Life & Culture

Floating Along In The Lowest Place On Earth

Jan 26, 2022 ByClaire Miles

No trip to Israel or Jordan would be complete without a trip to the Dead Sea, or Al-Bahr Al-Mayyit (Sea of Death) in Arabic, and Yam Ha-Melakh (Sea of Salt) in Hebrew. Although it’s not actually a sea, this lake lies in the Jordan Rift Valley along the border between the two countries. It receives nearly all its water from the Jordan River which lies to the north of Israel.

Lying at 1412 feet below sea level, it is the lowest place on the surface of the Earth. It is also one of the saltiest bodies of water in the world, coming in at a harsh 9.6 times saltier than the ocean. Due to the high salinity of the lake, the environment is too harsh for any plants or fish to grow, which is how the Dead Sea got its name.

The Dead Sea is known to be a great tourist destination due to the natural phenomenon that occurs there. Many photos have been snapped of people floating along this salty lake. The high salt content results in the lake having a density of 1.24 kg/liter. This means that swimming in the Dead Sea is actually more like floating. There is also a wide array of spas nearby with incredible amenities that take advantage of the local springs and the minerals they produce.

A contestant of the Miss Universe pageant poses for a picture during a visit to the Dead Sea, south of the West Bank city of Jericho, on December 4, 2021 ahead of the 70th Miss Universe event to be held in Israel's Red Sea resort of Eilat on December 12.

GettyImages/Ahmad Gharabli/AFP

One of the reasons why the Dead Sea is so famous is due to the health benefits that lie within. The combination of all the different minerals carries healing properties that have been scientifically verified. They help to strengthen your immune system, help your body recover after exercise and even contain anti-aging qualities. There are a number of public beaches along the shores of the lake where tourists can reap the benefits by rubbing mud over their skin or indulging in a mud bath in the many natural springs. Try it, your skin will be left feeling silky smooth and revitalized.