We asked our readers to come up with the image that best summed up what National Day means to them. The response was overwhelming – scroll through the gallery above to see all of our favourite entries – but this, we thought, was the best:
Nissa Riyas, India, UAE 47 - The Metamorphosis
“Underlying the glitter and sheen that blinds the world is the story of Metamorphosis, a story where a desert turned into an oasis of hopes and dreams for people from all over the world. This proud nation weaves incessantly, the cocoons from where they let us all emerge as butterflies. The world is dazzled by the vibrant colours and smooth flutter of its wings, but few know that it has been an arduous yet passionate 47-year long journey. These 47 butterflies, each signifying the unending journey to perfection, stand for these years, on which the glory of this land rests. The UAE is truly more than what it seems to be”
The runners up
Beerta Maini, the US, Happiness and National Pride
"I attended the UAE National Day Parade in Downtown Dubai. In this photograph I was able to capture the national pride and joy of two Emiratis sharing their heritage."
Andy Anderson, the US, Impressionistic UAE Flag
"A huge UAE flag draped on a downtown Abu Dhabi building is reflected on another building across the street, near Old Airport Road."
Mohamed Fouqd Mohamed Firdows, India, Unity is Strength
"The Rulers and the citizens of the United Arab Emirates made their national flag fly straight and proud."
Ricardo Diaz Quimada, the Philippines, Bonding Moments
"It’s the typical family bonding moment that makes this photo meaningful for me. Spending quality time together in the park relaxes the mind and the body."
Jack Lee, China, Sheikh Zayed
"Sheikh Zayed is pictured drinking coffee and reading the newspaper. Things are under his control and he is relaxed and calm. This image shows the dignity of the Founding Father and the peace and prosperity of the country."
Nadia Fernandes, Portugal, Heritage
"This is my representation of the true emblems of the UAE’s rich cultural heritage."
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National Day is a reminder of humanity's common bonds and the importance of sharing