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7 Things To Know Before Floating in the Dead Sea

A young women with short brown hair and sunglasses floats in a body of water, surrounded by other tourists. Her head, shoulders, and feet are floating above the Dead Sea water, and she's looking over her shoulder, smiling.

Floating in the Dead Sea is one of the highlights of my trips to Israel and Jordan. Heck, it’s one of the cooler experiences of my life. I’m also lucky, as I have been able to experience the Dead Sea on two separate trips, one in Israel years ago and more recently in Jordan.

Because the Dead Sea has such a high salt concentration, you literally float in it. (The end of this post gets into the science behind it.) It’s incredible! I read a lot of different articles on it before I went, but it still didn’t prepare me for it. I think it’s the closest I’ll ever get to weightlessness!

Before you embark on this adventure, though, there are a few ways to make your experience a little more enjoyable! I’m glad I followed them (and my husband broke a few and regretted it, haha). Be sure to at least take these into consideration before you go!

Floating in the Dead Sea!

*Disclosure: some of these links are affiliate links. Meaning, that if you click a link and make a purchase, Have Clothes, Will Travel gets a very small commission at no extra cost to you. Thank you for supporting the brands that make this blog possible!

7 Things To Know Before Floating in the Dead Sea

1.) Wear an Old Swimsuit

This is one I lucked out on. I didn’t realize it until we arrived and were talking to some of the folks here – but it’s a good idea to wear an old swimsuit when swimming in the Dead Sea. Due to the high salt concentration, it can strip the color of your bright, new swimsuit! It’s also a good idea to wear a dark-colored swimsuit if you plan to slather some mud on so you don’t accidentally stain your suit.

My polka dot bikini has been through a lot over the years, and fortunately, I didn’t notice any discoloration. But it’s definitely worth taking into consideration before you jump in!

Wearing water shoes or rubber flip-flops is also not a bad idea. The bottom and beach area are rather rocky and gravely, which can be painful on the bottom of your feet.

A man and woman pose together on the shoreline of the Dead See - an expansive body of water with mountains in the background. They're standing in ankle-height water. Other tours stand in the water behind the couple.

2.) Don’t Dunk Your Head Underwater in the Dead Sea

My husband found this one out the hard way…you will regret dunking your head in the Dead Sea! Your eyes will burn – even if they are closed! Plus, it’ll tangle however much hair you have on your head. There are even signs (which we noticed after the fact) saying, “Don’t submerge your head.”

A man stands at the shoreline of the Dead Sea, with the expansive body of water behind him. He's wearing red and white Budweiser Beef shorts, and has mud smeared on his arms, upper body, and face. His eyes are squinted in the sunlight.

3.) Drink Lots of Water Before Floating in the Dead Sea

Again, the high salt concentration can dehydrate you. While it’s tempting to grab a beer and hit the beach – don’t forget to hydrate!

A man holds a large chunk of natural sea salt pulled from the Dead Sea in his hands.
Look at all of that salt! We grabbed this hunk of salt just off the shore.

4.) Slather on the Dead Sea Mud

Grab handfuls of that Dead Sea mud and coat yourself in it! Wait a few minutes to let the mud dry. Then, go ahead and rinse off. It’s said to have healing properties…and at the very least, it’ll make your skin silky smooth.

5.) Don’t Wear Jewelry

Like wearing a new swimsuit, wearing your jewelry in here will wreak havoc on it!

Read More: What I Wore to Float in the Dead Sea (Jordan)

A stunning landscape photograph of the Dead Sea and surrounding mountains. Tourists line the shoreline and wade into the waters of the Dead Sea. The sky above is light blue and slightly hazy.
The Dead Sea – Don’t wear your jewelry in here!

6.) DO NOT Shave Before Floating in the Dead Sea Waters

If you have any kind of knick or cut or razor burn, you WILL feel it. And depending on your tolerance for this type of pain, it’s best just to avoid shaving. I didn’t shave for two full days before this dip in the sea. (Don’t look at these photos too closely!) I had a couple little cuts on my foot, though, and it wasn’t the worst pain by any means – more just irritating. (But again, it depends on your tolerance!)

A woman with short brown hair and sunglasses floats in the Dead Sea. Her feet, shoulders, and head float above water, she appears to be sitting in the dense, salty sea water.

7.) Don’t Get Your Camera or Phone Wet

Keep your electronics on dry land! The saltwater will also do some damage to your phone or camera if you drop it. Even using a GoPro can be tricky, as the salt will leave a residue over the lens. If you want your photos in the Dead Sea – have someone take them from shore.

For cool photos, also consider bringing a book or magazine. Taking a photo in this lounger position (above) with a book or magazine is fun, and I regretted not bringing one both times I visited!

The gorgeous Dead Sea resorts.
A Dead Sea resort in Jordan.

The Science Behind the Dead Sea

The Dead Sea, contrary to its name, is a hypersaline lake, the lowest body of water on Earth, straddling the borders of Israel and Jordan. Its salinity, is over 34%, this is what sets it apart, making it nearly ten times saltier than the ocean.

  • Salinity and Buoyancy: The Dead Sea’s high salt concentration increases the water’s density, making it denser than regular seawater. Here’s a quick look at the science:
    • Average Ocean Water Salinity: ~3.5%
    • Dead Sea Salinity: ~34%
    • Result: Increased buoyancy due to higher water density.
  • Healing Properties: Beyond its buoyancy, the Dead Sea is a treasure trove of minerals. Magnesium, sodium, and bromide, among others, are absorbed through the skin, offering therapeutic benefits. These minerals are known to:
    • Alleviate conditions like arthritis and osteoporosis.
    • Reduce inflammation and stress.
    • Enhance blood circulation.
  • Unique Ecosystem: The Dead Sea’s high salinity makes it inhospitable for most marine life, earning its name. However, this unique ecosystem is not devoid of life; it supports specific microorganisms and mineral-rich mud, widely used in the beauty and cosmetic industries for their skin health benefits.
What I Wore to Float in the Dead Sea (Jordan)

Click Here to See All Posts from My Travels to Israel

Is floating in the Dead Sea on your bucket list? Let me know in the comments!

Travel Tips for Israel and Jordan Travel

Travel Insurance for Israel and Jordan

It’s a good idea, no matter where your adventure takes you, to have travel insurance. You never know what might happen! Whether you get sick before your trip and can’t go, or you become sick or injured while on your adventure – being covered with travel insurance is a must. Some credit card companies do provide this service (check with yours), or you can get a quote from companies such as Squaremouth to find the best plan for you and your adventure. (This is the company I personally use. They are even recommended by Forbes!) Get a free quote from Squaremouth here.

Visa Requirements to Visit Israel

Before traveling to Israel, check if your country requires a Visa.

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*Disclosure: some of these links are affiliate links. Meaning, if you click a link and make a purchase, Have Clothes, Will Travel gets a very small commission at no extra cost to you. Thank you for supporting the brands that make this blog possible! I am also a participant in the Amazon Services LLC Associates Program, an affiliate advertising program designed to provide a means for us to earn fees by linking to Amazon.com and affiliated sites.


  1. Deze @bydeze.com says:

    Fantastic article! I hadn’t though of any of these! This makes me want to go to Israel really badly!

    1. haveclotheswilltravel says:

      Thank you! I hope you make it to Israel one day. 🙂

  2. Chanel Alaire says:

    Looks like you had a great time! I think it would be similar to a float tank experience, but au natural! Thanks for sharing.

    1. haveclotheswilltravel says:

      That’s true!

  3. whereivebeentravel says:

    Super cool experience! I love your polka dot bikini!

    1. haveclotheswilltravel says:

      Thank you!

  4. Wow! That sounds so cool! I hope I get a chance to visit there someday!

    1. haveclotheswilltravel says:

      I hope you get the chance too!

  5. Good tips! I probably wouldn’t have thought of them! What a neat experience!

    1. haveclotheswilltravel says:

      Thank you!

  6. Wow…the things I’d never think about!! So you even took off your wedding ring? I never think to take it off!!

    1. haveclotheswilltravel says:

      Yes, I took that off too! My husband and I went in one at a time, so someone would always be by our belongings. I was really paranoid about leaving my ring and camera on shore!

  7. Courtney Byers says:

    I would love to visit the Dead Sea someday. This is such good advice. I would have never known to not shave. Also, an old swimsuit is such a good idea. I’ve ruined new swimsuits in dirty lakes before.

    1. haveclotheswilltravel says:

      Thank you, Courtney! I hope you get the chance one day!

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