Sharjah, otherwise called the cultural capital of the UAE, is a neighboring emirate of Dubai. And also one of the major economic centers in the country. Despite its proximity to Dubai, Sharjah has its own distinctive culture and heritage.
With its many numbers of museums and opportunities for educational as well as fun trips, Sharjah has a top place in tourism radar. Here is a list of places to cover in your next visit here.
Al Noor Island
Opened in 2015, this oasis island in Khalid lagoon is a more recent attraction in Sharjah.
This park is an amalgamation of many tastes in the middle of the water. A pedestrian bridge connects the island to the mainland. The Island is decorated with lights that change colors to suit the time of the day. During dusk and dawn, everything becomes more exuberant.
Butterfly house, the biggest attraction in the island, is home to 500 butterflies from 20 different species. The climate-controlled encasement helps these insects to thrive and is also an architectural marvel. Entry here is not covered in the ticket fee to the island, though.
Besides all the natural elements, modern sculptures and artworks are spread all over the island.
Literature pavilion is for the souls who want to escape from the noisy city and go into the luscious world of words. The whimsical pavilion has soft cushions and pleasant sound of the fountain for you to curl up and read a book or jot some metered lines.
You might even like to spend the whole day here, strolling around and chugging something from the Noor Cafe when you are hungry.
Heart of Sharjah
Heart of Sharjah gives a complete picture of the forgotten era that was decades ago. To date, this is the largest heritage site in Sharjah. Currently in its first phase of development, the place is a love letter to history and traditions. The development is set to complete by the end of 2025.
Meticulous care has been taken to preserve the details and aura of mid 90s. The vision of the project is to preserve the cultural legacy for future generations. It is also conveniently located near to the main centers in the city.
Heart of Sharjah will encompass the existing museums and galleries once the project is complete. In 2014, UNESCO added Heart of Sharjah to its list of World Heritage sites.
Al Bait Hotel in Heart of Sharjah is an illustration of how to integrate tradition with modernity. The hotel is a modern adaptation of traditional architecture and construction. From the timber ceilings to wall finishing and alcoves, the hotel is an honest representation of the 50s
Though surrounded by Fujairah on one side and the sea on the other, Khor Fakkan is technically a part of the emirate of Sharjah. It is a solid one and a half-an-hour drive away from the main city of Sharjah.
Khorfakkan has one of the largest ports in the country. You will probably see entire armadas of cruise and container ships docked on the harbor. A little off the cost is Shark Island, which is the spot for snorkeling and diving. There are countless options for adventure sports and fun in the Khor Fakkan beach as well.
Hugged by Hajar mountains and blessed with lush natural landscapes and stunning beaches, this place has every ingredient to steal your heart.
Al Badayer Oasis
A palace in the middle of sands is literally what Al Badayer is. This oasis with coral-colored sand is a center for desert exploration in Sharjah.
Experience the Bedouin lifestyle and cuisine with the adrenaline rush of dune bashing.
But it’s not just a desert camp. In fact, this resort is bathed in luxury with swimming pools and business suites.
Sharjah Classic Cars Museum
Located near Sharjah International airport, Classic cars museum is a part of Sharjah Classic Car Club. The museum displays cars even from the early 1900s. The oldest car in the lineup — a Dodge — dates back to 1915.
Apart from the classic cars and vintage trucks, there is an old Mercedes Limousine that belongs to the ruler of Sharjah. Depending on the history and stages of development, the museum is divided into different sections.
Motorheads and classic car lovers should never miss this place. Having said that, this spot is easy to overlook because not many people know about it.
Al Montazah Parks
This is another tourist attraction in Khalid Lagoon. The Montazah Park, previously called Al Jazeera Park, recently underwent a massive makeover. The park has two sections: a waterpark called Pearls Kingdom and the Island of Legends which is an open-air adventure park.
The Eye of Emirates giant wheel which was originally in Al Qasba was moved here inside the Island of Legends in 2018. That itself is the most important attraction in the park. There are also many other rides that are mostly suitable for children. But the Volcano Tower is for a little more intrepid lads.
The Pearls Kingdom is the only water-themed park in Sharjah. This is yet another recent addition to Al Montazah park. The park was designed with keeping safety first in mind.
Mlieha Archeological Center
A proof of human civilization in the deserts of Sharjah that dates back to tens of thousands of years ago. That’s the apt way to describe Mleiha. It’s interesting to witness the evidence of social life once thrived in these desolate deserts because we usually think of the UAE post its oil discovery.
Mlieha is an archeological site located 60 km away from central Sharjah. If you drive, it will take you around 45 minutes. Several objects have been unearthed here that are at least 120,000 years old including stone and bronze weapons, pottery, and burial tombs.
It even has enough to satiate the thrill-seekers. Dune bashing near the fossil rocks in a 4×4 is something worth trying.
Mlieha has become the center for sustainable tourism in Sharjah, given the importance of the area and what lies beneath it. But choose winters when you go because you will be spending a lot of time outdoors.