Sinai Peninsula

Relief map of the Sinai Peninsula
Area60,000 km 2(23,000 sq mi)
Countries Egypt

The Sinai Peninsula or simply Sinai (now usually / SY-ny, also / SY-nee-eye and US: / SY-nay-eye)[1][2][3] is a peninsula in Egypt, and the only part of the country located in Asia. It is situated between the Mediterranean Sea to the north and the Red Sea to the south, and is a land bridge between Asia and Africa. Sinai has a land area of about 60,000 km2 (23,000 sq mi) and a population of approximately 1,400,000 people. Administratively, the Sinai Peninsula is divided into two governorates: the South Sinai Governorate and the North Sinai Governorate. Three other governorates span the Suez Canal, crossing into African Egypt: Suez Governorate on the southern end of the Suez Canal, Ismailia Governorate in the center, and Port Said Governorate in the north.

The Sinai Peninsula has been a part of Egypt from the First Dynasty of ancient Egypt (c. 3100 BC). This comes in stark contrast to the region north of it, the Levant (present-day territories of Syria, Lebanon, Jordan, Israel and Palestine), which, due largely to its strategic geopolitical location and cultural convergences, has historically been the center of conflict between Egypt and various states of Mesopotamia and Asia Minor. In periods of foreign occupation, the Sinai was, like the rest of Egypt, also occupied and controlled by foreign empires, in more recent history the Ottoman Empire (1517–1867) and the United Kingdom (1882–1956). Israel invaded and occupied Sinai during the Suez Crisis (known in Egypt as the Tripartite Aggression due to the simultaneous coordinated attack by the UK, France and Israel) of 1956, and during the Six-Day War of 1967. On 6 October 1973, Egypt launched the Yom Kippur War to retake the peninsula, which was unsuccessful. In 1982, as a result of the Israel–Egypt Peace Treaty of 1979, Israel withdrew from all of the Sinai Peninsula except the contentious territory of Taba, which was returned after a ruling by a commission of arbitration in 1989.

Today, Sinai has become a tourist destination due to its natural setting, rich coral reefs, and biblical history. Mount Sinai is one of the most religiously significant places in the Abrahamic faiths.


Mount Sinai (Gabal Musa)

The name Sinai (Hebrew: סִינַי, Classical Syriac: ܣܝܢܝ‎) may have been derived from the ancient moon-god Sin[4] or from the Hebrew word Seneh (Hebrew: סֶ֫נֶּהSenneh)[5] The peninsula acquired the name due to the assumption that a mountain near Saint Catherine's Monastery is the Biblical Mount Sinai. However this assumption is contested.[6]

Its modern Arabic name is سِينَاء Sīnāʼ  (Egyptian Arabic سينا Sīna; IPA: [ˈsiːnæ]). The modern Arabic is an adoption of the biblical name, the 19th-century Arabic designation of Sinai was Jebel el-Tûr.[7] In addition to its formal name, Egyptians also refer to it as Arḍ ul-Fairūz (أرض الفيروز 'the land of turquoise'). The ancient Egyptians called it Ta Mefkat, or 'land of turquoise'.[8]

In English, the name is now usually pronounced /.[9][10] The traditional pronunciation is / or /.[11][12]

Other Languages
Afrikaans: Sinai
azərbaycanca: Sinay yarımadası
Bân-lâm-gú: Sinai Poàn-tó
беларуская (тарашкевіца)‎: Сынайскі паўвостраў
bosanski: Sinaj
brezhoneg: Sinai
Cebuano: Sinayi
Cymraeg: Sinai
Esperanto: Sinajo
euskara: Sinai
føroyskt: Sinaihálvoyggin
français: Sinaï
한국어: 시나이반도
hornjoserbsce: Sinai
Ido: Sinai
Bahasa Indonesia: Semenanjung Sinai
íslenska: Sínaískagi
עברית: סיני
Basa Jawa: Ujung Sinai
қазақша: Синай түбегі
Kiswahili: Rasi ya Sinai
latviešu: Sīnāja pussala
Lëtzebuergesch: Sinai-Hallefinsel
lingála: Sinaí
მარგალური: სინაიშ ჩქონი
مصرى: سينا
Bahasa Melayu: Semenanjung Sinai
монгол: Синайн хойг
日本語: シナイ半島
norsk nynorsk: Sinaihalvøya
occitan: Sinai
oʻzbekcha/ўзбекча: Sinay yarim oroli
Piemontèis: Sìnai
português: Sinai
română: Peninsula Sinai
sicilianu: Sinai
Simple English: Sinai Peninsula
slovenčina: Sinajský polostrov
slovenščina: Sinajski polotok
Soomaaliga: Siinaa
srpskohrvatski / српскохрватски: Sinaj
suomi: Siinai
svenska: Sinaihalvön
Tiếng Việt: Bán đảo Sinai
吴语: 西奈半岛
Yorùbá: Sìnáì
粵語: 西奈半島
中文: 西奈半島