In the last few decades Doha has transformed from a small city to a major regional center. The crux of Doha's economy is oil and especially natural gas. Tiny Qatar has the world's third largest proven reserves of natural gas. That wealth has been a boon to Qatar's economy and is reflected in Doha's constantly changing skyline. Everywhere you look gleaming new towers are sprouting from the desert and even the Persian Gulf.
Doha is also at an international crossroads. The port is one of the busiest in the region. The new international airport is expected to make Qatar Airways into a world class carrier -- Doha's location makes it a connection spot between any two major world cities. Tourism has increased in recent years as well.
The heart of the city is along the Corniche which curves along the Persian Gulf. Newer developments sprawl into the deserts. Unfortunately, public transportation has not kept up with the city's rapid growth, so you'll need to rent a car or hope to get a taxi, which can be a precious commodity.
Doha's population has increased exponentially in the last thirty years, from barely 100,000 in 1980 to nearly 1.5 million today, the vast majority of Qatar's population. It's a very diverse community. The majority of Doha's residents are expatriates, mostly from South Asia, but there are also people from all over the Arab world, Europe, and the Americas.
Even though the city has faced some troubles from the recent economic crisis, the future of Doha is bright. As improbably as it may seem, the city is set to host the 2022 World Cup.