Skip links

Facts about the Red Sea for Kids

The Red Sea is a seawater inlet of the Indian Ocean, lying between Africa and Asia.In the north, there is the Sinai Peninsula, the Gulf of Aqaba, and the Gulf of Suez (leading to the Suez Canal). It has a maximum depth of 2211 m (7254 ft) in the central median trench, and an average depth of 490 m (1,608 ft).

  • However, there are also extensive shallow shelves, noted for their marine life and corals.
  • The sea is the habitat of over 1,000 invertebrate species, and 200 soft and hard corals.
  • The direct rendition of the Greek Erythra thalassa in Latin as Mare Erythraeum refers to the north-western part of the Indian Ocean, and also to a region on Mars.
  • One such expedition took place around 2500 BC, and another around 1500 BC (by Hatshepsut).
  • They cruised the Red Sea inside the Bab al-Mandab, as the first European fleet to have sailed this waters.
  • Several canals were built in ancient times from the Nile to the Red Sea along or near the line of the present Sweet Water Canal, but none lasted for long.
  • Monsoon winds occur because of the differential heating between the land surface and sea.
  • Very high surface temperatures coupled with high salinities makes this one of the hottest and saltiest bodies of seawater in the world.
  • The scarcity of rainfall and no major source of fresh water to the Red Sea result in the excess evaporation as high as 205 cm (81 in) per year and high salinity with minimal seasonal variation.
  • A recent underwater expedition to the Red Sea offshore from Sudan and Eritrea found surface water temperatures 28 °C in winter and up to 34 °C in the summer, but despite that extreme heat the coral was healthy with much fish life with very little sign of coral bleaching, and there were plans to use samples of these corals’ apparently heat-adapted commensal algae to salvage bleached coral elsewhere.
  • The Red Sea is one of the most saline bodies of water in the world, due to high evaporation.
  • Coral reefs in the Red Sea are near Egypt, Saudi Arabia, Israel and Sudan.
  • The Red Sea was formed by Arabia splitting from Africa due to movement of the Red Sea Rift.
  • In terms of mineral resources the major constituents of the Red Sea sediments are as follows: Biogenic constituents: Volcanogenic constituents: Terrigenous constituents: Authigenic minerals: Evaporite minerals: Brine precipitate: The Red Sea is a rich and diverse ecosystem.
  • More than 1200 species of fish have been recorded in the Red Sea, and around 10% of these are found nowhere else.
  • The Red Sea also contains many offshore reefs including several true atolls.
  • The rules and regulations governing this area protect local marine life, which has become a major draw for diving enthusiasts.
  • There are at least 18 desalination plants along the Red Sea coast of Saudi Arabia which discharge warm brine and treatment chemicals that may cause bleaching and mortality of corals and diseases to the fish stocks.
  • Government-related bodies with responsibility to police the Red Sea area include the Port Said Port Authority, Suez Canal Authority and Red Sea Ports Authority of Egypt, Jordan Maritime Authority, Israel Port Authority, Saudi Ports Authority and Sea Ports Corporation of Sudan.