Gary and Debbie's Israel Trip 2016 travel blog

Temptation Monastery

Desert basin. The Dead Sea thousands of years ago filled the valley...

More scenery near the Dead Sea

Jericho is a small city near the Northern end of the Dead Sea that has a great biblical story. Joshua brought the Jews across the Jordan and then conquered and destroyed Jericho by using trumpets to knock down the walls.

What's near Jericho now is a monastery built into the actual side of the cliff facing the valley. It's called Temptation Monastery and overlooks the part of the desert people believe Jesus spent his 40 days of fasting and afterwards being tempted by the devil. We didn't go up to the monastery, but went part way for a nice view of the desert valley below.

Spent a little time at a touristy gift area, then had lunch near the Dead Sea. The Dead Sea is the lowest point on Earth, almost 1800 ft below sea level. Because it's so low, water doesn't run out of it, just evaporates, and therefore it is so concentrated with minerals and salt, nothing can live in it. It's level is down probably 50 ft because so much water has been diverted from the Jordan River for farming. The oxygen percentage in the air is twice as much as sea level and you need half the sunscreen because less of the sun's harmful rays make it down here.

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