in prices of items at the sealine, attributing that to lack of competition and the monopoly of the commercial activities by one company.

Saeed al Hatmi lamented the traffic snarls in the area.

He, however, lauded the contribution of the al Kwayah in regulating the traffic movement, especially during the weekends.

He suggested that the government should expand the roads going to the sealine area and make them to twolane ones.

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