Israel: The Dead Sea

During the holiday of Sukkot, which is 7 days long in Israel, schools are still on vacation and many offices are closed fully or partially. It’s a popular time for many people and families to take a tiyul, or trip, often to the north or south. My sister decided to take off a few days from work and the four of us rented a car and headed down south, to the Dead Sea. Manor and I both hadn’t been there in many years so it was a real treat.

Cliffs of Jordan

The Dead Sea and cliffs of Jordan

It’s very beautiful there, and aside from taking a dip in the mud and water of the Dead Sea, there are also several hikes in the area. Lucky for us, Dudu is a certified guide and knows a ton about hundreds of hikes throughout the country. He also knew about a semi-secret beach on the Dead Sea, away from the main “Mineral Beach,” which is usually packed.

Mineral deposits

We weren’t completely alone, but there were very few others with us, some of whom felt isolated enough to be nude. Seeing the cliffs of Jordan on the other side of the sea is pretty majestic, and we went close to sunset so the rocks got nice and pink.

The water was, of course, very salty. It’s pretty fun to float in, but it does get burn-y pretty quickly. Putting the mud on was really fun, and it does feel super smooth. And when we washed it off our skin did feel really soft.

Going for a dip

Floaters

Muddy Buddies

More floaters

Post-muddying

Pink Jordan

Adina and Dudu also picked a great place for us to stay the night, Metzoke Dragot, which is perched on a high cliff, overlooking the Dead Sea.

The view from our tent

Aside from regular rooms, they also have large family tents, that actually looked like large sukkahs, in keeping with the theme. They came equipped with mattresses so we brought sleeping bags and were good to go. However, we still woke up with the sunrise, which happened to be beautiful.

Our tent at sunrise

View of the cliffs

After sunrise we went back to sleep for  a few hours, but while we were snoring Adina woke up and got to see a bunch of ibex (type of wild mountain goat common to the Middle East) right by our tent! Luckily, she took pictures.


We finally made it out to Wadi Amog for a 2-3 hour hike. It was definitely hot, but Dudu chose this hike because it has some shady spots, in the form of large cliffs overhead. That was certainly appreciated! There is also some fun climbing and great views at the end.

91 Comments

Filed under Hike, Israel, Sites

91 responses to “Israel: The Dead Sea

  1. becca

    what an adventure. looks awesome.

  2. Absolutely stunning pix!

    And BTW, those are some mighty cute floaters. And I don’t say that often about floaters…
    😉

  3. It seems to be a very interesting place. Wish I could go there someday.🙂

  4. A place called “The Dead Sea” with a hidden beach? Love it!

    Thanks for sharing your photos:)

  5. Emily929

    Nice! I studied in Israel for a summer when I was in college and I thoroughly enjoyed the unusual experience of floating in the Dead Sea. I remember seeing one young European woman who apparently hadn’t been warned about (or hadn’t considered the implications of) the sea’s extreme saltiness. She dived in headfirst and came up hollering! I enjoyed your pictures.

  6. Great and beautiful photos. The land of Jesus is wonderful. Thanks for sharing. Connie
    http://7thandvine.wordpress.com/

  7. We once took a night tour with a Beduin who had showed us the desert during the day. Four people and a baby, he took us on top of a plateau in total darkness, almost pulling us up. Was the climb up done like in a rush, and the view incredible, the night air so pure – still I felt as scared as seldom in my life, thinking about the climb back down:
    I was the one carrying our son, only six weeks old. And – not knowing about a semi-safe slide down option – I was convinced it will be the last minutes of his life.
    Great images…so lovely when it’s empty…thanks for sharing!

  8. Incredible photos!! I’ve always wanted to visit the Dead Sea. My parents went there about 20 years ago and my Dad said the best part about it was being able to float in the water and read a newspaper…I guess it wasn’t as “burn-y” back then as it is now, huh? lol!

    Congrats on being Freshly Pressed!🙂

  9. transplantednorth

    I am going back for a fourth time, my kids’ first time in Israel. I can’t wait to be in Israel again, thanks for the photos!

  10. Seriously fantastic. I loved this so much, and the pictures of you with the mud all over you all were hysterical.

    val
    http://valentinedefrancis.blogspot.com

  11. hackmark

    I haven’t floated in the Dead Sea, but I did taste it. Bad move.

  12. Rae

    Looks like an amazing trip! I’ve always wanted to go to Israel and Jordan, hopefully one of these days I’ll get around to it.

  13. WOW – looks like a great place to explore. Thanks for sharing!

  14. Look like fun and a great trip.

  15. I love your photos. I wish I could have been with you. Fantastic!! The ancient past was somewhat readable on your prints. Exciting!! The Dead Sea holds enormous salt deposits washed down from the mountains from long ago. There are huge amounts of corpses at the bottom. As it dries out it becomes saltier. I believe the ancients who lived there worshipped mother earth and fertility. Earthquakes destroyed much of the area. Thank you for sharing!! Todah Arbah!!

  16. Beautiful photos and incredible scenery. Thanks for sharing and congrats on being freshly pressed!

  17. totally cool. i am trying to imagine what the place sounds like and smells like. i mean i sense a serinity, a calmness, a quiet – when i look most of those pictures…🙂

  18. wooww!! looks like you guys had a blast, and the pictures are awesome!! 😀

  19. Thanks for sharing. Looks so amazing.

  20. …something I haven’t done before.😦 I can hope to at least see the Grand Canyon someday.🙂

  21. nearlynormalized

    Israelis call it the Salty Sea–tis not dead. Life was found at the bottom..Fresh water enters and there you have some sort of life.

  22. i shall put that on my list of desired vacations. How safe was it in terms of conflict when you went there?

    • There was no conflict when we there. We were there when the prisoner Gilad Shalit was returned to Israel so there was some excitement about that, but nothing unsafe. Generally, you feel very safe in Israel because their security is so good.

  23. Glorious. I miss this place. Great pictures!

  24. those shots are amazing! especially the sun set/rise. i’d love to visit a place like that. very peaceful and calm. might do me some good to get a little stress relief. thanks for sharing!

  25. Kudos that your got freshly pressed!!! Spectacular photos!!! Thanks for sharing!! I may never travel that far but through your eyes (and others) I can see the world!!!

  26. oops! please edit my typo! It should read;

    Kudos that your post got freshly pressed!!!

    Thank you.

  27. wemeetparis

    This looks like such a fun time! The Dead Sea is definitely a new must-do on my long travel to-do list! Thanks for sharing!

  28. simply Wow! breathtaking place and pictures.

  29. The countryside looks as if it goes on for miles and miles. It always amazed me how much good living is available in such a small space!

    Ronnie

  30. I enjoyed looking at the photos from Israel.

    “Bereshith”
    http://tim-shey.blogspot.com/2011/10/bereshith.html

    “the Arab Spring, ancient Egypt, & Jesus”
    http://tim-shey.blogspot.com/2011_09_01_archive.html

  31. Absolutely gorgeous! I’m envious.

  32. Wow! Great photoblog, looks like a fantastic visit(“-“)

  33. That’s one great adventure. I am really impressed with Israel’s beautiful landscapes. It’s such a nice destination for hiking I must say.

    Congratulations!

  34. Barren and beautiful. Stark and Ancient.
    Thanks for sharing, the land never seases
    to amaze me. See any Salt pillars?

  35. People like you allow me to see the world
    through my computer, I am an armchir explorer
    and thrive on the personal accounts of travelers.
    I often get out my globe, pick a random country
    and google it. Our planet is a massive pinyata full
    of surprises.

  36. Beautiful and breathtaking pictures! Thanks you for sharing. Cheers!

  37. replica

    nice shot. a moment to remember

  38. joahnadiyosa

    Looks like you really had a great time. For sure the “dead” sea came back to “life”.🙂

    Gorgeous photos! ^^

  39. Oh wow I see a via ferrata in one of your photos! Nicely frankly documented🙂

  40. love the pics – especially of the ibex and tents – awesome!

  41. Wow! I have always wanted to visit Israel and these pictures convince me even more that I have to go there some day. Thanks for posting!

    Evelyn
    cofchristelcajon.wordpress.com

  42. A beautiful spot! Nice photos.I hope to make it to Israel some day! So far I have just lived it through others.

  43. Amazing !! Hey now its Mumbai not Bombay

  44. beautiful pictures! hoping to visit Israel too some day. ^^

  45. Great photos of the Dead Sea, almost surreal. Another place to add to my bucket list.

    Sarah

  46. Nicely taken pictures! I wonder how it feels to be freely buoyant without exerting any effort or the help of any device (whatsoever) just to keep afloat? Wondering? I don’t know how to swim, that’s why.😉

    Anyway, I feel a bit saddened reading a few days ago Dead Sea’s apparent disappearance in the years to come. If I remembered it right, it says there that Dead Sea’s level is down a meter a year since 2000… Can’t imagine Dead Sea to be dead soon, literally.😦

  47. Great Pictures !! I have been wanting to make a trip to Israel for quite some time now…

  48. maseadi

    concern, but not bad for a holiday.
    http://Www.beritabaris.com

  49. Stunning – I would love to visit Israel.

  50. Потрясающие фотографии. Какое спокойствие и величие. Нежность красок и бескрайность. Пустынность. Мечтаю там побывать. http://novakmar.wordpress.com

  51. Hadas

    These are beautiful pictures. You have included the many views of the visit to this area in a very wonderful way. Thank you

  52. This place looks awsome great photos. My wife has been to the Dead Sea, but I have never been to Isreal yet it is on my list of places I must visit.

  53. The Dead Sea is a great experience!

  54. i want to travel in dead see one day!
    is fascinating

  55. What lovely photos,
    I assume the photos are from the David River hike? One of my favourite spots!
    Such a great post I hope you enjoyed your trip, looked like a lot of fun! I should get down there again at some point
    (:

  56. Wow, it looks amazing. Great photographs, thanks for sharing!

  57. incredibly beautiful photos… thanks for sharing your adventure..

  58. I just went to Dead Sea, also had a great time there, but yours are better ! I miss my 17 days in Jerusalem!

  59. Astounding pics! I also heard that the water in the Dead Sea has the highest salt concentration. As a matter of fact, my cousin’s sister took a dip in there while being pregnant. Unfortunately she had a miscarriage…sounds weird but true!

  60. atlast some really intresting pics that i have no seen!!! Beautiful….

  61. I would love to visit Israel. These are amazing photos; I feel like I am right there with you.😀

  62. Jafer

    nice shots thanks for share

  63. Man is the only being created in this world that takes risks, goes to places naturally hostile to man, climbs slippery jagged rocks and mountains, fords fast flowing torrents and jumps chasms. Not one animal does anything the like. But that is why man dominates and rules the world though god day and night remains sleepless, anxious about when how and where his creation would next endanger his life in another perilous adventure. From the time of Shackleton, it is interesting to read about adventurous travels, especially when we are sitting safe inside our homes. It is the first time I read a travelogue about Israel, especially about a travel to the Dead Sea which is actually not dead but is dying. The beautiful photographs gave me an idea of the terrain around Dead Sea. Many years back in a Russian publication I read about a proposed engineering feat of cutting rivers to the Dead Sea to compensate for the rapid evaporation. Did anything happen?

  64. Bucket listing this. Lovely pictures! Thank you. Congrats on FP!

  65. Lovely shots! Were the cliffs you climbed through made of mineral deposits? Looks very fun.

  66. The cliffs are beautiful as well as the other views. I wish i could also have that kind of adventure! And I wanted it to be in Israel ofcourse.

  67. Beautiful place , it seems like paradise !

  68. Thank you so much everyone for all the positive comments and congratulations! So glad you all enjoyed the post and hopefully the rest of the blog!

  69. It’s amazing how awesome the barren earth can be! Great shots, my friend!

  70. Que maravilla hermosas fotografías!!

  71. wow, beautiful! what a great experience!

  72. greatthingsinlife

    There is only one word to describe the dead sea —-Magnifique. You make me wanna go there so badly🙂

  73. what an amazing place. your photos are great!

  74. Pin

    Your photos are amazing and provide great insight into the amazingly beautiful Israel, especially for someone like me who isn’t allowed to travel there!

    On a side note, congratulations on being Freshly Pressed🙂 Keep up the brilliant work!

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