We drove through the Israeli desert from Jerusalem, with the sun high in the sky and intense heat beating down on the car windows. We were warned not to visit the desert in August (a logical suggestion!), but it was the only time that made sense on our journey through the Middle East, and we decided not to let the heat scare us away from the experience of a lifetime. I grew more and more excited to spend our days floating on the healing waters of the Dead Sea, which I expected to be refreshing and rejuvenating! Traveling the world nonstop means I'm constantly researching our next destination in hopes of “always being prepared
” like a good scout, and properly set expectations; however, I've learned quickly that there are ALWAYS surprises and I am NEVER prepared for every situation. The first item on our agenda was to have a nice
lunch upon arrival before checking into our hotel. The area around the Dead Sea that's open to floating is near the southernmost tip of the body of water, and our arrival to this area, after a 90 minute drive through desert nothingness, brought forth the first few surprises of this particular adventure…. The Dead Sea 'town' is not a town, it's a resort town.
I guess that explains why there were only all-inclusive hotels available. There are no restaurants in sight, except for the reliable golden arches that guided our hungry bellies… we stopped for lunch at McDonalds.
Our next surprise came when we set out for our afternoon of floating. We tip-toed to the water’s edge, across the scalding-hot sand, where salt accumulates in white, crunchy layers.
As soon as our toes hit the sea, we realized that a refreshing float was not in the cards. The waters of the Dead Sea are HOT in August. They may be like a warm bath during other seasons, but in the heat of the summer, the Dead Sea feels like a boiling tub! I learned that the high concentration of minerals in the water produce an oil that sits on top and heats up throughout the day, making our late afternoon float unbearable for more than a few minutes! Granted… a hilariously fun few minutes.
Despite the uncomfortable heat, we made the most of our first Dead Sea day, and we especially enjoyed smearing the mineral-filled mud all over our bodies, allowing it to bake in the sun, before washing it off and discovering skin silkier than I could possibly imagine. It truly is miracle mud.
Our afternoon was indeed fun despite the many, unexpected surprises, but it wasn't until early the next morning that I discovered the MAGIC of the Dead Sea! Per my modus operandi
, I woke up for sunrise to enjoy the unique, peace of the early morning (my favorite time of day). An unexpected surprise awaited me on this particular morning. A welcoming, cool breeze blew through the desert as I made my way to the salty water's edge. The sea felt like a warm, relaxing bath at this time of day, and I floated comfortably, with time to relax and take in my surroundings. I watched the mountains turn purple and the water illuminate around me, reflecting the hot pink sky. As I floated in the vibrant colors that morning, I knew it would be one of the most beautiful experiences of my life. What a truly amazing surprise!
I left the Dead Sea feeling refreshed and rejuvenated, just as I imagined I would, and it’s all thanks to seizing the sunrise! The Dead Sea contains minerals proven to instantly improve the skin, relax the muscles, and provide inner calmness and tranquility. I’m so thankful I was able to experience the magic. Despite my dedicated preparation before every trip, I’ve learned to see each adventure as just that – an adventure. Travel can be stressful, disappointing and even overwhelming. An unexpected surprise is always around the corner, but how you choose to deal with each situation will be the difference between an ordeal and an amazing adventure.
Andrea Leblang #bestworldyet
Andrea is a travel professional who escaped the 'corporate world' to answer the call of her wanderlust. Having an intense passion for exploring new places and experiencing new cultures, Andrea is circling the globe with her husband, Bryan, seeking out unique events and unforgettable experiences. Though no immediate plans to settle, their long term goal is a 'more permanent' place of residence. Part of the trip's agenda is discovering where in the world that place might be. Andrea's travel blog, Best World Yet
provides firsthand recommendations and inspiration for adventure, as she and Bryan make the world their home. You can follow them on Facebook
& Pinterest. Andrea is an adrenaline junkie and yogi, who enjoys hiking, paragliding and cliff-jumping as well as food, wine, art and dancing. She is especially passionate about helping others make the most of their travels, and founded Elite Travel Arrangements
in January of 2015. ETA is a luxury agency planning customized trips from curated travel selections. With in-depth, firsthand experience, Andrea combines her enthusiasm and passion for travel with an insider's perspective; offering local recommendations and hidden gems to ETA clients.