Biking through the Negev Desert 7 days

Itinerary

Day 1

Upon arrival at Ben Gurion Airport you will be transferred to a bicycle-lodge in the town of Mitzpe Ramon.  This Negev desert town is located at the Ramon Crater, this is a well known geological wonder. There will be an afternoon stop at the local visitors centre to view the crater and will include a movie with details about this exceptional phenomenon. This will be followed by an excursion on a camel to view the crater at sunset and then we will collect our bicycles before enjoying an appetizing welcome dinner at the Lodge. Overnight at Bike Lodge at Mitzpe Ramon
 
Day 2

The first day of cycling will start with a fast rolling ride along the eastern rim of the crater to experience the amazing view. We will then leave the rim and continue to Wadi Hava in the heart of the Negev, an area without any roads. This is a technical route by riding on the natural topography of the dry stream bid and rocky margins of Wadi Hava.  This route shows the wilderness landscape and the rough desert trails. We will ride along ancient camel trails and enjoy lunch at an incredible viewpoint with spectacular views of the Ramon Crater.  After lunch we will continue westward and finish the day with a delicious dinner. Overnight at the Bike Lodge at Mitzpe Ramon

Day 3

We will leave Mitzpe Ramon and bike northward across the wide streambed of Wadi Zin and continue upwards to the high saddle of Mount Nafcha with a panoramic view of the area, we will then descent through Wadi Tsena to enjoy a swim in the cool waters of the Ovdat pools. These pools were dug 2000 years ago by the Nabateans in order to collect rainwater for irrigation of agricultural fields.  After lunch we will descend further to the vicinity of Mount Arkov an ancient sacred place with many burial mounds (tumulus), sanctuaries and an abundance of Neolithic period petroglyphs.

At the end of the day we will arrive at the agricultural fields that flourished and supported the city of Ovdat during the Nabatean period.  Here a few Bedouin families live in the same way as they did many centuries ago. We will visit some families toexperience their way of life and have a traditional Bedouin meal around the camp fire. The night will be spent in one of the family tents to enable us to enjoy the abundance of stars in the sky and the cool desert air.
Overnight at Bedouin Tent- Ramalia Pools

Day 4

We will leave the Bedouin families and return to the single tracks of Mount Arkov and Mount Retamim and cycle down to the lovely Wadi Tziporim streambed.  We will have our lunch at the Nabatean Reservoirs. After lunch we will ascent to one of the highest summits in the area – Mt. Boker for a panoramic view of the Negev Desert. At this place an ancient Olive tree grows close to the mountain peak. We will then descent to Wadi Bsor. We will then continue via the single tracks of the Halookim Range and end the day at Nahal Boker ecological vineyard, for dinner and overnight.

Day 5

The day will be spent cycling the Hatira range, large crater and the Bedouin trails of Wadi Hatzatz.   We will start by cycling through Wadi Haro'ah and on to the Tzin Plateau and up to the Hatira range. This is a beautiful trail which has been used since the time of the Nabateans and still used by the Bedouins.  After reaching the Hatira crater with its amazing viewpoint we will continue to the west through the thriving Wadi Haztatz famous for its profusion of colorful desert flowers as well as poppies, daffodils and Tulips. The stream bed will return us to the Halukim Range from where we will descend to the Nahal Boker Farm and Vineyard. Overnight at Nahal Boker Farm and Vineyard.

Day 6

After having covered the best of the Negev Desert Trails we will continue our journey at the lowest place on Earth- the area of the Dead Sea.
We will unpack our bicycles and explore the white moonscape valley of Pratzim. This will be followed by the ultimate Israeli experience, floating on the Dead Sea at 423 meters below sea level.  In the afternoon we will be transferred to the Masada guest-House in the foothills of Mount Masada.
Overnight at Massada Guest-House

Day 7

After an early morning wake up, we will ascend Mount Masada via the "Snake Route" from where we will experience the dramatic sunrise over the Dead Sea and the Mountains of Moab. After that we will visit Masada's dramatic sites including King Herod's Temple, the oldest synagogue in the world and the water reservoirs.  From Masada we will drive via the scenic road along the Dead Sea and ascend the mountains of Jerusalem.  The entire day will be spent wandering around the City's ancient walls, visiting the Dome of the Rock, the Western Wall and famous churches.
Transfer from Jerusalem to Ben-Gurion Airport for departure.


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