Heart of the Judean Desert

Into the Heart of the Judean Desert – 5 days

Intro

Riding Level

Riding LevelRiding LevelRiding LevelRiding LevelRiding Level

For the young at heart and the serious adventurer, this special trip lives the wild Israeli desert – exploring the wilderness during the day and camping under the starry skies at night. This trip includes a tour of Qumran and a visit to a spa on the shores of the Dead Sea as a finale.

The Judean Desert is unique with its powerful, barren beauty of stream beds created by winter rains, steep cliffs, cisterns and hidden caves, and amazing wildlife. Specifically, this tour tells the story of the Essenes and the end of the revolt against the Romans in 70 AD. Living a communal life devoted to poverty, purity, freedom, and justice, the Essenes had their chief residence along the shores of the Dead Sea. In fact, some believe Jesus and John the Baptist were members of this elusive community. This tour takes you on a thrilling ride through the mysterious history and breathtaking beauty of the Judean Desert.

Dates & rates

Accommodations:

2 night in a country lodge, three nights in camping, one night at hostel in Jerusalem.

Availability:

Year round excluding May through August. The ideal seasons are October to May.

Rate:

2500$ per rider (not available for non-riders), single supplement $220

2018 Tours

From Date To Date Duration Reserve
Per request   7d-6n Open

Itinerary

DAY 1 (SATURDAY)

Arrival in early evening at Moshav Sharona in the lower Galilee,After introductions and explanations followed by dinner, you will enjoy an enlightening lecture on the history of Israel. We will sleep in a cozy country lodge located on the Moshav.

DAY 2 (Sunday)

At the morning we will meet our horses at our riding center, we will match riders to horses, and we will go out for 2-3 hour of introduction ride at Sirin Highest. When we finish the ride, we immediately start our Journey toward Judea Desert. We will travel throw the southern Jordan Valley, we will visit the beautifully monastery of Dear Hagala near Jericho. Afternoon we will arrive to our destination at the northern part of the Dead Sea. The dinner will be held at oriental restaurant at the city of Jericho. We will spend the night at Kibbutz country lodge at this area.

DAY 3 (Monday)

Waking at sunrise, we will set out at 6:30 am by car to where our horses will be waiting for us in Adumim Plains near Jerusalem. After a picnic breakfast in the desert, we will ride towards Mt. Muntar for a breathtaking view of the area. Riding south through Hurknia Valley, we will ride on dried stream beds and learn to find natural water cisterns in the desert. Towards evening we will arrive at our campground near Dargoat Stream. Length of tour – 29 km/ 6.2 miles

DAY 4 (Tuesday)

Today we will pack our horses with our tents, food and camping equipment and set out into the desert expanse. Crossing Dargoat Stream, we will ride south through the desert heights (in the winter if we are lucky we might see a desert flood). In the afternoon, we will head out towards Ein Gedi – one of the most ancient settlements in the world which is based on desert agriculture. Ein Gedi is the biggest and most important natural oasis in Israel. Possessing a tremendous amount of water, the springs of this area sustain and affect the entire Judean Desert. Desert hares, birds, ibexes and leopards live around this essential water source. Archeological finds have also recorded the existence of people living here for thousands of years. We will see the oasis from above and then ride to the spot where we will spend the night. Dinner will be Bedouin pita (patir) – an authentic meal similar to what has been eaten for the last 2,500 years by caravan leaders and desert inhabitants. Length of tour – 31 km/ 19 miles

DAY 5 (Wednesday)

Today will be a truly special day filled with the exhilaration of riding in the desert and learning about the fascinating history of the ancient peoples who once lived there. We will ride up the Essene mountainside and though channels of the Hever, Mishmar and Tseelim Streams to explore the caves where the Essenes lived. To these caves Jews and the first Christians fled after the fall of Jerusalem in 70 AD. These caves are also famous for the rare archeological findings discovered within testifying to the Bar Kochva revolt (132-135 AD). We will spend the night near Tseelim Stream.
Length of tour – 31 km/ 19 miles

DAY 6 (Thursday)

Another day of exhilarating desert riding ahead of us. After breakfast, we will pass through the extensive plains of the Kanaim Valley. Then we will head east riding above Tselim Stream until we again reach cliffs overlooking the Dead Sea. Along an old mule path, into the Dead Sea Valley, we will actually start our way down toward the lowest lake on earth the Dead Sea. At the dead sea we will say good bay to our horses and load them to the track.
We will drive to a beach on the banks of the Dead Sea. As a treat after many days of hard riding, we will cover ourselves in the black mud of the Dead Sea and go for a dip in its healing waters. We will visit the archeological site of Qumran (the place of the Dead Sea scrolls) from there we will drive to Jerusalem and we will spend the night at Abraham Hostel, a Special hostel for independence traveler. http://www.tripadvisor.com/Hotel_Review-g293983-d1932009-Reviews-Abraham_Hostel_Jerusalem-Jerusalem_Jerusalem_District.html
We will celebrate the Tour end at a nice restaurant in Jerusalem.
Length of tour – 17.5 km/11 miles

DAY 7 (Friday)

At this day you will have the freedom to explore Jerusalem, at independence way, the hostel will give you lot of information regards tours option at the City.
You will have the opportunity to participant in one of the guided tours that the hostel runs in the city.

Additional information

On the first day of the trip, participants have the option of being picked up at 3.45 PM from a hotel in Tel Aviv or at 4.20PM from Ben Gurion International Airport. This service costs an additional $35 per person and it is necessary to notify us ahead of time where to pick you up. It is also possible to arrive independently at Moshave Sharona by 7 pm. The official program ends at 11AM of the last day (Friday). For clients that would like to stay at different location: Tel Aviv , Hotels near the Dead Sea, or deferent location in Jerusalem we will help to find an appropriate accommodation , and we deducted the cost of the last night from the ride price, we will transfer the riders to this location without additional charge. We reserve the right to change the itinerary as necessary to accommodate weather conditions or additional unforeseen events.