Dubai is a city and emirate in the United Arab Emirates known for luxury shopping, ultramodern architecture and a lively nightlife scene. Burj Khalifa, an 830m-tall tower, dominates the skyscraper-filled skyline. At its foot lies Dubai Fountain, with jets and lights choreographed to music. On artificial islands just offshore is Atlantis, The Palm, a resort with water and marine-animal parks.
Sharjah is a United Arab Emirates city on the Arabian Gulf. Traditionally more conservative than its southern neighbor, Dubai, Sharjah is widely considered the nation’s cultural capital. Its Heritage Area is on the creek that the city first developed around, with restored homes and museums devoted to Emirati customs. It's also home to Sharjah Fort, a 19th-century royal residence turned local history museum.
Abu Dhabi, the capital of the United Arab Emirates, sits off the mainland on an island in the Persian (Arabian) Gulf. Its focus on oil exports and commerce is reflected by the skyline’s modern towers and shopping megacenters such as Abu Dhabi and Marina malls. Beneath white-marble domes, the vast Sheikh Zayed Grand Mosque features an immense Persian carpet, crystal chandeliers and capacity for 41,000 worshipers.
Ajman is continuing the development stalled by the financial crisis of 2007–2008 and once again undergoing a period of growth. Tourist attractions in the emirate, including hotels, shopping and cultural destinations are growing rapidly. Tourist attractions include the Ajman National Museum situated at Ajman Fort, the Red Fort and the museum in the inland enclave of Manama. Ajman's corniche is a popular evening and weekend destination for families and features a number of fast food outlets, coffee shops and stalls. It is home to the 'Outside Inn', a popular watering hole with expatriates, as well as to a number of hotels, including the Ramada, Ajman Palace, the Kempinski, the Ajman Saray and the Fairmont Ajman.
RAS Al KHAIMAH
Ras Al Khaimah is the northernmost emirate of the United Arab Emirates. It's known for its Arabian Gulf beaches. In the capital city of the same name, the National Museum of Ras Al Khaimah occupies a centuries-old fort. The museum features regional history and archaeological exhibits. Nearby is the large, traditional Mohammed bin Salem Mosque. Northeast, the mountaintop Dhayah Fort dates from the 19th century.
Fujairah is an emirate on the east coast of the United Arab Emirates, lying along the Gulf of Oman. It's known for its beaches and the Hajar Mountains, which run through much of the emirate. In the south, the city of Fujairah is home to the massive Sheikh Zayed Mosque, with its towering white minarets. Overlooking the city is Fujairah Fort, a reconstructed 17th-century fortress featuring round and square towers.
UMM AL QUWAIN
Umm al-Quwain is one of the United Arab Emirates. Umm al-Quwain city lies on the Arabian Gulf. On a peninsula, the old town area features the UAQ National Museum, in a centuries-old fort. Nearby, Al Sinniyah Island sits in a protected lagoon and is a haven for seabirds. Dreamland Aqua Park offers waterslides and pools. Inland, a camel racetrack is just outside the village of Falaj Al Moalla.
Muscat, Oman’s port capital, sits on the Gulf of Oman surrounded by mountains and desert. With history dating back to antiquity, it mixes high-rises and upscale shopping malls with clifftop landmarks such as the 16th-century Portuguese forts, Al Jalali and Mirani, looming over Muscat Harbor. Its modern, marble-clad Sultan Qaboos Grand Mosque, with 50m dome and prodigious Persian carpet, can accommodate 20,000 people.
Salalah is the capital city of southern Oman's Dhofar province. It's known for its banana plantations, Arabian Sea beaches and waters teeming with sea life. The Khareef, an annual monsoon, transforms the desert terrain into a lush, green landscape and creates seasonal waterfalls. The Frankincense Land Museum, part of the Al Balid Archaeological Site, recounts the city’s maritime history and role in the spice trade.