The Unknown Emirate

By | Category: Travel rumblings

The Blue Souq, Sharjah

The Blue Souq, Sharjah

Everyone has heard of Dubai – a favourite with footballers and their wives – and Abu Dhabi, the scene of the recent Sex and the City 2 film, but what about the UAE’s other emirates? There’s Fujairah. Ras Al Khaimah, Umm Al Quwain, Ajman and last but not least Sharjah. The latter has been overshadowed by its Khaleeji brothers to date but not for much longer if the Chairman of the Sharjah Commerce and Tourism Development gets his way. H.E Sheikh Sultan bin Ahmad Al Qassimi revealed his plans to put the emirate on the map at the World Travel Market which is taking place in London this week. Key is the inaugural Sharjah Light festival – similar to the ones in France and Germany – which will take place from 10-18 February 2011. As well as the water festival, Sharjah has scores of cultural attractions such as the Sharjah Art Museum and an impressive fort – not for nothing is it known as the cultural emirate – in addition to the UAE’s famous three ‘S’s’ (that’s sun, sand and shopping). So if you want guaranteed sunshine only a seven hour flight away without the risk of running into John Terry, perhaps Sharjah is the state for you. However the emirate is hampered by its strict sharia laws and as such is a dry state meaning you’d have to give the mojitos a miss. Sharjah’s Sheikh may have his work cut out trying to tempt Brits after all…

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