After a late night out at Tel Aviv's port, we slowly crawled out of our beds at 5:45 AM to prepare for our 3 hour long journey to the Dead Sea. We arrived at the site and quickly changed into swimsuits to lather up in some famous Dead Sea mud. While it felt strange to cover ourselves in these gray globs, this mud has exfoliating properties that we were all excited to take advantage of. The mud began to harden on our bodies, so we cautiously entered the sea one by one. As soon as the first person in the water lifted their feet from the salty seafloor and floated easily, we all flocked to the water. Other tourists watched on as we all reclined in the water, some of us flailing in confusion. Once we got our bearings in the Dead Sea, we gently floated along enjoying our newly smooth, soft skin.
Finishing the therapeutic session led us to the adjacent landmark, Mosada, which means Mountain Fortress. We tightened our hiking shoes and sneakers, applied sunscreen, and stocked up on water for the long and arduous trip on the gondola. After a challenging 3 minute wait in the rail car, we arrived at the top of Mosada and began touring. Ariel generously recreated history for us by screaming out from the top of the mountain that the Roman soldiers below would never take the Jewish city where we stood. Unfortunately, we learned that the citizens of this first century city took their own lives to avoid the savagery of the Roman troops.
We hiked down Mosada on and all piled into the bus after a tiring day. We are now en route to the Beduin tents where we look forward to a filling meal and restful sleep.