Our planet is passing through the path of Comet Swift-Tuttle, a once-in-133-years-or-so event happening this year from July 17 to Aug. 24. But this week we encounter the densest area of this celestial debris field when we’ll spot the most meteors in the shortest time period. So why are you reading this article? Grab a blanket,[.....]
Archive by category Travel
He’s coming back! In 2011, artist Spencer Tunick incited hundreds of people to shed their inhibitions (and their clothes) to raise awareness to the environmental threats facing the Dead Sea. This September, five years after that mass naked photo shoot, at the request of the Arava Institute for Environmental Studies, he will return to check[.....]
Like Israel and Jordan’s Dead Sea, Iran has it’s own inland salty lake called Lake Urmia. Climate change and dam construction has caused its demise to about 10% of its of former glory. Local protestors who have dared called on the government to fix it have been tied up, beaten and tortured. One trusted source I[.....]
This year’s World Environment Day (WED) put a high beam on illegal trade of wildlife. Event sponsor, the United Nations Environment Programme (UNEP), called on everyone to “go wild for life” and take action to help safeguard species under threat. In Saudi Arabia, a team of environmentalists and corporate volunteers took to a beach along[.....]
Environmentally friendly hotels not only save money for the owner, but also resources for the world, while at the same time letting their guests continue doing good things for the environment. For some people, like us, this is super important. In the lodging and hotel industry, green is the new black. In hotel business, initiatives[.....]
While its green status is questionable, the stunning Atlantis, The Palm Hotel and Resort located in Dubai is one of the UAE’s most popular attractions and one of the most alluring travel destinations in the world. The vast venue stretches out over 110 acres and this unique 5-star resort plays host to a number of special[.....]
Jordan will waive its 40 dinar ($57) visa fee for incoming tourists to make visits to Jordan “more convenient and affordable for people of all nationalities,” according to a government press release. The action aims to boost tourism to kingdom attractions such as Petra, Pella, and the protected area of Wadi Rum. It’s just one of several new initiatives to reinvigorate Jordan’s[.....]
Record rainfalls dumped on the region in this winter’s storms rendered a remarkable makeover of the Judean Desert, turning it from a Middle East dust bowl into rolling English hills. Israeli photographer Nir Cohen captured the transformation in these stunning images; see before and after photos above.
Israel and Jordan have signed a historic deal to press ahead with a plan to save the Dead Sea. The ‘Red-Dead’ project will build a plant near the Jordanian tourist resort of Aqaba that will desalinate water to be shared by Israelis and Palestinians. The brine left over from the desalination process will be channeled[.....]
There’s been a revolution in Iran, and we’re not talking about the one that resulted in overthrowing the Shah in 1979! The latest one involves an Irish environmentalist and surfing champion, and her mission to bring the sport to Iran, and its women. When a young boy stood on the beach in a fishing village[.....]
It might not have the archaeological marvels of Petra or the adventure of Wadi Rum, but a two-hour drive from Amman’s dusty streets, you’ll find something special that you won’t find elsewhere in Jordan. Nestled in the hills and landscape of north-western Jordan, lies a green oasis with an eco-minded philosophy: Sharhabil Bin Hassneh EcoPark (SHE.)[.....]
Last year, Green Prophet broadcast the alarming news of a Saudi prince who poached thousands of protected birds during a 21-day hunting safari in Pakistan. Nearly a year on, the Sindh High Court has revoked a federal notification that allowed issuance of permits to Arab dignitaries for hunting endangered species – (including the houbara bustard, pictured[.....]
The night before the Israel Defense Forces’ 1976 mission rescuing over 200 hostages from hijackers in Entebbe, Uganda, Tel Aviv University’s Prof. Pinhas Alpert, then head of an Israel Air Force base forecasting unit, provided intelligence that was critical to the success of the operation — the weather conditions commandos were likely to encounter en[.....]
Maybe you’ve heard of the Million Man March? Or the Million Mom March? Or last year’s Million Muslim March? Brace yourself for a macabre riff on that theme. A team of archaeologists from Utah’s Brigham Young University (BYU) discovered an ancient Egyptian cemetery that has more than 1 million mummies. Presumably, they don’t march.
Project Pressure has created the first open source glacier archive, recording the environmental impact of climate change by documenting the world’s changing glaciers. Danish photographer Klaus Thymann launched this not-for-profit in 2008, garnering impressive street-cred with official links to the World Glacier Monitoring Service (WGMS) and the National Aeronautics and Space Administration (NASA). What’s this got to do[.....]
The unconventional American Jewish physician and surfer Dorian Doc Paskowitz died earlier this month on November 10 at an old age. He started a surfing Odyssey with his family, a wife and camper full of kids, and came to Israel in 1956 bringing with him the first surfboard which he showed to locals on the Frishman Beach in[.....]
Although the tropical cyclone Nilofar has been veering away from Oman’s coast downwind towards Pakistan and India, it had inundated the infrastructure of several areas in the country, including Muzra, Dabab, Al Khabourah, Al Seeb, Al Khoud, Rusayl, Jalan, Sur and Al Ashkara. Nilofar is a Persian baby name and it means lotus or water lilly. Flooded[.....]
Weird, wonderful and sometimes toxic algae blooms at sea attract attention. But algal blooms, known as harmful algal blooms or HABS, can actually be a living carbon sink, a good thing for the sea and our climate, Israeli researchers have found. When we talk about global carbon fixation in the context of climate change “pumping”[.....]
If I were in charge of promoting tourism in Yemen, I’d be using the native dragon tree, or Socotra tree, as my mascot. Native to the Socotra Island these unusual trees have evolved in isolation over millions of years. The Latin name of the endangered Socotra dragon tree or dragon blood tree is Dracaena cinnabari[.....]
Want to take camping to a higher level? Tentsile, a UK company has developed a novel treehouse tent that is bound to attract attention. Slung between three trees, and hanging a yard or two off the ground, this two-person tent feels like something between a shelter, a hammock, and a fine solution for smuggling chocolate[.....]
There is no fighting chance for migratory birds when they fly over Lebanon: Hunting laws may be in place in the Middle East, but who’s enforcing them? From storks and pelicans to hoopoes to eagles to migratory songbirds… see the images of the bloodbath in Lebanon during this year’s hunting season. And these images are[.....]
If you’re familiar with Google Street View, you might have used it to see the Burj Khalifa up close and personal or spanned the sweeping expanse of the Liwa desert (mapped by a camel!) from your home computer or smart device. But have you seen the treasures of ancient Egypt through the eyes of one of Google’s[.....]
Google, bastion of cool-tech, has gone Throwback Thursday in a major way – resorting to camels to capture its latest addition to Google Maps. Thanks to their “camel-cam”, you can now explore Abu Dhabi’s Liwa Oasis exactly as the Bedouin have done for centuries, without leaving home.
The creation of the man-made Suez Canal that links the Red Sea to the Mediterranean has made it easier to ship goods from Asia and Africa to Europe, but it has caused a number of environmental problems. One is invasive species like jellyfish multiplying with no end in sight in the Mediterranean Sea.
The annual Muslim pilgrimage to Mecca known as Hajj has officially begun.
We’ve killed it! Once the fourth largest lake in the world, the Aral Sea between Kazakhstan and Uzbekistan is about 10% of its former size.
The Dead Sea is an amazing place to float, meditate, and to heal your aching body. But some guys hanging out on its shores show it is an awesome place to discover natural phenomena.
A farmer in Al Ain, the very green, flowery emirate bordering Dubai, claims that after three years of impregnating legions of nannies on his farm, his billy goat suddenly sprouted udders. And then produced milk.
The most spectacular Islamic religious architecture and interior design is something few westerners have experienced. Mohammed Reza Domiri changes that, at least a bit, with extraordinary photography. Using an extreme wide-angle lens, the young Iranian unveils a world of color, geometry, and beauty we can only dream of.
The United Arab Emirates has now become a very popular holiday destination, boasting dry, hot weather for much of the year. Although the climate may be appealing to tourists, the United Arab Emirates has much more to offer than sun, sand and sunbathing. 1. Natural Attractions As well as the modern, built up cities, the[.....]
An exciting tourism project is set to promise a bright economic future for Saudi Arabia.
The Middle East joins the race to space with a new program which will launch a research probe to MARS in the next seven years. His Highness Sheikh Mohammed bin Rashid Al Maktoum (Vice President and Prime Minister of the United Arab Emirates (UAE) and Ruler of Dubai) announced establishment of a UAE Space Agency.
What’s a beach without a shoreline, or a dune perch that overlooks a horizon of…more sand? According to the World Tourism Organization, it’s the newest frontier in eco-tourism – welcome news for the Middle East.
Picture what happens when the world’s only independent, chartered organization dedicated to achieving a sustainable world teams up with one of the oldest environmental engineering companies to underwrite an environmental photo contest. The eye-popping images of this year’s Atkins CIWEM “environmental photographer of the year” shortlist tell it all.
Planking’s passé, horsemaning is history, and while selfies are thriving in Tunisia, a new photo trend has emerged with the winning combination of mashing the beauty of nature and people. “The Topless Tour” invites people everywhere to shed their shirts to “feel the freedom and share their beauty with the world”.
Turkish archaeologists have unearthed what Discovery News calls the ‘Byzantine iPad.” Dated to the 9th century A.D., the wooden tool was found among a shipyard of roughly 37 ancient ships in Istanbul.
Green Prophet’s Brian travels to Jordan and finds way too much trash out at sea. He asks: What would Iron Eyes Cody do?
Our local photographer takes a look at what happens when trees are cut off from their water source in a “desert experiment” in the United Arab Emirates.
As I enter Arafet Ben Marzou’s new “office” at the top floor of an apartment building facing the lakes in Tunis, I am met with a very familiar feeling: that silicon valley, young brains, start-up feel. Only this time it is “ à la Tunisienne”, and I have to say, I prefer it.
Actors and actresses are starting to arrive in Abu Dhabi to film a segment of Star Wars 7 in the desert, according to sources close to The National – one of the best regarded newspapers in the United Arab Emirates. How does this fare for the local environment?
Ever seen a spider do back flips? If you have arachnophobia, you might not want to, but for everyone else, the spinning Cebrennus rechenbergi desert spider in Morocco is quite a sight.
I stood in a golden wheat field some five miles north of Acre in Israel. Paul Nirens of the Galileat organization had arranged a demonstration with a local farmer, to show us how the Druze traditionally roast green wheat for freekeh.
Saudi royals seem to be more hazardous to the world bird-life than wind turbines and skyscrapers! A Saudi prince poached thousands of protected birds during a 21-day hunting safari in Pakistan, so claims a new report.
Some people make injured sea turtles human-engineered solutions like this turtle that got new flippers but most sea turtles are just getting caught in fishermen’s nets or choking and dying from plastic without us even noticing. World sea turtle populations are steadily declining, but at some amazing sites in Abu Dhabi we still have hope.
The ‘historical imagery’ function on google earth is particularly helpful in tracking changes to landscapes since about the turn of the millennium when satellite imagery became commonly available.
Whales, the earth’s largest marine mammals, have had more than their share of ecological problems in all parts of the world’s seas and oceans. One of their biggest risks is noise in marine habitats caused by drilling for oil and gas.
A new one-day contest has attracted birding experts from around the world to southern Israel where they compete to record the highest number of species migrating through the Great Rift Valley along the Africa Eurasia Flyway.
Shark finning, in which captured sharks have their fins and tails removed for use in sharks fin soup, has been a prominent issue in many parts of the world, including the Arab Gulf region.
Flash floods are very dangerous; they come quickly, often catch people by surprise, and their force is formidable. This is especially true of Israel’s Wadi Zin, a deceptively dry riverbed most of the time. Visitors to the Dead Sea captured rare footage of a recent flash flood – a once-in-a-lifetime experience.
Springtime in Jordan means sandstorms, not downpours, but a solid week of rain just pummeled Amman – lashing, cold, complete with thunder! Here’s how we locals beat the doldrums caused by Jordan’s Arab Spring – on the cheap!
A new golf course is being built in the shadow of the Egyptian pyramids, the plans for its fairways and greens were recently unveiled by Thomson Perrett & Lobb, an architectural firm specializing in course design.
In 2010 Arafet Ben Marzou, like an increasing number of Tunisians, began to reach his personal limits of frustration when he saw his home country digress towards a political, religious and economic system that was draining Tunisians from their liberty, thoughts and creativity.