ABU DHABI // Pamela Alvarez and her brother Miguel arrive at school more energised than their peers.
"When we walk or cycle it's so refreshing," said Pamela, a Grade 6 pupil at Raha International School.
The children, who live in Khalifa City A, get on their bikes at 7.45am and are at school by 8am.
"Taking in the fresh air and listening to the birds chirping on the way is a great way to start the morning," Pamela said. Her brother, 9, uses the time to catch up with friends who walk with them to school.
The children were raised in an active society in Mexico, where they walked to school from a very young age. When the family moved to Abu Dhabi a few years ago, their parents made sure they could continue their healthy lifestyle.
"One of the main reasons we moved to Khalifa City was because we wouldn't have to jump into a car every morning to drop them at school," said their mother, Maridel Menino. "We save on petrol, too."
Mrs Menino said she did not want her children to reach school feeling worn out. "This happens to children stuck in the school bus," she added.
The family are environmentally conscious. "We also contribute to reducing the traffic congestion and pollution in our own small way," she added.