Shop at Old Souqs in Sharjah

Old Souqs in Sharjah

Old Souqs in Sharjah

Have you visited the old souqs in Sharjah? Are you like me and love searching for old treasures and love retro? Then Souq al Arsah, Souq Al Masqoof and Souq Al Shanasiyah are for you. Then head on to Souq Al Sagr to buy frankincense, tea, sweets, potions and textiles. Let’s explore more below.

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Souq al Arsah and Masqoof

In the past, you could find old telephones, gramophone players, typewriters, cameras, memorabilia, toys as well as some traditional items and shawls, etc. However, after the restoration, not all shops are open yet. I’ll keep you update though.

Take a walk through the alley to Souq al Arsah for yet more interesting finds – old Omani jewellery, gemstones, daggers, warrior helmets. Here you can also find shawls, scarves, dresses, etc. Again, there have been some changes but I did see that the shops selling silverware and general souvenirs were open on my last visit in December 2023.

Have a cup of chai in the traditional tea shop before going off to explore the many museums in the Heart of Sharjah. See more on The Heart of Sharjah.

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Souq Al Shanasiyah

Just a little further down the corniche is the newly built Souq Al Shanasiyah. It is on the site of the original Souq Al Shanasiyah, the foundations of which were discovered in 2012 during a survey of the area for the development of the Heart of Sharjah.

This is one of the oldest souqs in Sharjah, the original centre of Sharjah business and a main trading centre in the region at the time.

Stop by the Archaeological Findings section to read more and to see the original foundations and coins, pottery pieces, etc that were discovered from different times.

Inside you can find a variety of shops including clothing, more retro and an organic spice shop.

Once you’ve finished wandering round, you can relax and enjoy some refreshments overlooking the gardens and the traditional dhows on the water. There is also a children’s play area next to the cafes. (You need to buy a ticket for this inside Al Shanasiya Souq.)

Immediately after Souq Al Shanasiyah is Souq Al Sagr, also known as Souq Al Bahr.

Souq Al Sagr (Souq Al Bahr)

At Souq Al Sagr, you can find spices from around the world, frankincense, many kinds of oil, herbal teas, all sorts of food items and textiles in many colours and patterns. Low-cost ready clothes are also available in some shops.

Many traders have had their shops here for 20-30 years although many of them were moved back from the creek some years ago.

If you continue through Souq Al Sagr, you come out at Sharjah Art Area.

If you’re staying in Dubai check out this private Sharjah city tour from Dubai with 5* reviews

Sharjah Central Souq or the Blue Souq Sharjah

Built in 1978, Sharjah Central Souq is still one of the city’s iconic landmarks. Its Emirati wind towers, elegant arches, domes, decorative windows, blue tiles in different shades and calligraphy come together to create a wonderfully unique and beautiful building.

It also goes by the name of the Blue Souq, owing to its blue domes and is sometimes referred to as the Islamic Souq Sharjah

exterior of Sharjah Central Souq aka Sharjah Blue Souq

With the air of a Middle Eastern grand bazaar, it has two main halls linked by a bridge and a pedestrian crossing. In these beautiful matching buildings, you can find Persian rugs, perfume, gold and silver, tarnished old silver coffee pots, soft pashmina shawls, embroidered Arab dresses, materials, Western-style clothing and lots more.

You can also pick up some bargains among everyday clothes and shoes, handbags, gadgets, and PlayStation games. Arab dresses range from AED 25 to much more for well-tailored and embroidered ones. Abayas (ladies’ cloaks, traditionally in black) are reasonably priced and can be tailored.

Even if you don’t want to buy anything, you should include a walk through the twin halls on your visit to Sharjah to admire the beauty of the buildings and be taken back to the time before modern-day malls.

There is plenty of paid municipality parking on either side. You can get to Sharjah Central Souq by public bus, getting off at the nearby Jubail Bus Terminal or by taking the Hop On Hop Off Sightseeing bus.

Sharjah Central Souq Opening times: Daily 7am–11pm
Accessibility: Good accessibility

See also the new Al Jubail Souq for fruit, vegetables, meat, fish, dates and a cafe with a great view.

Souq Jubail, Sharjah

There’s no need to go to malls with so many great places to shop. If you want to buy souvenirs or gifts to take home for friends and family, the souqs are the place to go! Have fun exploring and shopping!

The old souqs and the Heart of Sharjah are included in the walking tours and itineraries in my e-book below. Tap below to buy now or see also The Ultimate Guide to the Emirate of Sharjah further down. Or visit How to plan your trip to Sharjah.

Buy Exploring the Emirate of Sharjah – Walking and cycling tours and itineraries in the city and Central and Eastern Regions. Includes old souqs in Sharjah

Buy now

Buy Exploring the Emirate of Sharjah – walking, cycling tours and itineraries

exploring sharjah book cover and sample

Buy The Ultimate Guide to the Emirate of Sharjah now to help plan your trip

sharjah guide book

What else can you see and do in the area?

If you liked this post, you might also like Souq Al Jubail Sharjah.

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