I stayed in Old Jaffa neighborhood, the old port city, and it was very charming and instagrammable. I’d definitely recommend it since it’s close to the beach, has lots of great food options, and a hipster vibe. Tel Aviv itself is like any western city but with more religious innuendo. It’s very safe and has a lot to offer tourists. From Tel Aviv, I did three day trips out to explore Israel:
- Masada & Dead Sea
- Nazareth, Tiberias & Sea of Galilee
- Jerusalem & Bethlehem
Each of these tours can be purchase individually from Travel Israel or Abrahm Tours. Both companies also offer day trips to a variety of other locations, it all depends upon what you’re interested in. Israel is a small country and easy to use one city as your base and travel out on day trips.
- Deade Sea
2. Sea of Galilee
St. Peter’s Fish
Given the Jewish slant to all my tours, I took extra time to explore Jerusalem and Bethlehem on my own. I crossed at the 300 security checkpoint into Bethlehem by myself with no problem and walked to Banksy’ hotel – Walled Off Hotel. My trip to Bethlehem will be one of those experiences that will stay with me forever. The plight of the Palestinians break my heart. Their voice is not loud enough to be heard around the world. People must visit to learn for themselves.
I took the Green Olive Tours recommended by the Walled Off Hotel, and I highly recommend it. I left Israel with more questions than I arrived with, but coming showed me that there is more to what we see on the news. It is important to witness it in person.
If you aren’t interested in the political history, Banksy’s artwork is spectacular and worth visiting in person. You can walk up to his paintings on the sidewalk, a few pieces walking distance from the Walled Off Hotel.