Crimson Sea – WorldAtlas

The Crimson Sea is the world’s northernmost tropical sea and can be one of the closely traveled waterways. This sea has a floor space of roughly 438,000 km2 and is about 2,250 km in size. The utmost width of the ocean is 355 km, and the ocean’s deepest level is 3,040 m on the central Suakin Trough, with the ocean’s estimated common depth being 490 m. The Crimson Sea is a World 200 Ecoregion, and underlying it’s the Crimson Sea Rift, which makes it part of the Nice Rift Valley.

The place Is The Crimson Sea?

Red Sea map
Crimson Sea.

The Crimson Sea is a semi-enclosed, inlet (or extension) of the Indian Ocean between the continents of Africa from Asia. It’s related to the Arabian Sea and the Indian Ocean to the south via the Gulf of Aden and the slender strait of Bab el Mandeb. The northern portion of the Crimson Sea is bifurcated by the Sinai Peninsula into the Gulf of Aqaba and the Gulf of Suez, the place it’s related to the Mediterranean Sea through the well-known Suez Canal.

A complete of 6 international locations of Asia and Africa, border the Crimson Sea.  The international locations of Yemen and Saudi Arabia border the Crimson Sea to the east. The Crimson Sea is bordered by Egypt to the north and west, and by Sudan, Eritrea, and Djibouti to the west. The Gulf of Aqaba is bordered by Egypt together with Israel, Jordan, and Saudi Arabia. Apart from these 6 international locations, another areas together with Somalia are additionally typically acknowledged as Crimson Sea Territories, on account of their proximity to the ocean and the geographical similarities with the international locations that border the Crimson Sea.

Origin Of The Identify

There are a number of theories relating to the origin of the title of the Crimson Sea. One common concept offers credit score to the seasonal blooms of a red-colored cyanobacteria alga –Trichodesmium erythraeum which supplies the ocean a reddish-brown shade. The title ‘Crimson Sea’ is a direct translation of its Greek title – Erythra Thalassa. The Europeans additionally as soon as referred to it because the Erythraean Sea.

A number of the trendy students imagine that sure Asiatic languages used shade phrases to indicate the cardinal instructions, the place the phrase crimson refers back to the south route of the compass, simply because the Black Sea’s title alludes to the north route.  An historic reference to the Crimson Sea additionally comes from the Biblical account of the Israelites miraculously crossing the Crimson Sea. The Septuagint translation of the Guide of Exodus from Hebrew to Koine Greek interprets the ‘Yam Suph’ as ‘Erythra Thalassa’ (Crimson Sea).

The Local weather Of The Crimson Sea

Red Sea swimming
The nice and cozy waters of the Crimson Sea are nice for swimming, snorkeling, and diving actions.

The local weather of the Crimson Sea is influenced by two monsoon seasons particularly the northeasterly monsoon and the southwesterly monsoon. Throughout summer season, the common floor temperature of the Crimson Sea is about 26°C on the northern aspect and about 30°C on the southern aspect. Through the winter months, the temperature decreases barely by about 2°C. There’s extraordinarily low rainfall averaging 0.06m yearly on this space, and desert mud storms sometimes sweep throughout the ocean. Owing to the excessive floor water temperatures, the Crimson Sea is without doubt one of the world’s warmest seas.

The excessive warmth along with the shortage of precipitation facilitates excessive ranges of evaporation, resulting in the excessive salinity of the Crimson Sea. It has been estimated that the salinity of the ocean ranges from 36% on its southern aspect to about 41% on its northern aspect.

Islands in The Crimson Sea

Vacationers tenting on a virgin island in Dahlak archipelago.

There are greater than a thousand volcanic islands within the Crimson Sea. The 2 largest island teams are positioned within the southern half, whereas the Farasan Islands lie within the east and the Dahlak Archipelago with greater than 350 islands lie within the western a part of the Crimson Sea. Some well-known islands embrace Tiran Island, which is positioned close to the mouth of the Gulf of Aqaba, and the Shadwan Island, which is positioned on the entrance of the Gulf of Suez. Located within the northern a part of the Crimson Sea, the Al Wajh Financial institution is thought for its distinctive biodiversity. A number of of the Crimson Sea Islands together with Kamaran, Perim, Hanish, and Socotra are managed by Yemen.

Marine Life And Protected Areas

Red Sea coral reef
Crimson Sea is wealthy in coral reefs.

The wealthy ecosystem of the Crimson Sea helps a excessive organic variety that additionally has a excessive proportion of endemic species. The in depth community of shallow cabinets of the Crimson Sea performs host to a minimum of 1,000 species of invertebrates, 200 exhausting and delicate corals, and greater than 1,200 fish species. It has been estimated that about 14.7% of the Crimson Sea fishes are endemic species, which makes the Crimson Sea – one of many topmost areas for prime fish endemism on this planet.

Researchers have discovered that about 90% of the fishes are Crimson Sea dottybacks – which belong to the Pseudochromidae household and the triple fins fish – which belong to the Tripterygiidae household. Greater than 50% of the Crimson Sea butterflyfishes belonging to the Chaetodontidae household are endemic species. Along with this, about 175 nudibranchs and 44 shark species are additionally discovered within the Crimson Sea.

Oceanic whitetip shark in the Red Sea
Oceanic Whitetip Shark in Daedalus dive website at Crimson Sea Egypt.

The shallow water depths and environment friendly water circulation patterns contribute to the thriving coral reefs of the Crimson Sea. These reefs are acknowledged to be one of many world’s longest steady dwelling coral reefs which can be distinctive for his or her adaptation to excessive temperatures and excessive salinity. The fringing coral reefs lengthen for about 2,000km across the shoreline, and most of those reefs are primarily fashioned of the stony Acropora and porites corals which have been estimated to be about 5,000-7,000 years previous. These scleractinian corals present the next resilience to the altering local weather in comparison with the opposite corals in numerous components of the world, and thus makes the Crimson Sea – a helpful pure laboratory to check the results of a warming ocean on the reef ecosystems. The Crimson Sea area additionally helps different marine habitats like seagrass beds, mangroves, salt marshes, and salt pans.

The unimaginable biodiversity of the Crimson Sea led to the institution of the Ras Mohammed Nationwide Park in 1983 by the Authorities of Egypt. Located on the southern fringe of the Sinai Peninsula, this marine park helps in defending the marine wildlife and plush reefs from the increasing inhabitants, coastal developments, and unsustainable fishing practices.

Temporary Historical past

The primary recognized exploration expeditions of the Crimson Sea space have been first performed by the traditional Egyptians round 2,500 BC and 1500 BC. The Septuagint translation of the Biblical Guide of Exodus revealed a narrative of the Israelites’ miraculous escape by crossing the ‘Yam Suph’ (Crimson Sea). Darius I of Persia within the 6th century BCE, had made the Crimson Sea part of his navigation venture, to enhance and lengthen navigation by finding a number of hazardous rocks and currents. From the northern finish of the Crimson Sea and the River Nile, a canal was constructed at Suez.  Alexander the Nice within the late 4th century B.C., had despatched naval expeditions via the Crimson Sea to the Indian Ocean. As talked about within the ebook titled, “Periplus of the Erythrean Sea”, it was Hippalus – a Greek navigator, who first discovered a direct path to India through the Crimson Sea.

Opening of the Suez Canal on Nov 17 1869
Opening of the Suez Canal on Nov 17, 1869

The Crimson Sea finally grew to become the favourite route of Romans for finishing up commerce with India. Through the Center Ages, the Crimson Sea was used for the spice commerce. The Suez Canal was formally opened on November 17, 1869. Nevertheless, due to the Six-Day Struggle, the Suez Canal remained closed from 1967-1975. At the moment, about 7% of all sea-trade happens via the Suez Canal.

Human Settlements Alongside The Crimson Sea

Jeddah Saudi Arabia along red sea
Jeddah is without doubt one of the largest settlements alongside the Crimson Sea shoreline.

The Crimson Sea shares its marine waters with international locations like Egypt, Jordan, Israel, Saudi Arabia, Yemen, Sudan, Eritrea, and Djibouti. About 150 million folks reside in these international locations. The shoreline additionally comprises a few of the highest inhabitants facilities together with Jeddah, Port Sudan, and the quickly creating cities of Massawa, Eliat, Aqaba, and Al Hodeidah. Nevertheless, many of those international locations endure from violence, instability, corruption, and tyranny. The nation of Egypt has about 1,500km lengthy shoreline alongside the Crimson Sea and can be well-known for leisure actions that entice many vacationers to get pleasure from diving at totally different websites like Ras Mohammed, Daedalus Reef, Elphinstone Reef, St. John’s Reef, The Brothers, and Rocky Island. Some well-known resorts within the space embrace the Hurghada, Marsa Alam, Safaga, El Gouna, Dahab, and Taba.

Economic system

Fishing boats within the Crimson Sea in Egypt.

The Crimson Sea kinds a important artery for the world’s financial system. The coral reefs of the Crimson Sea present meals and assist the livelihood of over 28 million those who reside alongside the coasts. Annual income of about US$230 million is earned from fisheries alone whereas about US$12 billion comes from tourism. The distinctive coral reefs of the Crimson Sea additionally function wealthy sources of drugs and pure merchandise.  Some main sorts of mineral sources which can be discovered right here embrace gypsum, dolomite, halite, phosphates, and sulfur. Quite a few business endeavors and industrial developments are additionally carried out by nations which can be positioned alongside the Crimson Sea for the exploration of oil and pure fuel deposits.

Red Sea Map
Crimson Sea Map




2,250 km

Most Width

355 km

Minimal Width

26 km

Common Width

280 km

Common Depth

490 m

Most Depth

3,040 m

Floor Space

43,800 sq. Km


215,000 km3

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