After Masada, we went on to the Dead Sea. We had already seen it from far, and driving along it was a bit like Loch Ness: it` a long and narrow sea, of which you can see the other side all the time, but never the start and end behind and in front of you.
From the bus, we could already see a white crust of salt on most beaches, and while we approached our own beach (there are several beaches with amenities, that you pay admission for, and one public beach, which is for free), our guide filled us in with facts I sure once learnt at school, but had not appreciated now:
- The Dead Sea is called dead because there is no life in it – too salty.
- The Dead Sea is 33% salt an 66% water.
- It is possible to drown in it, and rumour has it that it happens mostly to the Japanese. You are advised to lie on your back, for if you swim on your front, chances are that you`ll get water into your eyes or mouth. This is so salty that you want to wipe it, with your salty hands, and while doing so, you can drown. SWIM ON YOUR BACK!
- The Dead Sea is the lowest accessible place on Earth and 400m below sea level. Some people have their ears “pop” when they descend to it, as if they were on a plane, and some people on my tour could indeed feel it.
- the Dead Sea loses about 1m per year, and in about 200 years it will be no more. Guide pointed out a hotel, that was built right beside it in the Sixties, and although it`s still close it`s now a fair walk away!
- I was told the Dead Sea smells of sulphur (and so do you afterwards!), but I didn`t notice.
After receiving instructions from our guide on how to make best use of our 90 mins at the Dead Sea (too little time!!!! I wrote that in the feedback form), and then the fun began:
Big playground for adults:
- You are advised to remove all jewellery, but I ignored that, and I was fine.
- The water is REALLY warm. Nice!!
- You cannot steer, which causes you to constantly bump into other people, which makes for a great laugh!
- There are two kinds of mud – grainy and oily. It`s the latter that` s worth digging deep for and cover your whole body) not eyes.
- Because everyone is digging for mud, there is holes EVERYWHERE. Some are really steep and deep, and I had to rescue one lady out of one, who almost dragged me in with her, if a total stranger didn`t get a hold of me… It was hilarious!!
- My skin was really smooth afterwards, but I`d lie if I said this lasted longer than two days. Israelis, who have skin problems, are advised to come about twice a week if practical.
No more photos, unfortunately. As said, not really enough time on this particular tour.
Lots of Dead Sea beauty products for sale everywhere, but they didn`t differ in price or quality from what we can get at home. You can buy neat mud in bags for approx. EUR 10.oo though, which I`ve never seen before.