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.
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.
If you’ve been before, you’ll be familiar with the main beach, but it has recently undergone development and 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.
At the southern end of the Corniche you can visit the archeological site of the Portuguese Fort which was built in 1635 and an adjacent village and farming area.
Further down is the Hisn Fort Museum which relates the history of all parts of Sharjah Eastern Region. Behind the Museum is the restored old souq and Al Adwani Tower stands atop a hill at the end of the Corniche.
Inside the old souq you can also find the new Crafts Museum which is well worth a visit.
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.
From Al Rabi Tower, there is a hiking trail that takes you to the top of the next hill, the tallest in the town of Khor Fakkan. (Click here for more on Al Rabi Tower.)
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 part of the emirate of Sharjah, you will notice the Arabic architecture of all local government buildings.
The University of Sharjah has a campus there but it is soon to become The University of Khor Fakkan. A new Academy for Science, Technology and Maritime Transport is also under construction.
On the corniche, look out for the new amphitheatre and waterfall.
Khor Fakkan always participates in Sharjah’s many events such as Sharjah Light Festival. It also has its own Khor Fakkan Festival in March.
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 Loulou’a and Zobara beaches. There are also archeological sites at Zobara.
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 Khor Fakkan or on foot from Al Rafisa. (Click links to see more.)
Al Miqsar Village has since undergone development so this is how it looked before.
Finally, south west is the tiny exclave of 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. You can also take another road that comes out at Dafta.
You can also visit Shark Island just off Khor Fakkan either just for a boat trip or for diving. (More info to be added soon.)
There are also more exciting developments coming up in Khor Fakkan including the ampitheatre and hilltop restaurant. Watch this space!