I happened to go on this day tour on a day that it was pouring rain in the desert. Despite the crazy weather while at Masada, we did have the chance to see a waterfall in the distance from the flash floods. Apparently this is something so rare and it was interesting to see. The rain did not stop our tour and it was still enjoyable. The only issue was that Ein Gedi was closed due to the rain earlier in the day. So instead, we had the option to go to the Dead Sea. This was a wonderful day tour that I would highly recommend.
Very good tour to Masada and Ein Gedi Nature Park. The lady guide was very good and took particular good care of the older members of the group.
Amir once again was AMAZING!! Masada and Ein Gedi were beautiful!
This tour was amazing!
Pick up was very late. We were then taken to a location where we had to get off one bus and onto a 2nd bus. It was after 10:00 AM by the time we left Jerusalem. Our 2nd bus had two tour groups on it; one for Masada and Ein Gedi and the other for Masada and the Dead Sea.
When we got to Masada the guide kept us moving fairly rapidly, with no time to explore on our own (missing places that others were going to). Often the guide moved quickly to a location and begun talking before the slower (older) part of the group caught up. I believe this was because of the late start and resulting time constraint.
After leaving Masada the Ein Gedi tour group was taken there and left on our own without a guide. The tour bus and guide continued on to the Dead Sea. The bus then came back to pick us up about one and a half hours after drop off. We then went to the Dead Sea and waited to pick up the guide and the people from that tour. Next we went to near Jericho and waited to meet another tour bus. People going to Jerusalem got on one of the buses and people going to Tel Aviv got onto the other bus (both buses had people from both locations). We ended up spending far more time waiting for buses and on buses than we did touring sites.
The description of Ein Gedi does not adequately describe the difficulty of the hike. A minor portion of the trail is on a blacktop path. The majority of it is on a rocky trail with steep slopes and carved steps with loose gravel and sand on them. Of course there were no railings. Many on the tour did not go on the entire trail and I (age 72 with so-so knees) felt it was too dangerous to hike more than a few yards as I quickly encountered downward steps where one was so small that I could not put both feet on the step. My very fit wife was extremely glad I didn't attempt it as the path and steps only got steeper in its undulations.
We did see Ibex, Rock Hyrax and a variety of birds and lizards, so not a total loss for me.
This was an awful trip. I signed up for a tour not a taxi. They drove us to each of the locations - dropped us off - nothing about the history of the site - and said I will pick you up in 45 minutes. It was a waste of money.
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