The variety of awe-inspiring architecture is the reason that Sharjah is considered the cultural capital of the UAE. There is no better place for knowing the history and sophistication of Arabic art and culture.
Sharjah offers museums and art enthusiasts several sightseeing opportunities. Most tourists to the Emirate have the Art Museum and Sharjah Museum of Islamic Civilization at the top of their places to visit.
There are several attractions for kids that include Al Noor Island. Below are some of the top attractions of Sharjah.
1. Sharjah Arts Museum
This is the biggest art museum in the Middle East with several artworks upholding the Arab culture and legacy. The museum also has artworks of 18th-century painters who developed a liking for the architecture and culture of the Gulf.
The museum features a permanent collection and temporary exhibits. Artwork from the collection of Sheikh Sultan III, the Ruler of Sharjah, is among the permanent collection.72 galleries across three floors display works of Arab artists across the Arab world.
The temporary section displays some 300 artworks of Arabs, foreigners, and locals.
2. Museum of Islamic Civilization
This museum is a quintessence of Arab and Islamic culture.
The ground floor galleries offer a deep understanding of the Islamic faith that includes their endeavours in mathematics and astronomy. The galleries in the upper floor display art and relics of Islamic culture that date back 1400 years. Among them are ceramics, clay, woodworks, pottery, glass, textiles, jewellery, and handicrafts having inlays of gold, brass, and silver.
Visitors will also like the collection of silver dirhams and dinars of Abbasid and Omayyad times beneath the central dome.
3. Sharjah Heritage Area
This place is the quintessence of the Emirate with customary Arabian-style architecture, old family houses, and ancient Souks. The several museums here include Al Midfaa House, Sharjah Calligraphy Museum, Sharjah Heritage Museum, Hisn Fort, and Souq Al Arsah.
The several tourist attractions in the Heritage Area represent the tradition of the emirate. This place near the Corniche is a must-see for history buffs.
4. Blue Souk
Blue Souk is ideal for shopping for souvenirs and experiencing a proper Arabian bazaar.
Blue Souk gets its name from the extravagant blue tile work on its exterior. The ground floor and upper floor have some 600 shops selling gold, costly designer clothes, and carpets and curios from Afghanistan and Tibet.
5. Al Noor Mosque
This Mosque with fabulous architecture stands out among the buildings in the Emirate. The influence of the model Turkish Ottoman designs on the mosque is evident with features based on Istanbul’s Sultan Ahmed Mosque. There is no entry fee to the mosque and the non-profit SCCC organization arranges complimentary one-hour tours.
This tour offers visitors an insight into the Emirati and Islamic culture and customs and the meticulous design of this mosque.
6. Al Noor Island
Al Noor Island is a peaceful oasis in the heart of Sharjah city. Visitors will like the book pavilion, the butterfly House that’s an architectural masterpiece, and the modern sculptures of several renowned artists. There is also a playground and a cafe. A Broadwalk of 3.5 km goes through the designed garden and several white lights illuminate the island at night.
7. Buhaira Corniche
This path of 6 to 7 km circling the Khaled Lake ranks with the most picturesque places for tourists here. Visitors enjoy several facilities that include a jogging track and cycling trails. They make the Corniche a popular picnic spot and a place for a peaceful evening.
Al Noor Mosque beside Buhaira Corniche and Al Noor Island joining Buhaira Corniche by a footbridge are among the key attractions. Visitors also have access to Novo Cinemas and Al Majaz Park.
8. Sharjah Science Museum
Sharjah Science Museum offers displays and interactive sessions for exploring space, life, science experiments, and more fields.
Visitors get to create cartoons and puzzles on human anatomy and test their grip, flexibility, and poise. There is a play area for kids to get to know the world better. The museum planetarium is great touring the Sharjah sky and cosmos.
9. Sharjah Archaeology Museum
The well-maintained archaeological archives at the Archaeology Museum help tourists know the history of Sharjah.
Displays throw light on the technology of the Stone Age. Decorative gems and pottery remains are testimony to the trade with Mesopotamia
Jewellery, metals, stones, and pottery work of the Bronze Age are on display
Several tools on display are on mining and irrigation-related construction that were prevalent during the Iron Age. Several of these tools are amongst the foremost metal tools discovered in Arabia.
Several coinages and writings prove the trade of iron that was prevalent in Pre-Islamic Arabia.
10. Sharjah Aquarium & Maritime Museum
Sharjah is a settlement that has had a close association with water. This Museum highlights the role of the sea in the development of the emirate. Kids will love the aquarium featuring some 250 species of marine life that include reef sharks, vibrant fishes, seahorses, and eels. Visitors will also love the smaller marine life of the aquarium amidst mangroves, coral reefs, lagoons, and pools.
The joined Maritime Museum has exciting displays of customary wooden dhows, pearl collecting, and fishing. They contributed to the economy of the emirate. Several glimmering pearls believed to be the earliest pearl collected ever are on display.
11. Al Qasba
This commercial complex has various entertainments for families with kids. The various activities here include a Kids Fun Zone, Abra rides, theatres, Al Qasba Musical Fountain and the Eye of Etisalat.
The acoustic auditorium Masrah Al Qasba hosts ethnic concerts and film shows.
The Farat Qaddouri Music Centre hosts classes on dance ballet, painting, drawing, crafting, ceramics, and singing and acting.
12. Sharjah Art Foundation
The Sharjah Art Foundation promotes Arts and Literature.
The Foundation offers artist communities of Sharjah and worldwide various platforms for showcasing their talents. Among them are the Sharjah Biennial Art Exhibition, the Annual March Meeting of art practitioners, production grants, art residencies, and commissions.
The Foundation hosts exquisite performances, film screenings, music, artworks and artist dialogues of Arab and global Artists.
The fresh produce of this quaint fishing village some 112 kilometres is sold in the fish market on the coastline. Visitors will like the Al-Hisn Museum and traditional furniture and musical instruments in the house of Sheikh Saeed bin Hamad Al-Qassimi.
The mangrove forest in the Khor Kalba Conservation Reserve to the south of this village is ideal for bird watchers. Tourists will spot the rare white-collared kingfishers, booted warblers and reef herons.
14. Sharjah National Park
This park spread over 630,000 sq. meters is a must-see for people visiting Sharjah. The place is a blend of customary Arab architecture and trendy European styles.
There’re several tracks for jogging and cycling and licensed picnic spots and barbeque areas having grills.
Kids have access to playgrounds with Jungle Gym, rope ladders, slides, and several other amenities.
15. Sharjah Discovery Centre
This edutainment centre caters to kids aged between 3 and 12 years. The centre fosters a practical discovery of the world and science and technology that enhances life.
Young children discover answers to their queries as they play amidst colourful surroundings. Seven sections offer kids insight into definite areas and drive them to know more about the area that interests them the most. Several kids discover their natural talents here.
There is also a theatre featuring live shows and two workshops. They serve students keen on learning and creating handicrafts or artwork.
The attractions in Sharjah have to do with history, culture, heritage, and adventure. All the attractions make for a unique experience for tourists.