As a shallow sea, the Dead Sea is shrinking.
“There is a very simple way to test the current,” says Salim Qawwalah, a naturalist with the Jordanian Ministry of Tourism, as he crouches over a row of stones and sits across the middle. “Hang on to it.”
The empty Dead Sea basin is surrounded by gigantic rain-drenched hills. In the middle sits the Jordan River, on which Qawwalah says hundreds of miles of water-wasting pipes were buried in biblical times.
His aim is to draw more tourists to the Dead Sea. Jordan and Israel share this strategic body of water, which has experienced a rapid decline over the past four decades due to three things: poor management, international trade and climate change.
From the shore, the Dead Sea resembles a shallow, pleasantly clear lake. A shimmering shimmering sea of iron, yellow, blue and green of crystal-clear water is — though these days it has very thin walls, mainly covered in salt, as far as the eye can see.
At the rock-bound little pool of this body of water, there is not much to look at, except for the thin rocks and perfectly smooth sea, which, in just the right setting, turns into a stunning sea of crystal-clear water, swimmers and I found ourselves taken for a spin through.