Khor Fakkan has always been a favourite place for a nice little getaway but if you haven’t been for a while, you might be surprised at what’s new and also at parts you just never knew about. This scenic UAE east coast town is full of intriguing places to visit!
See also Guide to Khor Fakkan on my Instagram Guides.
It’s also no longer that long drive to Fujairah and up the coast. The new Khor Fakkan road cuts through the desert and the Hajar Mountains and takes not more than an hour from the junction on the E611.
The second half of the new road climbs winding roads through the mountains and five tunnels, the longest of which is 3km.
The road can also be accessed at other points along the way, the last being the Masafi-Fujairah road at Al Dafta. Khor Fakkan is also accessible from Fujairah and Dibba.
Khor Fakkan Beach and Corniche
If you’ve been before, you’ll be familiar with the main Khor Fakkan beach, but it has recently undergone development and the new Khorfakkan Corniche is now home to sports fields which can be hired, various play parks, a small skate park, food trucks, cafes, beach library, an inflatable water play area and lots of new seating areas.
You can also do different water sports in Khorfakkan. From the public beach, you can go kayaking and from the Oceanic Resort and Spa Khorfakkan you can go scuba-diving.
Buy Exploring the Emirate of Sharjah – Walking and cycling tours and itineraries in the city and Central and Eastern Region. Includes Khor Fakkan. Buy now
At the southern end of Khor Fakkan Corniche you can visit the archaeological site of the Portuguese Fort which was built in 1635 and an adjacent village and farming area.
Sultan Al Mutawa Mosque and Heritage Area
The Heritage Area is right next to the Portuguese Fort but is under development at the moment. It’s not officially open to the public yet, but you can still take a walk through it.
Some old houses have been restored and now form part of a museum. There are some nice cafes, too.
The Sultan Al Mutawa Mosque, named after its last imam to lead prayers there is in the same area and is approximately 200 years old. However, the mosque fell into disrepair before it was renovated and reopened in 2011.
It may look familiar to you as it is the mosque featured on the old five dirham note.
Al Hisn Museum and Khor Fakkan Souq
Further down is Al Hisn Museum which narrates the history of all parts of Sharjah Eastern Region.
Behind Al Hisn Museum is the restored old souq. There are lots of cute places to eat or just have coffee. Khorfakkan Restaurant behind the fort is great for local food and has a traditional vibe to it.
Behind the souq is a small traditional play area and the farms.
Traditional Crafts Museum
Inside the old souq you can also find the new Traditional Crafts Museum which is well worth a visit. See more here.
Book Oceanic Khorfakkan Beach Resort
Al Adwani Tower
Al Adwani Tower stands atop a hill at the end of the corniche. Next to Adwani Tower are a few places to eat and drink. Lilac Cafe is nice and on the other side next to the harbour are places that cook fresh fish to eat there or take away.
Al Rabi Tower Khor Fakkan Hike and Cafe
Up on the hill behind the museum and souq stands Al Rabi Tower which dates back to 1915. These towers and forts formed the defence network of Khor Fakkan.
You can climb up to Al Adwani Tower from the road but you can either drive or walk up to Al Rabi Tower. Both offer great views over Khor Fakkan.
The Al Rabi hiking trail takes you to the top of the next hill, the tallest in the town of Khor Fakkan.
If hiking isn’t your thing, you could enjoy a scenic coffee or meal at The View by Wave instead. The cafe has indoor and outdoor seating with a gorgeous view over the bay and Arabian Sea.
See more on Al Rabi Tower here.
Flag Square, Khor Fakkan Square and the Resistance Monument
Another place for a good view is Flag Square. You can drive up to the top. At the bottom of the road to Flag Square, there are beautiful fountains on four sides of the large roundabout.
The fountains are set in landscaped gardens and you can sit on a bench or on the grass and enjoy watching the mesmerising fountains with the mountains as the backdrop.
You will also see Resistance Monument on the other side, built recently under the orders of Sheikh Sultan to honour those who resisted against the Portuguese invasion in the 16th century. Read more about the monument here.
In the middle of the roundabout is a giant mabkhara, which is what Emiratis burn bukhoor in which gives a pleasant-smelling smoke used to perfume the clothes, body and home.
As Khor Fakkan is in the Emirate of Sharjah, you will notice the Arabic architecture of all local government buildings.
The University of Sharjah had a campus but it is now The University of Khor Fakkan. A new Academy for Science, Technology and Maritime Transport is also now open. Both are near Khorfakkan Square.
Khor Fakkan Amphitheatre and Waterfall
On the corniche, look out for the amphitheatre and Khor Fakkan waterfall. The amphitheatre is used for concerts, film screenings, etc.
Khor Fakkan always participates in Sharjah’s many events such as Sharjah Light Festival, Children’s Film Festival, etc. It also has its own Khor Fakkan Festival in March.
Louloua and Zobara
Outside of the main city, there are many other places to visit within the municipality of Khor Fakkan. To the north lie the beautiful and quiet Louloua and Zobara beaches. There are also archaeological sites at Zobara.
Suhub Rest Area
Suhub Rest Area resembles a flying saucer and sits atop a mountain with great views over the town and sea.
Fen Restaurant opens from 7am to 11pm and has indoor and outdoor seating. Next to it is a play area and parking spaces nearby. If they’re full, there are overflow car parks further down with a shuttle service.
Parking is free if you show a stamped receipt for a minimum of AED 50 from the restaurant. Otherwise, you pay when you exit. Check the parking fees mentioned below and at the entrance, as they may change. (Remember also that Friday is part of the weekend in Sharjah.)
You can also hike up the mountainside from Al Rafisah Dam, have breakfast and head back down. You’ll usually get a fantastic sunrise vista if you set off early morning. Or you might get a haunting above-the-cloud scene instead.
Parking fee – weekday AED 10 per hour, weekend/holiday AED 20 per hour, two free hours with a minimum spend of AED 50 in the cafe and a stamped receipt
Rafisa Dam, Wadi Shees and Al Miqsar Village
To the west on the Khor Fakkan Road, you can visit Al Rafisah, and Wadi Shees. Al Miqsar Village also lies to the east and now has its own parking area off the Khor Fakkan Road (signposted Najb Miqsar) but can also be accessed through Wadi Shie from inside the town or on foot from Al Rafisa. (Click links to see more.)
At Rafisa Dam, you can go kayaking or rent a pedalo or doughnut boat, have a picnic, sit and enjoy the view, go hiking or dine at Rafisa Lounge. There are also several play areas for different age groups. See more at the page all about Al Rafisa.
There is now also a hiking trail from Al Rafisah Dam up to Suhub Rest House with fantastic views out to sea and over Rafisa lake and the Hajar mountains.
Al Miqsar Village has since undergone development so this is how it looked before. See more of old Al Miqsar Village or Najd Al Miqsar here.
Search Khorfakkan hotels and resorts
Finally, south west is the tiny exclave of Al Nahwa which lies within the Omani enclave of Madha. The entrance to Madha is in Fujairah just over the border after Khor Fakkan Expo and Sharjah University.
If you have a 4WD, you can drive from Nahwa through to Shees. There is no border control here. See more on Al Nahwa or Wadi Shees.
You can also visit Shark Island just off Khor Fakkan coast either just for a boat trip or for diving.
There are also more exciting developments underway including a new luxury resort.
As you can see there are lots of great things to do in Khor Fakkan. Be sure to explore some of the relevant links and my Instagram Guides on Khorfakkan.
Links for our blog posts on places in and around Khor Fakkan – Al Rafisah Dam, Al Rabi Tower, Al Miqsar Village, Wadi Shees, Al Nahwa, Khor Fakkan Crafts Museum, Resistance Monument
- Go here to see more hidden gems in the UAE or go to Home.
- Follow on Instagram or Facebook for regular photos, tips and snippets of cultural and historical information too
- Sign up for Glimpses of the UAE Newsletter
- Follow Glimpses of UAE on WordPress.com
- Take me to the Glimpses of the UAE map
- How can I get from Sharjah to Khorfakkan without a car? You can get the intercity bus from Al Jubail Bus Station.
- Khorfakkan is in which emirate? Sharjah
- What is the Khorfakkan amphitheatre tickets price? It is free to visit Khor Fakkan amphitheatre and walk around the public area. To buy tickets for concerts at Khorfakkan amphitheatre, visit Platinum List and check if there are any events on.
- What is the name of the famous Khorfakkan Lake? – Al Rafisa Dam. See more info in the relevant section above or the specific post here.
What a gorgeous destination! The beaches are stunning. Thank you for putting Khor Fakkan on my radar. I had never heard of it before!
Khor Fakkan looks so pretty. I have never heard of it before, it looks like there is so much to see in the UAE beyond Dubai. Al Nahwa looks beautiful to explore.
I havent spent much time in this part of the world except as a stopover. But this post makes me want to book a holiday to the area for a few weeks at least. Thanks for the inspiration.
That waterfall looks great. Love the architecture of the buildings.