Dead Sea is a salt lake located in the Judean desert in southern Israel, bordering Jordan to the east. With its origins about four million years ago, it is one of the saltiest bodies of water on earth and is the lowest point on earth. Its arid desert climate features clear skies all year round, relatively high temperatures, and little rainfall.
Interesting Facts from the Dead Sea
The Dead Sea is located at the lowest point on earth, which is thought to be the result of volcanic processes that cause continuous land subsidence. It is one of the four saltiest waters in the world. This particular condition is the result of its extreme geomorphological structure in addition to the harsh desert climate. It creates constant dramatic changes that make up a landscape that is unlike any other in the world. In addition, the unique mineral content of the air, soil and water in this area is globally renowned for its therapeutic qualities, proving that the area has been a health resort for thousands of years.
One of the top must-do activities on any traveler's list is floating in the Dead Sea. Due to the high salt concentration, the water is much denser than ordinary fresh water, meaning we are lighter in weight – which causes us to float.
How was the Dead Sea Formed?
There are conflicting theories about the formation of the Dead Sea. About 3.7 million years ago, the area now known as the Jordan River Valley was repeatedly flooded with water from the Mediterranean Sea. The waters created a lagoon called the Lagoon of Sedom, which was connected to the sea via what is today the Valley of Jezreel. Then, about 2 million years ago, the land between this lagoon and the Mediterranean Sea rose to such an extent that the sea could no longer flood the area, leading to the creation of a landlocked lake. The shifting of tectonic plates causes the valley floor to rise and fall, and the harsh desert climate causes gradual evaporation and shrinking of the lake, until finally, about 70,000 years ago, what remains is the low-altitude Dead Sea.