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Saturday, August 23, 2014

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Israel hosting unique running competitions in 2014

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Showcasing its unique natural landscapes from the Galilee in the north to Jerusalem, Tel Aviv and the Judean and Negev Deserts in the south, Israel will host a variety of running competitions in early 2014.

The races include:

• the International Tiberias Marathon, Jan. 10;

• Israman and Ironman competition in Eilat, Jan. 17;

 • the Ein Gedi Experience – Half Marathon, Feb. 7-8;

• the Tel Aviv Samsung Marathon, Feb. 28;

• the Jerusalem International Marathon, March 21.

“We are very excited for next season’s diverse array of running marathons and athletic competitions,” said Ami Allon, consul for tourism, Israel Government Tourist Office – Canada. “We hope [they] will attract a new wave of active travellers to arrive in Israel.”

The 37th annual International Tiberias Marathon will bring runners to the Sea of Galilee, where they’ll run through the region’s awe-inspiring landscapes, rustic villages and past the historical landmarks of the Jordan Valley. The marathon is the “lowest” full marathon in the world at 650 feet below sea level and will bring participants through the main streets of Tiberias, crossing the Jordan River to Kibbutz Ein-Gev and back.

Ranked among the “Top 10 Best Long Distance Triathlons in the World” by Triathlete magazine, the annual Israman competition will challenge athletes from around the world with a 2.4-mile swim, 112-mile bike ride and 26.2-mile run in the Red Sea resort town of Eilat. The competition also offers a Half Israman triathlon, including a 1.1-mile swim, 56-mile bike ride and 13-mile run.

The International Ein Gedi Race will attract athletes from Israel and around the world for a unusual running experience along the Dead Sea, the lowest place on earth. The race will include a half marathon as well as a 6.2-mile run and 1.2-mile race for children.

The Ein Gedi experience also features the Masada Race, a 1.5-mile rocky uphill running competition that climbs 985 feet to the top of Masada, the 2,000-year-old desert mountaintop fortress.

The Tel Aviv Samsung Marathon is expected to attract tens of thousands of runners from Israel and around the world for an urban and beach-side running experience. The 26-mile run will pass through central streets in Tel Aviv and past the city’s collection of 4,000 Bauhaus architecture-style buildings, a UNESCO World Heritage Site, as well as the Mediterranean seaside promenade, Hayarkon Park and other major city landmarks.

On March 21, the third annual Jerusalem International Marathon will include 26-mile, 13-mile and 6.2-mile running routes through a unique course combing historic sites, beautiful landscapes and modern attractions, including the Old City of Jerusalem, Mount Scopus and Hebrew University, Sultan’s Pool, Mount Zion, American and German Colonies, the Alrov Mamilla outdoor mall and streets adjacent to the Machane Yehuda Market.

For more information, contact the Government of Israel Tourist Office at 416-964-3784.

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