Despite its close proximity to Dubai, Sharjah shuns glitz and glamour in favour of a more authentic approach. The airport is a great base for exploring both the city itself, as well as neighbouring Dubai. In 1998 Sharjah was nominated by UNESCO as the Culture Capital of the Arab World and has been attracting an influx of curious tourists ever since.
As well as more than 6000 years of historical intrigue, Sharjah wholeheartedly embraces its modern side. Its gorgeous beaches attract holidaymakers from across the globe, with plenty of UAE sunshine to match. A pair of covered souks attracts shoppers, while man-made lagoons, avant-garde architecture and high-end shopping malls throw plenty of modernism into the mix.
At 16 kilometres inland, the airport is just a 15-minute drive from the coast. Taxis are the fastest way to get around, though parts of the city can also be explored on foot. An airport coach and public transport options ferry visitors from the airport to the city centre, with some hotels offering free shuttles. For those wanting to day trip to Dubai, Sharjah International Airport is just 15 kilometres away.
The Heritage Area echoes the city’s ancient past, with beautifully restored homes and public museums offering visitors a glimpse at traditional Emirati customs. Sharjah Fort, a former 19th century royal residence has now been converted into a local history museum where guests can learn about the Al Qawasim regime.