Camel Trek
Representative Image Inbal Malca/Unsplash

Participants of the 10th edition of the annual Camel Trek have arrived at the Heritage Village in Dubai after their 557-kilometer journey.

The 37 participants — representing 16 countries, including Saudi Arabia, Egypt, Yemen, France, Italy, the United Kingdom, Belgium, Germany, Austria, Yemen, India, China, Australia, Mexico, Russia, Belarus and the United Arab Emirates — traveled for 12 days across the desert of the United Arab Emirates (UAE), from Abu Dhabi to Dubai.

They were then met by Sheikh Mohammed bin Rashid Al Maktoum, vice president and prime minister of the UAE and ruler of Dubai, at the Seih Al Salam area of Al Marmoom Desert Conservation Reserve in Dubai.

Among the participants was a French mother who embarked on the journey with her 10-year-old daughter amid the festive season.

"I deliberately took my daughter with me on this challenging journey during the holiday season and New Year celebrations. Life in the UAE is full of luxury and beautiful things for children before adults, so I wanted my daughter to have a different experience," she said, as per WAM.

"Through it, she can discover that life is not as easy as she lives it. I wanted her to realize how difficult the journey was that the people of the UAE have undertaken to put their country at the forefront," the mother said.

Another participant, a British skydiver, said it was his second time to join the annual trek. According to him, he's already knowledgeable about the customs and traditions of the Arab community, having spent 23 years in the UAE. Despite this, he still finds the camel trek experience different. He also thinks it is "no less challenging than skydiving."

"It requires compliance with the team leader's instructions and cooperation with colleagues on the trip in order to overcome the difficulties that you may face while crossing long kilometers in areas far from the city," he added.

A skydiver from Mexico described the trek as a "different and wonderful experience," noting that it took him away from the hustle and bustle of the city and his daily routine.

"The truth is that the trip, despite its difficulty, was very exciting. I spent 12 days wandering the desert. I didn't expect to have all this energy and the ability to travel on camelback every day. In general, the trip is considered an achievement that I did not expect to achieve," he said.

Saif Kitab Al-Suwaydi, an Emirati participant, said camel riding represents the era of the first ancestors, adding that every Emirati cherishes this popular heritage.