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Israel: Beyond the Holy Sites

Israel offers more than pilgrimages to holy places like the Dome of the Rock and the Wailing Wall. In Jerusalem, stroll Wohl Rose Garden (better than a bouquet any day) and marvel at the nocturnal light show screened on the Tower of David’s walls. Explore Tel Aviv’s galleries and museums, or sight “sea” with a swim in the Sea of Galilee, scuba diving in the Red Sea, a salty soak in the Dead Sea, and windsurfing off Beit Yanai Beach.

Some Experiences in Israel Beyond the Holy Sites

Tasty Treats in Levinsky Market
Join your local guide on a tasting tour through colourful Levinsky Market, one of the best places in Israel to procure spices, dried fruit and migrant cuisine. Your day of discovery also includes a visit to Neve Tzedek, Tel Aviv’s first neighbourhood, noted for its Bauhaus architecture, and a private tour of Jaffa’s Ilana Goor Museum, followed by cocktails on the patio.

Burma Road and Beyond by Jeep
Climb into a Jeep for a jaunt along the Burma Road, built by Israeli forces during the 1948 Siege of Jerusalem. Continue to the Valley of Ella, famous for its wines; there, enjoy a tour and tasting at a few boutique wineries. You’ll have lunch at one winery, then head out again to view Scroll of Fire, a breathtaking sculpture located in the Martyrs’ Forest.

The Writing’s on the Wall
Explore one of southern Tel Aviv’s bohemian neighbourhoods and learn how to decipher some of the abundant Hebrew graffiti common to this area. Afterward, visit the ancient Crusader town of Caesarea and the hillside artists’ colony at Ein Hod, where you’ll stop by the galleries of several Israeli and international artists.

Sifting Through History
Join Dr. Gabai Barkai in Emek Tzurim National Park to search for ancient artifacts on the Temple Mount. This project at the foot of the Mount of Olives has uncovered thousands of items. Then meet a Holocaust survivor for a humbling tour of the Yad Vashem Holocaust Memorial. End the day with a visit to the Machane Yehuda market to sample a variety of delicacies.