Eilat has an oversupply of comfy, but predictable modern hotels in various price ranges. Most are not directly on Eilat’s beachfront, but are short walks to the sea. During holiday periods, Eilat hotels can be mobbed and overpriced, but at other times, at least some of the city’s hotels will be offering great Internet deals. A lot of Eilat’s hotels are all inclusive, which means a running medley of meals and snacks is included in the rate.
There are three main hotels areas:
North Beach is a lively (but noisy) hotel area packed with shops, restaurants, nightclubs, and discos, both attached to and separate from hotels. This area is within walking distance of the spread-out downtown part of Eilat, especially in the relative cool of the evenings. Coral Beach is a quieter, more spread-out hotel area near the Coral Beach National Park, several miles south of town. For those into exploring the reefs, this is a good choice, as North Beach is basically coral free. Bus no. 15 connects Coral Beach to North Beach and the bus station. The downtown/bus station area is about a 15-minute walk to North Beach and contains numerous private hostels; the Eilat Tourist Information Center is the place to check on which are currently up to standard. You can also gather information there about rooms in private homes and rental apartments. Less expensive hotels, most with pools, can also be found in this district. If you're just looking for an air-conditioned room from which to sample Eilat, or a place to crash en route to Jordan or Sinai, this is where to look.
Near the New Tourist Center
The New Tourist Center (note that this neighborhood has nothing to do with the actual tourist information center, which is located elsewhere), right across (west of) the main highway from North Beach at the corner of Derech Ha-Arava and Derech Yotam, is a useful landmark and a prime nightlife area for Eilat's younger crowd.
North Beach/North Shore Area
This is the high-powered, high-priced hotel district covering the area from the northern shore of the Red Sea inland to the local Eilat airport. Most of the hotels here are mammoth blockbusters, although here and there a smaller holdover from pre-1993 Eilat has survived. An artificial lagoon has been created in the heart of this neighborhood, but it's not for swimming. A few hotels are right on the beach, but most hotels (including some of the most expensive) are anywhere from 1 to 4 blocks inland.
Coral Beach & South to the Border
The hotels down here are away from the tourist crush of the downtown and North Beach sections of Eilat. They're convenient to the Coral Beach Nature Reserve and to smaller reefs good for snorkeling, as well as to a number of diving centers and a small group of restaurants. The no. 15 municipal bus brings you here from central Eilat.
Just Across the Border: Taba, Egypt
Just across the Israeli-Egyptian frontier at the southern edge of Eilat, Taba came under Israeli occupation, along with the rest of Sinai, at the end of the 1967 Six-Day War. When Israel returned the Sinai Peninsula to Egypt as part of the Camp David peace accords in the early 1980s, Taba remained in dispute. International arbitration in the late 1980s decided in favor of Egypt, but by then it had become a very valuable few acres, encompassing the site of the Taba Hilton, which visitors and residents alike had come to think of as a southern precinct of Eilat. Today, travelers from Eilat can pass across the border to the Taba Hilton for a few hours to visit the Taba Hilton's Casino without a visa -- just show your passport at the crossing point. But to venture into Sinai beyond Taba requires a special visa. Guests at the Taba Hilton may and frequently do walk the few hundred feet across the border and taxi or bus into Eilat for shopping or dinner; however, Egyptian rental cars may not currently be taken across the border, nor can Israeli rental cars be taken out of Israel. Note: The Hilton (known also as the Taba Hilton Resort) was the victim of a terror bombing in 2004, probably because it was a favorite with Israelis and made an unusual and easy target just outside the protection of tight Israeli security (note that Egyptian security, even now, is not the equal of that in Israel).
Note: This information was accurate when it was published, but can change without notice. Please be sure to confirm all rates and details directly with the companies in question before planning your trip.