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Avdat National Park in the Negev is home to the remains of a Nabatean city which was found on the Incense Route; the road by which incense, perfumes and spices were brought from Arabia through the Negev and to the Mediterranean ports. Avdat was named after the Nabatean king Oboda who was buried there. the city flourished between the thirtieth and ninth century BCE, was destroyed in the second half of the first century BCE, only to be rebuilt by the last Nabbatean king, Rabbel. The Roman Empire took over the region in 106 CE and Avdat flourished until it was conquered in the seventh century by Arabs. There were almost no remains of the Nabatean temple in Avdat but its gateway has been resorted and allows visitors to imagine its magnificence. The temple would have enjoyed a stunning view of the Avdat highlands and the Even-Ari farm where Byzantine-era agricultural techniques developed by the Nabateans are reconstructed. Visitors can also see a Roman bathhouse and Roman watchtower with an inscription from the third century CE. Also, a cave-tomb including 21 burial niches can be viewed and caves that were used as cisterns, tombs and storerooms. There is a Byzantine winepress that is sometimes used to reconstruct ancient wine-production techniques. There are also churches from the fourth century and a display of antiques in the visitor's center. Visitors can learn about the Incense Route via a short film in the visitor center.
address: Located on road number 40, a fifteen-minute drive south of Sde Boker.
Open Hours: Apr-Sep 8:00-17:00, Oct-Mar 8:00-16:00, Fri and Holiday Eves 8:00-15:00
Categories : Nature Parks
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