Qatar, also known as the country or State of Qatar or locally Dawlat Qaṭar, is located in the Middle East, occupying the small Qatar Peninsula on the northeasterly coast of the much larger Arabian Peninsula.
Its sole land border is with Saudi Arabia to the south, with the rest of its territory surrounded by the Persian Gulf. A strait of the Persian Gulf separates Qatar from the nearby island state of Bahrain.
Varying in width between 55 and 90 km, much of the country consists of a low, barren plain, covered with sand.
To the southeast lies the spectacular Khor al Adaid (“Inland Sea”), an area of rolling sand dunes surrounding an inlet of the Persian Gulf. The highest point in Qatar is Qurayn Abu al Bawl at 103 metres.
Doha is the capital of the country and the major administrative, commercial, and population center. Other ports include Umm Said, Al Khawr, and Al Wakrah.
Dominated by the Thani family for almost 150 years, Qatar was a British protectorate until 1971, when it declared its independence after following suit with Bahrain and refusing to join the United Arab Emirates.