9.1 Physical Geography of the Arabian Peninsula, Iraq & Iran.

9.1 Physical Geography of
the Arabian Peninsula,
Iraq & Iran.
The Arabian Peninsula contains the countries
of: Saudi Arabia, Yemen, Oman, U.A.E.,
Qatar, Bahrain, & Kuwait. We also include
Iraq and Iran in this region.
Physical Features
The Arabian Peninsula has the largest
sand desert in the world.
 It also has huge areas of desert
covered with bare rock or gravel.
 The countries of this region form a sort of
semi-circle with the Persian Gulf in the
The Arabian Peninsula is also bordered
by the Gulf of Oman, the Arabian
Sea, & the Red Sea.
 The Caspian Sea borders Iran to
the north.
This region contains 4 major landforms:
rivers, plains, plateaus, and mountains.
The Tigris & Euphrates Rivers flow
across Iraq & empty in the Persian
 These rivers are considered “exotic
rivers” because they begin in humid
regions & then flow through dry
The Arabian Peninsula has no permanent
 Plains are located on the Eastern part of
the Arabian Peninsula.
 The mountains of Yemen are the highest
point on the peninsula.
Plateaus and mountains cover most of
 Iran is one of the world’s most
mountainous countries.
 The 3 mountains ranges of Iran are:
the Zagros, the Elburz. And the
 These mountain ranges keep towns
in Iran isolated from one another
which makes it hard to govern the
country at times.
Climate and Vegetation
Most of this region has a desert climate.
 The world’s largest all-sand desert,
the Rub-al-Khali covers much of
southern Saudi Arabia.
 The name means “Empty
Quarter” because there is so little
life living in this desert.
 The
Al Nafud is another desert in
northern Saudi Arabia.
 In both deserts there can sometimes
be an oasis (a wet, fertile area in a
desert that forms where
underground water bubbles to the
Water is one of the region’s two most
valuable resources.
 Throughout the deserts there are
many wadis (dry streambeds).
 Most of the groundwater found in
wells in the region is fossil water
(water that is not being replaced by
The other
resource in the
region is oil.
Exports of oil bring great wealth to the
countries that have oil fields.
 Most of the oil fields found in the region
are located near the shores of the
Persian Gulf.
 One major problem with oil is that it
cannot be replaced once it’s taken from
the earth.
 A depletion of oil may hurt these
countries in the future because most of
the countries are not rich in any other