Red Sea - Travel Egypt

The Red Sea is an inlet of seawater that is located in the Indian Ocean that lies between Asia and Africa. The connection to the above ocean is in the south that is in the Bab el Mandeb strait and the Gulf of Aden. In the northern part there is Sinai Peninsula and the Gulf of Aqaba. The Gulf of Suez leads to the Suez Canal and the Red Sea is certified to be a global 200 eco region.


The Red Sea is a water body that occupies a part of the Great Rift Valley and it has a surface area of about 438,000 km². It is about 2250 km long and the widest point of the river is about 355km. the Red Sea also has a maximum depth of about 490 metres. There are no shallow shelves and the region is noted for its marine life and the number of corals that are available in the region. The Red Sea is home to about 1000 invertebrate species and there are about 200 hard and soft corals that are available in the sea. The Red Sea is regarded to be the world’s most tropical sea in the north region.


The Red Sea is a rich history and it is the earliest known of exploration of the Red Sea that was undertaken by the old Egyptians. The early Egyptians had made many attempts to establish trade and commercial routes to the area of Punt. There is also one such expedition that had taken place in the year 2500 BC. There was another expedition that was conducted in the year 1500 BC and both involved long voyages through the Red Sea. The biblical Book of Exodus has indicated this sea in the Hebrew Text as the Yam Suph and the account is based on the historical story of the Israelites escape from the reins of slavery in the country. The meaning of Yam Suph can also be translated into the Sea of Reeds. It was in the 6th century BC that Darius the Great of Persia had sent reconnaissance missions to the Red Sea for the purpose of improving and the extension of the navigation by locating many hazardous currents and rocks. The canal was also built between the River Nile and the Northern end of the Red Sea at the Suez Canal.  In the later phase of the 4th century BC Alexander the Great has sent the Greek naval expeditions to the Red Sea right down to the Indian Ocean. The Greek navigators also continued to explore and compile the data that is on the Red Sea and Agathaarchides had gathered information about this Sea in the 2nd century BC. The Periplus of the Erythranean Sea that was written something in the 1st Century AD and there was a detailed description of the ports and the sea routes. The Periplus also lays down a detailed description of how the first direct route was discovered by Hippalus from the Red Sea to India.

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The Red Sea was the primary choice for Roman trade with India and this trade had began with the reign of Augustus who regained control over the Mediterranean in Egypt. This route had been previously used by many previous states. The states also grew in traffic that was under the Romans. From the Indian ports the goods from China were introduced to the Roman world. The contact between Rome and china also depended on the Red Sea and the route was also broken by the Aksumite Empire that was around in the 3rd Century AD.


It was during the Middle Ages that the Red Sea was a very significant part of the route used for the Spice Trade. In the year 1513 when trying to secure the channel to that route to Portugal Afonso de Albuquerque had laid siege to Aden but in the later years was forced to retreat. They had also travelled by sea to the Red Sea inside the first European fleet Bab al Mandab to have cruised these waters.


In the year 1798, France had ordered General Bonaparte to invade Egypt and also take control over the Red Sea. The mission failed and the engineer J B Lepere who had participated in it undertook the fresh plan for making a canal that had been earlier envisaged during the reign of the Pharaohs. There were many canals that were built in the ancient times from the River Nile to the Red Sea. They were along or near the line of the present Sweet Water Canal but none of them had lasted for a long period of time. In November 1869 the Suez Canal was opened and at that particular time the Italians, the British and the French had shared the trading posts. The above posts were later dismantled during the First World War. It was after the second World war that the Americans and the Soviets had exerted their influence in the midst of the oil tanker traffic growth. There was a Six Day War that resulted in the closure of the Suex Canal in the years 1967-1975. There were many patrols by the prime maritime fleets in the Red Sea and the Suez Canal had never recovered its supremacy over the Cape route that was believed to be better located and less vulnerable.


The Red Sea is a water body that lies between semi-desert, arid land and desert.  The Red Sea is a body that has better development of the reef systems because of the presence of a more efficient water circulation pattern and greater depths. The red Sea is one that mass exchanges its water with the Arabian Sea and the Indian Ocean through the Gulf of Aden. There are many physical factors that have an influence on the effect of the high salinity that is caused by the evaporation of the water that is in the North and the hot water that is in the south of the region.







Read also : Weather of the Red Sea


The Red Sea is also one of the most saline water bodies in the world and because of its high evaporation the salinity of the water ranges between ~36 ‰ in the south because of the water that is present in the Gulf of Aden and has the capacity to reach 41 ‰ in the north because of the water present in the Gulf of Suez. The average salinity of the water is about 40 ‰ and this is quite high when compared to the average salinity of the water of the sea is ~35 ‰.


The Red Sea was formed when Arabia has split from Africa because of the movement of the Red Sea Rift. This spilt had began in the Eocene and it was accelerated during the Oligocene. The sea is also widening and it is considered that in the near future this sea will become an ocean in no time. This proposal was laid down by John Tuzo Wilson. It was during the period of the closure of the Bab el Mandeb close when the Red Sea had evaporated to a very hot empty dry salt floored sink. The effects of the above would be the race of the widening of the Red Sea and the filing of the Bab el Mandeb with lava. There is also the possibility of the world level sea level during the Ice Ages that is caused by the water being locked up in the ice caps. The surface water in the present times also remains constant relatively and the visibility of the temperature is also good at around 656 feet. The Red Sea is also famous for its strong winds and its unpredictable local currents.


Read also : Bio-diversity of Red Sea