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In Salah
عين صالح
Aïn Salah; I-n-Salah; 'Ayn Şalih
—  Commune and town  —
A palm-lined street of In Salah. Note the sand dune at the far end of the street.
In Salah is located in Algeria
In Salah
Coordinates: 27°15′0″N 2°31′12″E / 27.25°N 2.52°E / 27.25; 2.52
Country  Algeria
Province Tamanrasset Province
District In Salah District
 - Total 43,938 km2 (16,964.6 sq mi)
Elevation 279 m (915 ft)
Population (1998)
 - Total 43,680
 - Density 0.63/km2 (1.6/sq mi)
Time zone CET (UTC+1)
PMA seats (as of 2007) 11
ONS code 1108
Postal code 11220

In Salah (Arabic: عين صالح‎) is an oasis town in central Algeria. It was once an important trade link of the trans-Saharan caravan route. Population 43,680 (calculated)[1]. The area around In Salah is home to some of Algeria's largest oil and gas reserves and production facilities[2]. The village is located in the heart of the Sahara Desert region of northern Africa. The name In Salah comes from the term "good well"[3] although the water is known for its rather unpleasant, salty taste.[4].


Features of Interest

A creeping sand dune on the western edge of town is literally advancing on the city and cuts In Salah in half. The dune is moving at a speed of approximately one meter every five years. As buildings are covered by its leading edge, structures at the back of the dune are being gradually uncovered. When a formerly covered location at the back of the dune once again becomes free, it is established who the past owners were and the building is restored and moved into by relatives.[5]. Four red or violet clay brick ksars (walled villages) are found in the oasis, each having its own citadel. [6]


Air flights via In Salah Airport connect the town with the capital Algiers and other major cities in Algeria. The Bus station of In Salah hosts buses going to the north and south. There is a hotel, a restaurant, an internet cafe[7] and two camping sites located in the city and surrounding area. See In salah camping.


A typical Sahara Desert Oasis

Aside from oil and gas reserves, the primary economic activities of In Salah are agricultural in nature with irrigation being supplied by artesian wells. The oasis has over 200,000 date palms. The chief produce are dates, fruits and vegetables. Fruit and vegetable gardens and Palm groves flank the village on its' southern and western edges. These groves are protected from the always advancing sand by hedges[8]. In Salah is also a centre for nomadic Tuareg.[9] The In Salah oil and gas fields are home to the In Salah Project, a major component of which includes a facility to remove CO2 from the gas produced. The CO2 is then re-injected into an underground formation.[10].

Historically, In Salah was formerly a trading town which dealt in slaves, ivory and gold from the south. These goods were exchanged with European goods from the north.[11].


In Salah NASA satellite imagery.jpg

Satellite image of In Salah (right)- from NASA Image Exchange. Note the oasis (bottom center) and city at the top/right of image. The dark areas in the center of the image are agricultural areas.

Photo gallery/virtual tour featuring 24 images of the In Salah area and their locations. From Panoramio[12]:


The Saharan desert region of Algeria has a climate that is virtually rainless. In Salah averages less than one inch of rainfall per year. Summer temperatures are consistently high - with heat indices reaching extreme levels for four months of the year - but temperatures at night fall low enough to be quite tolerable. Winter nights can be chilly and frost is by no means unknown but the days are warm and sunny.[13] During the summer, the Sahara region of Algeria is the source of a very hot, dusty, southerly wind called the Sirocco. These winds parch the plateaus of northern Algeria up to 40 days and reach the Tell coastal region for as many as 20 days.[14]

Monthly Averages[15]
In Salah Weather Averages.gif

Month High Low Precip. Heat
F/C F/C In./mm Index
January 71 / 22 45 / 7 .15 / 3.7
February 77 / 25 50 / 10 .14 / 3.5
March 83 / 29 56 / 13 .05 / 1.2 Moderate
April 92 / 33 63 / 17 .06 / 1.6 Medium
May 100 / 38 72 / 22 .02 / 0.5 High
June 110 / 43 82 / 27 .00 / 0.1 Extreme
July 112 / 45 85 / 29 .00 / 0.0 Extreme
August 111 / 44 84 / 29 .02 / 0.5 Extreme
September 105 / 40 78 / 26 .01 / 0.2 Extreme
October 93 / 34 67 / 20 .05 / 1.2 Medium
November 81 / 27 55 / 13 .02 / 0.5 Moderate
December 71 / 22 46 / 8 .11 / 2.7
Yearly Mean 91.83 63.33

Historical weather records for In Salah:

External links

Google Maps World Gazateer
Looklex Encyclopedia


  1. ^ World Gazateer.
  2. ^ World 66 -The Travel Guide you write.
  3. ^ "I-n-Salah." Encyclopædia Britannica. 2008. Encyclopædia Britannica Online. 13 Dec. 2008
  4. ^ Looklex Encyclopedia of the Orient:
  5. ^ Looklex Encyclopedia of the Orient:
  6. ^ "I-n-Salah." Encyclopædia Britannica. 2008. Encyclopædia Britannica Online. 13 Dec. 2008
  7. ^ World 66 -The Travel Guide you write.
  8. ^ "I-n-Salah." Encyclopædia Britannica. 2008. Encyclopædia Britannica Online. 13 Dec. 2008
  9. ^ [1]
  10. ^
  11. ^ Looklex Encyclopedia of the Orient:
  12. ^ [
  13. ^ The Times Books World Weather Guide, E.A Pearce and C.G. Smith, TIMES BOOKS, The New York Times Book Co., Inc.
  14. ^ The World Book Encyclopedia. Chicago: Scott Fetzer Co., 2007.
  15. ^

Coordinates: 27°15′N 2°31′E / 27.25°N 2.52°E / 27.25; 2.52



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