Eastern Desert

The Eastern Desert is the part of the Sahara desert that is located east of the Nile river, between the river and the Red Sea.[1][2] It extends from Egypt in the north to Eritrea in the south, and also comprises parts of Sudan and Ethiopia. The Eastern Desert is also known as the Red Sea Hills and the Arabian Desert because to the east it is bordered by the Red Sea and the Arabian Peninsula, respectively.[3][4]

Arabische Wüste Satellit
The Nile River and the Eastern Desert.


The Eastern Desert's main geographic features are the western Red Sea coastline—with the "Red Sea Riviera"—and the Eastern Desert mountain range that runs along the coast, the highest peak of which is Shaiyb al-Banat (2,187 m). Other notable ecological areas are Wadi Gamal National Park, Gebel Elba and the Wadi Dib ring complex. The Eastern Desert is a popular setting for safaris and other excursions.



The Eastern Desert mountain range along the Safaga-Qena Road


The Eastern Desert along the Hurghada-Safaga Road


Early morning with the Eastern Desert mountain range on the horizon

BusConvey Egypt

Tourist bus in the Eastern Desert

See also


  1. ^ Hobbs, Joseph J. 2007. Egypt. New York: Chelsea House, p. 26.
  2. ^ Zahran, M. A., & A. J. Willis. 2009. The Vegetation of Egypt. Berlin: Springer, p. 101.
  3. ^ Bard, Kathryn A. (2005). Encyclopedia of the Archaeology of Ancient Egypt. Routledge. p. 46. ISBN 1134665245. Retrieved 27 September 2017.
  4. ^ Flora Aegyptiaca, Volume 1, Issue 1. Palm Press. 2000. p. 5. ISBN 9775089344. Retrieved 27 September 2017.

External links

Coordinates: 27°18′N 32°36′E / 27.300°N 32.600°E

Arabian-Nubian Shield

The Arabian-Nubian Shield (ANS) is an exposure of Precambrian crystalline rocks on the flanks of the Red Sea. The crystalline rocks are mostly Neoproterozoic in age. Geographically - and from north to south - the ANS includes parts of Israel, Palestine, Jordan, Egypt, Saudi Arabia, Sudan, Eritrea, Ethiopia, Yemen, and Somalia. The ANS in the north is exposed as part of the Sahara Desert and Arabian Desert, and in the south in the Ethiopian Highlands, Asir province of Arabia and Yemen Highlands.

The ANS was the site of some of man's earliest geologic efforts, principally by the ancient Egyptians to extract gold from the rocks of Egypt and NE Sudan. This was the most easily worked of all metals and does not tarnish. All of the gold deposits in Egypt and northern Sudan were found and exploited by Egyptians. The earliest preserved geologic map was made in 1150 BCE to show the location of gold deposits in Eastern Egypt; it is known as the Turin papyrus. New gold discoveries have been found in Sudan, Eritrea, and Saudi Arabia.

Pharonic Egyptians also quarried granite near Aswan and floated this down the Nile to be used as facing for the pyramids. The Greek name for Aswan, Syene; is the type locality for the igneous rock syenite. The Romans followed this tradition and had many quarries especially in the northern part of the Eastern Desert of Egypt where porphyry and granite were mined and shaped for shipment.

Precious and industrial metals, including gold, silver, copper, zinc, tin, and lead, have been mined in Saudi Arabia for at least 5,000 years. The most productive mine in Saudi Arabia, Mahd adh Dhahab ("Cradle of Gold"), has been periodically exploited for its mineral wealth for hundreds or even thousands of years and is reputed to be the original source of King Solomon's legendary gold. Today, mining at Mahd adh Dhahab is conducted by the Saudi Arabian Mining Company, Ma'aden. Deposits of iron, tungsten, mineral sands, copper and phosphates have been found in many locations. Mining in the Eastern Desert of Egypt and Sudan is limited due to shortage of water and infrastructure. One option would be to bring water from the Nile by pipeline.

Arizona transition zone

The Arizona transition zone is a diagonal northwest-by-southeast region across central Arizona. The region is a transition from the higher elevation Colorado Plateau to the northeast in Northeast Arizona and the Basin and Range region of southwest and south regions of lower elevation deserts.

Northwest Arizona transitions to the higher elevation Mojave Desert of southern California, Nevada and Utah, with an indicator species of Joshua trees and other species, and southwestwards regions of the Sonoran Desert, along the Lower Colorado River Valley; in Arizona's south, all of central and eastern desert Sonoran Desert regions merge southwards into Sonora Mexico. The transition zone includes the Mogollon Rim and the White Mountains and extends into western New Mexico.

In the Arizona ecoregion section, the Arizona transition zone is the major section of the EPA designated, Level III ecoregion, Arizona/New Mexico Mountains ecoregion. The other two outlier subregions to the transition zone in Arizona, are the Kaibab Plateau of the North Rim of the Grand Canyon, and associated ranges of the Chuska Mountains region of the northeast Arizona and northwest New Mexico.

Baheira Airfield

Baheira Airfield, or Bir El Baheira is an abandoned military airfield in Libya, which is located in the eastern desert near the Egyptian border, about 48 km west of Bardīyah; 3 km west of Bi'r al Buhayrah.

Apparently a prewar Italian Air Force (Regia Aeronautica) airfield, it was used by the Royal Air Force in the early part of the Eastern Desert Campaign. Driven from the airfield by advancing Afrika Corps units in 1942, it was used by the Luftwaffe in support of Rommel's drive into Egypt. The Germans were driven out after the Second Battle of El Alamein by the British Eighth Army, it was then used by the United States Army Air Force as a heavy bomber base by IX Bomber Command. 98th Bombardment Group, which flew B-24 Liberators from the field between 29 January and 14 February 1943.

When the Americans moved out, the base was abandoned. Today the airfield exists in the desert, relatively intact despite the rages of time and the harsh desert climate. Twin runways are clearly visible, along with the round perimeter track and many dispersal hardstands. Parking ramps are clearly in evidence, along with the remains of the bomb/storage/supply dump and the remains of buildings in the technical site away from the airfield. Many connecting streets are visible in aerial imagery, however all of the above are clearly worn and decayed by the desert sands.

Geography of Egypt

The geography of Egypt relates to two regions: North Africa and Southwest Asia.

Egypt has coastlines on the Mediterranean Sea, the River Nile, and the Red Sea. Egypt borders Libya to the west, the Gaza Strip to the northeast, and Sudan to the south. Egypt has an area of 1,001,449 km2 (386,662 mi2).

The longest straight-line distance in Egypt from north to south is 1,024 km (636 mi), while that from east to west measures 1,240 km (771 mi). Egypt has more than 2,900 km (1800 mi) of coastline on the Mediterranean Sea, the Gulf of Suez, and the Gulf of Aqaba.

Geology of Egypt

The geology of Egypt includes rocks from Archaean - early Proterozoic times onwards. These oldest rocks are found as inliers in Egypt’s Western Desert. In contrast, the rocks of the Eastern Desert are largely late Proterozoic in age. Throughout the country this older basement is overlain by Palaeozoic sedimentary rocks. Cretaceous rocks occur commonly whilst sediments indicative of repeated marine transgression and regression are characteristic of the Cenozoic Era.

Kalawy Bay

Kalawy Bay is a resort on the Red Sea in the Red Sea Governorate of southeastern Egypt. The Eastern Desert region of the Sahara begins behind the resort on the west.

Lete Airfield

Lete Airfield is an abandoned World War II military airfield located in the vicinity of Al Jukhkh al Kabir; about 10 km east of Benghazi. Its precise location is undetermined, likely redeveloped as part of the suburbs of Benghazi.

It was used by the United States Army Air Force Ninth Air Force during the Eastern Desert Campaign by the British Eighth Army by the 343rd Bombardment Squadron (98th Bombardment Group) from 3 March-25 September 1943, B-24 Liberator and the 344th Bombardment Squadron (98th Bombardment Group), from 4 March-24 September 1943, B-24 Liberator.

Libyan Desert

The Libyan Desert forms the northern and eastern part of the Sahara Desert. It describes that part of the Sahara that lies within the present-day state of Libya; it also historically describes the desert to the south of Ancient Libya, a territory which lay to the east of the present-day state.

The Libyan Desert is one of the driest, harshest and most remote parts of the Sahara, the world's largest hot desert. This extended desert country is barren, dry and rainless.

List of Egyptian castles, forts, fortifications and city walls

Many buildings in Egypt can be put under the classification of Castles, Citadels, Forts, Fortifications.

List of ancient Egyptian sites

This is a list of ancient Egyptian sites, throughout all of Egypt and Nubia. Sites are listed by their classical name whenever possible, if not by their modern name, and lastly with their ancient name if no other is available.

Mining industry of Egypt

Mining in Egypt has had a long history that goes back to predynastic times. Egypt has substantial mineral resources, including 48 million tons of tantalite (fourth largest in the world), 50 million tons of coal, and an estimated 6.7 million ounces of gold in the Eastern Desert. The total real value of minerals mined was about £E102 million (US$18.7 million) in 1986, up from £E60 million (US$11 million) in 1981. The chief minerals in terms of volume output were iron ore, phosphates, and salt. The quantities produced in 1986 were estimated at 2,048, 1,310, and 1,233 tons, respectively, compared with 2,139, 691, and 883 tons in 1981. In addition, minor amounts of asbestos (313 tons) and quartz (19 tons) were mined in 1986. Preliminary exploration in Sinai indicated the presence of zinc, tin, lead, and copper deposits. Private sector exploration and exploitation activities so far have been limited. Only recently, AngloGold Ashanti with its joint Venture Partner Thani Dubai and a Canadian listed exploration company, Alexander Nubia International have been undertaking exploration in Egypt's Eastern Desert with some success. Centamin Ltd., a mineral exploration company founded in Australia, started a massive mining project in Sukari Hill.


Naqada is a town on the west bank of the Nile in Qena Governorate, Egypt. It was known in Egyptian as nbwt, which became Coptic Ⲉⲙⲃⲱ (ǝmbō), which was borrowed as classical antiquity as Ombos . Its name derives from Egyptian nbw, meaning "gold", on account of the proximity of gold mines in the Eastern Desert.

Northwest Arabian Arabic

Northwest Arabian Arabic is a variety of Arabic spoken by Bedouins of the Sinai Peninsula, the Negev, southern Jordan, and the northwestern corner of Saudi Arabia. In the eastern desert of Egypt, the dialect of the Maʿāzah borders the dialect of the ʿAbābdah, who speak a dialect more closely related to Sudanese Arabic.

Pope Gabriel VII of Alexandria

Pope Gabriel VII of Alexandria (Anda Gabriel VII) was the 95th Coptic Orthodox Pope of Alexandria and Patriarch of the See of St. Mark.

He was born in the area around the monastery of El-Mouharraq, and at a young age he became a monk in the wilderness at the Monastery of Saint Macarius the Great. Known for his good conduct and great holiness, he was ordained Patriarch in 1525 A.D. following the death of Pope John XIII. Gabriel's patriarchate witnessed the early years of Ottoman rule in Egypt.

Gabriel was patriarch for more than forty years. Some of his important accomplishments were the renovation of the monasteries of Saint Anthony, and Saint Paul, the first hermit, in the Eastern desert, and the monastery of El-Mouharraq in Upper Egypt.

Some people in authority asked him to approve things against the welfare of his flock. The Pope chose to leave his Chair and he went to the Monastery of Saint Anthony, for he desired to keep what the Lord said: "Greater love has no man than this, that a man lay down his life for his friends." (John 15:13) The Lord examined him but he endured thankfully, and received the blessing that the Lord gave for those persecuted for the sake of righteousness. Pope Gabriel died in 1570 following a brief illness.

Sidi Azeiz Airfield

Sidi Azeiz Airfield, or Sidi Azeis is an abandoned World War II military airfield in the eastern desert of Libya. It was located near the Egyptian border near Jabbanat Sidi, about 100 km west of Tobruk. German Coordinates are given as 31°40′00″N 24°54′00″E

It was used by the United States Army Air Force Ninth Air Force during the Western Desert Campaign (named due to the stretch of the Sahara in Egypt being called the Western Desert) by the British Eighth Army, which the 57th Fighter Group, flew P-40 Warhawks from on 12–13 November 1942.

The airfield was likely a compacted desert dirt flight strip, and was abandoned as the Allied forces moved west towards Tobruk. Close examination aerial photography of the hard desert about 10 miles west of Burdi shows some evidence of disturbance which could indicate where it existed.

Sidi Haneish Airfield

Sidi Haneish Airfield is an abandoned World War II military airfield complex in Egypt, in the western desert, about 235 miles (376 km) west-northwest of Cairo.

The airfield, known as Haggag el Qasaba by the German Luftwaffe, was the location of one of the most daring raids during World War II by the British Special Air Service (SAS). On the night of 26 July 1942, SAS Detachment "L", also known as "Stirling's Raiders", attacked the airfield, then under Luftwaffe control. Driving a convoy of 18 American jeeps, the raiders destroyed 18 German aircraft and damaged several other aircraft in a night raid. The attack damaged the Luftwaffe's capability during the German invasion of Egypt and also, by the destruction of many transport aircraft, severely diminished its ability to re-supply German land forces in the field.The airfield was later used by the United States Army Air Force Ninth Air Force during the Eastern Desert Campaign by the British Eighth Army, which the 57th Fighter Group, flew P-40 Warhawks from on 8–12 November 1942.

It was apparently abandoned after the western desert campaign moved into Libya, and eventually was taken over by the desert. Close examination of aerial photography of the desert shows some evidence of disturbance which could indicate where it existed.

Vidal Junction, California

Vidal Junction, California is a small town site in the Sonoran Desert in unincorporated San Bernardino County, California, United States.

The town is near the California/Arizona state line immediately west of Parker at the intersection of U.S. Route 95 and State Route 62 a short distance north of Vidal. It consists of little more than a couple of gas stations, a trailer park, a closed diner and a California agricultural inspection station.

In November 1973, an area near Vidal Junction and the Colorado River Aqueduct was selected as the preferred site of the Eastern Desert nuclear facility for Southern California Edison.Though not a destination in its own right, Vidal Junction is a frequently used rest area and "jumping off" point for travelers headed to Colorado River resort towns such as Lake Havasu and Laughlin, Nevada.

The ZIP Code is 92280 and the community is inside area code 760.

Wadi Hammamat

Wadi Hammamat (English: Valley of Many Baths, Coptic: ⲣⲁϩⲱⲓⲙⲓ, ⲣⲁϩⲉⲛⲧⲟⲩ Route of waves, Indian route) is a dry river bed in Egypt's Eastern Desert, about halfway between Al-Qusayr and Qena. It was a major mining region and trade route east from the Nile Valley in ancient times, and three thousand years of rock carvings and graffiti make it a major scientific and tourist site today.

Western Desert (Egypt)

The Western Desert of Egypt is an area of the Sahara which lies west of the river Nile, up to the Libyan border, and south from the Mediterranean sea to the border with Sudan. It is named in contrast to the Eastern Desert which extends east from the Nile to Red Sea.

The Western Desert is mostly rocky desert, though an area of sandy desert, known as the Great Sand Sea, lies to the west against the Libyan border.

The desert covers an area of 262,800 sq miles (680,650 km2) which is two-thirds of the land area of the country. Its highest elevation is 3,300 ft (1000m) in the Gilf Kebir plateau to the far south-west of the country, on the Egypt-Sudan-Libya border.

The Western Desert is barren and uninhabited save for a chain of oases which extend in an arc from Siwa, in the north-west, to Kharga in the south.

It has been the scene of conflict in modern times, particularly during the Second World War.

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