Red Canyon In Eilat Mountains – Full Guide


Red Canyon

Join us for a hike at the Red Canyon. But first let’s start with the basics: directions (shuttle, bus), trails, hours, and when to visit.

Map

The Red Canyon located around 23 km from Eilat (on-road #12). And if you are reaching by car, then the drive from Eilat will take about 20 min.

Map of the area:

Directions

There are several options to get there. Let’s go over them.

By Car

Reaching the Red Canyon by car is the fastest and one of the cheapest options. We entered “Red Canyon” into Waze, and it led us to the parking lot.

Shuttle

I saw online that there is a shuttle from Eilat to the Red Canyon and back. But keep in mind that at least currently, it is not available all year round. You can find additional details here.

Bus

If you are considering public transport, then the closest stop is bus #392. Route 392, stops on road #12 about 2 km from the starting point of the Red Canyon trail. So if you travel by bus, it will add an extra 4 km to your hike. You can find directions at this Moovit link (just update your starting point).

Taxi

Getting to and from the Red Canyon by taxi is the most expensive option. Moreover, if you are planning to call a taxi when you finish the trail, then I should warn you, not at all places in the mountains there is cellular reception.

Entrance Fee

Free.

Opening Hours

You can visit this Nature Reserve during the daytime. And since it is very close to the border with Egypt, after dark, you can be only in authorized campgrounds. Furthermore, since you have to finish the trail before dark, you have to start it at least two hours before the sunset. And this leads us to the next question.

When To Visit The Red Canyon?

First, let’s start with the season. During the summer, it is boiling there. Thus I would suggest any other season. And preferably winter. But one important note, do not hike after and during rains. Though wet stones are problematic, the real concern is flooding. And flooding in a narrow canyon can be lethal.

Regarding the time of day, I would suggest coming early. The earlier, the better. I advise early morning since first of all, it is not as hot during those hours. And secondly, there will be fewer people. Significant parts of this trail go through the narrow canyon and include multiple ladders. Thus, if you get stuck after a big group of people, that makes selfies every several meters, the hike will take more time than expected.

The photos you will see in this post are from our last visit. It was on a sunny day in December, and we started the hike at 8 am.

Trails

The sign at the parking:

Red Canyon at Eilat mountains, Israel
Map of the Red Canyon

Note: you can click on the image above to enlarge it.

We did not have additional maps, and the marking of the trails is clear. So we decided to go with the green path until it meets the black way for the second time. Then, return using the black, green, and blue trails. As you can see, it is a circular trail, where you walk through the same small part of the green twice.

How Much Time Does The Red Canyon Trail Take?

The trail as I described it above, took us 1.5 hours. Depending on your speed, amount of people, and the number of photographs, this trail should take 1 – 2 hours.

Green Trail

Shani stream, which originates at Egypt, undercuts colorful sandstone and creates the Red Canyon. When the volcanic granite rock erodes, the quartz in it survives mechanical wear and chemical decomposition. Sandstone is made of those same surviving quartz crystals, and its red color derives from the presence of iron compounds.

Here we are on the green path looking back towards parking.

Red Canyon at Eilat mountains, Israel
Visiting Red Canyon at Eilat mountains, Israel

Red Canyon trail starts with a light path along hills.

Visiting Red Canyon at Eilat mountains, Israel

After a while, we start to see red rocks.

Visiting Red Canyon at Eilat mountains, Israel

Inside The Red Canyon

Visiting Red Canyon at Eilat mountains, Israel
Inside The Red Canyon

Then the green trail leads you inside a narrow canyon.

Red Canyon at Eilat mountains, Israel
Red Canyon at Eilat mountains

And you start going down and down.

Red Canyon at Eilat mountains, Israel
Visiting Red Canyon at Eilat mountains, Israel

In the beginning, you climb over rocks as you go down, and then you start using metal ladders.

Visiting Red Canyon at Eilat mountains, Israel
Looking up

The trail inside the narrow canyon is not long, and it took us about twenty minutes to pass it (this includes my photo and video stops). When you exit the narrow part of the canyon, you will signs (bottom left), that tell you to turn right. These signs lead you back using the black trail.

Black Trail

The black trail leads back, along the upper rim of the canyon (while the green one passes inside).

Red Canyon at Eilat mountains, Israel

It seems that the Red Canyon is #instafamous. These youngsters were taking selfies frequently. And since there were about a dozen of them, jams were created. But, this gave me additional time to photograph 😉

Visiting Red Canyon at Eilat mountains, Israel

After climbing the ladder from the previous photo, you will to the top of the narrow canyon.

Red Canyon at Eilat mountains, Israel

From there, there are no more ladders, and it is a simple walk along the side of the canyon.

Red Canyon at Eilat mountains, Israel
At the Black Trail in Red Canyon

Looking back.

Visiting Red Canyon at Eilat mountains, Israel
Visiting Red Canyon at Eilat mountains, Israel

Around this point, our root, rejoined with the green trail. And then we took the blue one back to the parking.

Red Canyon at Eilat mountains, Israel

Common Questions

How do I get to the red canyon from Eilat?

You can get by car, shuttle, bus #392 or taxi. See the full answer at the “Directions” section above.

What is there to do in Red Canyon?

Hike and enjoy nature.

What are the opening hours of the Red Canyon?

Red Canyon Nature Reserve has no opening hours. In other words, it is always open. But for security reasons, after dark, you can be only in authorized campgrounds.

What are the things to do in Eilat and its surroundings?

The most popular attractions in Eilat are Underwater Observatory Marine Park and Dolphin Reef. Near the southern city, Timna Park is one of the beloved places. You can find additional information at the Eilat guide.

Summary

The Red Canyon Trail took us about one and a half hours. Though there were several ladders on the way, my daughter, who is in the first grade, had no difficulties in completing the track.

We enjoyed this route, and this is probably one of the most beautiful trails in Israel. Moreover, it is cyclic and not extended. Thus, families with children and less fit people can appreciate it as well. I highly recommended it.

Have you ever hiked at the Red Canyon? Tell us about your experience in the comments below.

That’s all for today, and I’ll see you in future travels!

Stay Tuned!

   

Additional Resources

Here are several resources that I created to help travelers: And if you have any questions then check out Useful Information For Tourists To Israel.  
Did not find what you were looking for? Email me at hi@israel-in-photos.com, and I will do my best to answer your questions.

Lev Tsimbler

Lev from israel-in-photos.com. You can contact me at hi@israel-in-photos.com

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