Taif has a rich, storied past, which is exquisitely portrayed by its museums. Al Shareef Museum is among the most prominent museums in the city. The museum offers a clear glimpse into the region’s vibrant history. It displays some of the dated tools and machines used in the Arabian Peninsula. Further, the museum houses a collection of well-preserved vintage cars in their pristine shape and color.
Al Shareef Museum history
Established back in the year 2005, Al Shareef Museum is one of the most famous private museums in Taif. While the museum has several highlights, what adds the most to its popularity is its owner Al-Sharif Ali Bin Malbas. He has been traveling across the entire country for around three decades in search of unique and valuable historical artifacts. Counted among the top tourist destinations in Taif today, The museum has a vast collection of incredible artifacts, paintings, and furniture.
Al Shareef Museum architecture
The museum sprawls across an area of 6,000 square meters in the Umm Al-Sebaa neighborhood of Taif. The large traditional building of the museum has been constructed from old stone with jittering rain gutters emerging from the rooftop. One of the museum’s major highlights is its diverse wooden doors decorated with iron frills, giving the museum a striking architectural style of the past. Additionally, elaborate lanterns hang on each house to light up the museum alleys beautifully.
Museum’s main attractions
Al Shareef Museum has an exceptional antique collection that is revered by historians all across the world. Further, its beautiful architecture and various other amazing attractions are enough to attract hundreds of tourists all year round.
Listed below are some of the major highlights of all that the museum has to offer.
1. Household display from 150 years ago
Al Shareef Museum exhibits a very large collection of heritage pieces and artifacts of all kinds, displaying them by their function and specialization. This exquisite collection provides visitors with a deeper understanding of how the country’s ancestors used to live in the past. The museum has numerous sections, including an elaborate recreation of a housewife’s room from nearly 150 years ago. The section displays sewing machines, jewelry, and clothes. Other sections include life-size models of the ancient living rooms for women and men from centuries ago.
2. Tools and vintage car displays
In addition, the museum has sections that exhibit everything from medical tools dating back 60 years, weapons, and agricultural tools to old children’s toys, copper tools, cooking utensils, and other household items. Another section of the museum displays a plethora of ancient books, old manuscripts of the Holy Quran, and a breathtaking collection of rare pieces that date back to when the Saudi state was founded. Visitors can explore other interesting exhibits such as old cameras, radios, and watches. For most visitors, the best part of the tour is a collection of 30 different vintage cars, including a 1926 Ford. These cars provide insight into the initial days of automobiles and how they were different to present-day motor vehicles.
3. Museum’s market
The museum has a market that features a huge collection of antique weapons, souvenirs, and clothes representing the region’s traditional folk dresses. A corner of this market is solely dedicated to craftsmen, carpenters, sculptors, and tailors who spend their time working on different kinds of projects. This corner consists of an array of stalls and shops, each dedicated to a particular craft featuring tools and machines belonging to that craft. Additionally, these craftsmen and artists provide tourists with customized souvenirs.
4. Weekly auctions
The most prominent and distinguishing feature of the Al Shareef Museum is that it holds a weekly auction of various rare artifacts. These auctions are widely regarded as the most important attraction of the private museum. A number of amateur and professional collectors attend these auctions every week. Though the auction has limited artifacts on sale, with a watchful eye, one can find a great piece from the history of Saudi Arabia.
Al Shareef Museum general information
Location: The museum is 9 km south of Taif city center
Al Shareef Museum timings: the museum stays open to visitors from 4 pm to midnight every day.
Ideal visit duration: It can take 2-3 hours to explore the museum completely.
Entry fee: The museum charges an entry fee of SR 20 per adult.
Instagram profile: @alsharif_museum
When in Taif, visiting Al Shareef Museum is among the top things to do for a tourist. With its massive collection and rare heritage pieces, the museum is a gem for history enthusiasts or those interested in learning more about the local history. Additionally, the local guides make the experience of visiting the museum much more informative.
Al Shareef Museum FAQs
How long does it take to explore the museum?
Ideally, one should be able to fully explore the museum in a couple of hours.
What is Al Shareef Museum ticket price?
The entry fee to the museum is SR 20.
Can anyone participate in the weekly auctions at Al Shareef Museum?
Yes, the weekly auctions are open to anyone willing to pay for a heritage piece or artifact.
What is Al Shareef Museum location?
The address of the Museum is Al Sadad, Taif, opposite Hassan Ibn Thabet road.
What are the popular attractions at Al Shareef Museum?
A market, vintage car collection and weekly auctions are top attractions of the museum.