Chronicle of the Middle East and North Africa

Katara International Hunting and Falcons Exhibition

katara festival
At the sidelines of the Katara International Hunting and Falcons Exhibition. Source: Francoise Mouly / icedoha

20th October to 24th October 2020

Katara Cultural Village

Doha, Qatar

Established in 2017, the Katara International Hunting & Falcons Exhibition, known as S’hail, is back in its fourth edition in all its splendour but with all the mandatory health precautions and highest of safety standards.

The annual exhibition is considered the largest in MENA region bringing falcons, falconry products and hunting-related wares and equipment manufacturers from all over the globe to Qatar.

Holding over five days, S’hail has been attracting close to 135,000 falcon enthusiasts to its venue at the Cultural Village Foundation (Katara), Doha, each year since it was launched.

Qatar is best known for hunting and falconry and S’hail is strongly dedicated to preserve and promote those arts.

The aim of the organizers is to preserve and create awareness about its rich cultural legacy by organizing a world class exhibition, and in parallel, events and activities, awareness programs and supporting educational and environmental initiatives.

S’hail (سهيل) – is also known as Canopus, the only star that is closely related to hunting. It is also the sign of a new beginning and, every year, birds and hunters eagerly wait for S’hail to shine in the sky to begin their journey.

It has four different stages, and every stage is equally symbolic. It is said that S’hail is the only guiding light towards the fascinating world of hunting and falconry.

S’hail is of great importance in Arab culture as well. Many renowned Arabic poets have described the importance of S’hail in their masterpieces.

katara festival qatar
At the sidelines of the Katara International Hunting and Falcons Exhibition. Source: Francoise Mouly /icedoha

Besides its symbolic and literary connection, Katara International Hunting & Falcon exhibition is active in the commercial world of hunting and falconry. And despite the coronavirus pandemic, this year too it had the presence of as many as 120 international firms specialising in hunting and falconry products from 13 countries, including Kuwait, Spain, Lebanon, the United States, Britain, Turkey, Pakistan, Romania, Belgium, Portugal, France and Hungary.

One consortium from Europe – International Sporting Properties – made its maiden appearance at S’hail, represented by a team of six companies, from Belgium, France, and Spain.

They had a large pavilion in the main hall of the exhibition area and were immensely impressed by the grand show and enthusiasm and passion of hunting and falcon lovers in Qatar.

Speaking of the S’hail experience, Laurent Huwart, speaking on behalf of International Sporting Properties, said their entire team has been impressed by the sheer composition and quality of the exhibition.

“It is indeed what we had heard of and thought of. S’hail does stand out as a state-of-the-art exhibition among the various falcon exhibitions all over the world. We travel to various parts of the world for exhibitions and this has been by far one of our worthy destinations for sure,” he said.

Huwart was all praise for the organisers for making it easy and safe for them to make their way to Qatar and mentioned that they are now exploring an expanded plan for the next year, hopefully with many more specialists, including from New Zealand and Canada besides Europe.

Francoise Mouly
Innovation Centre for Education (iCE) Doha


The opinions expressed in this publication are those of the writers. They do not purport to reflect the opinions or views of Fanack or its Board of Editors.

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