First Day - Sede Boqer, Mitzpe Ramon and the way to the Dead Sea

Sede Boqer Travel Blog

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The papa deer in the grave area

On the first day it was around 35 degrees celsius, so we waited till noon to do our shopping of food and drinks for the weekend (taking around 6 litres of water per person).

We drove all the way from Tel-Aviv to Sede Boqer, something like 2.5 hours, through the city of Beer-Sheva and other small farmer towns.

Our first stop was the graves of the first Israel Prime Minister - David Ben Gurion. He was a big fan of the desert and he dwelled there after he stopped being a prime minister in Israel. He believed that we should try and make the desert a place to live and this was heritage for us. His and his wife's graves are located next to a small kibutz called Sede Boqer that's stationed above a hill, just before the beginning of the nice part of the desert.

The amazing view of the river below the graves
In this area they support wild deer that wander around freely in the desert area and come to eat and drink when they want. Below the graves there's a nice and very recommended hiking trail that takes you to a permanent pool in the desert called Ein-Akev.

After this stop we drove to Mitzpe Ramon, which is another desert city, stationed just above one of the three craters in Israel. The craters were created around 5 million years ago, when everything was filled with water, and then the and seperated, creating the great Syrian-African rift, that left in Israel these three craters, the red sea and other areas. All the water disappeared and now when you walk there you can see a lot of shells (from 5 million years ago) and some very amazing fossils and amonites (huge sea shells fossils in the rocks).

The graves of the first prime minister of Israel and his wife, and the amazing view they have
We took a tour on the cliff of the crater, and then we went down into the crater to watch the amazing amonites in one of the walls of the crater. These Amonites are around 50cm big shrimps :) amazing how they preserved for 5 million years. After the Amonites we climbed a small mountain in the crater just to have an amazing view from the middle of the crater, seeing 360 degrees of the crater around us. The walk was short but hard due to the steep climb and the unbearable heat in the desert.

From here we drove a bit north, passing some Beduim and Jewish villages spread around in the desert. We drove to the Dead Sea through the famous Sdom highway, which takes you from around 200 meters down to minus 270 meters, down to the lowest place on earth. We got to the Dead Sea in the dark, found some piece of land, and made dinner while suffering from a very strong and hot wind that came from the desert. We struggled with the fire (and I had some headache from the sun) but in the end we got the food ready and spent the night in the place.

jmaxiv says:
I like trips like this, sounds awesome.
Posted on: Sep 07, 2007
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The papa deer in the grave area
The papa deer in the grave area
The amazing view of the river belo…
The amazing view of the river bel…
The graves of the first prime mini…
The graves of the first prime min…
The grave of the first prime minis…
The grave of the first prime mini…
The deer around the grave area and…
The deer around the grave area an…
Sede Boqer
photo by: lauro