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About 55 kilometers northeast of Ras Al-Khaimah, Jebel Jais, part of the Hajar Mountain Range, is the United Arab Emirates’ tallest mountain, with its summit at 1,934 meters. A recently opened 20-kilometer-long road to the top (not quite to the summit) snakes in a switchback all the way up the mountain’s flank, with viewing platforms along the route to take in the beautiful far-reaching vistas.
Near the top of the road, a series of landscaped terraces with viewing platforms and cafes offer up spectacular views that tumble over craggy peaks down to the coastal plain, making this prime territory for photographers, particularly in the late afternoon when the orange-hued rocks glow.
Ras Al-Khaimah has plenty for sun seekers and relaxation fans. The emirate’s long shoreline is strung with luxury resorts all offering their own private patch of golden sand. Most will also allow non-guests to use their facilities with a day pass. The beaches are well cared for and packed with facilities, including sun loungers, sun shades, cafes and restaurants right on the sand, freshwater showers, and pretty much everything you need for a day of topping up your tan. Various water sports are also on offer, including kayak hire and jet-skis.
The Ras Al-Khaimah National Museum is in a fort that was the residence of the ruling family up until the early 1960s. The museum houses an excellent collection of archaeological and ethnological artifacts.
The Qawasim Room on the first floor is particularly interesting, with a collection of documents, manuscripts, and treaties between the rulers of Ras Al-Khaimah and Great Britain.
This 16th-century mud-brick fort, about 20 kilometers north of Ras Al-Khaimah city, was built in a strategic hilltop position facing the gulf to defend the region from attack by the British. As a defensive military tower, the Dhayah Fort played an important role in the history of Ras Al-Khaimah.
Other ruined fortifications and watchtowers can be seen to the south of the hill. A battle in 1891 between the emirate and British forces resulted in the destruction of much of the fortifications here.