Sunday, July 10, 2011

The Dead Sea

No trip to Israel or Jordan is complete without a visit to the Dead Sea, so fortunately for me I get to go twice. I will report on which side I find better. :)

The Dead Sea is such an extremely unique and remarkable place.  It is located in the Great Rift Valley and is the lowest point on earth, 1388 feet below sea level.

It also has so much salt and other minerals that it is about 30% solid, hence its name and our ability to float on the surface. 

From a tourist's perspective, the big thing about the Dead Sea is that it is basically a free trip to an amazing and all-natural spa.  Since I've never been to a spa, I enjoyed it all the more!

When you arrive, you first slather yourself with the thick, sticky black mud from the banks. After letting it dry, you go in the sea (carefully, and hope you don't have ANY cuts!) and use the salt/sand from the sea bed to exfoliate and scrub off the mud. You float around for a bit and get pictures :)

Next you can rinse off and get into a hot sulphur bath, also natural, and then relax in a freshwater pool before buying some Ahava Dead Sea products and heading home, allegedly with soft and amazing skin.

Initially I had a slight calamity- when we first arrived I immediately jumped into the mud pit to commence slathering, but failed to realize beforehand that the mud was boiling at roughly a billion degrees.  At the same instant I realized this, I also realized that my flip flops had suctioned themselves into the mud and I could not pull my feet out.  Fortunately the peril only lasted about a second before I was assisted by friends, although in my mind it seemed much longer, and the day was amazing from there.

I passed this couple on my way to the water... she was posing in front of the sea while he took her photograph.  What a gift to be in your eighties or so, still traveling the world and having someone to share it with!

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