Sandora Desert is the name of the desert that takes up all of Arabasta, encompassing its towns and landmarks.
The Sandora Desert is very ancient, featuring sand dunes that can pile up to 300 meters. The paisage is usually barren, with a few crags that can provide shade from the scalding sun.
The temperature of the Sandora Desert is incredibly oppressive, being scorching at day and freezing at night. Due to the extreme heat, the desert's rocks can become hot enough to function as a makeshift griddle for cooking. Mescal Cactus are known to grow in this region and may cause hallucinations if consumed.
Sandstorms are frequent and may hit towns occasionally. It was once revealed that Crocodile was responsible for some of the region's stronger sandstorms, particularly the ones hitting the town of Yuba.
The Sandora River cuts through the desert. The towns of Rainbase, Yuba and the ruins of Erumalu are to the west of the river, while the capital Alubarna, Nanohana, Katorea and Tamarisk are to the east. Traveling from Yuba to Rainbase on foot takes around one entire day (roughly half of that regarding Erumalu to Yuba). Despite being mostly dry, the desert does have a few scattered oases, allowing towns to exist.
The Sandora Desert has few human inhabitants outside those living in towns and cities.
Despite that, the local fauna living in the open sands is very dangerous. Warusagi Birds are known to steal from naive travelers by pretending to be dead. Meanwhile, Sandora Lizards are enormous and may prey on passing humans. That said, harmless animals like Matsuge (a Yasa Camel) and Hasami (a giant Moving Crab) also inhabit this area.
Sandora Desert Bandits
The Sandora Desert Bandits are an anime-only group of bandits that live in the Sandora Desert. They are the sworn enemies of the Barbar Pirates and tried to attack them, but were foiled when the dung ball from a Giant Dung Beetle ran over their leader. They appeared in Episode 98.
Concludes non-canon section.
At various moments of the Arabasta Arc, the Straw Hat Pirates were forced to traverse through the desert's sands in order to reach various towns. Starting from Erumalu towards Yuba, the Straw Hats had to brave through the Sandora Desert's many dangers including the burning son, supplies being stolen by thieving birds, hallucinogenic plants and sandstorms, among other things.
Once they discovered from Toto that the rebels had moved to Katorea, the Straw Hats briefly considered returning from the path they came, but Luffy opposed the idea and confronted Vivi about it. Luffy eventually convinced Vivi to have him and his crew take on Crocodile at Rainbase, crossing another stretch of the desert along the way to reach the turf of their enemy.
After escaping from Crocodile's trap at Rainbase, the Straw Hats had to cross the desert once more to reach Alubarna and stop the war set up by the Warlord. As Luffy stayed back to fight Crocodile on Rainbase's outskirts, the rest of the crew headed to Alubarna on Hasami, and with the latter's help as well as the Kung-Fu Dugongs from Erumalu and the Super Spot-Billed Duck Troops, the Straw Hats were able to journey to the capital quickly and safely.
- One Piece Manga and Anime — Vol. 18 Chapter 162 (p. 4) and Episode 97, The Straw Hats journey through the Sandora Desert.
- One Piece Manga — Vol. 19 Chapter 173 (p. 9), Crocodile shows off his sandstorm creation abilities
- One Piece Manga — Vol. 19 Chapter 167 (p. 9), Vivi explains where Rainbase is.
- One Piece Manga and Anime — Vol. 18 Chapter 162 (p. 7-8) and Episode 97, The Warusagi Birds are introduced.
- One Piece Manga and Anime — Vol. 18 Chapter 162 (p. 11-13) and Episode 97, A Sandora Lizard is seen.
- One Piece Manga — Vol. 19 Chapter 167 (p. 2).