A triangle of sand and granite, limestone and sandstone, the Sinai Peninsula appears as a rugged wasteland in this view to the north from a NASA satellite miles out in space.

Two fingers of the Red Sea separate the peninsula from the land on the west and east—the 180-mile-long Gulf of Suez on the west and the 112-mile-long Gulf of Eilat or Aqaba on the east. Clearly visible are the coastal plains, the barren interior Tih Plateau, and the mountainous southern region that constitutes one third of the total area of the peninsula.