Categories: Southern Israel

Ancient Nabataean City of Avdat : Israeli Negev

Avdat, an ancient city at the heart of the Israeli Negev dating back to 7th century BC was built by the Nabataeans – the world famous traders based in Petra (one of newly announced wonders of the world) who built magnificent thriving cities in the middle of the bare desert. Since the Nabataeans it’s also been used as a trade post by the Romans and the Byzantines till it was destroyed by an earthquake during 7th century. Relatively recently it was dug up, and even declared a UNESCO World Heritage Site, exposing a magnificent site. Visiting there recently I couldn’t believe I’ve never heard about it before. What ignorance.

 

But in a way I was a bit too late. It pained me greatly to discover that the site was recently vandalized by two local Bedouins as a payback for the destruction of structures in their local village. The Israeli government, UNESCO and others are trying to restore things back to how they were, but restoration requires millions in funding that no one has and most likely that even with that it would never be quite the same again.

 

Yet, even so, it’s still a remarkable place to visit if you’re venturing across the Israeli Negev, full of history and mystery.

 

The Nabateans traders…

Ancient Nabataean City of Avdat : Israeli Negev

Ancient Nabataean City of Avdat : Israeli Negev

Ancient Nabataean City of Avdat : Israeli Negev

 

… were quite an interesting bunch. They knew how to adjust to the local desert environment when no one else would or could, and they had a sense for picking strategic locations that make for some really spectacular sites.

 

There are quite a few important historic artifacts to see, like this Greek-Nabataean stone inscription on top of the entrance to one of the structures…

Ancient Nabataean City of Avdat : Israeli Negev

 

The view extending to the desert, is breathtaking…

Ancient Nabataean City of Avdat : Israeli Negev 

 

And you can get a feel of what living in a city could have been back then…

Ancient Nabataean City of Avdat : Israeli Negev

Ancient Nabataean City of Avdat : Israeli Negev

Ancient Nabataean City of Avdat : Israeli Negev

Ancient Nabataean City of Avdat : Israeli Negev

Ancient Nabataean City of Avdat : Israeli Negev

Ancient Nabataean City of Avdat : Israeli Negev

Ancient Nabataean City of Avdat : Israeli Negev

Ancient Nabataean City of Avdat : Israeli Negev

Ancient Nabataean City of Avdat : Israeli Negev

Ancient Nabataean City of Avdat : Israeli Negev

Ancient Nabataean City of Avdat : Israeli Negev

Ancient Nabataean City of Avdat : Israeli Negev

Ancient Nabataean City of Avdat : Israeli Negev

 

The nearby museum offers a model and an introduction movie…

Ancient Nabataean City of Avdat : Israeli Negev

 

And to wrap things up… a panorama.

Ancient Nabataean City of Avdat : Israeli Negev

 

If you’re in the area – a must visit.

 

More on Advat:

visions

Share
Published by
visions

Recent Posts

Opera House : Zhuhai China

Opera House : Zhuhai China

An unexpected treat in my last visit to Zhuhai was the futuristic Zhihai Opera House. These are visible almost from…

3 hours ago
Visions of Mdina Old Town : Malta

Visions of Mdina Old Town : Malta

Mdina is an 8th century fortified town near the center of Malta, with well preserved city walls and picturesque old…

3 hours ago
Visions of Maribor : Slovenia

Visions of Maribor : Slovenia

Maribor is a sleepy little town in Slovenia, on the border with Austria. Only stopped here briefly before crossing the…

1 day ago
Visions of Stockholm : Sweden

Visions of Stockholm : Sweden

Been hoping to see Sweden for quite some time, but it was only recently in an invite to Linkoping that…

1 day ago
Visions of Linkoping : Sweden

Visions of Linkoping : Sweden

When visiting a conference in Rotterdam beginning of summer I got an unexpected opportunity being invited to visit Sweden. I…

6 days ago
Visions of Rijeka : Croatia

Visions of Rijeka : Croatia

After a cold weekend in mid-summer at the Netherlands, I decided it was time to warm up, and headed down…

2 weeks ago
Facebook Iconfacebook like buttonTwitter Icontwitter follow buttonVisions of Travel InstagramVisions of Travel InstagramVisions of Travel Instagram