The area of the geological craters looks like a science fiction movie set. Enjoy the boundless desert views that encompass cliffs, boulders, waterfalls and multi-colored sand in many different textures.
Start at Nahal Tamar, an untamed river that flows only during floods, when it erupts over steep waterfalls that cascade onto the Sedom wilderness. The river bed is dry during most of the year, becoming a short, challenging and spectacular canyon, where you can rappel down natural rock slides, climb down the dry waterfalls with rope ladders and enjoy the cold of the desert emanating from the steep sides of the cliffs.
Take Routes 31 and 90 to Nahal Tamar (about 50 minutes from Kfar Hanokdim).
From here continue on to a visit to the Orly Cactus Farm, which is the largest prickly pear farm in the Middle East. You can tour the farm, which spans an area of over 1,000 dunams, with prickly pears of various different varieties and colors, and meet the animals in the farm’s tropical garden. Workshops and activities for children are held on the farm from time to time. Lunch can be enjoyed in Dimona, which offers restaurants, falafel and shawarma stalls and several fast food chain outlets.
Take Route 25 to the Orly Cactus Farm if you’re coming from Nahal Tamar (a drive of about half an hour), or Routes 31, 25 and 80 if you’re coming from Kfar Hanokdim (an hour’s drive).
From the Orly Cactus Farm continue on to the Big Crater in Yeruham, the second largest crater in the Negev. The crater is very large and it’s lovely to walk through, to breathe deeply and take in the primal power of its formation. There is multicolored sand in the crater, which can be collected and layered in bottles. In addition to the sand in all the colors of the rainbow, you can also see the remains and fossils of corals and other sea creatures in this magnificent chromatic crater.
Take Routes 252 and 204 to the Big Crater (half an hour from the Orly Cactus Farm, and an hour and a quarter from Kfar Hanokdim).
If you like to cycle, then you can continue the daily walk and cycle along one of the routes offered by Geofun at Midreshet Ben-Gurion educational center. You can rent a bike and cycle independently or you can join an organized bike tour. Either way, the desert around the Midrasha is spectacularly beautiful, and there’s a good chance that you’ll see some mountain goats as you cycle along.
Take Routes 225, 204 and 40 to Midreshet Ben-Gurion if you’re coming from the direction of the Big Crater (a drive of about 45 minutes) or Route 204 if you’re coming from Kfar Hanokdim (an hour’s drive).
For additional info ring 050-3833899 or contact http://www.geofun.co.il