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Visit Umm al-Quwain

Updated on 09.06.2018

Umm Al-Quwain, UAQ in short, is the second smallest emirate, and the least populated. Here we are far from the skyscraper forests of other emirate capitals: life is flowing quietly and the few tourists who venture don't stay there very long. Just the time to visit the downtown museum. This article will give you the keys to understand the emirate of Umm Al-Quwain (he also carves Umm Al-Qiwain) and will be your guide for the visit of the city.

Umm Al Quwain Museum, United Arab Emirates ©Odyfolio

History of Umm Al-Quwain

The occupation of Umm Al-Quwain dates back to the 5th millennium BC. On Akab Island, a fishing village was established with ritual practices of dugong bones. A sanctuary was discovered there by a team of French archaeologists. Researchers have not yet discovered the mysteries of these prehistoric rites. Significant complex structures of dugong bone have been discovered, as well as a high concentration of objects.

The island of As Siniyyah was one of the first settlements, before its inhabitants desert it to the benefit of the continent. Probably because of the exhaustion of its drinking water resources. Today the island is inaccessible without authorization and is dedicated to the preservation of nature. Many species of birds nest here, and its shores are frequented by dugongs.

The etymology of Umm Al Quwain is related to iron, because it is said that a sheikh would have owned 100 guns. Contemporary history is succinct and resembles that of other emirates of the region: at the end of the 18th century an influential nomadic family settled there and its descendants still reign today. In 1820, the emirate found itself under British rule in a group called the Trucial States. Then in 1971 the British left the country and Umm Al-Quwain became one of the seven members of the United Arab Emirates.

Umm Al-Quwain tour guide

Tourism in Umm Al-Quwain is limited to the northern part of the peninsula, delimited by a defensive wall and a watchtower (beach side to the west).

Former defensive wall of the city of Umm Al Quwain, United Arab Emirates ©Odyfolio

The old town offers little interest except for its wind tower.

The main attraction is its fort museum (UAQ National Museum) open in the morning (except Friday) and in the evening from 17h. Quite classic for the region: two guns frame the front door, reconstructed old houses, some archaeological pieces, and various objects of everyday life.

Former tank in front of the Ajman Museum in the United Arab Emirates ©Odyfolio

At the extreme north of the old town, at the end of the road along the beach, the oceanographic center can be visited in the morning.

Umm Al-Quwain Hotels

If you have come to Umm Al-Quwain, you have decided to visit remote corners of the region, looking for authentic places away from the main tourist sites to see different things and maybe to be on the lookout for beautiful photos. It may not be necessary to go further in the process and forget the idea of staying overnight in one of Umm Al-Quwain's six hotels, as their quality is mediocre. If you really want to stay there, go to the beach at Umm Al Quwain Beach Hotel.

Map of Umm Al Quwain

If you leave the city and head north on the E11 main road, you will see after fifteen kilometers the emirate's flagship attraction park, the Dreamland Aqua Park. Dirty and relatively expensive for the benefits. We recommend it only if you have an impulsive need for freshness and water slides.

Map of the emirate of Umm Al Quwain with its administrative borders ©OpenStreetMap contributors

Map of the city of Umm Al Quwain, United Arab Emirates ©OpenStreetMap contributors

Map of the old town of Umm Al Quwain ©OpenStreetMap contributors

Map of the old town of Umm Al Quwain with the location of the UAQ National Museum and the ancient wall ©OpenStreetMap contributors

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