A lot of people come to the UAE, visit Dubai and leave thinking they’ve seen everything the UAE has to offer. That is unfortunately not true, with each Emirate offering its own window into life in the UAE. And if you haven’t visited Sharjah, you’ve missed out on some of the most important cultural and historical landmarks of the country.
This weekend, we headed to Souq Al Shinasiyah , located between Al Hisn Fort and the Corniche (also known by locals as the Irani souq/mosque area or Bank Street), which has been under renovation and is being restored to its 1950s glory days.With winter coming, it’s going to be a great place to walk around and as part of the Heart of Sharjah, it’s conveniently located within walking distance of other important landmarks, such as the Sharjah Museum of Islamic Civilization, Al Hisn Fort, Sharjah Art Foundation and Souq Al Arsah. I can’t wait for winter, to just grab a cup of coffee, sit outside and enjoy watching the ships at the port on the other side of the road. A lot of the shops are still being leased, since it’s just opened up recently after renovation but there are some places to look forward to already- such as Ratios Coffee, a souvenir shop, Hamayem (from where you can buy traditional bakhoor) and the soon to be open Al Saroud which serves traditional Emirati food. And of course, you have the beautiful mosque next to the souq, so you don’t end up missing your prayers. It’s a great place to go, and if you’re a tourist wondering how to get here… don’t worry. You can always hop on the City Sightseeing Bus and get off at Heart of Sharjah.