We stayed in a kibbutz at Ein Gedi which was nice. I liked that we avoided the big 'glitzy' hotels on the dead sea and while it wasn't luxurious it was very comfortable. Plus, it was interesting to learn more about kibbutz life which is a big part of the culture in Israel and we were close to the Ein Gedi spa where we took a dip in the dead sea.
We stayed two nights, arriving the first afternoon from Petra and had enough time to go to the dead sea before dinner. Then we spent half of the next day hiking up to a nearby waterfall and the other half back at the spa. The next morning we headed back toward Jerusalem.