Aviram Valdman, The Tower’s in-house photographer, has gone high and low—and lower still—for dazzling photos of the Dead Sea.
It’s the sea of death, but also the sea of life. Since Herod made it into a personal resort, the Dead Sea has attracted millions of people—some looking to its salt and minerals to treat skin, sinus and joints, while other are simply drawn to the bizarre, barren beauty of its salt-encrusted coast.
The lowest point on earth, the Dead Sea—or, in Hebrew, the Salt Sea—has a salinity ten times greater than that of the ocean and yet it’s infinitely more peaceful, with complacent waters barely lapping the shore, a lack of marine life that translates into an absence of fear and a water density that makes drowning nearly impossible.
Surrounding the still water are arid hills that have been home to Christian monks, pioneering kibutzim and a startlingly rich array of fauna and flora. But the Dead Sea’s own abundance has taken a toll, as mineral mining has caused environmental concern and as the diverting of the Jordan River, which feeds the sea, has led to a visible desiccation of an already dry place.
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Banner Photo: Aviram Valdman