The region is beginning to 'wake up' and return but with a lighter step and revitalized energy. Credit (top photo) Avishag Ayalon

There is something about driving ‘down’ to the pit of the stomach of the globe.  It’s not just the altitude that gets lower and lower and even lower, it’s the silence that suddenly envelops you, the intake of deep breaths at the stunning, yet confusing landscape, that has tremendous power and emotion, that embraces you gently.  Time spent here at the Tamar Regional Council is different.  What was of the most importance in the world an hour ago, is now, not even entering your mind.  All the rules have changed. 

Dead Sea credit Adi Landau

As you descend even further to the lowest point in the world and immerse yourself in the salty waters of the Dead Sea, think of the words ‘health’, history, heritage and the ancient constructions that have been revealed and create this wonderful pearl of serenity and calm.

A huge fracture that lacerated the dry, tectonic slabs, the mountains that rose, the boulders that crushed into thousands of rocks, such a huge fracture that exists to this very day.  And here is Ein Gedi, at the heart of all this drama, in the place closest to the earths stomach, all wrapped up in water, minerals, mud and salt. And noiselessly, there is so much silence in the air. Ein Gedi is the most northern community of the Tamar Regional Council and has just recently reopened its gates to guests.  The hotel, the botanical gardens, the B and B’s and the camping sites are up and running with renewed energy, motivation and excitement.

Arrival at the Tamar region is misleading.  The nature reserves are just as beautiful as always; abundant with flora and fauna, the sea and mountains have stayed exactly the same.  On the outside, everything is calm and serene as if nothing special has happened here in recent months. On the inside of each community, attraction or locality, revitalization and titivation releases a new wave of energy  and motivation amongst the residents, workers and youth. 

The ‘purple tag’ guidelines are not considered as restrictions here, but just the opposite – the opportunity to be better and to provide an exceptional experience.  “We felt like somebody had suddenly told us - forget everything you've done so far and rethink every detail of the guest experience.” “This rethinking has generated a lot of creativity,” says Tom Geva, the Ein Gedi hotel's new CEO.

Ficus tree credit Avishag Ayalo

One of the most significant insights that we have gained from recent times is connecting with the community.  During the COVID-19, we (the regional council) saw the power of the communities and the amazing capabilities of the people who live here. Post COVID this attitude has stayed and continued across all the villages of Tamar. 

It is a unique and exciting experience to wake up in the morning with the crystal Dead Sea lake and the Moab Mountains of Jordan on one side and desert mountains, waterfalls and nature reserves on the other majestically standing over region as if protecting man and nature.  If there is nothing else to do, you could just stay here all day, drinking herbal tea at one of the many hotels, restaurants/cafes and absorb the magnificent landscape. 

Ein Gedi hotel gardens credit Yossi Rotem

That’s what life is all about here – Doing nothing – just relax, enjoy and pamper.  The possibilities are endless at the Dead Sea.  The various options are slowly, but surely returning to normal and are even better than before.  The communities are just waiting for the visitors and are anxious to host, serve and entertain.  Nature hasn’t been on a break, nature has continued to provide beauty and sanctuary to one and all, and the nature of the Tamar Regional Council’s terrain is no different.

You no longer need a good book, headphones and a glass of drink to enjoy a whole day here.  This region encourages guests to think a little differently about what is a vacation.  Less pursuit of attractions and more rest.  Less movement and more staying put.  In Tamar you don’t ask yourself what to do, you are just there doing it.  In English it’s called ‘The Art of Doing Nothing’ which doesn’t translate into every language but is definitely an art!!! 

Photo Avishag Ayalo


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