In association with: Israel Government Tourist Office
Unspoilt deserts, beautiful beaches and vibrant cities make Israel the perfect winter-sun getaway
Are your clients looking for desert adventures? Or would they prefer to get under the skin of a vibrant coastal city, where relaxing beaches and watersports sit alongside buzzing bars and restaurants? How about a wellness break by the sea? Whatever their preference, when the nights draw in this winter, recommend they head for Israel, where all this and more is waiting for them.
In the heart of Israel, stretching down to the Gulf of Aqaba, is the Negev Desert. Whether hiking, cycling or exploring in a 4×4 vehicle, visitors will be mesmerised by the desert’s rugged scenery. The jewel in the crown is the 25-mile-long Ramon Crater. Admire the views from the rim or walk 500 metres down to the crater floor. Some of Israel’s most impressive stargazing is found here.
For an eco-stay among locals, recommend Kibbutz Lotan, where guests can enjoy a sustainable way of living. Elsewhere, properties such as Six Senses Shaharut and Beresheet provide higher-end alternatives.
For a beach break, head to Eilat, where stretches of sand sit against a backdrop of rugged mountains. Eilat is one of the best diving destinations in Israel, so snorkelling is a must. But non-swimmers needn’t worry as they can observe the vivid marine life from the town’s Underwater Observatory Park. Back inland, explore the Red Canyon, where the walls stretch 30 metres high.
Finally, for wellness, a stay by the Dead Sea is unmatched. The warm, salty waters are a perfect complement to a spa treatment in the surrounding hotels – the icing on the cake of a winter-sun break.
How to get there
Israel is easy to reach, with a flight time of around five hours. Direct flights to Tel Aviv’s Ben Gurion Airport are operated by several airlines, including El Al from Heathrow and Luton, Virgin Atlantic from Heathrow, easyJet from Manchester, Luton and Gatwick, and Wizz Air from Luton and Gatwick.
Clients heading for the beaches of Eilat can fly onwards to Ramon Airport from Tel Aviv with Arkia or Israir.
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PICTURES: Itamar Grinberg; Shutterstock/Dmitry Pistrov; Ministry of Tourism/Dafna Tal