The climb to Masada

Turn a “Standard” visit to Masada national park into an Unforgettable Hiking Experience!

Combine your visit to Masada with an exciting hike through the Roman siege camps. Get amazing views of Masada from different directions.

GALLERY =====>
Region – Judea Desert
Distance – 8.5 Km. (Short version 4.5 Km)
Add about 2 Km for tour in Masada
Accumulated Climb – 350 m.
Difficulty – Moderate.
For Private or Public transport directions, use Google Maps –
Masada Eastern Parking

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Get the Map & GPS Track for this hike ===>>

Masada is on the top of any shortlist and justly so. A trulry remarkable site!
The problem with such sites that they cam become over crowded and a little banal. 95% of the visitors visit Masada in one of 3 ways:

  1.  The most lazy ones take the cable car.
  2. The more active climb up the “Snake Path”
  3. The most ambitious climb the “Snake Path” to watch the sunrise over the Dead-Sea.

However, if you are a hiker you can turn a “standard” visit to Masada into a memorable and unique Hiking Experience.  Climb up the mountain on the ancient “Runners” path, visit Masada, then get down via Elazar mountain. You will visit the ruins of several Roman siege camps and get amazing views of Masada from different angles. You will also enjoy true desert atmosphere away for the crowds.

To get the most out of this route we suggest to learn a little about Masada and especially about the Roman siege.[ Masada (Wikipedia) / Siege on Masada (Wikipedia) ]

Track description:

  • For the short version finish the tour at Masada site and descend with the Cable Car.
  • Starting point –  parking area at Masada National Park (1). (entrance fee required)
  • Follow the signs to the “Snake Trail” on an unmarked dirt road for about 500 m until the junction with the ‡Red‡ marker. (2)
  • On your right you can see the ruins of a roman siege camp.
Roman Siege camp F at the foot of masada
Camp F By Ted Chi [CC BY 2.0] Wikimedia Commons
  • Turn right and follow the ‡Red‡ markers for about 1.3 Km until he junction with the ‡Green‡ marker. (3)
  • Turn left and follow the ‡Green‡ markers. You are now on the “Runner Trail”. This trail was used by the Roman messengers (runners) to pass information between the camps.
  • You climb steeply about 200 m. As you gain height you get a good view on the northern palace of Masada.
Masada Northern Palace
Northern Palace by Andrew Shiva / Wikipedia
  • At the top of the cliff the trail curves left. Continue with the ‡Green‡ markers until you reach the back (West) entrance to Masada. (4).
  • Turn left and ascend to Masada on the Ramp trail
  • Tour the site and walk down back to (4). (Or descend with the cable care if you choose the short version)
  • Turn Left and follow the ‡Red‡ markers into the Masada Wadi.
  • After about 750 m you will notice  that the Wadi makes a sharp left turn.
  • Leave the trail and follow the Wadi shortly until the big dry waterfall.
  • Enjoy the dramatic cliff and the great view down to the dead sea.
  • Continue with the the ‡Red‡ markers now into a short steep climb to the saddle of Elazar mountain (5).
  • Turn left on the ‡Black‡ markers to reach the top of Elazar mountain near the Ruins of the Roman Siege camp H.
View of Masada from Elazar Mountain
View From Elazar Mountain
  • Enjoy the view and imagine the Roman soldiers standing in the same spot.
  • The perfect place for a long break.
  • Continue for about 1.7 Km with the ‡Black‡ markers down steeply all the way to the starting point (1).

Topographic map with English labels and legend

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