The Dead Sea is a closed salt lake located in the Jordan Valley gully within the Syrian-African fissure, on the border line separating Jordan and historical Palestine (the West Bank and Palestine). The Dead Sea is famous for being the lowest point on the surface of the globe, as its beach level reached about 400 meters below sea level, according to 2013 records. The Dead Sea is also characterized by its high salinity, as the percentage of salts in it is about 34%, which is nine times the concentration of salts. in the Mediterranean Sea, and one of the highest levels of salinity in water bodies in the world. These salts were produced because the lake is a final destination for the water that flows into it, as there is no way out for it after it.
Historically, the Dead Sea was given several ancient names in the Old Testament, such as: “The Sea of Salt”, “The Arabah Sea”, “The Eastern Sea” and “The Depth of Nebula”. During the era of Isa al-Masih, it was known as the “Sea of Death” and the “Sea of Sodom” in reference to the neighboring Sodom region. It was also called the “smelly lake” because its waters and shores had a stench. It was also called “Lake Zaghar” in relation to the town of Zaghar that was located on its southeastern shore, and it was called “Bahr Asphalt” in relation to the bits of asphalt that sometimes floated on its surface, especially when earthquakes occurred. Some of the residents of the area were trading in the pieces of asphalt they extracted and selling. It was also mentioned by al-Maqdisi in his book “The Best Divisions in Knowledge of Regions” under the name “Inverted Lake.” It was also called “Lake Lot” in reference to the Prophet Lot, who lived with his people near him before the torment befell them. As for the Greeks, they were the first to call it the “Dead Sea” because there was no life in it.
According to the theory of the land scientist Professor Leo Picard, it was in the past part of a wide lake with sweet water that extended over the Jordan Valley and Marj Ibn Amer and poured into the Mediterranean Sea. According to this theory, changes in the height of the earth nearly two million years ago resulted in the interruption of the link between that lake and the Mediterranean Sea, and in the narrowing of the lake to Lake Kinneret, the Jordan River and the Dead Sea. Confining the waters of the Dead Sea, and the evaporation of the water, led to an increase in the percentage of salts in it.
The Dead Sea was historically associated with the story of Lot’s people, which was mentioned frequently in the heavenly books. Lot is the nephew of the Prophet Abraham. Lot and Abraham migrated from Iraq to the Levant in the nineteenth century BC. And the people of Lot are of Qahtani Arab origin, whose origins go back to the Arabian Peninsula. They inhabited the area south of the Dead Sea after the first Arab migration that left the Arabian Peninsula towards the north, specifically the Levant.
These people were known to practice sodomy. The heavenly books mentioned their story after Lot got tired of them and despaired of their guidance, so they were subjected to a torment that led to the destruction of their five villages completely. Their story was mentioned in the Qur’an twenty-seven times in 14 different surahs.
The Dead Sea was mentioned in the Bible under different names, such as the “Sea of Salt”, “the Sea of the Arabah”, “the Eastern Sea” and others. The story of Lot was also mentioned in the Torah in several places in the Book of Genesis
The Dead Sea region is one of the most important tourist areas for environmental healing in the world, as it is characterized by a group of natural factors, which made it a competitive position in the region in the field of medical tourism and hospitalization due to its unique climatic characteristics, whether it is devoid of moisture, and contains sulfur springs that made it It is qualified to treat many diseases, especially skin diseases, which are widely spread, as the number of people infected with them in Europe reaches 25 million patients, in addition to rheumatoid treatment. Thus, the Dead Sea region possessed important elements of tourist attraction, not only in hospital tourism, but also in its distinction in Leisure tourism and ecotourism. The selection of the Dead Sea region by the World Health Organization as a global center for the treatment of many skin diseases in 2011 indicates the importance of the region in the field of medical tourism. And many hotels built on the Dead Sea coast rely on providing natural treatment based on taking advantage of the natural characteristics of the region without using any chemical drugs at all. Numerous studies confirm that the Dead Sea region, with these therapeutic advantages, can achieve the largest material tourism revenue for Jordan, as the incidence of skin diseases ranges between 1: 3% of the population.
Conference tourism in the Dead Sea has also witnessed a remarkable development in recent times, and the Dead Sea region has become specialized in this type of tourism, by organizing conferences, seminars and meetings at all local, regional and global levels, where specialized agencies undertake the task of organizing these meetings and conferences and providing services that are not limited to The official aspect of the conference, but also includes the provision of tourism and entertainment services for the participants. Jordan established the Dead Sea Company for Conferences and Exhibitions in 2003 with the participation of a group of Jordanian and Arab investors. The first project of this company was the establishment of the King Hussein Bin Talal Convention Center to host the most important regional and international events and conferences. This project has contributed to putting Jordan on the global map of business and investment forums, as the center hosted the World Economic Forum more than once.
Jordan annually organizes a marathon to run in the Dead Sea with the participation of thousands of citizens and tourists, starting from Amman and ending at the Amman tourist beach overlooking the Dead Sea. This event is held to support brain and nerve patients in the Kingdom
Dead Sea Laboratories also produce a lot of cosmetics made of minerals extracted from its mud, as they are available in markets throughout Jordan, or they can be ordered online and delivered to anywhere in the world, so that visitors can continue to enjoy the benefits of the Dead Sea, after their return. to their homes for a long time.