Dubai has never been on the top of my list of places to visit because of my perception of the glitz and commercialisation, but what I have rapidly discovered is that if you scratch under the veneer the country has so much more to offer.
On day three of our visit I reluctantly got up in the early hours of the morning, to see the camels being exercised at one of the race tracks at the outskirts of the city. A camel is a camel after all...... After a short drive through the traffic, which was beginning to build up for the early morning rush, we turned off the freeway and entered another world - the world of camel racing.
Not that there was any racing happening at that time. Instead the riders were taking out the animals for a slow walk around the perimeter of the track. As we watched, group after group came past us in the perfect morning light.
What struck me was that the camels were all well groomed and attired. The riders willingly allowed us to photograph them as they rode by in procession.
This has definitely been one of my highlights so far, but then I am not one who wants to hang out in the shopping malls.