From the time that King Solomon and Queen Sheba held their legendary tryst; Eilat has been a special gateway. For sun seekers and fun lovers; singles and families; youngsters and the young in heart, Eilat offers a lot to each.
The most southern city in Israel, on the shores of the Red Sea, Eilat is without doubt the crown jewel of Israeli resort tourism. Pleasant weather in the winter brings thousands of tourists to this relaxing city and its beaches. Only one hour flight from Tel Aviv and you can find yourself diving among colorful coral reefs and rare fish in warm water.
Eilat is also a gateway for day tours to Petra in Jordan.
Eilat has Israel’s only aquarium and a unique underwater observatory, which takes you beneath the surface of the Red Sea. Eilat is perfect for simply relaxing on the soft sandy beaches and using a snorkel or going scuba diving, to exploring the coral reefs inhabited by tropical fish. Many beaches along Eilat’s shore offer exciting water sports like skiing wake boarding, sailing and kayaking. Another unique site in Eilat is the Dolphin Reef, where an enclosure has been created but left open to the sea, so dolphins can come and go as they please. The dolphins come into the enclosure throughout the day to be fed and to play. Visitors can swim with the dolphins or relax on the Dolphin Reef’s private beach. After a day in the sun visitors can enjoy a wide variety of stores selling duty free goods as Eilat is a tax (VAT) free port city. There is a mall with a huge ice rink in the center, an IMAX cinema, an open air market, excellent restaurants, nightclubs and luxurious resort hotels.
With the translucent sea on one side Eilat has the Red Canyon and desert as its backdrop. Visitors can go on jeep excursions into the desert; take a camel ride through the canyon; meet desert animals at Hai-Bar Nature Reserve or visit nearby Timna Geological Park. Timna offers a number of activities in the dramatic landscape of the valley. The Timna Valley is rich in minerals including copper, iron and manganese, which create multi-colored sand and a red landscape. The area is the traditional site of Solomon’s Mines and was indeed the site of copper mines, run by ancient Egyptians. The site offers a sound and light show projected on the red cliffs and strangely shaped rock formations of the park.