Posted by: englishdubai | April 20, 2007

Somewhere Over The Rainbow


On the way to Liwa it is only a short detour to Sheikh Hamad bin Hamdan al Nahyan’s or the Rainbow Sheikh’s car museum. I can clearly remember Jermey Clarksons Motor World some 10 years ago and being in awe at the collection that the Sheikh had put together.

As you drive through the desert the first thing you notice is the top a pyramid glistening in the distance. Not what you might expect in the UAE but certainly not surprising for this country. It turns out this pyramid houses the car museum.

Checking in the UAE off-road guide it is suppose to be open 7 days a week – but when our convoy of cars arrived it was decidedly closed. Carol (a British expat who has been here for 17 years) used her jedi mind trick and powers of persuasion on a bored looking Indian chap to let us in. To be honest he would never have been able to disappoint the children we had along for the ride. We were kindly let in and basically had our own private tour of the car museum. It was just great.

Here is the largest pick-up truck in the world which actually contains a house and even is able to be driven short distances:

This more regular sized pick-up sports the Rainbow Sheikh’s motif:

As well some sort of moon buggy/car/MPV that the Sheikh designed himself:

Outside was parked a real Mercedes monster truck – which I think would be great fun to ride around:

And for me the signature vehicle the huge globe trailer:

I had always wanted to see this car collection in the “metal” since the Clarkson feature on it. In fact you can watch the original TV show has it has been immortalized on google video. Just a couple of comments on this video:

  1. Jeremy Clarkson’s buffon hair do is utterly ridiculous

  2. Jerermy Clarkson’s attempts at driving a wrangler through the desert are hopeless

  3. Some of the crazy driving featured in the video has not changed an iota in ten years

Here is the video:

I think it is great gesture that the Sheikh has made this car collection available to the public. I would hope that though that anyone making the long journey from Dubai there could guarantee it being open on their arrival.

Overall – 8/10 – you can not get cheaper than free, would have been nice if all the lights were on when we walked around.

The rest of my photos from this trip can be found here.


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