Check out the best things to do in Eilat! You might also want to read the 53 best things to do in Israel!
Eilat is a great place to stop for a few nights at the end of a visit to Israel while also having enough going on to make it a holiday destination in its own right. It provides a refreshing contrast to the cities and historical/religious sights. And boasts colourful sea life right off the shoreline and nice stretches of beach. Check out these best things to do in Eilat for some inspiration.
Also check out:
- 2 weeks in Israel – itinerary and budget
- Weekend in Jerusalem
- Tel Aviv on a budget
- 53 Things to do in Israel
#1 Dive to see the corals (and maybe a shipwreck!)
Eilat is a great place to learn how to dive with cheap prices and colourful corals. There are lots of dive schools in the area but I would recommend the Manta dive school for a professional experience. If you are looking for something a little different on your dive – ask to see the shipwreck!
#2 Snorkel from Coral Beach
Coral Reef Beach is the best spot in Eilat to see corals and marine life. This is a protected area so you’ll need to pay entry (roughly 30NIS) to access the beach. Arrive early to get a spot under one of the constructed shaded areas and pack a picnic and your snorkel gear to make the most of a day on the beach. Snorkel gear can be hired from the beach if you need it, or check with the hotel you are staying in.
#3 Visit an Underwater Observatory
The Underwater Observatory Marine Park has lots on offer to teach you about our sea life. The biggest attraction is the Underwater Observatory where you can observe natural marine life from behind thick glass. You’ll need about half a day to take in the full park.
#4 Wander the Botanical Gardens
Eilat’s newest attraction is the Botanical Gardens. This privately-owned space is basic but pretty. Wander the site learning about plants and trees. There are some fun play vehicles for children and a nice cafe on-site.
#5 Watch the ‘Wow to the Future’ show
WOW To the Future is a fun and eccentric ‘Vegas Show’ in Eilat. Played weekly at the Isrotel Royal Hotel.
#6 Stay up to watch the fountain display
Twice a night, Eilat has a 15-minute fountain display with water, lights and music. It’s a bit gimmicky but good fun. Times vary throughout the year, so check on the website before going!
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#7 Go tax-free shopping
Eilat is a tax-free zone making it the destination for a shopping spree in Israel. Best place to head? I’d suggest Big Eilat or the Ice Mall for the largest shopping centres in the area.
#8 Swim with wild dolphins
I love Dolphin Reef….a place that is working to build mutual respect between dolphins and people. The dolphins here are wild. You can visit for a day of snorkelling and watching the dolphins from the observation deck. Or sign up to snorkel or dive with the dolphins.
#9 Do a glass-bottom boat tour
Eilat offers a lot of boat tours from 2-hour cruises to speed boat experiences. I’d personally suggest taking Eilat Yam‘s glass-bottom boat tour. Don’t expect to see a lot! Instead, relax and enjoy a bit of time on the water.
#10 Wander Eilat’s promenade
Head to Eilat’s promenade in the evening for funfair rides, live performers and restaurants.
#11 Hike the Eilat mountains
Sat right behind the resort of Eilat is a range of beautiful mountains. There are dozens of hikes that can be done in the area from short 1hour loops to full-day trips. Ask your hotel for guides and maps for the Eilat Mountains. Make sure you pack plenty of sun protection and water and tell someone where you intend to go and when they should expect you back.
#12 Do a freediving course
I did a freediving course in Eilat and absolutely loved it. Learn with the Israeli freediving record holder, Alon Rivkind. By the end of the 3-day beginners course, I swam to 20 metres on one breath.
#13 Catch some live music
Eilat has a bustling evening scene. The best places to head for live music is the Three Monkey’s Pub or Mike’s Place.
#14 Eat in Eilat’s highest-rated restaurants
Eilat has some great places to eat. Some of the highest-rated and most special restaurants are:
- Pastory (Italian & Seafood)
- Omers (Israeli)
- Pastory (Italian)
- Fast Habesh (Ethiopian)
- Whale Burger (Mediterranean and Street Food)
Things to do near Eilat
While Eilat has enough activities to keep you busy for a few days, it is also a great base for exploring further afield. Here are the best things to do near and from Eilat:
#15 Explore Timna National Park
Timna is one of Israel’s most beautiful National Parks. It takes about 25minutes to drive there from Eilat and is a must-see attraction.
#16 Do a car safari
Yotvata Hai Bar Wildlife Reserve is a short drive from Eilat. The reserve is slowly reintroducing wildlife back into the region. You can go on a safari, and while sightings aren’t guaranteed, you might spot antelope, vultures and ostriches!
#17 Do a Jeep Safari
Shanti Jeep Safari are one of the best companies in the area offering nighttime and daytime safaris into the Negev desert. Have fun driving over sand dunes while also spotting wildlife and interesting sites in the area.
#18 Visit Petra in Jordan
Eilat is a great place to join a tour to visit Petra (in Jordan) as you are right on the border with Jordan. The tours are usually done over 2 days and I highly recommend using Abraham Hostel Tours.
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