Health resortsHealth resorts

  • Issue: August 1979
  • Designer: A. Kalderon

Israel is a country poor in natural resources but blessed with an abundance of sunshine and mineral springs rich in their healing properties. Even in biblical times we find references to disputes over the hot springs as various groups fought for control over their healing waters.

It was the Romans, however, who were the first to develop the springs and establish treatment centres and evidence of their work is to be found in the area of today's installations. The Roman emperors themselves were known to have undertaken treatment at these springs and as a result, their fame spread far and wide.

The modern development of the springs dates from 1932 when the thermal baths were constructed around the Tiberias hot springs. From then on, Israel has been known throughout the world as a Health Centre.

Israel's two principal Health Resorts are the Tiberias hot springs on Lake Kinneret (the Sea of Galilee) and the Dead Sea. Both Centres are in a continuous state of development so as to exploit to the full the natural healing resources available.

In 1973 official recognition was given to the importance of developing Israel's Health Resorts when the Knesset enacted a law for the establishment of the Health Resorts Authority which was entrusted with raising the standards of existing resorts, encouraging and planning the establishment of new resorts, carrying out and encouraging research into the therapeutic properties of the spring waters and encouraging spa tourism.

So far, the Israel Health Resorts have treated diseases of the muscles and joints, diseases of the skin - especially psoriasis and asthma. The Town of Arad which enjoys fresh dry air was planned from the beginning as a Health Resort especially for sufferers from asthma. The Health Resorts Authority is responsible for supervising the treatments given and ensuring that they are effective.

Next to the springs in Tiberias has sprung up one of the most modern and sophisticated thermal centres in the world, while plans are currently being prepared for constructing a Health Centre for the treatment of psoriasis on the shores of the Dead Sea.

A recent development has been the establishment of a new industry for the bottling of the mineral waters to be used locally for both prophylactic and healing purposes and also for export.

Israel is investing considerable sums in all the above developments as well as in research to find as yet unknown healing properties in the spring waters.

The Health Resorts Authority sees a great future for the development of Israel's Health Resorts which will not only contribute to the country's economic progress but will bring benefits to masses of people throughout the world.

The era of peace in the Middle East will undoubtedly affect Israel's Health Resort industry and plans are already being drawn up for professional cooperation with the neighbouring countries and for the development of tourism across the soon-to-be-open borders.

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Health resorts in Israel