AL Sammalyah Island is considered an important protected area in Abu Dhabi Emirate. The island has witnessed high rates of change in land use in the past few years starting from the early 1990s. Change detection analysis is conducted to monitor rate and spatial distribution of change occurring on the island. A three-phase research project has been implemented, an integrated Geographic Information System (GIS) database for the Island is the focus; the current phase main objective was to assess rate and spatial distribution of the change on the island using multi-date large scale aerial photos. Results of the current study demonstrated that total vegetation cover extent has increased from 3.742 km<sup>2</sup> in 1994 to 5.101 km<sup>2</sup> in 2005, an increase of 36.3% between 1994 and 2005. The study also showed that this increase in vegetation extent is mostly attributed to the increase in mangrove planted areas with an increase from 2.256 km<sup>2</sup> in 1994 to 3.568 km<sup>2</sup> in 2005, an increase of 58.2% in ten years. Remote sensing and GIS have been successfully used to quantify change extent, distribution and trajectories of change. The next step will be to complete the GIS database for AL Sammalyah Island.