The Iraqi Desert is the western and southwestern part of Iraq, spanning an enormous but barely populated region of desert.
- 1 Anah
- 2 Al-Qa'im
- 3 Ar Rutba – home to a destroyed Iraqi Army installation
- 4 Haditha –
- 5 Hit
- 6 Nukhayb
Al Anbar Province is in this region. If you are coming from Jordan, this will be the first province you enter. Al Anbar's terrain is similar to parts of the western United States of Wyoming and Utah. The climate in Al Anbar is similar to other high desert regions of the world.
The majority religious group in Al Anbar Province is Sunni, although there is a mix of religious groups in the Ar Ramadi area. Ar Ramadi is a modern day recreation of an old west, gunslinging cow town.
From Syria, the easiest way to get in is through the Since 1 Al-Qaim border crossing which has been open since September 2019. Keep in mind however that reaching touristic points of interest in the area from the Syrian border requires a lengthy journey through the desert, so prepare accordingly. It's advisable to stock up on supplies in border town Husaybah.
Al Anbar Province's roads are in the worst condition of the country. Constant roadside bombs and mujahideen digging up the asphalt to plant mines and bombs make the Al Anbar highways extremely unsafe for curious travelers. Even trucks wait at the borders until there are enough of them to make the drive. The idea is there is safety in numbers – if one truck is hit, at least the others could stop to help.