Saudi Arabia: Buraidah – Al Qassim Camel Market

The overall unremarkable town of Buraidah in the central Saudi Arabia is home to the world’s largest camel market. Every morning at 5-6am thousands of camels are bought and sold here. These are all Arabian (one-hump) camels, traditionally prized in Saudi Arabia for riding and meat, and more for camel racing these days (cars have replaces camels as means of transportation, although it feels like many drivers still drive their cars like they did camels – no order and just pushing through). The whole area is very chaotic, hectic, and very smelly with buyers and sellers all dressed up in traditional Arab garb and camels of all colors – black, white, brown, beige – traded and hustled over. We walked all around the area with camels being traded and the even larger with hundreds of not thousands of animals stored in special feeding areas. Many baby camels as well, and a lot of welcoming and smiling looks from the locals. Besides camels, there are sheep, goats, and camel paraphernalia goods like saddles, halters and blankets.