A visit to Sharjah on Dubai Tour

sharjahDubai is a big, spread out city with limited options of transportation. Cabs are expensive and the different attractions are pretty far away. That’s why one of the best options to move around the city is taking a Hop-On Hop-Off tour. This way you’re free to stop anywhere you want, for as long as you want, without depending on any group or having to follow someone carrying an umbrella. My choice was BigBus Dubai. I recommend the 48h ticket. It’s not so much more expensive than the 24h ticket and a day is not enough to get to know this interesting city.


I started my BigBus tour in Sharjah, a city next to Dubai. More conservative than her modern neighbor, Sharjah is a big city with broad avenues and residential buildings. Everything looks quite modern too, like a newly built city. The tour takes 3,5 hours and has two stops. The first one was on The Heritage Area, an historical Center rebuilt with traditional style houses and little museums. Walking through its alleys you can have a good idea of how was traditional life back then, nowadays it is a city with modern architecture. Thinking about the difference between today’s modern city and the ancient way of life in this hard desert place is very interesting.

The second stop was the Blue Souk, a big traditional Arabian market. Unlike the modern malls of the region, the souk is an old style commercial center where you can find a great variety of shops selling regional and traditional Arabian products. In Blue Souk, the main products are gold, jewelry, silver, clothes and carpets. It’s important to remember that here bargaining is a must. It reminded me some souks I visited in Sudan, Egypt e Turkey.

From the souk, I decided to return to Dubai on my own and follow the promenade to Al Majaz, where I was planning to go to an art exhibition opening.  On my walk, I passed by a huge mosque, the Al Noor. Impressive. Apparently, it was the end of prayers so everybody was leaving the premises. The sunset on the promenade was crowded; it looked like a fun moment for families, men, women, children…  I also noticed that they love neon lights around here. Some of the buildings on the shore had a neon outline, and so did the paddle boats steps in the lake. The water fountain was also illuminated in strong, vibrant colors.

When I got to the exhibition it started raining. Yes, it rained on the desert.  And the exhibition that was supposed to have an outdoors music performance was cancelled.  Summer rain in the desert is always a blessing…

[Translated by Òscar Buenafuente]

See also 2nd day on Dubai tour

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