Hotels in Sharjah

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Sharjah hotels

Sharjah Hotels

Buzzing souqs, elegant mosques and peaceful ocean views welcome you to the city that UNESCO labelled as 1998’s Cultural Capital of the Arab World. Sharjah is the third largest, and most populated, city in the United Arab Emirates, and it offers the perfect antidote to Dubai’s excesses - outshining its illustrious neighbour’s neon lights with a wealth of culture and heritage. With just 10 miles separating the 2 cities, you can enjoy both sides of the spectrum during your stay in the area’s luxury hotels, which invite you to unwind below the pulsing Middle Eastern sun.

Things to see

A magnificent golden dome will draw you to the Sharjah Museum of Islamic Civilization, where you're encouraged to dig beneath the shiny surface of the UAE, and immerse yourself in the stories and legends of the Islamic faith. Carefully laid out exhibits take you on a tour through time, revealing how ancient astronomers first mapped the stars, and early artists created stunning geometric mosaics. To really discover this city, however, you need to head out into the humming streets, and its maze of souqs. First, try gigantic Blue Souq, which sits on the banks of Khalid Lagoon, and has a collection of over 600 shops. Watch and learn from the locals, as they barter for everything from gold necklaces to beautiful baskets woven from palm leaves, before giving haggling a go for yourself. The Souq al-Arsah, is more traditional, and is believed to be the UAE’s oldest covered marketplace. Breathe in deep, and take in the smells of roasting Arabic coffee beans, floral saffron spices, and minty tea leaves, before putting your new found bargaining skills to the test. Dubai may be flashier, but Sharjah isn’t all about museum and markets - visit the Al Majaz Waterfront at night to see rainbow colours shimmering in the spray of fountains, as lasers ricochet off the water during jaw-dropping light shows.

Hotels in Sharjah

Luxury resort hotels in Sharjah offer the perfect escape from the desert heat - and their icy air-conditioning, outdoor pools, and relaxed common areas will leave you feeling distinctly chilled out. Stay in 5-star accommodation, overlooking the Persian Gulf, or in hotels gathered around secluded blue lagoons. Alcohol is banned in this emirate, but the cheaper prices and great facilities on offer mean that’s a sacrifice worth making. With whirring treadmills waiting in the hotels’ fitness centres, you can easily get back home feeling healthier than when you arrived.

Where to stay

If a morning routine of waking early, to watch the rising sun speckling the Persian Gulf’s waves appeals, then stay in the beachside suburb of Al Layyeh. Otherwise, the Abu Shagara area gives you the chance to check into hotels in the shadows of the city’s many beautiful mosques. Al Noor Mosque is unique, as tourists are allowed inside its sacred walls for guided tours designed to promote understanding. Hotels in the less conservative Dubai literally reach for the sky, meanwhile, and let you stay on top of the world, in some of the tallest, most ambitious structures ever dreamt up by man.

How to get to Sharjah

Sharjah International Airport is about 10 miles from the city centre, but Dubai’s international hub is likely to be much more convenient. In theory, it’s only a 20 minute drive - or taxi ride - from Sharjah to Dubai’s airport, but be aware that the roads between the two cities are notoriously busy during the early morning, lunchtime and late afternoon rush hours. Busses can help you to hop between the 2 cities, if you’d like to save some money, but can take as long as 2 hours during peak periods.