Media & Insights

September 08 - 2020

Facts About Sharjah


Sharjah was one of the wealthiest towns in the gulf region. The history of Sharjah dates back to 6,000 years, and built on a strong foundation, rich in history and traditions, art and culture.

Tourists can explore many heritage sites and museums, admire the majestic mosques, stroll around the lagoons, and experience the natural beauty of true Arabian deserts, mountains and seas. Also, they can enjoy visiting modern shopping malls and parks, and discover Sharjah’s traditional souks.

We’ve put together a list of some surprising cultural, geographical, educational, and tourism facts about Sharjah. We are pretty sure that you will be interested to know about.

Cultural Facts

  • The first evidence of human life in the UAE was discovered on Jebel Faya in Sharjah, which dates back to around 85,000 BC.
  • The country's history dates back over 6,000 years and appears as early as the 2nd century AD in a map drawn by the Greek geographer, Ptolemy.
  • His Highness Sheikh Dr. Sultan Bin Mohammed Al Qasimi, Member of the Supreme Council and Ruler of Sharjah, is the 18th ruler of the emirate from Al Qasimi ruling family, which dates back to AD 1600.
  • In 1971, His Highness Sheikh Dr. Sultan Bin Mohamad Al Qassimi became the first Minister of Education in the Union Government.
  • Sharjah built the first municipality in UAE.

Geographical Facts

  • Sharjah occupies 3.3 per cent of the total area of the UAE (without counting the islands).
  • Sharjah is the 3 rd largest emirate in UAE, after Abu Dhabi and Dubai.
  • Sharjah is the only emirate that shares its borders with all the other six emirates of the UAE.
  • Sharjah is the only emirate in UAE to have land on both the Arabian Gulf Coast and the Gulf of Oman.

Educational Facts

  • The first UAE school was established in Sharjah in 1907 under the name Al Taymeya School.
  • Sharjah was the first emirate in the UAE to promote women’s rights and introduce education for women in 1942.
  • Sharjah International Book Fair is the 4 th largest book fair in the world, which was started in 1982.
  • The first library in UAE was established in Sharjah in 1933 under the name Al Taymeya.
  • In 2017, the American University of Sharjah (AUS) ranked number one university in the world in terms of diversity.
  • QS World Rankings placing Sharjah among the top 100 student cities in the world in 2017.

Tourism Facts

  • Sharjah was the first country in the GCC region to build an airport in 1932. Today, it's known as Sharjah International Airport.
  • Air Arabia’s main base is Sharjah International Airport, and it is the first low cost airline in the Middle East.
  • In 2014, Sharjah was named the “Capital of Islamic Culture”.
  • Sharjah was crowned Capital of Arab Tourism in 2015.
  • Sharjah have more than 22 museums and heritage areas, that provide the perfect platform to showcase the arts, crafts, traditions and importance of Islam in people’s lifestyles.
  • The first Sharjah Biennial took place in 1993. It is a large-scale contemporary art exhibition that takes place once every two years in the city of Sharjah.
  • Sharjah was rewarded as the: “Cultural Capital of the Arab World” by UNESCO in 1998.

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