The country measures an area of 11,435 sq km, has a population of 435,000 people and its capital is Doha. Languages are spoken Arabic and English. The religion is Muslim
Qatar is flat and barren and the highest point is 75m. There is little natural vegetation and only patches of scrub. It has not a lot of wildlife but only dangerous desert creatures such as camel spiders and scorpions.
Birdlife, including falcons, is common.
Qatar was a poor country and the only income was pearl diving as a main industry.
In 1939 oil was discovered and it boosted the economy greatly. Ever since the standard of living improved and many foreign workers came to Qatar.
Natural gas is also an important source of income and the North Field is one of the largest natural gas fields in the world.
Qatar’s main history was only civil ones and it was between the Al-Thani family who ruled Qatar since the mid-18th century and the Al-Khalifa family. The Al-Khalifa family rules Bahrain and originally occupied Zubara, north Qatar.
In 1932 the Al-Thani reclaimed Zubara and the western peninsula. There is still a dispute over the Hawar islands, on the west coast.
In 1971 Qatar became independent from Britain.
The country’s Emir, ruler of the country, is Khalifa Bin Hamad Al-Thani.
In 1989 Qatar opened its doors to tourism.
The Zubara fort, near the north-western coast, was built in 1938 when the Al-Thani family claimed Zubara from the Al-Khalifa’s of Bahrain.
The fort was built as a border police post and used by the military until the mid-1980s. It was for many years the main settlement in Qatar, but now it is a museum.