December 5th, 2009
Jordan's Rift Valley is the home of the world-famous Dead Sea. Located just over 400 miles below sea level, the Dead Sea shore is the lowest land area on the planet.
The Dead Sea is fed by the River Jordan, but the water has no place to go and so it slowly evaporates, leaving deposits of salts and other minerals behind. The Dead Sea has a salinity level of 33.7%, according to Wikipedia. For comparison, the ocean has an average salinity level of 3.5%.
The Dead Sea is approximately 8.6 times as salty as seawater. Because of the high concentration of salt, if you go for a swim in the Dead Sea you will float like a cork!
With this much salt in the water, the Dead Sea is almost completely devoid of animal and plant life, the only exception being small amounts of certain types
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