Breaststroke is pretty much impossible, but if an effortless swim is what you’re after, how about a dip in the Dead Sea? Here we find out what it feels like to take a Dead Sea dip.
The Dead Sea is actually a lake. Well it once had an outlet to the Sea of Galilee but that evaporated some 18,000 years ago. It’s famously salty. Ten times more salty than the Atlantic Ocean, and this allows the unusual phenomena of floating on water. Take a trashy novel, and kick back. No need for the li-lo.
It doesn’t matter what shape or size you come in, you will not sink. So those that skipped the swimming classes, you’ll be fine here.
For those expecting a cool, refreshing dip in the sea, think again. Actually, swimming in the Dead Sea is a very different experience in summer or winter. In summer, temperatures soar to around 30 degrees, and the water will too. In winter the temperature averages 21 degrees, and is pretty comfortable.
You can swim any way you like in the Dead Sea, actually – Vladimir Putin
DO NOT under any circumstances open your eyes. This experience isn’t an opportunity to spot Nemo. And that brush against your leg isn’t Jaws either. High salinity prevents fish and aquatic plants from thriving in the Dead Sea. So make like a game of Marco Polo, and keep those peepers shut.
Salt licks are for cows. Practically everyone attempts to taste the Dead Sea, but our advice is that it’s more bitter than salty. Wait for lunch.
Don’t shave close to your dip, unless you literally want to experience the saying, “rubbing salt into wounds”. And take a pair of thongs or water shoes. The salt crystals make it a bit sharp on the sea floor. Ouchy.
Be prepared to be covered in mud. In fact, it’s actually quite fun, and the high quantities of minerals – magnesium, sodium and potassium – act as nutrients for your skin and help it to retain moisture. Emerge from the waters like Bo Derek in 10.
And don’t forget to giggle. Everyone does. It’s just plain impossible to not enjoy the experience.
Want to take a dip yourself? TripADeal travels to Israel and Jordan here.
Film clip: Dead Sea