This Lesser-Known City In UAE Is Set To Become One Of The Best Travel Destinations In 2024

Everything about Dubai screams extravagance and luxury. Think of the Burj Khalifa and the Mall of the Emirates; there's nothing subtle about this tourist destination. But what tourists need to be aware of before visiting Dubai is that some visitors believe it is highly overrated. However, there's a low-key alternative. About an hour from Dubai is Fujairah, an up-and-coming emirate. In fact, CNN named it one of the best places to visit in 2024, and with good reason. Fujairah is located on the Gulf of Oman on the eastern coast of the United Arab Emirates (UAE), featuring mountains and nearly 44 miles of coastline on the Indian Ocean.

Fujairah is ruled by Sheikh Hamad bin Mohammed Al Sharqi, and although population growth has been slow, tourism has been booming. Visitors can fly into Dubai International Airport and make the short drive to Fujairah. There, visitors can shop until they drop at City Center Fujairah or Lulu Mall. They can also dine at restaurants offering diverse cuisines, from local Emirati dishes to international fares. A top restaurant not to miss is Steki. The high-end eatery is ocean-side and serves Greek classics like chicken souvlaki and mouthwatering seafood dishes from grilled octopus to lobster spaghetti. 

Fujairah is a beachside paradise and a go-to destination in the UAE for water-based activities like diving and snorkeling. Snoopy Island, named after the cartoon character, is a popular spot to do this. Likewise, Fujairah is known for its various lavish beach resorts.

Stay at a beach resort in Fujairah

Fujairah is a coastal escape where visitors can enjoy the sun at Umbrella Beach. This is a boardwalk-like attraction that features restaurants, tennis courts, a playground, and more. Arguably, the best way to enjoy Fujairah is through a resort. For example, the Sandy Beach Resort is located directly across from Snoopy Island.

Their infinity pool, as well as their beach, offers direct views of the Island. In addition, it's home to the Sandy Beach Dive Centre, which takes guests diving to Snoopy Island and other sites in Fujairah. One night in a Standard Double Room at the Sandy Beach Resort (without breakfast) will set back tourists around $100 a night at the time of this writing, excluding taxes and other fees.

A top-rated option on Trip Advisor is the five-star contemporary InterContinental Fujairah Resort (seen in the TikTok above). It's adjacent to Al Aqah Beach and has scenic mountain views, four swimming pools, and a private beach. Although the cost is unclear, guests at the InterContinental Fujairah Resort have access to various water sports, including parasailing and more. Prices for a king-size bedroom start at under $200, excluding taxes, fees, and breakfast.

Like the InterContinental Fujairah Resort, Miramar Al Aqah Beach Resort is a five-star institution with a water sports center and diving center for guests. Designed with a Mediterranean and Moroccan influence, one night in a standard room with a queen bed starts at under $130 a night without taxes and fees. Breakfast is included.

Visit Fujairah's culturally significant attractions

Playing in the sand and water is not the only thing to do in Fujairah. There's much to discover in this underrated part of the country, such as the Sheikh Zayed Mosque. Built in 2015, it is truly a sight to behold, and the second-largest mosque in the UAE. Visitors to the Sheikh Zayed Mosque should note that they must adhere to a dress code to respect the local culture. For both men and women, this involves wearing loose clothing that covers most of the body, including shoulders and knees, and women must also ensure their clothing covers their ankles. 

If visitors are interested in learning about Fujairah's history, they should head to the Fujairah Fort and the Fujairah Museum, which are located a brief distance from each other. The historical fort was built in the 1500s and can be explored for free, and the Fujairah Museum displays fascinating artifacts from around the region. A similar and nearby destination is the Fujairah Heritage Village, which is an archaeological site that acts as a recreation of a traditional village visitors can explore. At the Friday Market at Masafi, people into food tourism can get a taste (literally) of Fujairah's culture by eating local dishes and purchasing handcrafted goods.