• Day7

    Dead Sea

    November 23, 2018 in Jordan ⋅ ⛅ 16 °C

    Our last and long-feared day in Jordan has started!
    This morning the alarm clock rings way too early: the departure is scheduled for 8.30am! And, as we learnt over the past 6 days, punctuality is meant the German way...
    We have a very long drive ahead of us: we will have to travel all the way from the very South of Jordan (the Red Sea) back to the North, where our adventure started. Our destination is the Ramada Hotel, a renowned resort on the shores of the Dead Sea, just a few kilometres away from the border with Israel. And, once again, our expectations are about to prove completely wrong...

    If we were expecting a posh beach resort crawling with people in a touristic town, the reality is quite off...
    First of all, the hotel is literally in middle of nowhere: after driving for a good 15 minutes in the marshes, we check in and get to our rooms, just to discover that not only we are far off the sea, but all around us there is just an endless swampy ground.
    Secondly, the hotel is quite nice indeed, but once we get to the beach (thanks to a hotel shuttle), we realise that:
    1. There are absolutely no infrastructures
    2. We are literally the only people there
    3. All around the beach there is an open-air landfill
    As the beach will "close" at sunset (or rather, that's when the last shuttle leaves and we really don't want to be abandoned there), we pick up towels, flip-flops and sunblock and we hurry up towards the shore. And I have to admit that the experience is quite special indeed...

    Despite the appearances, this place is truly special. As Abdullah explained to us, this is the lowest point on Earth: we are 400 metres below sea level! And it's not the only pecualirity!
    The water of the Dead Sea has 33% salinity, meaning that 1/3 of the water is actually salt. Just to get an idea of what this means, normal seas and oceans have an average salinity of 3% i.e. ten times lower. This fact has two main consequences:
    - the sad one is that almost no forms of life can survive in such conditions (hence the name "Dead Sea")
    - the funny one is that it's basically impossible to swim: as soon as you enter into the water, your body is pushed up by the salinity and you float like a raft!
    No need to say that we have to try it ourselves, but not before covering out bodies with a weird and slimy black mud from a special pool close to the shore. It's definitely an unforgettable experience, also thanks to the spectacular sunset that our last Jordanian day decides to thank us with.

    At dusk, we have to head back to the hotel for a good shower and our last supper. For the occasion Abdullah has organised a proper party, with three Arabic rappers singing for us. And the music is simply contagious...🎶
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