Updated: Mar 12, 2020
While in Jordan this past January I braved the cooler waters to experience weightlessness in the salty Dead Sea. It wasn't as calm as I had imagined and wow was I kissed, from head to toe and even up my nose! I was very grateful I never got any salty water in my eyes. I have heard that it can be excruciating. It's incredible how much softer and smoother my skin was after being in the vast salt bath for 15 minutes. As well as a brilliant way to relax and unwind, It's been said that it relieves aching muscles and joints, strengthening and exfoliating the skin, improving blood circulation and eliminating toxins. Have you been kissed by the ocean?
The shoreline kissed in salt from the Dead Sea, Jordan
Kiss Of The Ocean
The ocean is a natural salt brine but to harvest/mine the salt, the brine is pumped to the surface and evaporated to create salt. Salt production has taken place throughout the world from South America to Poland. Today the largest salt mines are in Pakistan with 10 billion tonnes in reserve across three mines.
Would you believe that the largest salt producer is China? Once the salt was said to be white gold, due to its function in food preservation. First discovered by the Egyptians in a dry riverbed. It's said that they were the first civilisation to use salt to preserve fish and meat.
Salt has been used in the mummification process, used as currency and as well as preserving food, it is also used to cleanse and absorb negative energy from your home.
Well, maybe this has to be taken with a pinch of salt?
Salt dried preserved fish in Norway ©MDHarding
The salt industry of Scotland
In the 1790's salt production was the third-largest export to wool and fish. It is said the production started as early as 600BC, with the east coast of Scotland dotted with salt pans.
Today you can still see the remains of the pans and the windmill in St Monan's, Fife.
Did you know that the legacy of salt still lives on in place names too? Such as Prestonpans, located just outside Edinburgh. Which other Scottish place names do you know that have the word "pan" or "pans" in them?
During the 18th and 19th century there was a salt tax which was much higher in England than in Scotland. Due to this a highly illicit and profitable smuggling operation took place between Joppa Pans outside Edinburgh to the north of England.
St Monan's Windmill, that used to pump seawater into the salt pans, which were heated using locally mined coal.
Salt Themed Destinations
A few years ago, we took a private car trip to the Salineras de Maras in Peru. What an adventure! It was incredible to see the geometric landscaped terraces covered in Mara's salt, the same as they have been, pre-dating Inca times. Located 11,090 feet (3,380 meters) above sea level in the Sacred Valley.
Can you believe that the area was once the sea? Mara's meaning sea is now known around the world for its pink coloured salt. Said to be used not only for food but also for its medicinal properties. Today it's highly prized by top chefs.
Salt Pans, Peru
Travelling to Bolivia? Are you looking for an unforgettable experience? Head on over to the Uyuni Salt Flats for a 3-day tour. Salt stretches as far as the eye can see, lagoons are filled with flamingoes and steaming geysers hiss from the ground. Read Dreamer at Heart's post to find out everything you need to know before you go!
Uyuni Salt Flats
© Alison Palmer/Dreamer At Heart
One of the most accessible and incredible places to visit is the Wieliczka Salt Mine in Poland. Salt has been produced here since neolithic times, mining rock salt ceased in 1964, declared a World Heritage Site in 1978. Covering over 9 levels and going as deep as 327 metres. Over the 700 years, there were over 26 shafts mined in this unique geological structure (only one in the world). See what life must have been like in the chambers, the skilled carvings and much more. A must visit!
Read more about Wieliczka Salt Mine and how you can visit - A Visit To Wieliczka Salt Mine.
Salt carved miner,
Wieliczka Salt Mine,
Have you heard of the White Rann of Kutch in India? It's where the land kisses the sky. Discover more about the desert of salt that goes on as far as the eye can see, Rann Utsav (Desert Festival) and how you can best enjoy this magical landscape from Fernwehrahee.
I hope you have enjoyed reading. If you have, don't forget to share! Sharing is caring. As always, I would love to hear your comments and answer your questions. You can reach me via email at enquiries@MDHardingTravelPhotography.com
Until next time, happy travels:)