Dead Sea was towards the end of our 7 days journey in Jordan. As soon as I entered the Dead Sea, I ran out screaming, unable to open my eyes. My co-travelers, between guffaws and friendly teasing guided me towards an open air shower next to the beach. Before I could reach that, I needed water.
I needed water without even a gram of salt in it. My friend Stuti came to rescue and helped me wash my face with drinking water. Just to make sure, I still stood under the shower and rinsed of every bit of Dead Sea water from my face.
My friends told me that in Dead Sea, you are not supposed to take a dip or submerge your head. The water is so saline that it causes burning sensations on skin; eyes and nose being the most vulnerable. Once bitten, twice shy, I entered the sea again this time with head held high (No pun intended here). The water was way too salty, dense and sticky. It felt heavy.
I tasted a small amount only to be overwhelmed by its strong taste. As I gingerly lied down on my back in Dead Sea, I was amused to ‘discover’ that the ‘floating story’ is not someone’s fabricated story. I floated effortlessly, keeping my eyes open at all times, lest I drift deep into the Dead Sea like a tragic poem.
The sun had started to melt far in the horizon as I floated eerily on the water, pebbles visible on my sides. It was a surreal moment. It was an unprecedented experience for me and easily one of my finest moments from not only Jordan but all my travels so far.
I almost did not make it to the Dead Sea. After a comforting lunch of Pasta and Pizzas (mezzes are great, but I needed my comfort food) at the resort, we were instructed to check in our room and show up at the private beach of the resort before sundown when the beach closes. Tired, I decided to lie down in my comfortable room.
I didn’t realize when I caught a sound sleep. God alone knows what woke me up after few hours and the first thing I did was check the time. Panicking, I ran towards the beach, not even bothering to carry any swimwear or towel. I jumped hurriedly in the sea with my shirts and pants on.
When I emerged from the Dead Sea, it was already dark. As I passed the café of the hotel, someone announced a Belly Dance Performance. Scared that I might miss the show, I watched the entire show wearing my salty wet clothes.
When the show ended, my clothes dried naturally by the warm Dead Sea air. The Belly Dance I saw was the best I had seen till date. The presence of Dead Sea made it even more atmospheric.
10 COOL FACTS ABOUT THE DEAD SEA
- It is world’s lowest point at 430 meters (1412 feet) below sea level.
- 33.7 % salinity makes it the world’s saltiest sea.
- It is called Dead Sea because no flora or fauna can survive.
- Asphalt for preserving Egyptian mummies was sourced from here.
- It served as the first health resort of the world.
- Potash sourced from Dead Sea is used for fertilizers.
- Thanks to its rich mineral content, many new age resorts have mushroomed across the Dead Sea in Jordan and Israel. They offer natural spa treatments. Dead Sea cosmetics made from its salt and minerals are quite popular and are available everywhere in Jordan.
- Swimming is not possible in Dead Sea due to heavy density of its water.
- It is 9 times saltier than the ocean.
- If you walk around the beach, you will see salt deposits on rock. The drive next to Dead Sea is scenic.
Pictures above: Jordan Valley Marriott Resort & Spa, Dead Sea, Jordan
I stayed at:
Jordan Valley Marriott Resort & Spa: It was my most luxurious experience in Jordan. My cozy room overlooked the sea. The bathtub helped me rinse off all the salt on my body post a dip in Dead Sea. Their restaurant serves good Italian. What I enjoyed was their buffet of a vast variety of mezze and Arabic sweets. Some so sinfully good that I was almost having a dessert dinner. They have a private secluded beach. They have many pools in the premises. A live belly dance performance combined with above factors made my stay memorable. My favourite part was of course the balcony of the room where I would sit and smoke in night, listening to music played far away.
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NOTE: I was invited by Jordan Tourism Board to Jordan on a Press Trip
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