Where can I camp in Eilat? – That’s a question I hear a lot lately. Eilat is full of hotels and even has some great hostels in it, but what if you’re on a very tight budget and don’t have much money for accommodation? In this case, you might want to know about the camping options in Eilat and its surroundings. You might also want to know about them if you’re looking for a unique way to spend the night in Eilat. So… Here they are:
Free Camping on the Beach:
According to the Eilat Municipality’s policy, you cannot camp on all the beaches in Eilat. There are only some beaches which are open for camping. In reality, there are some people who do camp on “the forbidden” beaches and the Municipality’s inspectors aren’t doing much to prevent that from happening. Anyway, I suggest that if you choose to camp on the beaches, you do so on the legal beaches only. By the way, it is completely free to camp on the beaches! But keep in mind that there are no organized facilities there.
So here are the legal beaches for camping:
Camping on the Southern Beaches:
It is legal to camp on the beachline that stretches from Snuba Beach to Migdalor Beach (the “Lighthouse Beach”). Near Snuba Beach you can also find an organized parking lot, where you can park a caravan.
Camping on the Northern Beaches:
It is legal to camp in the parking lot of the Mifraz HaShemesh Beach. It is also possible to park a caravan there. Be aware – It is illegal to camp on the beach itself, only in the parking lot area.
It is also possible to camp on the Roksa Beach (also called “Ardag Beach” or “Thailandi Beach”), which is located a bit east of Mifraz HaShemesh Beach, near the border line with Jordan.
Camping in the Eilat Field School:
If you prefer to camp in a more organized place, that also feels safer (although camping on the beaches in Eilat is considered safe), you might want to check out the camping option in Eilat Field School. The field school is located across from the Coral Beach Reserve, at the end of the Israel National Trail, in the southern beaches area. It is a short bus drive from the city center. There are rooms for accommodation, but if you bring your own tent, you can stay on the Eilat Field School’s grounds for a reasonable amount of money (around 50 Shekels a night, but check with the field school itself for prices). The campground includes showers, toilets, BBQ corners and lighting.
For more info about prices and availability, call: +972 3 638 86 88 or send an email to email@example.com.
Free Camping in and Around Eilat:
There are several free camping grounds around Eilat, but all of them are very basic and do not have any facilities in them. There are no toilets, no showers, no flowing water or lighting in those campgrounds (January 2019 Update: Those campgrounds are supposed to be upgraded this year and will include field toilets and water jerrycans from which you will be able to drink). They are good for hikers who make their way in the Eilat Mountains Reserve or in the Timna Valley area, but if you plan to stay there, you should make sure you have enough water for the night.
Here are a few of the camping grounds around Eilat:
Nahal Shlomo (Solomon River) Camping Ground: This camping ground is located a bit west of the Camel Ranch in the southern part of Eilat. This is a perfect campground for those of you who plan to hike up Mount Zefahot in the early morning, as it is about an hour hike from the mountain. There are no facilities. To get there, you can take a bus from the Eilat city center towards the Taba Border (line 15), get off at Mitsrayim Road/Camel Ranch station (דרך מצרים/ חוות הגמלים) and then hike along the dirt road north-west to the campground. It is about a 30-minutes’ hike from road number 90.
Mount Yehoram Camping Ground: Located near Yehoram Mountain, about 2.5 km north of Eilat, a bit off road number 12. The campground is on the other side of the road from Mount Yoash (there is a brown sign pointing to the mountain), a bit north-east to Mount Yoash. It is considered a safe camping ground, which currently only has a toilets facility. This camping ground is perfect for those of you planning to hike up Mount Yoash in the morning or hike down Gishron Wadi on the Israel National Trail. You can get there:
- By Bus – Line 392 to the station called Mahavar Netafim (מעבר נטפים) and then a 30-minutes’ hike down along the road to the camping ground.
- By Foot – About a 2.5-hours’ hike from the beginning of road number 12 in the south-western part of Eilat.
Red Canyon Camping Ground: If you’re planning to hike around the Red Canyon, this camping ground can suit you. It is with no facilities. Check out my post – Hiking Around Eilat – Beautiful Red Canyon – for more info about getting here.
There are a couple more camping grounds that are farther away from Eilat, on the Israel National Trail. Those include: Nahal Raham Camping Ground (חניון נחל רחם) and Shchoret Camping Ground (חניון שחורת).
Camping Outside Eilat:
Here are a few camping grounds outisde of Eilat that charge a fee:
Hai Bar Yotvata Camping Ground: Located near the Hai Bar Yotvata Reserve between Kibbutz Yotvata and Kibbutz Samar on road number 90, about 35 km north of Eilat. The camping ground includes hot showers, toilets, BBQ corners, electricity spots for phone charging, drinking water faucet and a field kitchen with a refrigerator and cooktop. It is possible to get sleeping mattresses for an additional fee. The camping is in private tents.
You can arrive at the camping ground until 5:00 PM (on Fridays until 4:00 PM) and you need to leave before 11:00 AM on the day you choose to leave. If you wish to leave the camping ground during the day for a hike in the area, you will need to leave an ID at the entrance of the site as a security deposit.
The prices (in the time of writing – March 2018) are: Adult – ₪ 53, Child – ₪ 42. Payment is made upon arrival to the camping ground at the ticket office. You can pay by credit or cash.
It is possible to reserve a camping place in the camping ground in advance by calling +972-8-6373057 or sending an email to firstname.lastname@example.org.
To get to the Hai Bar Yotvata Camping Ground by bus, you can take lines 390, 397, 444 or 991 and get off at Samar Station. Then, walk a short while to the camping ground.
Camping in Timna Park: There is an option of camping in private tents near the artificial lake in Timna Park. The camping ground includes toilets, hot water showers, electricity sockets, lighting, drinking water. It is possible to get sleeping mattresses for an additional fee. This is a perfect camping ground for those of you planning to hike around Timna Park.
Please contact Timna Park for more info about camping prices and availability.
And check out my post – Saturday Morning in Timna Park – to learn more about the park.
Wish you all a wonderful camping experience!
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