While Fujairah is the regional centre for this picturesque part of the UAE, it’s best to see it as a starting point for the popular domestic tourism spots that dot the east coast up to the Musandam Peninsula. Apart from a visit to Khor Kalba, with its open beaches, bird life and picnicking families, the town of Fujairah itself won’t delay you long in heading north. Once past the polluted and unattractive Port of Fujairah, the dramatic mountain scenery delivers a stunning backdrop to the glorious blue of the Arabian Sea and pristine stretches of beach, although development is starting to take its toll on this once clear stretch of coast. While lazing by the pool or on the beach is popular, the resort hotels around Khor Fakkan and Badiyah also offer the best diving and snorkelling opportunities in the country.
En route to Fujairah from Dubai you’ll drive through a strangely desolate dune landscape, punctuated only by power poles. Splendid at dusk, when the sunset on the sand dunes is stunning, the road eventually meets the Hajar Mountains. About 30km before Fujairah on the road from Dhaid you’ll drive through Masafi’s famous Friday Market (Souq al Juma), actually open every day from 8am to 10pm. Here you’ll find rugs, fruit and vegetables, household goods and some souvenirs, and though the quality of goods isn’t high, it’s worth 30 minutes of your time.
Until 1952, Fujairah was a part of the emirate of Sharjah. Even today, neighbouring Khor Fakkan is still a part of that emirate rather than Fujairah.