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Don’t be afraid if you see “Hebrew” we will be glad to respond in English…
The local MTB community welcomes overseas riders and is looking forward to helping with accommodations, planning the stay, and things to do before and after the challenge. Keep the dialogue open at the FB group!
Assuming you are arriving by air (not that you have any other option…) you will be landing at Ben-Gurion airport which is not far from Tel Aviv. You are heading to the starting line located at Majdal Shams. A lovely Druze town where you can relax and enjoy the lovely scenery and the great local cuisine. It is a long ride that covers quite a long journey, relax and take your time as you will pass along some sections of the route of the HLC.
From the airport the best way to get to Migdal Shams (note – in some cases spelled “Majdal Shams” on the schedules) is the following:
1. From “Ben Gurion Airport” take a bus to “Tel Aviv Central bus station” – estimated travel time 30 min
2. From “Tel Aviv Central bus station” take a bus “Eged 845” to “Kiryat Shmona” – estimated travel time 3:30 hours
3. From “Kiryat Shmona” you will need to change bus, take “Line Route 58 Golan” to Migdal Shams – estimated travel time 30 min
Check here for schedule
Note – does not include transfer time between busses
Once you have arrived to Eilat relax and start planning the way out to the airport or to whatever your destination might be. You may want to consider staying couple of days in Eilat or just spend the time in Tel Aviv.
You have two options to return to Tel Aviv:
1. Flight – scheduled daily flights leave Eilat towards “Tel Aviv Sde Dov” located within Tel Aviv city, you went by it when riding this section or “Tel Aviv Ben Gurion” if you have a connection flight to catch. Check here for schedule for Arkia Airlines or schedule for Israir Airlines
2. Bus – you have many daily busses leaving Eilat towards Eilat, check here for schedule
While there are no additional charges taking your bike on the bus, you may have to pay additional charges if you choose to fly.
The best period to ride across Israel is generally during April. Not too hot in the south and low probability of rain in the North.
During the day, average temp of 25 celsius in the North and low 30 in the South. At night the temp falls and can get to around the 10 celsius.
Low probability of rain in the North but occasional rain during this season may occur, while close to zero probability in the South.
The route was planned to provide maximum safety for all riders and as such it is safe to bivy with common sense everywhere. Clearly, when crossing more populated areas, as with any event, bivy is less recommended, but crashing for the night in a room at a small guest B&B / zimmer can be an option. We are aiming to provide a list of accommodation along the route though bivy is the way to go!
A word about language, most people is Israel speak reasonably good english. We don’t think the language is going to be part of the challenge….actually promise we it would not be!
We don’t think any particular gear is required to ride in Israel. Any kit you are familiar and comfortable with for your bike-packing riding will be fine. May be more space for liquids for the southern section, but we don’t think its going to be an issue.
Updated information, please visit the “Tracking” page.