The Eye of the Sahara is also called the Richat Structure and though it doesn't exactly resemble an eye, per se, it's still unique enough to garner attention. Its shape is closer to that of a bullseye, caused by at least 100-million years of rock movements. This archeological discovery is similar to other strange formations, but scientists have finally found an explanation for it. While some locations remain a mystery, the Eye of the Sahara is pretty easily explained In fact, it's believed that this structure was actually formed when Pangaea, the supercontinent to which all were once connected, split apart.


The way to see the Eye of the Sahara isn't from the ground, though - it must be viewed from the sky to be truly appreciated for all its years of hard work.

It Was Discovered By Early Tribes

These tribes were the first to know of the strange formation and for a long time, that was the way it remained. The first photographs of the unique rock formation weren't even taken until the 1960s by the Gemini astronauts. It served a great use to them, as it was their guide point for their landing sequences. The Landsat satellite was the next to take photos of the bullseye, sending back usable information to scientists, including its size and expansion.

Initially, the theories were that some kind of asteroid created the bullseye, as it seemed to closely resemble that of a crater. However, as it was studied further, it was revealed that the formation was purely earthbound and not created by an outside force.

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The Origins Of The Eye

By studying the composition of the Saharan Eye, scientists have discovered that it contains rocks that can be traced back to Pangaea. When the land began to separate, the Atlantic ocean began to flow in, furthering the divide between continent pieces. Evidence that magma bubbled up from below the surface of the original continent has also been found in the formation. This is also what has added to the unique shape of the Eye, creating the rings that are now able to be seen from space. The center of the formation, referred to as the core, has been left slightly more sunken in than everything else.

The good thing about the Eye of the Sahara is that it's not currently under the threat of overtourism. While people do head to Western Sahara to see it, it is a bit of a challenge to get to. The trip must be pre-planned with the help of locals, as its location is not a prime tourist destination. Tourists are also required to obtain a visa and find a sponsor for their trip. The region isn't subject to much rain which means that its preservation isn't much of a concern, either. Another option to see the Eye is by hot air balloon, which provides tourists with the bird's eye view needed to appreciate it in its entirety. The only current threat is that of wind storms and global warming, which could mean this formation is left buried for future visitors.

For those interested in visiting, the closest town is that of Oudane. From there, tourists can request a car ride to the Eye and take things from there. Interestingly enough, there is a hotel inside the Eye and this is about as close as people can get to the ancient formation.

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