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Driving from Eilat to Golan Heights

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Zurich
posts: 11
reviews: 25
Driving from Eilat to Golan Heights

In a couple of weeks' time I shall pick up a hire car in Eilat and head for the Golan Heights, taking 2 days and 1 night. I would appreciate any tips on where to break the journey, and which route to take.

The Dead Sea area would be possible for a stop, but many of the hotels I've looked at seem short on character - I want to feel and enjoy that I'm in Israel, and not just any holiday place.

As an alternative, I considered overnighting somewhere in the Negev, but couldn't find anywhere which attracted me. Again, I'm looking for somewhere out of the ordinary.

After spending time in the north, I intend to drive down to Jerusalem on Route 90/Route 1, which I've seen recommended here. I prefer not to travel the same route twice, so what would be the best routing going north?

Jerusalem
Destination Expert
for Jerusalem, Israel
posts: 1,591
reviews: 41
1. Re: Driving from Eilat to Golan Heights

Here's a suggestion if you're really open to something different - a Mongolian tent in Neot Hakikar, a moshav just south of the Dead Sea:

www.i-travelisrael.com/Business.asp…

I've stayed there a couple of times and really enjoyed it. I gather you're traveling on your own - if so, and given the time of year, you might not find many other people there and you'd need to check they can take you on your own.

Jerusalem, Israel
Destination Expert
for Jerusalem
posts: 3,091
reviews: 39
2. Re: Driving from Eilat to Golan Heights

The best route to drive from Eilat to the Golan Heights is route 90, straight up the Jordan Valley.

I would go for an overnight at the Dead Sea - the hotels are fairly standard, but the amazing physical location in the valley is not at all standard, and neither is the Dead Sea itself. For just one night, it's a relaxing and impressive place to be.

The hotels in Ein Bokek are the best option if you want to be right on the Dead Sea itself, but the kibbutz hotel at Ein Gedi is also an option for something a bit less standard, embedded in nature, but still upscale:

http://www.ein-gedi.co.il/en/

For less expensive options, there are youth hostels at Ein Gedi and Masada.

Israel
Destination Expert
for Israel
posts: 10,996
reviews: 112
3. Re: Driving from Eilat to Golan Heights

For something different stay at Kfar Hanokdim. It's a bit off your way north but is a Bedoiun hospitality "hotel". It is located on the western side of Masada.

Chana

Israel

Zurich
posts: 11
reviews: 25
4. Re: Driving from Eilat to Golan Heights

Thanks for these suggestions. Staying in a Mongolian yurt is certainly different (as I experienced in Mongolia), but I prefer Chana's idea of Kfar Hanokdim and have booked there.

Regarding the onward drive up route 90, am I correct in assuming that areas controlled by the Palestinian Authority will be clearly marked as such? I don't want to wander into them in error.

Ottawa, Canada
Destination Expert
for Jerusalem, Galilee, Tel Aviv
posts: 5,030
reviews: 104
5. Re: Driving from Eilat to Golan Heights

If you drive up route 90, it is a major road. All of Route 90 is under Israeli control. No chance of 'wandering' away. Signage is clearly marked in Hebrew, Arabic and English.

Edited: 8:54 pm, February 07, 2014
Melbourne, Australia
Destination Expert
for Jerusalem
posts: 4,387
reviews: 76
6. Re: Driving from Eilat to Golan Heights

You could only have a problem if you get off the road to go into a town, but even then most places you might want to stop along the Dead Sea are fine. (You can go into Ein Bokek, Masada, En Gedi etc.) If you try to go into Jericho though you will get stopped at the border. You can't go in there with an Israeli rental car because it is under the full Palestinian Authority. Just follow the route 90 signs which bypass Jericho and you will be fine. Watch out for camels in that area though. :).

If you want to visit Jericho then the easiest way to do that is by a tour from Jerusalem, though you can go by public transport from Jerusalem.

Israel
Destination Expert
for Israel
posts: 10,996
reviews: 112
7. Re: Driving from Eilat to Golan Heights

Clarification - there is no border between Israel and Jericho. However there is a check-point. Keep in mind that if you see a soldier manned checkpoint, you have probably made a wrong turn.

Chana

Israel

Zurich
posts: 11
reviews: 25
8. Re: Driving from Eilat to Golan Heights

Just returned from a memorable trip. No problems with the driving - thanks to everyone who assisted.

Tampa, Florida
posts: 1
9. Re: Driving from Eilat to Golan Heights

This is hugely helpful as I am planning a trip from the Dead Sea to Galilee, Golan Heights, then to Haifa all in one day drive. Plan to rent the car in Jerusalem and return in Tel Aviv 3 days later. Any suggestions on rental car companies to book ahead of time? Any other traveling tips as we pass throughout the West Bank Area?

Zurich
posts: 11
reviews: 25
10. Re: Driving from Eilat to Golan Heights

Having made a similar trip recently, I can agree that you have chosen a potentially attractive and interesting route. However, you will not benefit much from it, as you will be driving hard all day. With that schedule, you won't be able to see any of the settlements on the West Bank. Why not spend at least one day enjoying the historical sites and sights on Golan? Maybe you prefer cities.

I rented from Eldan and was satisfied.