Discover the Arava – From the Dead Sea to Eilat
Deserts make up a full 60 percent of Israel’s landmass. But in Israel, “desert” doesn’t mean “desolate”
Here are a few recommendations for visiting this desert valley that stretches 180 kilometers (112 miles) from the Dead Sea down to Eilat, with the Edom Mountains of Jordan on the east and the Negev Plateau to the west.
Wintertime is a good time to hang out in the warm steppe. The stillness makes the desert a great place to unwind and relax, breathe fresh air and stargaze while hiking in the cool air. You can also enjoy a wealth of attractions, like workshops on astronomy, art and desert agriculture, enjoy local beer and fine food.
Brew Beer on the Cliffs
Agronomist Ehud Katz founded “Arava Brewery” six years ago. They produce about 2,000 liters of fresh beer every month, and you can watch the process on Fridays from 1 PM until sundown. Of course, there is beer tasting as well as sightseeing tours and shopping.
A trip to the Arava would be incomplete without a sit-down at Ursula’s Restaurant. This is a family-run, pleasant establishment offering varied and colorful cuisine with plenty of prairie vegetables, local sausage and desert desserts. The restaurant is open Sunday and Wednesday from 1 PM to 9 PM, and on Thursdays and Friday from 1 PM to 10 PM.
Cliffs Artist Village
Twenty-five artists and artisans can be found at work in a new complex built on the remains of a riverbed manor. It is open Friday from 10 AM to 5 PM, and you will see artists working in ceramics, iron, concrete and more. The unique studio of Nehama Harach comes highly recommended. Her lovely bowls, jugs, mugs and kettles are full of joy, and she even offers workshops where you can learn the pottery craft. O yea, and don’t miss the wood and iron works of Doron Ben-Ziony.