Sharjah Light Festival illuminates hearts - GulfToday

Sharjah Light Festival illuminates hearts


The beauty of the emirate is that it refuses to rest on its laurels. Captivating events and year-long variety activities keep the charm of the emirate alive.

Sharjah has emerged as a favourite tourism destination for visitors from around the world. It has rightly been recognised as the home of Arab and Islamic culture and civilisation and declared the Cultural Capital of the Arab world in 1998 by Unesco.

The Arab tourism ministers’ summit in Cairo also selected Sharjah as the Capital of Arab Tourism for Year 2015.

The beauty of the emirate is that it refuses to rest on its laurels. Captivating events and year-long variety activities keep the charm of the emirate alive.

The Sharjah Light Festival 2020 (SLF) is presently the talk of the town.

Using the magic of lighting and latest technology to narrate the story of the Emirate’s Islamic heritage, history and magnificent architecture, the SLF, running until Feb.15, has been lighting up the hearts of the citizens, residents and tourists alike.

What makes this year’s event special is that it is being held for the tenth consecutive year.

The yearly festival attracts hundreds of thousands of visitors who come to be astonished by the specially composed music, artistic ingenuity and technical skills of the masters who curate the stunning illuminations onto the beautiful architecture of Sharjah.

The festival takes visitors on a tour of cultural heights, fusing all the components of beauty, art, culture, education, innovation and higher thinking into one glorious event.

Figures speak volumes about the popularity of the event.

The SLF attracted more than 1.2 million visitors in 2019, recording a growth of 20 per cent compared to 1 million visitors in 2018, to witness 20 light shows that encapsulated the significance of familial ties and reflected the cultural values and traditions of the emirate of Sharjah across 17 different locations.

This year, the visitor number is all set to surpass the number recorded during the previous editions.

The organisers naturally have expressed thrill at the response.

As Sharjah Commerce and Tourism Development Authority (SCTDA) Chairman Khalid Jasim Al Midfa pointed out: “The unprecedented response of massive crowds to the festival encourages us to step up our efforts to promote Sharjah’s immense potential and look forward to more such challenges and successes. We, the SCTDA team, are proud to host this historic event that opens a new era in the history of the emirate that has already earned itself a distinct position on the global tourism map.”

The light festival has been hugely successful in drawing attention to the sea and marine environment of Sharjah, which has had a long seafaring tradition including fishing and diving that are enjoyed even to this day.

The visitors to the emirate can enjoy various marine activities, fishing, diving and water sports throughout the year.

The organisers deserve praise for keeping the crucial factor of sustainability in mind. In recent years, sustainability has become part of the agenda of SLF and all the lights and projectors used have passed certification for environmental compliance.

Surrounding lights are switched off so the net result is 50 to 60 per cent of the power in that area is saved, and that’s certainly another great moment in the journey of the Sharjah Light Festival.

Rich programmes, grouped into clusters based on up to 20 locations with new highlights every year powerfully showcase the architectural splendour of Sharjah and the beauty of its buildings.

The festival’s colourful programmes certainly help boost the image of Sharjah as a global destination, while also promoting the emirate’s achievements on scientific, cultural, and artistic levels.

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