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Posted On: 25 March 2016 02:36 am
Updated On: 12 November 2020 01:55 pm

Get the scent of a Qatari household

Noor Odeh
Noor Odeh
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Have you ever been to a Qatari home and smelled a beautiful, burning wood scent? Well, it’s most probably the smell of agarwood. Agarwood in Arabic means oud. Not the instrument oud that gives a nice melody, but the dark heartwood that is formed from trees. Bukhoor is the name of the smoke created when the raw oud is burned.


Oud is used frequently among Qataris. It is used for cultural and religious reasons. Qataris also love using bukhoor in their cars. It comes in three different forms: raw form shaped like thin, flat chips; in oil form, and in perfume.


The raw form can be burnt on charcoal in a Bukhoor stand or if you don’t have one, you can place layers of aluminum foil on a glass bowl.

Oud in the form of raw chips has many medicinal purposes to it. Itis good for breathing problems, for someone who feels light-headed, and it’s also good for heart palpitations.

Oud in its oil form is used for several different reasons. According to some Ayurvedic practitioners who follow the Hindu medicinal tradition say that oud oil helps the mind stay focused and also gets rid of any negativity a person might be carrying.

Oud also comes in perfume bottles just like any fragrance you find at a perfume shop. You can spray it on you and smell wonderful. It suits both men and women.

In the Qatari culture, tradition comes from religion. Back in the days of the Prophet Muhammad (PBUH), people used to greet their guests with Bakhoor made of oud.

The ways in which Qataris use Bukhoor is to fragrance the body, either by oil or perfume, to add fragrance to their clothes, and to fragrance their homes by using the Bakhoor smoke by walking around carefully carrying the Bukhoor stand or the glass bowl. Some people like to recite verses from the Quraan silently while walking around. In the Qatari society, Bukhoor smoke symbolizes the end of a gathering. It is a nice way of telling the guests that they were welcome but that the night has come to an end.