The Negev comprising about half the land mass of Israel, is in the process of development since the times of the first Prime Minister, David Ben-Gurion that chose to set his home in the Negev. He believed that this uninhabited and uncultivated could be tamed and turned into a prosperous and populated place. That idea was materializing slowly, and the vision became reality, but for many years it was ignored by travelers, hurrying up to Eilat.
Nowadays, this wide flourishing desert is a popular travel destination, offering beautiful landscapes, charming nature corners, canyons, remarkable craters, waterfalls, caves, amazing historical and archeological sites and modern cities. Luxurious spa resorts in the relaxing desert atmosphere, unique wine route with vineyards and wineries, marvelous camping options for the real desert experience, mountain hikes, camel treks and 4WD desert adventures.
Beersheva, the gate of the Negev is the biggest city of the modern Negev offering cultural events and culinary options. Funny that in the bible it was the place where Abraham lived in his tent, herding sheep.
The astonishing Makhtesh Ramon, a huge crater-like wilderness, looks and feels like another planet. Rappelling off the edge of the crater from Mizpe Ramon is popular, as well as hiking the many trails leading into the crater. Arad is known for its clean, dry air, which makes it a haven for people suffering from asthma and allergies. The southern route to Eilat, is dotted with many Eco settlements and Kibbutzim, each with unique agricultural branch Palm tree plantations, dairy products, prize-winning tomatoes, olives, wine, and various fruits, vegetables and flowers.
The Nabateans, the ancient people that inhabited the Negev are particularly fascinating. They were the lords of the desert that established the “Spice Road” trade route in which Caravans of camels traversed carrying spices, perfumes and salt. Rest stops were built along the route, and their remains still beautify the Negev today. Mamshit is one of the best preserved of the Nabatean towns, with ancient style crafts fair happening on weekends and holidays.
For centuries, the Bedouins, tribes of wanderers have lived all around the Negev. Most of them gave up the nomadic lifestyle and settled permanently, but their huge tents are welcoming visitors, to enjoy their amazing hospitality and experience the traditional desert culture and delights.
The Negev is a popular destination for ecologists and researchers from all over the world, due to the innovative research and remarkable developments that were achieved and practiced in the Negev, in the fields of brackish water treatment for agricultural irrigation and solar energy usage.
Now that the Negev became so popular, a new international airport is being built in Timna and the highway and railway to Eilat are being improved.
Booking Israel is great source for tourist's information about hotels in Israel, guided tours to Israel, car rental in Israel as well as attractions and events throughout Israel.