the other side of the UAE

Last weekend, we went to Fujairah, one of the seven Emirates of the UAE. The UAE is composed of seven (7) Emirates namely: Abu Dhabi, Dubai, Sharjah, Ajman, Ras Al Khaimah, Umm Al Quwain and Fujairah. Of these seven Emirates, only Fujairah is situated in the east coast, fronting the Indian Ocean so the color of the sea is different than in Dubai!

All the other Emirates are located on the west coast and are largely covered by desert but Fujairah is almost totally mountainous.

~ Hajar Mountain range in Fujairah ~

hajar mountains

~ tree less mountains ~

The road going to Fujairah looks like this:

hajar mountains

~ road less travelled ~

Just after crossing the border of the neighboring Emirate, the road is narrow with only one lane for each way making driving a bit scary. You know all those people who overtake without thinking and end up crashing with the car on the opposite side!

We stopped by to take photos with the Hajar Mountains on the background and to let other cars (the speedy ones) go ahead and not honk or flash their lights behind us.

It’s been almost a year and a half that I’ve not seen mountains!


~ can you believe I’m still smiling even if it’s 110F outside! ~

After almost two hours of driving from Dubai, we finally reached our destination:

Hotel JAL Fujairah Resort & Spa

~ Hotel JAL Fujairah Resort & Spa ~

The hotel is a resort type hotel with its own private beach:

Hotel JAL Fujairah Resort & Spa

and a very big pool:

Hotel JAL Fujairah Resort & Spa

The private beach view from above. At this time of the year, the sand becomes too hot it could scorch the soles of your feet. No kidding!!

Hotel JAL Fujairah Resort & Spa

On the way to Fujairah city proper, there are some interesting roundabouts:


~ a giant lamp ~


~ huge jars of clay ~


~ a traditional dhow and some dolphins ~

We also saw an old mosque along the road thought to be built around 500 years ago.


Explanation of the historical site and a well the people used for ablution before going inside the mosque for their prayers:

On the way home, we spotted a public beach and braved the hot, hot summer sun. Just like in the private beach at the hotel, the sand was scorching hot and if barefoot, unless you run like the road runner going to the water, chances are you will want to wear your slippers.

The public open beach in Fujairah is not well maintained as the ones in Dubai. Clearly, Dubai is exerting so much effort to keep it a tourist attractive city. There were no lifeguards, shower areas and picnic areas in Fujairah’s public beach. The grounds were also dirty of garbage from picnickers.

It was more than 110F at 2 pm. Even the beach babe did not dare swim.


We stayed on the beach for maximum 5 minutes and ran for shelter.



If anyone is interested in visiting Fujairah, I highly recommend the Hotel JAL Resort & Spa, that is, if you don’t mind the long drive from the city of Dubai. It’s a great value for money than other beach hotels in Dubai (read: it’s much, much cheaper!). It has its own private beach, pool, spa and diving center.

The Diving Center offers classes in diving and snorkeling and will take tourists to the nearby island for diving. The photos of the diving sessions are so enticing I would go if only I can swim.

I recommend checking into a resort hotel (there are plenty in the area) than going to a public beach because of reasons I wrote above.

We went there because of M’s work. He was invited to inspect the hotel and since it’s a weekend, we joined him.


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