An archaeological destination in Sharjah that flourishes during “the most beautiful winter in the world”

“Buhais Park” tells historical stories about people and places

  • The park includes geological features and fossils dating back millions of years.

    From the source

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The UAE is home to many archaeological tourist destinations that bear witness to civilizations that inhabited this land and left traces remaining for the rest of time, some of which date back to the late Stone Age period or the so-called Neolithic Age.

The Buhais Geopark in Sharjah is one of the most prominent of these sites, as it is one of the oldest archaeological sites in the country, and an important element in the field of archaeological research on the Arabian Peninsula.

Buhais Park and other ancient archaeological sites that the UAE is rich in attract excavation experts, geologists, and researchers in the history of the Earth and geological sites, as these sites are open-air museums that summarize the deep history of the region’s inhabitants and the remains of their civilization and monuments, and provide scientific evidence of the establishment of human settlement on the Earth. The UAE.

Buhais Park contains historical evidence about how the local nature was formed no less than 93 million years ago, and it is a site rich in the fossilized remains of many ancient marine creatures that inhabited shallow seas that covered most of the land in the Emirates until a recent period from a geological perspective.

This period of the year, which witnesses the fourth edition of “The Most Beautiful Winter in the World,” the comprehensive national campaign that this year gains special importance based on its slogan “Unforgettable Stories,” is an ideal period to enjoy a tour among the ruins of the Buhais Geopark, which documents a long history written by the residents of the Emirates. It is a witness to the elegance and aesthetics of human achievement in all areas of life, which makes Buhais and other archaeological sites filled with the Emirates a window on history from which young people can draw inspiration on their path towards the future.

Eco-tourism

The Buhais Geopark, which opened in January 2020, is a pioneering project in the field of ecotourism that aims to introduce visitors to Sharjah’s geological history, and the geological importance of Mount Buhais and its surrounding archaeological areas.

The park contains historical evidence about how the local nature was formed no less than 93 million years ago. It also contains two archaeological sites that contribute to enhancing knowledge of the history of human settlement in the central region of Sharjah, which dates back more than 200 thousand years.

The park includes geological features and fossils dating back millions of years, and is characterized by unique designs in its paths through which one can learn how the most prominent geological features in the region were formed, such as the Hajar mountain range, other individual mountains, gravel plains, and sand dunes.

Buhais Geopark won the 2020 Architecture Award (AMP), a global award that celebrates creativity and innovation in the fields of architectural design, landscape architecture and interior design.

Excavations

Mount Buhais, which rises to about 340 meters above the level of the adjacent plain, is located near the Al Madam area, about 48 kilometers southeast of the city of Sharjah. Excavations began in the area since the early seventies of the last century, when an Iraqi team discovered the remains of a stone fort at the top of the northeastern slope. For the mountain.

In 1990, the French archaeological mission excavated a group of seven structures that were visible on the southern slope of the mountain. Excavations in three of the structures resulted in the presence of materials dating back to the first millennium BC, while excavations in the slope area directly below the stone fort revealed the presence of nine mutilated tombs. With great intensity, and limited materials dating back to the Iron Age, then came a systematic excavation campaign under the management of the Sharjah Antiquities Authority, which lasted 12 continuous years (1994 - 2005), which led to the discovery of about 91 graves from different periods, and excavations are still continuing through the German mission in the south of Jebel Buhais. .

The mountain site contains many discoveries, the most prominent of which are archaeological finds that reflect the life of ancient humans in the region, dating back 50 thousand years.

The discoveries of the Jabal Buhais site and the surrounding area indicate the presence of groups of mobile shepherds in the eastern Arabian Peninsula in the Neolithic period, during a period that far preceded the appearance of the first settled settlements in the region. As for the Neolithic burials, their remains were dated by radiocarbon dating to the beginning of the fifth millennium. BC. As for the Bronze Age, it was represented by a large number of burials dating to the first half of the third millennium BC, and the “Wadi Suq” period dating to the first half of the second millennium BC.

The Buhais cemetery also included other burials dating back to the Iron Age, dating back to the first millennium BC. Most of the graves of this period took the form of simple earth pits that were used for the purposes of individual and group burials as well. The residents of the Iron Age also used the graves built during the previous time periods for burial purposes as well. The caves and rock shelters that are naturally available on the slopes of the mountain were used for burial purposes after fortifying them by adding other stone walls and converting them into stone suitable for burial purposes.

Inside these caves, a number of skeletons and a large number of archaeological finds were found, especially pottery vessels bearing the hallmarks of the distinct Iron Age, as well as metal industries such as utensils and weapons. Here we refer in particular to the group of bronze arrowheads, some of which bear decorative grooves.

In addition, the slopes of Mount Buhais contained a small number of graves dating back to the Hellenistic period, and a number of glass vessels of distinct shapes were found inside them.

The concerned authorities in Sharjah are keen to provide the highest levels of attention to these historical treasures in the Jebel Buhais Natural Reserve, as actions, activities and actions that would damage or deteriorate the ecosystem or harm wildlife, marine or fungal life, or prejudice archaeological and heritage activities, are generally prohibited.

In particular, it is prohibited to hunt, transport, kill or harm wild creatures or carry out actions that would eliminate them unless this is done in accordance with the rules determined by the environmental laws, regulations and decisions issued by the competent authority. It is also prohibited to transport or take any organisms or organic materials such as rocks and soil. For any purpose, introducing alien species into the protected area, or damaging or destroying geological, geographical or archaeological formations or areas that are home to animal or plant species or their reproduction or where antiquities are located.

Bicycle path

In an effort to revive travel in these archaeological areas, at the beginning of last year, the “Al-Bataeh Cycling Path” was opened, which extends 48 kilometers round-trip, with a total width of five meters, and begins parallel to Maliha Street towards the “Al-Muntahir” area, all the way to the “Buhais” area.

The track is a distinguished tourist and sports destination for cycling professionals and enthusiasts in all regions of the emirate, and it was designed and implemented according to international specifications that provide a stimulating and safe environment for practicing this sport, due to its health, environmental and traffic benefits.

The location of the track was chosen based on several criteria, the most important of which is its attractiveness to bicycle users and providing them with security and safety, as this track serves in particular the city of Sharjah, Al-Bataeh, and the cities of the central region. The area is very popular with desert lovers, and in the winter there are restaurants, wild cafes, and various recreational activities.

• The park contains historical evidence about how the local nature was formed no less than 93 million years ago.

• 2020 is the year in which the Buhais Geopark was opened to introduce visitors to Sharjah’s geological history.

• Mount Buhais rises 340 meters above the level of the adjacent plain near the Al Madam area.