Dead Sea - City of Jordan
The Dead Sea is a salt lake between Israel and the West Bank to the west, and Jordan to the east. It is 422 metres below sea level,and its shores are the lowest point on the surface of the Earth on dry land. The Dead Sea is 378 m deep, the deepest hypersaline lake in the world. It is also one of the world's saltiest bodies of water, with 33.7 percent salinity.
JORDAN National Animal : Camel
Only Lake Assal, Garabogazköl and some hypersaline lakes of the McMurdo Dry Valleys in Antarctica have a higher salinity. It is 8.6 times saltier than the ocean. This salinity makes for a harsh environment where animals cannot flourish, hence its name. The Dead Sea is 67 kilometres long and 18 kilometres wide at its widest point. It lies in the Jordan Rift Valley, and its main tributary is the Jordan River.
The Dead Sea has attracted visitors from around the Mediterranean basin for thousands of years. Biblically, it was a place of refuge for King David. It was one of the world's first health resorts and it has been the supplier of a wide variety of products, from balms for Egyptian mummification to potash for fertilizers. People also use the salt and the minerals from the Dead Sea to create cosmetics and herbal sachets.
The Dead Sea is an endorheic lake located in the Jordan Rift Valley, a geographic feature formed by the Dead Sea Transform. This left lateral-moving transform fault lies along the tectonic plate boundary between the African Plate and the Arabian Plate. It runs between the East Anatolian Fault zone in Turkey and the northern end of the Red Sea Rift offshore of the southern tip of Sinai. There are two contending hypotheses about the origin of the low elevation of the Dead Sea. The older hypothesis is that it lies in a true rift zone, an extension of the Red Sea Rift, or even of the Great Rift Valley of eastern Africa. A more recent hypothesis is that the Dead Sea basin is a consequence of a "step-over" discontinuity along the Dead Sea Transform, creating extension of the crust with consequent subsidence.
The first such prehistoric lake is named "Lake Gomorrah." Lake Gomorrah was a freshwater or brackish lake that extended at least 80 km south of the current southern end of the Dead Sea and 100 km north, well above the present Hula Depression. As the climate turned more arid, Lake Gomorrah shrank and became saltier. The large, saltwater predecessor of the Dead Sea is called "Lake Lisan."
The Jordan River is the only major water source flowing into the Dead Sea, although there are small perennial springs under and around the Dead Sea, creating pools and quicksand pits along the edges. There are no outlet streams.
To the west of the Dead Sea, the Judean Hills rise less steeply, and are much lower, than the mountains to the east. Along the southwestern side of the lake is a 210 m tall halite formation called "Mount Sodom".
The Dead Sea Scrolls were found in caves at Qumran at the Dead Sea. The world's lowest road, Highway 90, runs along the Israeli and West Bank shores of the Dead Sea at 393 m below sea level.
There are also health spas and hot springs along the shore, besides the unique water of the Dead Sea itself. A golf course named for Sodom and Gomorrah was built by the British at Kalia on the northern shore. The first major hotels were built in Israel, first at nearby Arad, and since the 1960s at the Neve Zohar resort complex. The Jordanian side has seen increasing development in recent years. For example, three international franchises have opened seaside resort hotels near the King Hussein Bin Talal Convention Center along the eastern coast of the Dead Sea.
JORDAN National Bird : Sinai Rosefinch
JORDAN National Flower : Black Iris Iris nigricans