The largest camel market in Egypt’s takes place in a dusty and desolate location called Birqash (Souq al-Gamaal), a small village 35km northwest of Cairo. Most of the camels are walked approximately 1250km up the 40 Days Rd from western Sudan to north of Abu Simbel by camel herders. From there they continue to the market at Daraw in Upper Egypt. Any remaining camels which are unsold are then hobbled and transported trucks for the day’s drive to Birqash. There are also camels from other parts of Egypt there, and from as faraway as Somalia even. It’s a gruelling place to walk around, and not one for animal lovers or the faint-hearted. When the camels arrive in Birqash, many are so emaciated, many are fit only for slaughter; others die at the market. Despite their weakened state they remain famously stubborn, and gruff traders take no nonsense, beating any camels mercilessly if they step out of line. They are traded at the market for cash, other livestock, or sold for farm work.