The Dead Sea
The Dead Sea holds two impressive world records:
The saltiest lake (~35%) and the lowest spot on earth.
Between the Judean Desert and the Jordan mountains, the Dead Sea has it all: Hiking, hot and cold springs, archeological sites and amazing views.
Sleeping options range from 5 star luxury hotels to free camping sites under infinite stars.
When to go: Because of it's unique location (lowest point on earth),
the Dead Sea is a hot area with high temperatures.
Winter is therefore a great time to travel & camp here.
In summer, it can get extremely hot and is not recommended for hiking.
Geting there: The northern area is around a hour away from Jerusalem by car. Masada & Ein Bokek are another hour southward.
By bus: #486 from Jerusalem to Ein Bokek, through Qumran, Ein Feshkha, Metzukey Dragot, Ein Gedi and Masada.
#421 from Tel Aviv to Ein Bokek & Masada.
Around weekends & holidays, nature lovers and hippies head for "Metzokey" (=cliffs) on the Dead Sea shore. Hot and cold springs, pools, breathtaking desert views with great company.
20 minute walk from the parking lot. No charge.
Free camping: Behind the army checkpoint, a small parking lot and free camping area. Map to campsite here
Water: Fill up near the check point.
Wood: No wood.
Warning: This area is geologically active and is continually changing. Beware of sinkholes and walk around with someone who knows the area.
Hiking: The most extreme canyoning in israel- The Darageh. Ask us for more information.
King Herod built his magnificent winter palace on this high cliff overlooking the Dead Sea.
2,000 years later, Masada is one of the most impressive sites to visit in Israel.
Hiking in the desert is a great experience, yet it can be dangerous. Rain in higher areas such as Jerusalem, finds its way down to the Dead Sea.
On its way, the water gushes through dry river beds and canyons, creating powerful and potentially fatal flash floods in the canyons.
Before hiking in this area, always check local weather reports on Israel Meteorological Service.
Free camping: Official free campsite is located 800m east of main entrance. Location here
Water: Fill up in the entrance area.
Wood: No wood in sight.
Hiking: Many trails surround Masada. The most popular one is the Snake Path. It is recomended to start climbing before dawn and watch the sunrise from the top of Masada. Consult your map and avoid hiking during hot hours.
For updated weather & information, call Masada site on 08-6584207
Opening hours, entrance fee and more info in this link.
"Ein" in hebrew means spring. In the desert, springs create beautiful oasis that attract animals, birds, insects, and hikers. Most of the hotels in the Dead Sea are located in one area near the Ein Bokek spring. The shopping area there has restaurants, fast food, minimarkets, Dead Sea products and more.
There is a well-serviced beach (including a men & women seperated beach). A beautiful promenade stretches from the northern entrance to the south.
Free camping: Allowed in two spots near the hotels: one in the northern entrance to the area, and the second is southwards down the promenade. Map to campsites here
Water: Fill up on the beach or in any hotel.
Wood: Can be found near the hotel's back entrances.
Hiking: A short hike, marked in black will take you to the oasis of Ein Bokek. Starting point: under the big bridge of of the Bokek Stream.