Khor al Fakkan is located in the enclave of Sharjah.
The cruise dock is part of a large container facility. Free shuttle buses will take you to the port entrance as one is not allowed to walk through the port. At the port entrance one will find a fish market (AM only) and a fruit and vegetable market and a few taxis offering tours. From there on it is at least a 20 minute walk to the center of town, where the main highlight is a supermarket and a small souq. The walk is along the corniche and the beach. Keep in mind that temperatures can be high and there are no shady areas.
As Sjarjah is one of the more conservative emirates, western style bathing suits are not allowed at the beach.
Across from where the ships dock there is a well stocked and priced duty free store as well as a seaman's cafe with good WiFi. 2 minutes free. $4 per hour. If you look like a "seaman" it might be less.
Map to take along.
Cruise schedule for this port.
Watch a destination video.
Khor Fakkan (or Khawr Fakkan') is a town in the emirate of Sharjah in the United Arab Emirates (UAE). Located along the Gulf of Oman.
Set in the splendid natural Bay of Khor Fakkan on the short Gulf of Oman coast of Sharjah, the prominent features are Shark Island and Port Khor Fakkan itself. The town has developed around the bay with the focal point of the economy centered on the expanding container port. The first buildings you notice are the Oceanic Hotel with its porthole style windows and above, the Ruler of Sharjah's Palace, high up on the hilltop.
Khor Fakkan is a popular local tourism spot, surrounded with huge mountains and attractive beaches. Its most famous hotel is the Oceanic. It also features coral outcrops suitable for diving and snorkeling. Tourism is somewhat held back by Sharjah's ban on alcohol.
The Heritage District of Sharjah city is dominated by the Sharjah Fort Museum. The fort itself has been lovingly restored by the present Sheikh, and the museum provides something of a glimpse at social history of the Emirate. Many exhibit signs, however, are solely in Arabic, with those in English often being rife with errors.
Also in the Heritage District is the Islamic Museum. This is a fascinating place for any visitors with an interest in the faith, as there are handwritten Qur'ans, letters from the Prophet to other leaders of the time and various artifacts from Mecca itself. There is also a comprehensive display of Arab handicrafts. Most sites in the Heritage District have certain opening times set aside solely for women. Visitors of both genders should make certain of these on arrival in the city.
Ladies – instead of shorts, pack below-the-knee trousers or skirts. No exposed knees, cleavage or upper arms.
As the town has not much on offer: Either stay on board and enjoy the pool etc. or take a ship's organized tour if they are of interest.
While staying on board: Look at portside and you see at least 50 large tankers waiting at the port of Fujairah to be filled up with Arabian gold: Oil! An impressive sight. Also the well organized container terminal across the dock is worthwhile seeing in operation.
There is no public transport in Sharjah, which means that visitors will need to have their own wheels or rely on taxis. If you take a taxi anywhere in the UAE, ask for the meter to be switched on even if you make a tour by taxi.
For old forts around the area and other ancient spots, a cruise organized tour probably will be your best bet.
The "Blue Souq" (Souq Al Markazi or Central Souq) is an interesting, if slightly shambling, shopping center hosting around 600 shops in two wings. The ground floor shops tend to stock gold and expensive designer clothes, with the upper level containing shops stocking carpets and curios from as far as Afghanistan and Tibet. Haggling over prices in the upper-level shops will frequently attract massive discounts. A great place to buy gifts and traditional goods. Considered superior to Dubai for carpets by Western expatriates. Another souq worth a visit is Souq al-Arsah (considered to be the oldest souq in the country).
The town is part of the booze-free and ultra-conservative Sharjah emirate.
The currency is the United Arab Emirates dirham (AED, local abbreviation dhs). The Dirham is pegged on the USD, so rate variations with this currency are unlikely.
The official language is Arabic, but it is safe to say that the majority of the population doesn't speak it (Iranian, Indian, Asian and Western expatriates are more numerous than Arabs in Dubai, and usually have very limited knowledge of Arabic). English is the lingua franca.
Shopping hours Daily 0900-1300 and 1600-2100, but many shops are open all day. Shops close for prayers Fri 1130-1330.
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