The Sayif travertines and lacustrine limestones cropping out in the northern Arava Valley, a region of extreme aridity, have been dated by the 230Th 234U disequilibrium method. The consistency between the stratigraphic position and the apparent ages at each of the sampling sites strongly supports the reliability of the ages. Most of the ages fall within two clusters that are coincident with ages representative of oceanic oxygen-isotope stages 5 and 7. The colder intervening stage 6 was not a period of substantial travertine formation. During the warmer global episodes of isotopic stages 5 and 7 the arid south of Israel apparently was considerably wetter than at present.