A man, dressed as Santa Claus, had a swim in the Dead Sea on Sunday. It was a part of Israel’s Tourism Ministry campaign to bring some Christmas cheer during a pandemic that has kept Christian pilgrims away from the Holy Land. He stuck a Christmas tree in the salty bottom, which he took along while returning to the shore.
Santa Claus came to the Dead Sea ahead of the Christmas season. He rode a paddle board a few hundred meters offshore to a spot where salt has piled up in a massive mushroom shape, allowing him to stand in the middle of the otherwise much deeper lake.
Beyond the compelling landscape, Christianity has roots in the Dead Sea, whose surroundings are abundant with remains of ancient Christian communities. The Christmas tree, however, had no chance of surviving in the salty waters and Santa took it with him when he returned to shore.