The Sahara Desert is found in North Africa and occupies around 10% of the continent, spanning over 3,500,000 square miles (9,000,000 sq km). Which makes it one of the biggest and largest deserts in the World The Red Sea runs along its eastern border, and it reaches west to the Atlantic Ocean. The Mediterranean Sea forms the northern border of the Sahara Desert, whereas the Sahel, a semi-arid tropical savanna, defines the southern border.
The Sahara Desert is generally referred to as the world’s biggest desert since it covers over 10% of the African continent. However, because it is merely the world’s largest hot desert, this isn’t totally accurate. The world’s largest desert, according to the criteria of a desert, is the continent of Antarctica, which receives less than 10 inches (250 mm) of precipitation each year.
Geography of the Sahara Desert
Algeria, Chad, Egypt, Libya, Mali, Mauritania, Morocco, Niger, Sudan, and Tunisia are among the countries that make up the Sahara. The Sahara Desert is mostly underdeveloped and has a diverse landscape. The wind has formed most of the topography, which includes sand dunes, ergs (sand seas), barren stone plateaus, gravel plains, parched valleys, and salt flats. Sand dunes cover over a quarter of the desert, with some reaching heights of over 500 feet (152 metres).
Within the Sahara, there are various mountain ranges, several of which are volcanic. Emi Koussi, a shield volcano that rises to 11,204 feet, is the highest peak in these mountains (3,415 m). It is located in northern Chad and is part of the Tibesti Range. The lowest point in the Sahara Desert is -436 feet (-133 metres) below sea level in Egypt’s Qattara Depression.
Today, the majority of the water in the Sahara comes from seasonal or intermittent streams. The Nile River, which runs from Central Africa to the Mediterranean Sea, is the only permanent river in the desert. Other water in the Sahara is located in subterranean aquifers, and in regions where this water reaches the surface, such as the Bahariya Oasis in Egypt and Ghardaa in Algeria, there are oases and occasionally small cities or communities.
The Sahara Desert is separated into distinct geographic zones since the amount of water and terrain vary depending on location. In locations with greater rainfall, the desert’s center is classified hyper-arid and has little to no flora, but the northern and southern sections feature sparse grasses, desert shrub, and occasionally trees.
Sahara Desert Climate
The Sahara Desert, while being hot and dry now, is thought to have gone through several climatic upheavals during the previous few hundred thousand years. Because precipitation in the area was low during the previous glacier, it was much larger than it is now. However, due to the formation of low pressure over ice sheets to its north, precipitation in the desert rose from 8000 BCE to 6000 BCE. However, after the ice sheets melted, the low pressure changed, allowing the northern Sahara to dry up while the southern Sahara continued to get precipitation because of the existence of a rainstorm.
Around 3400 BCE, the monsoon migrated south to where it is now, and the desert dried out again, returning to its current condition. Furthermore, the existence of the Intertropical Convergence Zone, or ITCZ, in the southern Sahara Desert prevents precipitation from accessing the area, while storms from the north of the desert also fail to reach there. As a result, the Sahara receives less than 2.5 cm (25 mm) of yearly rainfall.
The Sahara is one of the world’s warmest places, in addition to being highly dry. The average annual temperature in the desert is 86°F (30°C), however, temperatures may reach 122°F (50°C) even during warmest months, with the maximum temperature ever reported in Aziziyah, Libya, at 136°F (58°C).
Plants and Animals of the Sahara Desert
As one of the largest deserts in the World, the Sahara Desert’s plant life is scarce, with just roughly 500 species surviving due to the high temperatures and dry conditions. Drought and heat tolerant types, as well as those suited to salty environments (halophytes) if adequate water is present, make up the majority of this group.
The extreme circumstances encountered in the Sahara Desert have also contributed to the presence of animal life there. There are roughly 70 distinct animal species in the middle and driest portion of the desert, 20 of which are big animals like the spotted hyena. Gerbils, sand foxes, and Cape hares are among the other animals. The Sahara is also home to reptiles such as the sand viper and the monitor lizard.
People of the Sahara Desert
People are thought to have lived in the Sahara Desert from at least 6000 BCE. Egyptians, Phoenicians, Greeks, and Europeans have all lived in the region since then. The inhabitants of the Sahara are now estimated to be over 4 million people, with the bulk of them residing in Egypt, Mauritania, Libya, Algeria, and Western Sahara.
The majority of the residents in the Sahara nowadays do not live in towns; alternatively, they are migrants who wander from one location to the next across the desert. As a result, the area is diverse in terms of ethnicities and languages, with Arabic being the most generally spoken. Crops and the extraction of minerals such as iron ore (in Algeria and Mauritania) and copper (in Mauritania) are key businesses that have enabled population centers to expand for those who do reside in towns or villages on lush oasis.
Egypt Sahara Desert
The Sahara Desert begins on the western outskirts of Egypt’s larger Cairo city. The Pyramids of Giza, which for the most part represent the end of Cairo and Giza’s urban development, have historically defined the Sahara’s extreme eastern frontier. The merciless desert wasteland of stunning sand dunes and occasional rocky features goes all the way across the African continent to Morocco on the Atlantic coast from there.
Egypt, in the Sahara’s the Far East, and Morocco, in the Sahara’s far west, have the most established tourism choices. Getting a horse ride into the desert further than the Pyramids is one of my favorite things to do in Egypt. It’s incredibly peaceful and refreshing out there, with just the dunes and the horse. The views back toward the Pyramids, as well as the urban sprawl of Giza and Cairo, are inspiring. I also like to put up camps out there for leisure, complete with tents and large cushions that are perfect for lounging on as the desert air gently sweeps over you.
Sahara Desert Oasis
Tourists seeking a genuine Egyptian experience that also offers some exciting outdoor adventure go to the Sahara Desert Attractions. Contrary to popular belief, the Sahara contains a plethora of fantastic Egypt tourist sites as well as some spectacularly gorgeous oases. Stay at resorts, camp out under the stars, and have dinner with the locals.
The Siwa Oasis Tours bring visitors to the personal contact with hundreds of olive and date trees blooming in Western Sahara, as well as old oracle temples, lush natural springs, and verdant gardens to roam about in free time!
The Siwa Oasis is located in the extreme western parts of Egypt’s the Sahara Desert. The oasis has a remarkable history that dates back to the 10th millennium BC Mesolithic epoch. It was thriving throughout the Pharaonic period of ancient Egypt, and its name derives from the old Egyptian terms for palm and land, implying that it was recognized for its landscaped gardens and clean water even back then. It later became the site of the Amun oracle temple, which was visited by Alexander the Great, who learned through the oracle that he was the true king of Egypt.
Tourists who wish to see more than ancient pyramids, tombs, and temples should take a Farafra Oasis Tour. Farafra is the most remote of Egypt’s New Valley oasis, renowned as the “Land of the Cow” when the country was still governed by pharaohs.
The region is predominantly occupied by Bedouins and is home to various local springs. It is located virtually in the heart of Egypt’s western Sahara Desert. It’s also the closest oasis to the world-renowned White Desert. As a result, Farafra Oasis trips are starting to be increasingly popular.
A tour of the Bahariya Oasis is a great opportunity to see a lot of Egypt’s the Western Desert. Visit a current archaeological excavation, travel to scenic beauty, and take in several other attractions of the Bahariya Oasis in the Sahara, a region where dinosaurs once roamed and a steamy mangrove forest once flourished.
Fayoum City, the oasis’s principal town, lies 85 kilometres south of Cairo. The city of Fayoum, while being referred to as an oasis, is not sustained by subterranean water like the oases of the western Sahara Desert to the south and west; But rather by water from the Nile, which is carried to this natural triangular depression by a system of canals.
After irrigating the oasis, the water flows into Lake Qaroun, Egypt’s biggest natural salt-water lake, which, while having decreased drastically over the last few thousand years, still encompasses around 215 square kilometers.
The Dakhla Oasis is one of seven famous Egypt’s Western Desert. Dakhleh Oasis and the “Inner Oasis” are two of the many titles granted to the oasis. It’s in the New Valley region, which also features the Farafra and Al Kharga oases.
The Kharga Oasis
The Kharga Oasis is the southernmost of three oasis in the New Valley located in Western Desert. Kharga Oasis formerly had a large lake that enticed people from all over the world to reside there. Nevertheless, the lake dried up with time, leaving only a sandy, clay, and sandstone depression in the ground.
Sahara Desert Attractions
White Desert Tours take visitors to one of the most interesting parts of the Sahara Desert. It was previously covered by the sea, then a savanna region rich in animals and plants, and now a desolate terrain dotted with an almost infinite amount of alien-like geological formations.
The White Desert is a found naturally accumulation of chalk and limestone rocks that have been eroded by desert winds and geological action over thousands of years.
Wadi Al Hitan
Wadi Al Hitan, in the Fayoum Oasis, is known as the Valley of Whales, and with good cause. There are several motives why someone would want to visit this valley, and it is conveniently accessible because it is only 150 kilometers south of Cairo.
The Valley of the Golden Mummies
The Valley of the Golden Mummies is a massive “Roman Egypt” necropolis located 230 miles southwest of Cairo in the Bahariya Oasis. Archaeologists excavating the tombs believed that the site may hold up to 10,000 mummies, making it one of Egypt’s most significant finds.
The Temple of Hibis
The Temple of Hibis is the best-preserved temple in the Kharga Oasis, which is home to a number of intriguing and well-preserved attractions to see during your Egypt holiday. Because this oasis is located along a major caravan route, it has been heavily occupied for a long time.
Temple of Qasr Dush
Qasr Dush is one of two old architectural wonders in the Kharga Oasis that attracts the greatest number of visitors. That isn’t to say the oasis isn’t full with things to see. After all, ancient sites abound in the surrounding desert. These two locations, on the other hand, are popular because they are well-preserved and accessible.
You may encounter naked Egypt and a fascinating sensation of complete seclusion in the Black Desert, where even the sound of your thoughts can be deafening. In this fascinating place surrounded by pale desert sands, visitors will also be treated to some breathtaking vistas.
The Western Desert of Egypt
The Western Desert of Egypt, about the size of Texas, is a section of the Sahara Desert that has piqued the interest of travellers since they first arrived in the country.
El Haiz Valley
El Haiz Valley, located in the Black Desert, is not only unusual but also stunningly beautiful. The valley is located in the Black Desert’s western region and is only accessible by 4WD vehicles. Expeditions of this lovely desert area may, nevertheless, be simply scheduled.
The remains of the Temple of Nadura may be seen sitting conveniently on the summit of a hill in the Kharga Oasis, just north of the city of Kharga. Although this temple is newer than most of the area’s several famed temples, it has not been properly conserved. As a result, only remains exist now.
Deir El Hagar Temple
The Roman temple at Deir El Hagar is located in the Dakhla Oasis. It is one among Egypt’s tiniest temples, if not “the” smallest. For decades, the edifice was buried beneath the sand, which served to preserve it, and it has now been rebuilt to its former glory.
Siwa’s Amun Temple
The Temple of Amun Siwa has a unique history that dates back to Alexander the Great’s reign. The Temple of the Oracle or the Temple of Amun, which is located in Siwa, Egypt’s most remote oasis, is also known as the Temple of the Oracle or the Temple of Amun.
Temple of Ain El Muftella
The Temple of Ain El Muftella is situated in the Bahariya Oasis‘s central section. In the ancient city of El Qasr, this temple served as the city center. This city has fallen away since ancient times, and a contemporary metropolis called Bawati has risen in its place. While the city itself has long since fallen to the Sahara, the temple’s four 26th century shrines have survived. The place is a prominent tourist destination in the Sahara and should be included on every Bahariya Oasis trip.
Qasr El Labeka
The Qasr El Labkha is another name for Qasr El Labeka. It is one of the numerous historic monuments in the Kharga Oasis, and it is an old Roman fortification dating from the 5th century AD.
Qasr Al Farafra
Anyone who want to take a genuine voyage back in time should visit Qasr Al Farafra. This little community in Egypt’s western desert region has remained untouched by contemporary times. Instead, you’ll find yourself immersed in the world of medieval architecture. The Badr Museum, as well as several traditional houses and the ruins of an old Roman fortification, are all located in the town.
Mountain of the Dead
The Mountain of the Dead (Gebel Al-Mawta) burial place, located in the Siwa Oasis, has many terraced tombs that are positioned down the slope of the mountain. As a result, a spectacular cone-shaped burial mound emerges from the desert floor.
Al Mizawaka Tombs
The Al Mizawaka Tombs are frequently cited as the main theme of a visit to the Farafra Oasis. Despite the fact that Farafra is one of the smallest oasis in the White Desert; it nevertheless has a lot of historical sites to visit.
The Magic Spring
Need not to ask the locals where Magic Spring is located, as this is the moniker assigned to the spot by tourists. It’s not tough to locate, particularly considering it’s flanked by a gift store, a coffee shop, and even a hotel.
The English House
The English House is one of Bahariya’s most well-known tourist attractions. The Valley of the Golden Mummies would be the Oasis. When all of the gilt-painted mummies were discovered, the oasis’s tourist appeal was forever altered. Many individuals come to the region only to see the museum and witness several of the golden and precious mummies.
Does this, nevertheless, imply that this is all there is to see in the oasis? Without a doubt, no. In reality, if you appreciate studying about numerous periods of history in Egypt’s past; there are several historical places that are well worth your time. The English House is one of these locations.
The Crystal Mountain
If you come to Crystal Mountain Egypt expecting to see a massive mountain rise up out of the desert, you may be disappointed. In Egypt’s Western Desert, this is a ridge that runs between Bahariya Oasis and Farafra Oasis.
Cleopatra’s Bath is a freshwater natural spring that bursts up from the earth and is situated in the Siwa Oasis. Although there are other springs across the oasis, this is the most famous one of the other oases.
The Christian Cemetery of Al Bagawat is a unique and relatively unknown destination in Egypt that is found among other sights in the Kharga Oasis. It is hardly busy and definitely worth witnessing because many people are unaware of its existence.
10 Facts assist you to travel to the Sahara Desert
The Sahara Desert conjures up images of camel rides and magnificently sculpted dunes. The desert is one of the most famous in the world, and seeing it in person is a once-in-a-lifetime experience. Learn some fascinating facts about the Sahara Desert.
- The Sahara Desert stretches over virtually all of Western Africa, encompassing 11 nations. Algeria, Chad, Egypt, Libya, Mali, Mauritania, Morocco, Niger, Western Sahara, Sudan, and Tunisia are all affected.
- Researchers are baffled by the occurrence of singing sand dunes in the Sahara Desert. Sonic booms, pounding, and even whistling are among the symphonic noises produced by the desert. Charles Darwin and Marco Polo were among the first to notice the occurrence. Some academics feel it has something to do with the size of the sand grains or the dunes’ morphology.
- The Sahara Desert is not the world’s biggest desert, contrary to popular belief. After the Antarctic and Artic deserts, it is really ranked third. Because a desert is described as a barren area with a hostile environment for plants and animals, this is the case. As a result, the Sahara Desert is the world’s biggest hot desert, but not the world’s largest.
- It comes out that the vast area of the Sahara Desert is a valuable mine of Dinosaur fossils. Paleontologists have discovered one of the region’s biggest preserved dinosaur fossils in the Moroccan Sahara.
- The Sahara Desert is easily pictured as a massive sandbox. Sand dunes and sheets, on the other hand, make up just 25% of the Sahara desert’s surface. Because to its position on the African barrier, the remainder is composed of limestone, sandstone, and other geological types.
More Facts about Sahara Desert
- Throughout the day, the temperature in the Sahara Desert averages 38 degrees Celsius (100 degrees Fahrenheit). The desert may be as frigid as -4 degrees Celsius as the sun sets (25 Degrees Fahrenheit).
- Is it possible to live in the Sahara? Deserts are characterized by their harsh climate for animals and plants, yet the Sahara Desert has some traces of scant flora. The little pockets of the oasis attract species and allow life to survive to some extent. The desert is home to over 70 animal species, 90 bird species, and 100 reptile species, among others.
- The word “Sahara” is derived from the Arabic word meaning “desert.” The desert is known in Arabic as Al-Sahra Al Kubra, which translates to “The Great Desert.” To get ‘Sahara,’ the Sahra (meaning desert) is changed to its feminine irregular form.
- One of the nicest things to do in the Sahara desert is stargazed. Because of the kilometers of desolate territory, artificial light has little to no effect on the sky. As a result, you can see the whole cosmos over your head.
- The Sahara Desert offers a wide choice of activities, including camel riding, quad biking, and sand surfing. In certain regions of the desert, spa resorts have evolved to be popular tourist attractions.