Posted by: travelrat | June 10, 2011

The Camel Farm

Bahrain: 11th February 2011

So, we continue. Museum? Done that! Fort? Check! What’s next, the market?

No, the Camel Farm! Started as a hobby by an uncle of the present King, and remaining in the ownership of the Bahraini Royal Family, that’s something to see, even if all you really do there is wander around inspecting (and, of course, photographing) the camels.

Most people have mixed feelings about the camel. At first glance, you would never call it beautiful. Someone once called it ‘a horse designed by a committee’, which I thought was a very good description. All the unattractive-looking features have a function, and, like the VW Beetle or the C-130 Hercules, that functionality grows on you, and develops a kind of beauty of its own.

There’s no camel-riding here; most people’s experience of it is a ten-minute lurch along the beach or around the Pyramids on a flea-bitten beast that’s seen better days. But, several years ago, we’d had a proper camel ride; three hours in the Wadi Rum, accompanied by two lads who really knew, and cared for their animals.

On that ride, we’d passed a group of ‘happy campers’ digging their LandCruiser out of a sand dune.

‘You’ll never see a camel stuck like that!’ said one of the boys ‘Because, a creature which knows the hundredth name of God has sense enough to go around that which he can’t go over!’

But, back to Bahrain, and the magnificent beasts at the farm. These aren’t working animals, said the guide. They’re just kept because the Royal Family like having them around. But, she had a word of warning. If you get too close, and the camel doesn’t like you, it will spit.

‘And, nobody who’s been spat on by a camel is getting on MY bus!’

 

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Responses

  1. Hi Keith,
    They are magnificent animals and do have a special place I feel, especially in the desert regions of course. I have had a good ride on a camel just over an hour, a very well looked after camel too, there were cheaper rides, but you could certainly see the difference in the camels, with the cheaper ride, you could tell the camels were not very well looked after. I loved it, scary at first when the camel got up, but relaxed into it all within minutes.

  2. I’ve never seen a camel spit. With those big lips it must be quite spectacular. How funny!

    • I have on the best authority (a Jordanian camel herder) that to say camel spit ‘stinks’ is a masterpiiece of understatement! :D

  3. [...] Bahrain Travelrat presents The Camel Farm posted at Travelrat’s Travels, saying, “Shortly after this visit, it all kicked off in [...]

  4. We only really hear about Bahrain (and Yemen, and..) in the UK media when everything kicks off; it’s nice to be reminded that life goes on, and that somewhere out there, people are avoiding being spat upon by a camel…


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