Many Dubai residents and even tourists consider Ras Al Khaimah, ruled by Saud bin Saqr Al-Qasimi their preferred escape from Dubai. Although most people come for the beaches, Ras Al Khaimah is also a great place to base yourself if you want to do more active activities.
Jebel Jais, or Jais Mountain, is a primary tourist attraction. And it’s ideal for adventure seekers.
Ras Al Khaimah’s coastal area and resorts are well-known, but this area is also steeped in history. Archaeological digging has revealed that this area was inhabited for thousands of years. This history is well-explained by the Ras Al Khaimah National Museum.
You can also learn what the Emirati lifestyle was like before the oil boom by visiting Dhayah Fort. Both the museum and the fort make for a nice day trip.
This list of top-rated destinations and activities will help you figure out what to do when you visit Ras Al Khaimah.
Hit the Beaches
The majority of visitors to Ras Al Khaimah make their way to the beach. There are many luxury hotels along the long coastline of the emirate, each with its own beach and coastal access. Many resorts allow tourists to use their facilities even if you’re not staying there, so long as you purchase a day pass.
The beaches are clean and well-maintained. There are restaurants, bars, and shade structures and more right on the sand. You can also find showers and everything you need to boost your tan.
Most hotels also rent everything you need for water sports, including kayaks, jet skis, paddleboards and more.
Head to Jebel Jais
Jebel Jais, located about 50 km northeast of Ras Al Khaimah, is part of the Hajar Mountain Range. It is the highest mountain in the UAE at nearly 1,935 meters.
The 20-kilometer road that leads to the top (near the summit) runs in a switchback up the mountain and features viewing platforms along the route so you can enjoy the distant views.
The viewing deck park is a prime spot for photographers, especially in the early evening when jutting rock formations glow in the sun’s setting light.
Jebel Jais is the place to go if you want to feel like your jumping off a mountain. Jebel Jais Flight is the longest zipline in the world, and it runs down the mountain for nearly 3 km. It is a popular activity for adventure seekers in the UAE and beyond who enjoy traveling fast — up to 120 kilometers an hour!
The thrill of the flight and breathtaking mountain scenery are great highlights. But the best part is landing on the platform at the zipline, which is suspended in midair.
Another zipline adventure, Jais Sky tour, is available on the mountain. This offers a slower experience but allows you to take in the sights on seven ziplines that are connected by platforms suspended from the sides of the mountain on a course of amount 5 km.
Go to Dhaya Fort
This mud-brick Fort, built in the 1500s, is about 20 km trip north of Ras Al Khaimah. It was constructed on a hilltop facing the Gulf to protect the region from British attack.
The Dhayah Fort was a defense tower that played an important part in the history of Ras Al Khaimah.
To the south, you will find other ruined fortifications or watchtowers.
In 1891, a battle broke out between British forces and the Emirate. Many of these fortifications were destroyed.
The views from the fort’s ramparts make it well worth the visit. For anyone who is interested in history, the fort itself makes a great place to explore.
Take a Drive
The majestic Hajar Mountains dominate the city’s landscape far from the coast.
One of the best things about road-tripping in the Hajar region is the awesome scenery. The interior is characterized by barren and jagged mountain landscapes that stretch outward as roads ascend higher.
To get there, take the E18 highway south from Ras Al Khaimah and turn right onto the E87 highway. This will take you through the belly of the Hajar Mountains.
You can also find a lot of mountain scenery on the E11 highway that runs north from Ras Al Khaimah to Dhayah Fort.
Experience a Scenic Hike
In the winter, climbers and hikers who are keen to explore the lower slopes of Jebel Jais will find it a popular destination.
Half a dozen trails that range from easy to moderate have been established along the mountain’s lower slopes. They all start at the same trailhead on the main road to the mountain.
The trails offer spectacular views, including views of flora and fauna — such as mountain goats.
Jebel Jais offers more experienced hikers a route made of steel cables attached to the rock face. It runs along the mountain’s lower slopes. To climb, you must be part of a guided tour.
Visit the Museum
The Ras Al Khaimah National Museum can be found in a fort that was home to the ruling family until the 1960s. This museum has an outstanding collection of ethnological and archaeological artifacts.
The Qawasim Room, located on the first floor, is especially interesting. It houses a collection document manuscripts and treaties between rulers of Ras Al Khaimah and the U.K. You will also find traditional weapons as well as archaeological displays on the early settlers of the area. The museum also includes a section depicting traditional architecture and agriculture.
To learn more about the region, sign up for one of the many tours that delve into its cultural and historical sights. The museum, Dhayah Fort and Jazirat al-Hamra are some of the major included sights.
Explore an Abandoned Village
Jazirat al-Hamra, an old village of pearling and fishing, was established in the 1500s. The village was abandoned in the 1960s after the end of the pearling business and the start of the oil boom. It has remained mostly abandoned and even eerie since then, as new resorts and towns have sprung up around it on the coast.
Because of the desert climate, much of the coral-block architecture has been preserved so that visitors can experience traditional Emirati village life.
In recent years, the village mosque was also fully restored.
Pamper Yourself at Khatt Springs
Khatt Springs, located 26 km southeast of Ras Al Khaimah, is a region of hot springs. The mineral water is known for its therapeutic and relaxing properties.
Although the facilities are somewhat outdated, it’s still worth visiting if you want to take a quick dip in the hot-spring water to ease tired muscles after a long day of travel.
Khatt Fort’s towers are still visible in the village. The countryside is also of great interest to archaeologists, with its ancient tomb sites.
Get a History Lesson at Shimal
The little village of Shimal, 12 km north of Ras Al Khaimah, is located near the Hajar Mountains. Like those near Khatt Fort, this area also contains several historic tombs that are several thousand years old. Archaeological digs have revealed pottery, bronze tools and weapons, and even jewelry.
We hope this detailed list enables you to get the most out of your trip to the UAE and Ras Al Khaimah.
Read Also : Massage Center In Dubai