Geography of United Arab Emirates


Terrain shapes and bedrock

The coast towards the Persian Gulf is a smoothed tidal coast with coral reefs and wide, flat and vegetation-free deposits with the character of salt deserts, so-called sabkha. The tidal currents are constantly changing the appearance of the coast and the islands. The coastal area has a bedrock of oil-rich, sedimentary rocks that towards the Hormuz Strait are getting older. Along the eastern coast of the Musandam Peninsula south of the Hormuz Strait, the Hajar mountain range with peaks around 2,000 m asl extends.

According to COUNTRYAAH, most of the United Arab Emirates is made up of the huge sand desert Rub al-Khali with elongated dunes with northeast-southwest extension. Occasional wadis and oases, e.g. The Liwao oasis, interrupts the desert landscape.


United Arab Emirates has a dry desert climate. The rainfall is usually between 75-100 mm per year, but fogs from the coast can somewhat alleviate the drought. A sandy wind, shamal, blows from the north and northwest, especially at the turn of the year and early summer. The average temperature in January is around 18 ° C and in July around 33 ° C, but can reach as high as 46 ° C.

Plant-and animal life

United Arab Emirates Wildlife

The plant life is sparse and consists mostly of shrub-covered amaranth plants, euphorbios and Zygophyʹllum species as well as small populations of acacias and the Mesquite family Prosoʹpis cineraʹria. In the oases, date palms and the blue louse are cultivated. Along the east coast is the oldest mangrove forest in the Arabian Peninsula.

Of the approximately 25 species of mammals, desert rats dominate, but there are also predators such as red fox and fennel. About 70 species of birds nest, and on the north coast around Dubai, large numbers of waders, or antlers, desert whip and heron whistle, rest or winter. In the hinterland several species of larch breed, and in winter desert scrub and desert singers are common.

Of the approximately 40 species of reptiles, there are hornworms and dabbagams. Three species of sea turtles visit the beaches to lay eggs, and in coastal waters there are dugong. Outside the rich coral reefs there are plenty of Spanish mackerel (Scoʹmber japoʹnicus) and temporary tuna and whales.

Nature conservation

In 2010, the United Arab Emirates had a national park and two areas with a lower degree of nature protection.