The 5 Main Types of Desert

Did you think that a desert is just a stretch of sand? You are wrong! There are many different types of desert. Sub-tropical, coastal, interior deserts... We explain it all!

The 5 Main Types of Desert
1- Subtropical Deserts

Located in the subtropical latitudes, these deserts are caused by permanent subtropical anticyclones that bring warm and dry air masses. The summers are extremely hot, winter is much better for hiking. Another characteristic of these deserts is the large difference in temperature between the day and night.

The most well-known subtropical desert is the Sahara in the Northern hemisphere, which joins the Arabian and Iranian desert and the beautiful Thar desert in India. In the Southern hemisphere, we can cite the Kalahari desert in Africa and the Simpson desert in Australia.


2- Interior Deserts

These deserts are located at the heart of continents. The distance between these deserts and oceans means that masses of maritime air rarely reach them. The winters are very cold and the summers, hot. It is best to hike in interior deserts in the summer. The best known is the Gobi desert in Asia.


3- Coastal Deserts

The most surprising is that there are also deserts in the intertropical coastal areas, due to cold maritime currents that condense as they reach the warmer continents. These are relatively cool deserts with lower thermal amplitude. The best known coastal deserts are the Namib desert in Namibia or the Atacama desert in Chile.


4- Rain Shadow Deserts

Sheltered behind mountain ranges, the masses of moisture-laden air cannot reach them. For example, that is what happens behind the Andes, in the Patagonian desert.


5- Polar Deserts

There are only 2 polar deserts

-The Antarctic desert: an area of the globe that is almost inaccessible to humans, apart from a few scientific bases.

-The Arctic desert: a slightly more populated region. The most populated is Greenland and it is much more comfortable to go there in the summer.


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