The Museum of Islamic Art in Doha is a must see during your travel through the Middle East. When exhausted from business negotiations or need a break from the intense heat in Qatar, this stellar collection of Islamic Art, on an artificial island off the Corniche, is perfect for a visit to decompress and learn more about this corner of the world. Designed by I.M. Pei, the almost half-million square-foot masterpiece showcases art from the Arabian Gulf, Central Asia and northern Africa. The modern and airy design pays homage to traditional Arabian architecture and design; in fact, the space almost outshines the incredible collection.

Textiles, ceramics, manuscripts and armor are among the incredible artifacts that make it impossible to just drop into the MIA. And despite the initials, there is nothing missing in action about this museum, which ranks among the world’s great cultural institutions. Even if you only have a few minutes, to just sit in the museum’s cafe and enjoy the view of Doha’s harbor is a definite highlight. When I return to Doha, the Museum of Art cafe will be my mobile office of choice. I could not get enough of this spectacular temple of Middle Eastern culture. And the walk off the Doha Corniche is sublime.

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Natural light floods the MIA

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The Museum of Islamic Art boasts an amazing armor collection

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Simplicity gives the MIA's interior an understated beauty

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Clean lines and a modern vibe contrast with the MIA's timeless art

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The cafe should not be missed

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The MIA's exterior is supposed to resemble a woman in an abaya

Breaking: A fire has broken out in the Villagio shopping complex in west Doha.

About The Author

Leon Kaye

Leon Kaye is the founder and editor of GreenGoPost.com. Based in California, he is a business writer and consultant. His work is has also appeared on Triple Pundit , The Guardian's Sustainable Business site and has appeared on Inhabitat and Earth911. His focus is making the business case for sustainability and corporate social responsibility. He's pictured here in Qatar, one of the Middle East countries in which he takes a keen interest because of its transformation into a post-oil economy. Other areas of interest include sustainable development in The Balkans, Brazil and Korea. He was a new media journalism fellow at the International Reporting Project, for which he covered child survival in India during February 2013. Contact him at leon@greengopost.com. You can also reach out via Twitter (@LeonKaye) and Instagram (GreenGoPost). As of October 2013, he now lives and works in Abu Dhabi, United Arab Emirates.