It has been a few years since this trip and this is a retro posting that I have put together to keep us positive of the potential places to visit and explore when the world opens up again when COVID-19 vaccine has been available for enough time to allow us to plan on travel internationally (my tracking page for guidance).
Where is a great place to hike in Israel? Ein Gedi. This is one of the more famous day hike locations in southern Israel, but it is not as popular as many others in the summer as it can get very very hot. But it has a delightful surprise at the end if you are successful in the hike…so read on!
It is about a 2-3 hour hike round trip. In the summer months when it reaches over 40 degrees Celsius, the general rule of thumb is you need to prepare and carry 1 liter of water per person per hour. Yep, this means you need backpacks and the water weight will be heavy.
Despite it being quite arid, there is a fair amount of flora and fauna to observe.
I have no idea why this dragonfly let me get so close to take a picture.
What is the best part and surprise ending? The water spring and pool at the end to cool down from the hot dry hike! It is a very popular place to go under the spring waterfalls and refresh. A victory for the achievement.
After the hike, we stopped and rented a room at the nearby Kibbutz to recover from the long day and rest overnight since we had one more hike planned before heading back.
Guess what was next?
We did not spend any time at the Dead Sea (I will save that for another post), but we did get up very early to climb Masada before the sun rises.
It is a hike that everyone must do if you visit Israel.
There is a cable-car that some people can take to the top that is operating sometimes, but it is not available at 4:00 AM if you want to go up and see the sunrise.
If you are in decent shape, it takes about 45 minutes to an hour to climb up the 400 meters to the top. But it is worth it. Watching the sun rise above Jordan is an amazing experience.
But I also love all the history. The Siege of Masada is an amazing story. You can still see the ramp that was built by the Romans (that took months to build) and some people will even walk up the ramp to see how the siege actually occured.
You can also see on the other side the camps where the Romans assembled for months with their tents, etc. You can see the remains on the ground, but when you up on top of the fortress you can see the remains from so long ago.
If interested in some of the other sites of Israel, check out some of my other postings: