The United Arab Emirates' most northern emirate is a treasure trove of cultural sites and sublime beaches, featured within a seafaring way of life steeped in pastimes of literature, camel racing, falconry, art, and pearl farming still part of a communal way of life operating within a striking desert, mangrove, and mountain based landscape exuding tranquillity.
With the bustling entertainment hub of Dubai situated only a short drive away along the coastline, Raz Al Khaimah provides the ideal base for fascinating exploration of UAE’s intriguing history, all from the pristine comfort of some of the region’s most authentic Arabic accommodation’s channelling the generous hospitality of the culture through everything from chic boutique offerings and five-star properties.
Wherever you choose to stay at Raz Al Khaimah, we have selected our five must-see locations when visiting this enchanted destination adorning the sparkling Persian Gulf.
The National Museum
Found in the western part of the city and housed in a 19th century fort originally constructed from coral stone to keep the building cool in summer and warm in winter, The National Museum began life as a defence tower outside the perimeter walls of the Old Town. Visitors today can visit many of the rooms inside the building, open to the public as a journey though archaeological findings and social observations of the area in recent centuries.
Mohammed Bin Salim Mosque
Recognised as the largest surviving traditional mosque in the UAE, Mohammed Bin Salim Mosque is the best depiction of religious architecture in the city. Still utilised by residents in Ras Al Khaimah Old Town, the mosque was originally built over an original 16th century iteration and a later version destroyed by British occupation in the early 1800’s.
Several renovations and expansions restoring original features ever since sees a visit to the site today bearing witness to an impressive internal column structure with mangrove wood ceiling as testament to the centuries of prayer eternally listing the building as an important historical landmark.
This striking 16th century mud-brick constructed fort was strategically built to fend of enemies as the region became increasingly connected to the world through a series of trade routes.
A prime hilltop position surveying the Gulf saw this defensive military tower play an important role in preserving the city’s then burgeoning status, with other long-destroyed fortifications highlighting a war-torn past punctuated by a British invasion in 1891 which damaged many of the battlements originally placed on the south side of the hill.
Al Hamra Golf Club
The Middle East is renowned as an impeccable golfing destination for travellers seeking the best courses to work on their swing technique.
Raz Al Khaimah boasts two world-glass golf courses, one of them being Al Hamra Golf Club, featuring five tee options and 18-holes gloriously interspersed with lagoons and desert pockets. Handily suitable for all levels of golfer, the club offers an exciting challenge for all comers, which can be played at night using the available floodlights, before relaxing within the stellar range of restaurants and shops to stock up on sumptuous food and professional golfing kit respectively.
Iceland Water Park
Cool off from days on the range of fantastic beaches on the coast with a trip for all the family to enjoy at Iceland Water Park. Offering the pinnacle in water-themed amusement, expect to find the largest waterpark in the UAE featuring over 30 exciting rides and slides, an expansive wave pool, and relaxing private cabanas making up the coolest destination in the desert.