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Posted On: 2 November 2018 12:00 am
Updated On: 12 November 2020 10:18 am

Traditional wedding in Qatar

Khadiza Begum
Khadiza Begum
Content Writer
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Marriage is the crucial event that signals the end of a stage in a person's life and the beginning of a new one.Here is a sneak peek at what you can expect at a Qatari Wedding.

Till recently, the Qatari community was accustomed to holding more than one celebration on the wedding day. For instance, a celebration for women only used to be held at the bride's house, where women folk bands would perform. On the day following the wedding, another celebration would be held at the bride's house that begins in the afternoon and lasts until sunset.

Henna party

There are several parties prior to the actual wedding ceremony including Hidiya, the gift ceremony, and the Henna party. Henna, which is a natural substance made out of powdered leaves that women often use as a temporary tattoo to create intricate designs for their hands and feet.

Zarif dance

The other part of celebrations was held at the groom's house in two stages, the first would be one night before the wedding, in which men sing Samiri, Liwa, Habban or Tamboura all old dances performed at weddings before dinner is served.

"On the wedding day, a Zarif dance, dancing with swords, is performed in front of the groom's house, and after dinner, members of the band walk with him in procession if the house is close until they reach the bride's house," the book describes.

It is noted that the groom's celebration is held in an open area outside the house, where sword-dancing, rifle and trumpet performances can be seen.
Depending upon the weather and social status, the duration of the wedding ceremonies can take a week or according to Bedouin tradition, three days.

In Bedouin areas, men gather in the Majlis and clap their hands and sing and dance to a song that says:

Oh God, may it be blessed and joyful
The boy and girl's wedding
May she have a child
And be guided left and right.
The following morning, called Sabahiyya, is considered the effective start of the marriage parties and the bride embellishments.

Wedding ceremony

A Qatari wedding ceremony usually lasts for 4-6 hours. In Qatari weddings, males celebrate in tents and females in halls. But later on during the evening the first-degree male relatives of the groom and of the bride walk into the hall where females are.


Guests are served an array of delicious traditional cuisine, including roast lamb on a platter of rice, seafood stews, and stuffed vine leaves.

They are accompanied by a wide range of sumptuous sweets such as mehalabiya—a rose water and pistachio pudding—and umm ali, a bread pudding with nuts and white raisins. The mouthwatering food is complemented by delicious beverages.

Gift tradition

There is a consensus referring to the gift the groom is offering to the bride before exiting the room after the wedding night. The gift tradition is registering offers like precious watches, gold and diamonds, pearls, artifacts, cars and cash of course.
After this moment, the first morning the couple will have a traditional breakfast with balaleet and traditional dishes. Then, the groom goes out to prayer where his father asks"if things went well."

You have just enjoyed a sneak peek of a Qatari wedding. Clearly, we can’t give justice to how amazing these weddings are, but if you get invited, to make sure to go!

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