The Dead Sea, the lowest point on earth, lies at about 1,300 feet below sea level, at the southern end of the Jordan Valley. Its waters have the highest level of salinity and density in the world and are rich in potash, magnesium and bromine. Cleopatra and Mark Anthony were among tourists, that from ancient times until today, to experience the therapeutic properties of the Dead Sea. Beauty products made from the mineral rich mud and salt are sold worldwide.
Some of the sites in the region are the Mt. of Temptation, En Gedi, Masada, the Dead Sea Scrolls Caves, Qumran, Dead Sea Spas and look outs to Mt. Nebo and the regions of Edom, Sodom and Gomorrah.
The Jordan Valley and Arava, running the length of the country is part of the Great Syrian-African Rift, which split the earth’s crust millions of years ago. Its northern stretches are green and fertile, while the southern portion is semi-arid. The Jordan River, flowing from north to south through the Rift, descends over 2,300 feet in the course of its 186-mile route. Fed by streams from Mt. Hermon, it runs through the fertile Hula Valley into the Sea of Galilee and continues winding through the Jordan Valley before emptying into the Dead Sea.
The Arava, Israel’s savannah region begins south of the Dead Sea and extends to the Gulf of Eilat, Israel’s outlet to the Red Sea.