The most popular traditional sports in UAE

traditional sports in UAE

Traditional sports of United Arab Emirates (UAE) are lively reflection of country’s rich history of culture and continue to be very popular with both locals and visitors. Among these, falconry and camel racing are particularly notable as traditional Emirati past times, steeped in the country’s Bedouin heritage. Large audiences watch camel racing, which is sometimes referred to as the “sport of sheikhs,” as it highlights extraordinary quickness and toughness of specially developed camels. UAE even hosts international falconry tournaments. Falconry is an old art form that involves hunting with trained falcons. Symbolises patience and expertise. In addition to offering thrilling entertainment, ancient sports provide painful reminder of UAE’s historical ties to desert landscape and mobile way of life.

Abu Dhabi city tour provides amazing look into country’s rich history of culture and modern wonders and is must-do experience for everyone visiting United Arab Emirates. Journey starts with visit to beautiful Sheikh Zayed Grand Mosque, masterpiece of architecture that represents Islamic culture and Emirati artistry. Visitors can explore Emirates Palace; exquisite hotel perfectly captures beauty of Arabia. Visit city also includes visit to ancient Qasr Al Hosn, Abu Dhabi’s oldest stone structure and offers insight into history of the area. Abu Dhabi city tour offers unique and remarkable view of UAE’s capital by skilfully fusing ancient and the new.

Here are the most popular traditional sports in UAE

1. Camel Racing

traditional sports in UAE

Camel racing, sometimes known as the “sport of sheikhs,” is a popular and deeply rooted pastime in the United Arab Emirates. In order to show off their strength and speed, specially bred camels compete over desert courses in this sport. A lot of people watch camel racing events, and they receive a lot of media coverage. The camels are now guided by high-tech components, such as robot jockeys, which combine current innovation with tradition.

2. Falconry

traditional sports in UAE

An ancestor of Emirati culture, falconry represents skill, patience, and a close connection to the natural world. As a status symbol, falcons undergo extensive training to hunt their prey. The importance of falconry is reflected in the fact that the UAE hosts international competitions. Falconry is a way of life, involving intensive training and care for these valuable birds. It is not just a sport.

Read More: The amazing facts about the Sheikh Zayed grand mosque in Abu Dhabi

3. Horse Racing

traditional sports in UAE

Horse racing is a prime example of the UAE’s equestrian history, and major international events like the Dubai World Cup exhibit this past. Arabian horses were essential for transport and combat throughout the nation’s history, and this sport has connections with that past. Horse racing events are lavish affairs that highlight the importance of the sport by frequently offering large prize money and luxurious settings.

4. Dhow Sailing

Dhow Sailing

Dhow sailing contests, which honour the UAE’s rich nautical heritage, are evidence of the nation’s marine heritage. Traditional wooden dhows speed around the coasts; they were formerly utilised for pearl diving, fishing, and trading. These races serve as a vivid reminder of the country’s nautical heritage and its historical dependence on maritime trade for survival and economic growth.

5. Archery


The Bedouin way of life is deeply rooted in archery, since it was vital for both defence and hunting. It’s still a well-liked traditional sport today, praised for both its skill requirement and historical relevance. To maintain and promote this age-old sport, archery tournaments and events are organised, with a focus on accuracy, control, and tradition.

6. Saluki Racing

Saluki Racing

Arabian greyhounds, or salukis, are prized for their hunting skills, quickness, and agility. A classic activity that showcases the amazing ability of these canines is saluki racing. Salukis have long been used for hunting in the desert; their competitive racing now reflects the long-standing relationship between the Bedouin people and their animals.


The UAE’s traditional sports, especially falconry and camel racing, are more than just recreational activities; they represent an essential component of the country’s cultural past. These sports celebrate the Emirati people’s historical heritage and special relationship with the environment, expressing their energy and perseverance. The UAE makes sure that upcoming generations may recognise and take part in the rich weave of their heritage by protecting and developing these customs. In addition to garnering attention on a global scale, these sports illustrate the continuing heritage of Emirati traditions in a world that is modernising at a rapid pace by acting as a link between the past and the present.

Read more: The Most Famous Historical Places to Visit in Abu Dhabi

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