To reach the Dead Sea you have to descend about 400 meters below sea level. Almost the same is the depth of this salty lake (in the northern section).
Here are a few more facts: The Dead Sea is the lowest point on earth in any land mass (417 meters below sea level, to be exact). The quantity of water that evaporates from it is greater than that which flows into it, such that this body of water has the highest concentration of salt in the world (340 grams per liter of water).
It is called the Dead Sea because its salinity prevents the existence of any life forms in the lake. That same salt, on the other hand, provides tremendous relief to the many ailing visitors who come here on a regular basis to benefit from its healing properties. All these and more make the Dead Sea so fascinating, so different and so interesting.
The Surrounding Area
The Dead Sea is on the edge of the Judean Desert, a hot, barren region at the foot of Ha-He’etekim cliff, which has also become an important center of desert tourism. The coastline is dotted with many springs, surrounded by wild plant life. The special combination that has formed in this place, between desert landscapes and oasies with plentiful water, plants and animals, attracts both the eye and the heart and draws many tourists to sites such as Mt. Sdom, Nakhal Darga, the Ein Gedi nature reserve and the Einot Tsukim (Ein Fashkha) reserve.
Alongside these breathtaking natural sites there are also some purely historic sites of considerable importance in Israel’s past, which preserve the ancient charm of this area. Among the most prominent sites are the Massada fortress, ancient Ein Gedi and the Qumran cave site where ancient scrolls were found, including the Dead Sea scrolls, which offer some insights into early Christianity and the Essenes sect that lived at the site and is considered the beginning of Christian monasticism.
The northwestern region of the Dead Sea is also a pilgrimage site for Christians who have visited here over the centuries especially during the Easter season. From here they go to the Jordan (the traditional site of Jesus’ baptism), and many still follow this tradition in our times.
The Healing Power of the Dead Sea
The Dead Sea can also be called “the lowest health spa in the world.” Sea salts are produced from the southern section for industry, and in the northern section promote tourism and good health. The composition of the salts and minerals in the water are what make it so unique and beneficial for the body.
The sea bed also has deposits of black mud that is easy to spread on the body and provides the skin with nourishing minerals. As if that were not enough, the bromide in the air is also beneficial to the body’s systems, thus making the Dead Sea a provider for good health and healing for vacationers from all over the world.
Copyrights: Israel Ministry of Tourism www.goisrael.com