Protecting the Geological Heritage and the Geological Tourism in the United Arab Emirates
Monday, June 01, 2020
million years ago, terrestrial factors and natural elements began their work to
form the geology of the United Arab Emirates, with varied terrain, beautiful
nature, unique geological diversity, and the presence of many distinct and rare
geological features that represent a tourist attraction if they are promoted
for such goal. This terrain is the result of geological processes that occurred
during the Earth's history.
In most of the
emirates of the country, there are unique natural sites of high geological
value; and geologists from all over the world come to the country to study
these unique geological features.
The country can
be divided into the following regions and regions:
Desert gravel plains.
Coastal areas and marshes.
Each of these
regions has certain geological characteristics and a special tourist
attraction, as most of the population of the country inhabits the desert plains
and coastal areas where the main cities are located.
the Aflaj, which are characterized by the eastern mountainous regions and the
desert plains, represent a distinct system of irrigation, as these Aflaj
represent man-made rivers that were built to interrupt the level of groundwater
at the feet of the mountains and transport it to the surface for usage
especially for agricultural purposes.
Sand dunes in
the United Arab Emirates are a natural sand dunes museum, which includes most
types of dunes on the surface of the earth, and cover approximately 74% of the
total area of the country.
Among the types
of sand dunes are longitudinal, transverse, parallel, semicircular, and
stellar. And the sand dunes in Liwa Oasis rise to more than one hundred meters
above the ground and contain among them unique farms known locally as (Pales);
and some sand dune areas are used for some special sports such as car racing
and bicycles, and in climbing dunes and skiing on sand dunes.
- Stunning mountain
ranges in the country: (Ophiolite)
- The mountain
region is characterized by the peculiarity of the rock sequence, which is rare
in only a few regions in the world, because these rocks are their current place
during the dynamic activity of the earth about 95 million years ago.
attract scientists from all over the world to visit and study them. These rocks
are characterized by contrast and harmony of colors, and they form beautiful
Because these mountains are the rainiest areas in the country, many
farms and oases have arisen in them, and many springs have burst to add to this
unique beauty. Currently, some activities, like mountain climbing, is organized
by some tourism entities.
Jebel Hafeet, which is in the south
of Al Ain city, extends 15 kilometers inside the country, with an average width
of four kilometers and a height of 1200 meters east of Al Ain Al Faida, is a
typical site for mountain climbing and exploring caves by many tourists.
The historical oases of Al Ain, Hili and Al Buraimi are tourist
attractions in addition to the Al Ain Museum, castles and Aflaj.
Many of the Emirates islands, such as Delma Island, the two parts Sir
Bani Yas, , and Abu Na'ir, are unique geological examples where mountains of
salt and evaporation form the core of those islands that took their way from
the inner of the earth to its surface millions of years ago, through rocks
called the Hormuz complex, which extend to thousands of feet in depth. Flat
plains and breathtaking coastal areas surround the saline core of these islands;
and these, in addition to the coastal areas of the country, from the
picturesque areas where alongside it grow many coral reefs in the shallow
waters of the Arabian Gulf.
- The contribution of geology to enriching the tourist movement:
In addition to many other factors, geology can contribute to enriching
the tourist movement activity in the country through the following activities:
1- Geologists can lead opportunities to explore the caves and choose the
most appropriate areas for climbing mountain slopes. They can also lead trips
to mountain areas through specific paths characterized by their multiple
natural and tourist features to explain those features, types of rocks and geological
2- Given the influence of climate and weather conditions on
archaeological sites, geology can contribute to its maintenance and
preservation by selecting the most appropriate restoration material.
3- Given the presence of archaeological sites in different geological
environments, exploring iron in these sites and searching for extensions of
existing sites requires geological expertise in subsurface phenomena, in which
it can contribute to exploring new archaeological sites; in addition to the
available field capabilities of remote sensing techniques and multiple geophysical
4- The negative impact of groundwater on the covering of archaeological
sites may be significant and may be prevented or reduced by the participation
of water geologists in studies and procedures necessary to maintain those sites.
Director of Department
of Geology and Mineral Resources
Ministry of Energy and Industry