Sharjah is the arts capital of the United Arab Emirates, and the region’s history was preserved as the cultural capital of the Arab world by UNESCO in 1998. For museum and art lovers, Sharjah is full of excellent sightseeing opportunities. The famous Sharjah Museum of Islamic Civilization and Art Museum are Sharjah’s top attractions and a highlight for visitors to do, while the Heritage District is filled with interesting buildings dedicated to Emirati history.
The 10 Places To Visit in Sharjah :
1.Sharjah Museum of Islamic Civilization
The Sharjah Museum of Islamic Civilization is a good place to delve into the deep roots of Arab and Islamic culture. A number of scientific and religious manuscripts are on display, as well as a collection of Islamic arts and craftsmanship dating from the 7th to the 19th centuries. Highlights include a gallery of pottery, pottery, and glass, as well as metal handicrafts inlaid with silver, gold, and copper, and the Lapp line collection.
The museum contains items from the Abbasid and Umayyad eras, including a coin collection of silver dinars and dirhams, but it also traces far-reaching tentacles of Islamic culture, with exhibits of Mughal and Ottoman craftsmanship.
2. Sharjah Art Museum
One of the largest art museums in the UAE, this state-of-the-art facility opened in 1997 and houses a permanent collection as well as a program of temporary exhibitions. The permanent collection includes valuable artworks from the collections of Sheikh Dr. Sultan bin Muhammad Al Qasimi. There are 72 galleries spread over three floors, focusing on the work of Arab artists from all over the Arab world.
Other artworks are by 18th century painters who visited the Middle East and became fascinated by the natural environment, architecture, and culture. The Ali Darwish Gallery contains watercolors from Sharjah. The contemporary section consists of more than 300 works by local, Arab and foreign artists. If you are an art lover on a weekend in Dubai, then this is one of the best places to visit.
3.Sharjah Heritage Museum
The Sharjah Heritage District is a mixture of several museums which includes the Sharjah Heritage Museum, with exhibits covering all aspects of traditional Emirati life. Calligraphy Museum, exploring this Arab art form; And Bait Al Naboodah, a well-restored traditional family home, it’s a great place to delve deeper into traditional Emirati culture and discover what life was like before the discovery of oil.
A number of traditional market areas have also been revived, such as Souk Al Arsah. This large open courtyard market has been renovated in its traditional style and now houses a number of different shops displaying silver and wood handicrafts, jewellery, traditional clothing and beauty products.
Sharjah Castle (called the fort in Arabic) is located in a square in the corner of the Heritage District. It was built 200 years ago and served as a defensive facility for the city and as a traditional residence for the ruling family of Sharjah.
Inside, the rooms contain themed displays that trace the history of Sharjah, as well as the city’s importance as part of Gulf trade networks. An exhibition details the painstaking restoration of the building in the late 20th century. From the rooftop there are great views across the Heritage District and out to sea.
Sharjah City Highlights The private tour offers a half-day exploration of Sharjah’s attractions including the Sharjah Castle, Sharjah Heritage Museum and Souk Al Arsah. The guide can tailor the trip according to your interests, so you can add trips to the Museum of Islamic Civilization, the Museum of Art, or wander around the Central Market if you like. Transportation, including pick-up and drop-off from Dubai hotels, is included.
5.Sharjah Central Souq
Sharjah Central Market is the city’s most famous landmark. The intricate blue tile work on the outside has given it the nickname Blue Market. There are more than 600 stores inside, where shoppers will find sections dedicated to gold, jewelry, perfume, apparel, food, electronics, and gifts.
The upper floor has the atmosphere of an authentic Arabic bazaar, where vendors sell antiques, carpets, Omani and Yemeni jewelry, and all kinds of other exotic souvenirs. For downtime after shopping exploits, the market area is also home to plenty of coffee shops.
6.Al Noor Island
This public park, established in Khalid Lake and accessible by a bridge from the Corniche Street in the city center, is the best place in Sharjah if you are looking for some quiet respite to recover from shopping and exploring the museums. The island blends art and nature in its design and features gardens dotted with sculptures and modern art installations created by some of the world’s most famous artists. The Butterfly House on the Island of Light, where nearly 500 different species of butterflies can be seen.
Sharjah has always been closely associated with water, and the Aquarium and Maritime Museum highlight the importance of the sea in the city’s development. For children, the aquarium is a major factor in tourism and hosts about 150 species of marine life, including reef sharks and sea rays.
The connected Maritime Museum hosts interesting exhibits on traditional wooden sailboats, as well as pearl collecting and fishing – all of which were once important to the economy here. Highlights include the collection of gleaming pearls (including what is believed to be the oldest pearl ever collected in the world) and the beautiful wooden ship docked outside the museum.
8.Souq Al Jubail
Sharjah’s huge covered Jubail Souq is an excellent way to experience the bustle of traditional Arabic shopping in a modern setting. Join local shoppers as they make their weekly rounds at the fish market – a stinky and busy mix of noise and colours – then plunge into the fruit and vegetable market, always crowded with vendors screaming at their prices and customers haggling for good deals.
In addition to being an excellent opportunity to take some vibrant photos of daily life in Sharjah and see the shopping market, which is not worn by tourists, it is a great place to pick up gifts, such as dates and local honey.
9.Sharjah Archaeology Museum
The Sharjah Archeology Museum contains exhibits that trace the extensive arched history of humanity in the region. The exhibits in the Stone Age section include many flint pieces that reflect the technology of that period, and ancient seashells. There are also decorative stones and pottery from the Ubaid period that were found in Hamriyah and confirm the trade exchange of this era with Mesopotamia (present-day Iraq).
The Bronze Age Hall features archaeological finds of pottery, metal, stone and jewelry, while the Iron Age Hall features two museum pieces: a camel statue and a ceramic dome both from the Muwailih archaeological site. The museum has done a good job of making its exhibits easy to use, and children will enjoy a variety of games.
Located in the southernmost part of the UAE, Kalba Village is an attractive fishing village with vibrant fresh produce and a seaside fish market. Located 112 kilometers east of Sharjah, this is a charming picnic spot worth visiting for the Al Hosn Museum (built as a fort 200 years ago) and the fully restored house of Sheikh Saeed bin Hamad Al Qasimi. It displays musical instruments and traditional furniture.
Just south of the village is the Khor Kalba Reserve, which contains the most northerly mangrove forest in the world. This is a bird watchers’ paradise, especially during the spring and fall migrations. Visitors can spot the rare white-collar kingbirds that breed here, as well as coral herons and game birds. Excursions to the reserve are made by boat or chartered boat.