Bringing The Negev, Israel to life through the Artza Holy Land blog

a stone arch on the beach with the ocean in the background
By Daniel Goodman
Edited by Itai Schimmel

Updated February 5, 2023.

Israel Holy land tour negev desert

Embark on a journey and travel to the Holy Land through the lens of the 'Holy Land Artza Blog' series.

In this series, you will be taken on an immersive journey through the Holy Land. Exploring ancient, biblical and modern stories, magnificent scenery, flavors, traditions, sites and most importantly of all - we will introduce you to the people that call this place home. Along the journey you will meet all of the Israeli artisans and charities that we hep support, and we explore the rich culture, history and beauty of Israel.

And for those of you that want a fully immersive experience of the the land where Jesus walked, our Artza subscription box, are designed to do just that. Delivered quarterly, each locally sourced Artza box is packed this gorgeous hand crafted gifts foods, locals spices, content, stories, scripture and so much more! Delivered from the Holy Land, directly to your home.

Location: The Negev desert (which makes up 60% of the Holy Land!!)

The Hebrew meaning for the word 'Negev' is 'Dry'. This desert is home to many Bedouin tribes who have lived there for centuries, as well as many thriving Israeli communities who are working hard to transform the barren desert into a fertile agricultural area. The goal is to make the Negev Desert a place where food can be grown, families can be raised and people can live in harmony.

The prophet Isiah speaks of a time when the desert will bloom and the Negev will be transformed into agricultural land, an event unfolding before our eyes every day.

The desert and the parched land will be glad; the wilderness will rejoice and blossom. Like the crocus, it will burst into bloom; it will rejoice greatly and shout for joy: Isaiah 35:1-2 (NIV)
Israel Holy land tour negev desert

Top things to do in the Negev, Israel.

1.     Ramon Crater: Also known as "Makhtesh Ramon," this natural wonder is the largest crater in the world and offers breathtaking views of the desert landscape. Makhtesh Ramon has been used by humans since prehistoric times, who would have lived there seasonally as they followed their food sources between the Mediterranean Sea and Jericho.

2.     Ein Advant: Hike through Ein Avdat National Park: This picturesque park is home to a variety of hiking trails, including the Ein Avdat waterfall trail and the Avdat-Nahal Zin trail. Ein Avdat is a beautiful oasis in the Negev desert. It's situated near the Dead Sea, and as such, it's a popular tourist destination for Israelis and international travellers alike.

3.     Visit the Bedouin village of Lakiya: Experience the traditional way of life of the Bedouin people and learn about their culture and customs. Bedouin hospitality often provides camel rides, traditional cuisine, and an opportunity to sip tea or coffee while reclining in colourful, blanket-filled tents.

4.     Go stargazing: The dark skies of the Negev make it an ideal spot for stargazing. Take a guided tour to learn about the constellations and see the stars up close. The Negev Desert in Israel is ideal for stargazing due to its clear, dark skies and minimal light pollution. The desert climate and high altitude also contribute to the excellent visibility of stars and celestial bodies.

Biblical significance: Jesus spent time in the wilderness of the Negev before beginning his ministry (Matthew 4:1-11; Mark 1:12-13; Luke 4:1-13).

It is believed that Jesus spent time in the Negev desert, as found in scripture in the New Testament: in the Gospels of Matthew, Mark, and Luke. It is said that after Jesus was baptized by John the Baptist, He was led by the Spirit into the wilderness to be tempted by the devil.

At once the Spirit sent him out into the wilderness, and he was in the wilderness forty days, being tempted by Satan. He was with the wild animals, and angels attended him : Mark 1:12-13 states

Rich history: The Red Sea has a rich history, from the ancient Egyptians, who called it the "Sea of Reeds" and used it for trade and transportation. The Red Sea also holds religious significance for the three Abrahamic religions, with the Israelites crossing it during the Exodus.

Distance from Jerusalem: The Negev Desert to Jerusalem is approximately 220 kilometres (136 miles).

As we come to the close of our third Holy Land Artza Blog which takes you on a journey through Israel with us, we want to express our deepest gratitude for your participation. It has been a privilege to share with you the beauty, culture and traditions of this land that holds such a special place in our hearts thus far, and we are so excited for what is to come!

For those who seek a deeper connection to the Holy Land, our Artza subscription boxes are the next best thing to actually travelling to Israel, it is the best way to bring the Holy Land to your doorstep. Each Artza box is sent to you from a different region in Israel, and it is packed with up to eight stunning hand-crafted gifts, local foods, spices, art, scripture, ceramics and so much more - each carefully chosen from the local artisans and charities of that specific region - with the aim of bringing the Holy Land to life in the most meaningful and immersive way possible. This is your chance to experience the Beauty of the Holy Land and to support the people of Israel.

We look forward to welcoming you back soon and providing you with the next Holy Land Artza Blog, and of course, welcome to ISRAEL!