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Eritrea has three distinct regions.

The temperate central portion, where Asmara lies,
is situated on a rocky highland plateau, which separates the two desert regions.

These mountains fall away to reveal the eastern lowlands, characterised by the searing heat and humidity of the Eritrean salt pans, lapped by the Red Sea.

To the west of the plateau stretches a vast arid desert area, extending over an opaque border into Sudan and the empty Sahara beyond.  It is this desert that Eritrean refugees have to cross to reach the relative safety of the Sudanese refugee camps.  Thousands make this journey every year.

Featured Areas Assab    

1. Asmara
2. Massawa
3. Keren
4. Dahlak
5. Sawa
6. W'ia
7. Assab

Assab has been an important port since it was purchased by the Rubattino Shipping Company on behalf of the Italian Government in 1869.

It became the main port serving Addis Ababa, and is of strategic importance for both Eritrea and Ethiopia. You could say that the war between the two countries is, at its core, about access to the sea.

Assab also hosts a prison known as ‘Gimbar’.