A day trip from Dubai: Sharjah
While Dubai is a tourist destination in itself, those who decide to come live in the emirate are also able to visit the six other states that make up the United Arab Emirates. The closest one, Sharjah, is so close that it’s hard to distinguish where Dubai ends and Sharjah begins.
However, this smaller city is known as the UAE’s cultural capital so it is worth making the short journey to enjoy some of these attractions.
Sharjah art foundation
The Sharah Art Foundation sponsors art exhibitions from artists in the UAE and around the world, showcasing different works in several buildings in an arts district in Al Mareija. Notably, every two years, a Sharjah Biennial festival of contemporary art happens (similar to the Venice Biennial of architecture).
Most significantly and the foundation’s most popular and world-famous permanent installation is the Rain Room. A purpose-built venue was created for the art piece, which allows visitors to experience a heavy rainstorm — without getting wet.
Arabia’s wildlife center
While the Dubai Zoo has shut down, Sharjah continues to offer a close look at the natural world. Dedicated only to the species found on the Arabian Peninsula, Arabia’s Wildlife Center offers a unique view and experience with over 200 species, most of which are endangered. It offers a great experience for the entire family and unlike many zoos, the entire experience is indoors and air-conditioned.
Sharjah museum of Islamic civilizations
Currently, the only museum dedicated to Islamic culture and history in the UAE, the Sharjah Museum of Islamic Civilizations holds over 5,000 pieces in its collections. Located on the city’s waterfront near the Sharjah Art Foundation, the museum has rare historical artifacts from early Islam, a gallery on scientific advancements made in the Islamic world, and art from all over the world.
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