We spend three nights in Eilat. The drive south from Jerusalem ook about five hours. We passed many memorials, Bedouin villages, signs for camel crossings, camels, and well- desert!
Eilat was a very pretty resort town with a mall in the center of town. There was little evidence of Jewish life. The beautiful Red Sea and beaches were hopping. Eilat is Israel’s southernmost city. To the east is Aqaba in Jordan. It was hot in early June. Expect temperatures of 100 degrees or more.
We stayed at Kibbutz Eilot where we found a cute bedroom with a round table, two chairs, two night tables, an armoire of sorts, a giant flat screen TV that got more than FOX news, a mini-frig, tea and coffee and a coffee pot. The Kibbutz has several types of rooms. Ours was called the Harim Guestroom. The bathroom was fine. The beds were two twins pushed together and I ended up in the crack! Although the people who live in this traditional Kibbutz (Traditional meaning no one gets paid and everyone lives in the same kind of house.) were not friendly the staff was.
We had a great Israeli breakfast in the dining room every morning (included in the price). There were two swimming pools, a Jacuzzi, horseback riding, and an animal farm,
You will want to go into Eilat and walk on the Promenade. You might want to stop in at the Red Sea Star Underwater Restaurant. I am only suggesting it because it is unusual. The reviews were not good and I could see why. We ended up just getting a drink. The draw is that the restaurant is literally underwater so if the windows had been cleaned in this century and there were no dead flies on them, it would be a treat to eat here. The nautical theme was cute but that was about it and the bathroom was horrible.
We ended up eating in Ginger Restaurant, which is recommended in Fodor’s and it was perhaps the best food we had on the trip. It is located on Yotam Road. We didn’t have reservations but since we were there at 7:30p.m. versus 8:30p.m. we were given a seat without a view. The staff was very nice. It was the first time we came across American wait staff. We got a chicken dish, with sauce, mushrooms, veggies – called Jakarta- recommended by Foder’s and a dish called Borneo hold the calamari (I can’t stand looking at it.) which was in a peanut sauce with noodles. It was totally scrumptious and included all the home-made coleslaw we could eat. The cost: 140 NIS.
If you have children (and even if you don’t), you will enjoy the Underwater Observatory Marine Park. It was a treat to see the underwater world of marine life through clean windows. We also saw sharks getting fed. It is located on Coral Beach in Eilat.
Farther down on the same side of the road (heading toward Egypt) you will see the Coral Beach Nature Preserve. We were told of this particlular area by a staff person at the Kibbutz. This was the most amazing snorkeling I’ve experienced because of the 1,240 miles of coral reef that extend along the Red Sea’s coastline.
Across the street (The address is South Beach.) there is a shack called Snuba http://www.snuba.co.il/. You’ll find showers, lockers and be able to rent gear for your fabulous excursion under the water. Cost: 40NIS each. Note that there are markers. The snorkeling area is out of bound to boats but it also seems as if you aren’t supposed to be there. You can be. This is a free beach – just try to stay within the boundaries and of course don’t touch the amazingly beautiful coral. Please leave it for others to enjoy.