Visiting a country the size of the UK city of Birmingham may seem limited in what it has to offer. However, Ajman is a modern, well-developed emirate with plenty of cultural attractions and watersports activities to keep visitors well entertained.
1. Ajman Museum
The Ajman Museum is a highlight for anyone staying in the area. Located in the former ruler’s residence, the museum is housed within a typical 18th century fortress-style building. Enter through the grand entrance guarded by twin towers and authentic cannons. The building served as a police station from 1970 but now houses a collection of antique weapons, photographs and archaeological exhibits tracing Ajman’s interesting past. It’s a great place to learn more about the traditional way of life in this desert emirate.
2. Dhow-Building Boat Yard
Another attraction that underlines the uniqueness of this Middle Eastern destination is a trip to the old boat building yard. Located on the north side of the Creek about a mile from the city centre, this is an active dhow building boatyard.
See how the simple sail-driven craft are built from huge tree trunks following traditional methods. These boats with their billowing sails were used in the past to transport divers to the pearl banks nearby.
3. Shopping in Ajman
Designer brands and bargain priced electronics and jewellery are just some of the goods available in the extensive City Centre Mall in Ajman. There are plenty of excellent bargains that compare favourably with the larger and better-known malls further south in Dubai. The mall includes a cinema, play area and food court.
A better place to hunt for more authentic souvenirs are the local souks. Enjoy the hospitality if you are offered a cup of mint tea, and haggle for bargains. Best buys are the local pottery, honey and scarfs.
A trip to the Fish Market is a fascinating place to buy fresh fish and have it prepared and cooked for you in the market or at one of the restaurants across the street.
4. Ajman Beach
The beautiful white sandy beach stretches for over 10 miles and is perfect for swimming and sunbathing. Most hotels provide beach chairs and shady umbrellas for their guests and there are plenty of public beach areas along the corniche. Dolphin spotting is a popular pastime in this area along with snorkelling, jet skiing, fishing, scuba diving and watersports.
5. Al Masfout
In contrast to the busy city, a trip to the outlining Ajman enclave of Masfout makes a pleasant change. The area is located about 50 miles east of Ajman city and is primarily used for farming and agriculture.
The wide valleys and higher elevation make it cool and pleasant to visit. This mountain area is highly fertile and is famous for its beehives and honey production. In the centre of Masfout, look out for the Bin Sultan Mosque which was built from palm tree branches and red clay in 1815.
Once you’ve ticked these top Ajman attractions off your list, you can look further afield for shopping and dining in Dubai, dhow boat trips, camel racing, dune buggy trips, sandboarding or dining out at a Bedouin encampment on a thrilling desert safari.