A camel ride in Dubai is the perfect opportunity to discover and explore the magnificent landscape of various Arabian deserts – especially areas with rich culture and history. While on top of this magnificent animal, you can get a new perspective of Dubai that you wouldn’t find in a busy city.
This adventure begins with booking the best camel ride tour in Dubai. But before you do that, here’s an all-inclusive guide that can help you with your preparation and selection.
Everything You Need to Know About Camel Riding in Dubai
Camel riding is a family-friendly activity that first-timers would love in an instant, but it’s more than just riding a magnificent animal. There are some things you need to know about desert camels and camel riding.
What It’s Like To Ride Camels in Dubai?
Camel riding is both a leisure activity and a mode of transportation. Passengers can explore different areas of the Dubai desserts by riding camels, the domesticated mammals that contributed to UAE’s rich culture and heritage. The Emirati views camels as God’s gift, providing everything they need to survive the harsh conditions in the desert, from food and clothing to transportation.
Riding a desert camel can be a bit comfortable, especially for first-timers. These animals are big, and you have to stretch your legs to hop on them. On top of that, camels have a unique style of limb movements that complement the structure of Dubai deserts but provide discomfort to passengers. When riding one, you need to keep your balance by swaying gently with the camels.
Who Can Ride Camels in Dubai?
A camel ride in Dubai is a fun activity, but it requires balance and flexibility. For this reason, tour companies impose restrictions to protect both the passengers and the camels.
Camel Riding Age Restrictions
Most tour companies impose a minimum age requirement of 4 years old. Although there will be camel guides and trainers during the ride, minors should be accompanied by parents and guardians.
Camel Riding Weight Restrictions
Weight restrictions for camel riding aren’t strict in Dubai. The average passenger weight limit for a camel ride in Dubai is 120kg, but many tour operators accept a total weight limit of 170kg for tandem riders.
Camel Riding Health Restrictions
Camel riding may be uncomfortable, but it’s not entirely dangerous, especially if you’re with professional camel riders and trained guides. Passengers in fair or good condition are welcome to ride camels. However, the activity is not suitable for pregnant women and passengers with backache or other physical disabilities.
Does Camel Riding Requires Skills and Experience?
Camel riding is simply a unique mode of transportation and leisure activity that allows tourists to explore the deserts and mountains of the UAE. You don’t need superb skills and experience to take a camel ride in Dubai. Besides, tour operators host camel rides with safari guides and camel trainers.
Guests and passengers just need to follow the tour operator’s safety instructions and camel riding guide to stay safe. And again, you just need to maintain your balance and improve your flexibility during the ride.
Is Camel Riding Safe and Regulated in Dubai?
Domesticated camels are safe and friendly. Only desert camels with human interaction and tour experiences are allowed to be used for commercial purposes. With this, tour operators ensure that their camels are stable and reliable during the ride to keep passengers away from harm.
Injuries and accidents are uncommon in camel rides as local regulations require tour operators to provide experienced guides and safety riding equipment, including halters, harnesses, and saddles.
All travel and tour companies in Dubai follow special health and safety measures to combat COVID-19. Camel riding operators in Dubai are required by the World Health Organization (WHO) and local authorities to ensure social distancing among guests, sanitize riding equipment regularly, conduct temperature checks for staff and guests, and promote contactless payments. Some operators may limit the number of riders and visitors in a day.
Guests, too, are required to follow individual safety protocols. Visitors should wear face masks during the ride, avoid physical contact among staff and other visitors, and submit basic personal information for contact tracing purposes.
When is the Best Time to Ride Camels in Dubai?
The best time to experience a camel ride in Dubai is during the winter months, typically between October to May. If you plan to ride camels in the summer months, choose a date when there’s little to no rain in the area. But don’t fret; Dubai offers year-round sunshine with very little rainfall.
How Long Are Camel Rides in Dubai?
The duration of your trip depends on the package you choose. Tour operators offer camel rides lasting from 20 minutes to an hour. If you happen to book a desert safari package with other activities, you’ll most likely stay in the desert for a day or at least half a day.
Where to Find the Best Camel Riding Locations in Dubai?
Camels are everywhere in Dubai, but there are only a handful of locations where you can ride them and explore the beautiful Arabic deserts of the UAE. Most travel companies host desert activities at Al Awir, Lahbab (also known as Lehbab), Al Khayma, and the Dubai Desert Conservation Reserve.
Al Awir Desert Safari
Al Awir is a prosperous community that takes pride in its rich agricultural resources and camel breeding farms. The community produces some of the most stable and friendliest desert camel breeds in Dubai.
Lahbab Red Dunes Desert Safari
Lahbab is a small village south of Dubai. This is the perfect place to find authentic camel rides as the village is famous for its desert camel breeding and raising efforts. Lahbab also promotes camel racing through its extensive camel race tracks.
Al Khayma Camp Desert Safari
An hour away from the busy city of Dubai, Al Khayma offers the perfect place to try Arabian adventures and camel tours. The desert offers some of the best traditional food and entertainment in the UAE.
Dubai Desert Conservation Reserve (DDCR) Safari
DDCR is one of the largest conservation areas in Dubai—and maybe even the world. It’s located on the outskirts of Sharjah, taking up 5% of Dubai’s total landmass and preserving hundreds of local, international, and endangered species.
Preparation Tips And Booking Procedures
Now you know what it’s like to take a camel ride in Dubai, let’s proceed to the actual preparations and procedures involved in booking the activity.
How to Get to the Best Deserts for Camel Riding in Dubai
The best camel riding locations are easily accessible from Dubai’s city center. You can reach them through private vehicles or public transportation if your tour package doesn’t come with pick-up and drop-off services. Here’s a guide on how to reach your preferred desert destination:
How to Get to Al Awir Desert
Al Awir is a small town 35 kilometers from Dubai’s city center. Travelers with private or rented vehicles can easily reach Al Awir from the city center in approximately 21 minutes through D83 or Ras Al Khor Rd/E44.
If you want to commute, city buses can take you to Al Awir and its surrounding areas. Take bus number 11A and alight at Awir, Masjid – 01. There are currently no direct metro transportation services that can take you to Al Awir.
How to Get to Lahbab
Lahbab stands between Dubai and the border of the Emirate of Sharjah. Travelers with private or rented vehicles can easily reach Lahbab from the city center in approximately 40 minutes through Dubai-Hatta Road/E44 or Jebel Ali – Lehbab Road/E77.
If you want to commute, city buses can take you to Lahbab and its surrounding areas. Take buses 8, 84, F55A, and alight at Jumeirah, Royal Meridian – 02. If you want to take the metro, take the Red Line and alight at Damac Metro Station, then take a 16-minute walk to Lahbab.
How to Get to Al Khayma Camp
Al Khayma is the northernmost part of the UAE, outside Dubai. Travelers with private or rented vehicles can easily reach Al Khayma Camp from the city center approximately 1 hour and 20 minutes through Sheikh Mohammed Bin Zayed Road/E311 or Emirates Road/E611.
If you want to commute, city buses can take you to Al Khayma Camp and its surrounding areas. Take buses 8, 84, F55A and alight at Awir, Jumeira, Royal Meridian – 01. If you want to take the metro, take the Red Line and alight at Damac Metro Station, then take a 25-minute walk to Al Khayma Camp.
How to Get to Dubai Desert Conservation Reserve (DDCR)
DDCR is in the heart of Dubai. Travelers with private or rented vehicles can easily reach DDCR from the city center in approximately 45 minutes through the Sheikh Mohammed Bin Zayed Road/E311 at Al Ain – Dubai Road/E66 or Dubai-Hatta Road/E44.
There are no bus and metro transportation services that can directly take you to DDCR. You’ll have to ride multiple vehicles with varying rates if you take this option. It’s best to rent an Uber, taxi, or private vehicle.
What are the Things Travelers Need to Prepare?
Again, camel riding may be a bit uncomfortable for first-timers, but you can ease your discomfort by preparing some necessary things to take advantage of during the ride. Here are some things you should and shouldn’t bring during a camel ride in Dubai:
Dubai’s heat can be intense sometimes; it can irritate you. Plus, the woolly fur of a camel could make it worse. To protect your skin, wear long but breathable pants and tops. For your footwear, wear shoes or boots that won’t fill up sand. It’s also advisable to wear sunscreen, hats, and sunglasses.
Food and Drinks
You can’t exactly eat while you’re riding a desert camel. If you have food and drinks with you, you can consume them in desert camps. You can also eat at nearby stalls in the desert. It’s best to only bring a bottle of water throughout the ride.
To capture memories, you can bring cameras and electronic devices while riding a desert camel. However, make sure they’re tethered. Put straps and protection on all your devices. To carry other essential items like alcohol, wallet, and smartphones, bring a small bag with you.
Do Travelers Need to Book Prebook?
Prebooking is not necessary for a single camel ride in Dubai. If you want to ride one, you can easily spot operators and trainers in the desert. However, if you want to book a slot or a complete desert safari tour with multiple activities, it’s best to prebook online or via phone call.
Where to Book a Camel Ride in Dubai
Camel riding is probably the most popular tourist activity in Dubai. Paired with an exciting desert safari tour, tourists all want to experience how it’s like to ride a camel in the Arabian desert.
Given its popularity, you’ll undoubtedly encounter a lot of travel and tour companies offering camel rides in Dubai. You might find it challenging to choose the best tour or package based on your budget and preference. To help narrow down your option, here are some of the most recommended camel rides in Dubai and their existing tour packages:
Expert Rangers – 400 AED (109 USD) per adult; 280 AED per child (76 USD) for camel trekking with BBQ dinner, shisha, complimentary drinks, henna painting, and live entertainment.
Platinum Heritage – 595 AED (162 USD) per adult; 495 AED per child (134.76 USD) for a 45-minute camel ride with traditional Arabian dinner, shisha, coffee-making class, falcon shows, complimentary drinks, henna painting, and live entertainment.
Rayna Tours – 486 AED (132 USD) per person for a 1-hour camel ride with pick-up and drop-off service and sandboarding/quad biking.
Arabian Adventures – 380 AED (103.47 USD) per person for camel trekking with pick-up and drop-off service, continental breakfast, complimentary drinks, and live entertainment.
Arabia Horizons – 265 AED (72.14 USD) per person for a camel caravan with an international buffet, live entertainment, pick-up and drop-off service, henna painting, Arabic dress photo op, unlimited drinks, and sandboarding.
RAH Tours – 200 AED (54.45 USD) per person for a 1-hour camel ride with drop-off and pick-up service and complimentary drinks.
Desert Quad Safari – 199 AED (54.18 USD) per person for a 1-hour camel ride with drop-off and pick-up service, photo ops, and complimentary drinks.
Project Expedition – 357 AED (97.17 USD) per person for a 1-hour camel ride with pick-up and drop-off service.
Final Camel Riding Tips for First-Timers
The best way to enjoy a camel ride in Dubai is to learn how to ride it comfortably. To do that, you must carefully listen to the tour operator’s riding instructions and understand how camels behave. A camel ride is a give-and-take situation where you and the camel should make each other as comfortable as possible.
What to do After a Camel Ride in Dubai?
Camel riding may be the most popular activity in Dubai and the UAE, but Arabian deserts have more to offer. There are many equally exciting activities and hidden gems in the deserts of Dubai that you shouldn’t miss. If you want to maximize your desert experience, ride a dune buggy, a hot air balloon, or a quad bike. To try them all, book a complete desert safari tour.