Best time to go to Dubai

Camel Racing Season 2024-2025

The tradition that honors a camel as a racing animal

Dates: October–April

Camel Racing Season
Camel Racing Season
Camel Racing Season
Camel Racing Season

Camels have always been an integral part of Bedouin culture and lifestyle. These animals supplied the tribes with food, clothing, transportation, and also entertainment in the form of camel racing. Though there was much controversy over human rights and treatment of animals, this Emirati tradition has remained one of the prime experiences in Dubai. Now, to end the arguments, tiny robotic jockeys are replacing the children, who were used as jockeys until 2002.

Not all types of camels can partake, but only selected breeds which include the native breed of the UAE, Oman, and Sudan. Moreover, racing camels are trained from an early age. They exercise and feed on a special diet that features dates, oat, bran, and cow's milk. Every camel goes through a complete medical check-up before a race.

Camel Racing Tracks

Camel races take place across the UAE under the patronage of the ruling Sheikhs. While minor races occur throughout the year, the main season lasts during the winter, from October through April. The competitions are usually scheduled for Friday or Saturday morning. The most popular venues include Al Marmoom Camel Racing Track and Al Khawaneej Racing Track.

Al Marmoom Racetrack

A true landmark of Dubai, Al Marmoom Racetrack is located in the deep dunes. The venue draws thousands of enthusiasts from all over the world for races that run from 7 to 9 am on the weekends only. If you arrive early, you can take a selfie with racing camels before the event! Admission to the racetrack is free.

Al Khawaneej Racetrack

Al Khawaneej Racetrack is another Dubai camel racetrack that hosts several camel races every year. Located near Emirates Road in Al Khawaneej, the oval-shaped course boasts vast desert terrain. Admission to Al Khawaneej is free, with races scheduled from 6 to 9:30 am. A camel racing event is a great opportunity to spend time with friends and family while watching an exciting dash.

Al Marmoom Heritage Village Festival presents another occasion to see a camel racing themed event, which annually draws thousands of tourists from across the UAE, Oman and Saudi Arabia.

Al Marmoom Heritage Festival (March 2025)

Al Marmoom Heritage Festival is an annual event held during the Doly Month of Ramadan. The festival celebrates the indigenous lifestyle as well as showcases and promotes camel racing as part of the UAE cultural legacy. Visitors can see one race per day, which occurs in the evening. Overall, the festival features 316 rounds of races, with 76 rounds dedicated to the camels of Sheikhs and 240 rounds for those of tribesmen.

The public will see an impressive herd of 60 camels, running along the racecourse at a speed of 25 mi/h (40km/h). The camels are steered by robot jockeys, while the owners and trainers ride along in four-wheel vehicles, encouraging their prized camels. Winners will get 44 awards, with 16 going to the Sheikhs' camels and 28 to the tribesmen's. Camels and their masters get coveted golden swords, guns, daggers, and various other prizes and trophies.

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