Travel Arad
36 hours in Arad, at the edge of the Judean and Negev deserts

The development town founded by a group of former kibbutz and moshav members in the 1960s is surrounded by the hilly planes of the desert, and not far from the back side of Masada (which is how visitors access the popular Light and Sound Show, open from March through October).

The desert is the draw to this quiet town for many of its residents. Renowned writer Amos Oz, who passed away in December last year, lived here for years as the dry, arid climate helped his son’s asthma.

The town is particularly beautiful after a rainy winter like this last one, which covered the undulating hills with a soft furring of sage-green and tiny white flowers — yellow dandelions and dainty purple dwarf irises that only open in the slanting rays of the late afternoon sun.

The non-traditional accommodations and activities are the real draw here, including yoga retreats, a Bedouin-style oasis, meals hosted in people’s homes, nature hikes and bicycle rides in the desert, as well as some art gallery visits and workshops.

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