Category Archive: History

The Things People Tell Me

The United Arab Emirates as a country was founded today, 2 December, exactly 50 years ago, when Abu Dhabi, Dubai, Sharjah, Fujairah, Ajman, and Umm-al-Quwain joined forces. Ras-al-Khaimah, the 7th emirate making up… Continue reading

Out with the Old, In with the New – Abu Dhabi’s Old Souk

“We do not give up on the places we love just because we are physically detached from them.”  – Elif Shafak I pull the throw over my legs, before I cradle a steaming… Continue reading

Landscapes – A Virtual Travel Adventure

“Adventures will change you. They’ll saturate you with a fresh view of life. They’ll take every foundation you ever stood on and shake them until they crack. Adventures will tear away layer after… Continue reading

Sharjah Archaeology Museum

Archaeology, that painstaking science of digging in dirt, patiently brushing sand to one side to uncover unknown treasures long forgotten and deeply buried, is a quest to know where people lived, how they lived, what… Continue reading

Christianity in the Pre-Islamic UAE

Collapsed and hidden under layers of soft creamy sand, the remains of a Nestorian church, monastery, and various courtyard houses patiently lay hidden for centuries on the eastern shore of Sir Bani Yas island, 170 km west of… Continue reading

Wadi Sur

Wadi Sur, the largest man-made feature known in Ras-al-Khaimah, starts at the foot of the hill on which Sheba’s Palace was built, and runs for 7 kilometres in a straight line to Ras-al-Khaimah’s creek. It… Continue reading

Ras-al-Khaimah’s Old Houses

Ras-al-Khaimah, in the not too distant past, had the largest expanse of date palm gardens in the UAE. Even though most of these gardens contained a house, not many have survived. These houses were either… Continue reading

Doors: In Sepia

Doors, in Islamic architecture, mark an important transition from community to private space. Their decoration, in the past, was often the only form of artistic expression the inhabitants projected to the outside world, while, at… Continue reading

Fujairah Fort and Old City

A handful of tourists leave as I arrive. The guard hands me a map of Fujairah. There is no fee. Just a welcoming smile. What I presume to be a guide that speaks… Continue reading

Dubai – From Small Town to Sprawling Metropolis

Imagine a dusty town huddling close to a creek with no roads, electricity, running water or traffic noise. A place where drinking water has to be brought by donkey, drained through a muslin… Continue reading

Hili Archaeological Park

During that magical hour when the shadows start to lengthen and the light turns soft and golden, Hili Archaeological Park is the perfect place to visit. The soft cooing of pigeons is only… Continue reading

Top 10 Competition on Expats Blog

Expats Blog is a great blogging community that regularly challenges bloggers to participate in some friendly competition. It is a great way to discover new blogs, and as a blogger, to step out of… Continue reading

Remnants of an Ancient Civilisation

At the foot of Jebel Hafeet’s eastern slope, just outside Al Ain, 5000 year old tombs lie scattered across the harsh dry landscape.Forgotten piles of stone that once housed the bodies of early… Continue reading

Where History Lingers

In the bustling heart of Al Ain nestles the erstwhile residence of the late Sheikh Zayed bin Sultan bin Zayed bin Khalifa Al Nahyan. Revered as “father of the nation”, and a much… Continue reading

Al Mezyad Fort

“So where are we going today?” my husband asks with a sigh of resignation. “Al Mezyad Fort”, is my quick reply, before I inform him that it is past Bawadi Mall and to the right of… Continue reading

In Search of National Treasures

On Sunday morning we woke up to an unusual quiet. Nothing stirred, except for the birds who filled the air with joyous songs. When we moved to this neighbourhood at the end of June,… Continue reading

In the Heart of Dubai

Summer in the UAE is, apart from the sweltering heat, also a time when travel packages are heavily discounted. Despite the decline in the number of tourists during this time, there is still a steady stream of people making… Continue reading

Strolling through a Sliver of History

The Bastakiya (also known as the Al Fahidi Historical District), a sliver of Dubai’s fragile history, huddles close to the Ruler’s Court and the Creek. It has been beautifully restored and allows for a glimpse… Continue reading

Al Jahili Fort

Al Jahili Fort in Al Ain is a beautifully restored fort in which one can linger for a happy hour or two. I visited it during the week when it was almost deserted. A small group of Emirati students… Continue reading

A Place of Respite – Ras-al-Khaimah’s National Museum

Visiting the National Museum in RAK is not a very exciting experience when one is simply focusing on the exhibits. Although artefacts that were discovered in the area are housed here, and as a result, capture… Continue reading