Category Archives: Negev

Hike in Nahal Peres – Difficult hike in the Peres River in the Negev

The hike in the Nahal Peres riverbed is a classic but challenging hike. It is a beautiful hike with varying elements, past waterfalls in upper Nahal Peres, leading to the famous Peres waterholes, slides in the Peres riverbed, and a steep climb up out of the Nahal at the end.

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Timna Copper Mines – Ancient Smelting furnaces and Storage Rooms

The Timna Copper Mines are located just outside of the city of Eilat. The copper mines date back to the Egyptian Ramsesside period (13-12 centuries BCE). Inside Timna park, storage rooms and tool production areas were found. Crushed ore and crushing tools were found at the site. Mud for lining the oven and bellows was prepared here. A workshop for pouring copper for producing tools was found. An oven was found, and a slag ditch for disposal of the leftovers from the smelting can be seen. A shrine for the ancient copper workers to give offerings to their deities is also at this site.

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Family Hike in Timna National Park – Arches and Plates near Eilat

The hike begins on the green trail, which begins just before the arches parking lot. The hike leads through a narrow canyon before climbing up into the hills. On the hilltops, there are many “plates”. These round depressions were once the shafts into the ancient mines, which have since been filled up.

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Ein Evrona Well – Avrona Farmstead and Doum Palms near Eilat

Avrona, or Evrona, was an old farming village near Eilat from the 7th-9th centuries. The inhabitants were able to farm the area due to the underground spring nearby. A deep well was dug, and tunnels carried the water by gravitation to the cultivated fields. The runoff from the rains in the Eilat mountains was also captured by the village inhabitants.

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HaMinsara in the Ramon Crater – Carpentry Shop in the Ramon Crater

The Ramon Crater is 40 kilometers long, but just a few kilometers wide. The craters were formed when the Arava rift valley was formed, and the rivers changed course, carving out the inside of the crater. The walls of the crater keep their vertical angle, while the bottom deepens, exposing ancient rock stata.  The bottom of the crater is 500 meters deep, and the rocks at the bottom are 200 million years old!

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Flamingoes at Avrona near Eilat – Evrona Salt Ponds are home to flamingoes

The Evrona salt ponds are home to hundreds of flamingoes. Originally the flamingoes stopped in Eilat only briefly, but within a few years, the young began staying. Now, the young flamingos live there that the older flamingos return after winter. The young ones can be recognized as they are white, while the older flamingos are pink.

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Museum of the History of Eilat – Eilat City Museum

The Eilat museum tells the history of the city of Eilat, highlighting milestones over the years. Photographs and displays in the museum include the ink flag being raised in Eilat after the city was liberated in 1949, the new port being opened along with the Straits of Tiran in 1956, and the peace agreement with Egypt in 1982.

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David Ben-Gurion’s Kibbutz home – Ben Gurion’s house in Sde Boker

David Ben-Gurion was the first prime minister of Israel. When he resigned from the government in 1953, he joined the newly formed Kibbutz Sde Boker in the Negev. He and his wife Paula lived in a simple hut (tsrif in Hebrew), expanded slightly to receive David’s many visitors.

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Yotvata Hai-Bar Nature Reserve – Nature Reserve for breeding endangered animals

The Yotvata Hai-Bar Nature Reserve was established to foster a protected environment for desert animals. The reserve breeds animals which were mentioned in the bible with the goal of reintroducing them to the Israel deserts (the Aravah and the Negev) which were their home. The reserve also breeds other endangered desert animals. A similar program was established in the Carmel Hai-Bar Nature Reserve for Mediterranean animals.

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Ben Gurion’s Tomb National Park – Ben Gurion’s tomb in Kibbutz Sde Boker

Ben Gurion’s Tomb National Park is located just south of the Sde Boker Kibbutz in the Negev. Paula and David Ben Gurion are buried side by side in the center of the park. The graves are in a well tended park with a stunning view of Nahal Zin from the amphitheater around the graves.

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Tel Be’er Sheva National Park – Remains of biblical Beersheba

Tel Be’er Sheva is the remains of the biblical town of Beer Sheva. It is located to the east of the modern city of Beer Sheva. The town of Beer Sheva is mentioned in Genesis when Abimelech and Abraham swear an oath beside a well; this story about Abraham’s well gave the town its name.

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Abraham’s Well in Be’er Sheva – ancient well and information center in Beersheba

Abraham’s Well is a visitors’ center dedicated to Abraham, who lived in Beersheba, and the biblical connection to the city. The story in Genesis 21 tells of a well which Abraham dug and Abimelech’s servants seized. Abraham gave seven ewe lambs to Abimelech as witness that he dug the well himself. Abimelech accepted the lambs and the two men swore an oath in the place, named Be’er Sheva.

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