Welcome to Sharjah
Sharjah is the third-largest of the UAE's cities, and is capital
of the wealthy Sharjah emirate.
Many of the headline attractions are within the Heritage Area
near the main cornice. Here visitors can explore the Al Hisn Fort
and the Sharjah Museum of Islamic Civilization, both worth
experiencing to counterbalance the Emirate's more modern, consumer
Nearby Khalid Lagoon has a water fountain that spouts 160 feet
(100m) into the air, making this the third largest fountain in the
world. The Sharjah Aquarium, located at the mouth of Al Khan
Lagoon, is also worth visiting.The Eye of the Emirates on the edge
of the city is a giant wheel that offers a spectacular views over
the downtown and cornice attractions - a great way to orientate one
on first arrival.
For shopping, brush up on your haggling skills and head for the
Blue Mosque, possibly the best place in the country to buy carpets,
or the venerable Souq al-Arsah, the UAE's oldest covered market,
and well worth a visit. For those wanting a little more activity
into the surrounding area, there are plenty of desert and camel
safaris, diving and boat tours to take.
The emirate of Sharjah is the only emirate in which the sale,
possession and consumption of alcohol is banned. Despite this the
city is popular with expats who take advantage of Sharjah's cheaper
accommodation while commuting to Dubai, 20 miles (34km) away, for
Information & Facts
Arabic is the official language of the Emirates, but
English is widely used.
The currency of the United Arab Emirates is the Dirham (AED),
which is divided into 100 fils. There are no currency regulations
in the UAE and all major currencies are readily exchanged at banks
and large hotels. The Dirham is fixed against the US Dollar. The
best exchange rates are found at private moneychangers who operate
throughout the territory, particularly in the more popular souks
(markets) and shopping centres. Most major credit cards are
accepted, as are travellers cheques (best carried in US Dollars or
Pounds Sterling). ATMs are common throughout the UAE. Banking hours
are generally Saturday to Thursday from 8am to 1pm, but some are
also open between 4pm and 8.30pm.
Local time in the UAE is GMT +4.