This section is dedicated to take away all your "I wish someone had told me that before I went!" experiences. This way, you are better prepared for what to expect, what not to expect and can spend less time settling in, and more time making new friends in your chosen hostel. We share our insider knowledge of tips, tricks and important things to look out for in Arad. To help you make friends with Arad before you visit, we've included a few helpful and fun things you should know about the area. Enjoy!
Arad is a city on the edge of the Negev and Judean deserts in the Southern District of Israel. It is approximately 25 kilometres west of the Dead Sea and 45 kilometres east of the city of Beersheba. Arad is most well known for its exceptionally clean air; it is visited by asthmatics from around the world. It also holds the distinction of being Israel’s first planned development, founded in 1962 after repeated attempts to settle the remote area in the early part of the century.
Bus is the easiest way to get to Arad, Israel. The most frequent buses from from Beersheba, although there are infrequent one from both Tel Aviv and Jerusalem. Once in Arad, you can utilise the local transport, but its also a very easy city to walk in, having mostly followed the master development from the 60s.
Arad was founded by young Israelis seeking to get out of the overcrowded older cities. You’ll find a relaxed, vibrant city with outdoor spaces, hostels, museums, and artist communities. Arad’s hostels are a good alternative to the high-priced accommodation near the Dead Sea, since Arad is only a short drive away. Backpacker hostels in Arad tend to be similar to hostels in other countries, not the sterile youth hostels in other parts of the country. Expect English-speaking staff, knowledge about local adventure activities (hiking and biking), and great local restaurants, bars, and cafes all nearby.
Avid outdoor people will love Arad and its proximity to attractions like the Dead Sea, Zohar Peak and Lookout, the Israeli National Trail, both deserts, Mitzpe Ramon, and the ancient city of Tel Arad. The two ancient settlements at Tel Arad dates to the Bronze Age and the later mid 2nd century AD. Mitzpe Ramon is a great day trip from Arad for hikes along the edge of a giant crater.
Written by local enthusiast for Arad hostelsJakob Lombardi