Sharjah – is the third largest city in the UAE; it is the only one with a shoreline on both the Arabian Gulf and the Gulf of Oman. The Emirates of Dubai and Ajman surround one part of the Emirate, while the other extends east to the Gulf of Oman. The settlement of Sharjah dates back some 6,000 years when it is believed to have been called Sarcoa. The population was small and people relied on trade and sea faring, farming, hunting, fishing and pearling. Many of the early settlements were based around the ‘falaj’, a man made underground watercourse.
The city of Sharjah, which overlooks the Persian Gulf covers 2,600 km² (1,003 mi²) and has a population of over 800,000. Sharjah has three enclaves on the East coast, bordering the Gulf of Oman. These are Kalba, Dibba Al Hisn, and Khor Fakkan. The Emirate also encompasses some important oasis areas, the most famous of which is Dhaid where a wide range of vegetables and fruits are cultivated on its fertile soil.
Sharjah is popular for its rich and cultural presence in the Arab region, as it has won the prestigious UNESCO award as the Cultural capital of the Arab world in 1998. The Emirate of Sharjah is renowned for its vibrant multicultural ambiance, diverse museums with interesting artefacts in every corner, reflecting both rich cultural heritage and contemporary artwork, and it’s charming blend of historical and modern architectural sites. It was one of the wealthiest towns in the UAE. This cultural square is famous for its combination of restored houses in traditional style.
Distinctive landmarks are the two major covered souks, reflecting Islamic design and a number of recreational areas and public parks such as Al Jazeirah Fun Park and Al Buheirah Corniche. The city is also notable for its numerous elegant mosques, which contribute to the Emirate’s title as the Cultural Capital of the UAE. The Expo Centre Sharjah is well known especially for the annual book fair that is famous all over the region.
Sharjah is ruled by His Highness Dr.Sheikh Sultan Bin Muhammad Al Qasimi, Member of the UAE Supreme Council and Ruler of Sharjah.
Renowned throughout the Arab world for its commitment to art, culture and preserving the local heritage, this Emirate is the place to visit and explore experience, to discover the secrets of a unique Arabian lifestyle and Islamic culture. Sharjah offers an impressive array of over twenty museums, several art galleries and beautifully restored heritage areas. A good overview of Sharjah’s heritage is available here including a few restorations of old houses.
Sharjah City of Humanitarian Service
The persistence of Sharjah City for Humanitarian Services in pursuing humanitarian work, especially in the fields of care, training, education rehabilitation and integration of the handicapped in the society, does not stem from a utopian ideal but from a conviction that ties the potential future to a radiant past embodied by the adherence of the people of the UAE to standards derived from a deep-rooted history and a glorious Islamic past.
If we compare the past and the present, we would find a wide contrast between the suppression, negligence and ignorance of the past, and the towering achievements we see and feel today.
A Trade Hub
Sharjah has traditionally been a trading point, thanks to its strategic location between the East and the West, for centuries. Sharjah has been an important seaport for trade and commerce in the Gulf region. Today it has most-modern air and seaports. The Sharjah airport was the first Category II airport in the Arabian Gulf with an annual capacity of over two million passengers. It is the main exporting airport for sea-air cargo in the UAE. The Emirate boasts of having ports in both the Arabian Gulf and the Indian Ocean.
Sharjah is one of the largest cargo hubs in the world and is a key commercial centre in the Middle East, having both natural resources and well-developed infrastructure. Investors flock to the Emirate as its free zones offer them land on lease along with several other tax benefits. Residents enjoy a superb lifestyle with excellent accommodation, leisure & sports facilities, education and health services.