The Dead Sea, home to the lowest point in the world at 1,269 feet (383 meters) below sea level, also ranks as one of the world’s saltiest bodies of water. This hyper-salinity that is so unique to the Dead Sea attracts visitors from all over the world to experience the unusual buoyancy, as well as access the nutrient-rich mud on its banks.
Many travelers visit the Dead Sea on a day trip from Amman in Jordan, or from Tel Aviv, Jerusalem, Herzliya, or Eilat in Israel. A full-day tour to the area makes getting there simple, and offers plenty of time for swimming, sunbathing, and soaking in a therapeutic mud bath. You can also combine a quicker visit to the Dead Sea with other regional highlights, including Masada, Ein Gedi Nature Reserve, Jericho, Jerusalem, or Bethlehem, depending on the option you choose.
Things to Know Before You Go
- The Dead Sea is a must-see for any first-time visitor to the region.
- Dead Sea tours can last upwards of 10 hours.
- Pack some water shoes to protect your feed from the rough salt at the bottom of the sea.
- Wear an old bathing suit, as the salty water and mineral-rich mud can discolor fabrics.
- Don’t shave for at least a day or two before your Dead Sea swim, as the salt can sting.
How to Get There
The remote Dead Sea is situated fairly far from any major city, making public transportation a tricky option. There are bus services from Jerusalem and Tel Aviv, but many visitors find it more convenient to join a guided small-group or private tour.
When to Get There
The best times to visit the Dead Sea are during the spring and autumn months, when milder temperatures make it a good time to explore some of the Judean Desert’s other outdoor sights. Expect temperatures over 100°F (38°C) during July and August.
A Dead Sea Skin Routine
The water and mud of the Dead Sea are believed to do wonders for your skin, and there’s a set routine that those in the know follow. Start by getting into the water (fall backward, not forward) for a 10-minute float. Make your way toward shore and give yourself a mud rubdown. Once the mud dries on your skin, get back in the water for another floating session before rinsing off in the showers.