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  • Dalit Gliksman

A Trip to The Middle East

Updated: Jan 11, 2020

Israel is the hottest destination in recent years, and honestly, I understand why.

Because it's a tiny little country, nowhere is too far to reach. Public Transportation is limited during the weekend so I recommend renting a car for the North and South parts.

Here is some top recommendation from an Israeli Pro.

Central Israel - Tel Aviv- Jaffa

Stay at the coolest hostel in town- Abraham Hostel.

Dizengoff street; young vibes area with bars, restaurants and lot's of shopping.

Visit Jaffe's old port and flea market; explore the beautiful promenade with local fisherman trying their luck, shop the boutique store in Jaffa's flea market. Keep walking towards Neve Tzedek and the Old Train Station.

Spend a morning at Florentin neighborhood and Levinsky Market.

Walk the beautiful Rothschild Boulevard for evening hang out. Spend the day at Gordon Beach and Marina. Eat lunch at Ha'Carmel Market and shop at Shenkin street.

F O O D; Israel is all about the food. We love eating, and when we're not eating we are planing our next meal.

There are sooo many delicious restaurants in Tel Aviv, it's very hard to pick only a few -

Pizza Lila is definitely the best pizza I ever had, good vibes and romantic setting

The Urban Bakery- a hidden french gem near Jaffa (go to Nitsana street location) and don't miss a short visit in the American German Colony neighborhood.

Disco Tokyo for Asian style dinner with fun vibes

Claro; restaurant (near Sarona Market) one of my favorite

Night Kitchen for a fun evening and sharing dishes

Hotel Montefiore for the greatest breakfast

Norman for a fancy dinner

Cicchetti for Italian cuisine

Shato Shual Wine Bar for fine wine and snacks

223 for cocktails lovers

Thailand House for Asian cuisine

Kab Kam for some more Thai food

Taizu - Asian. must try

Gordon Beach, Tel Aviv

Northern Israel - Haifa

On the way to Haifa, stop for lunch at Caesarea and visit Caesarea National Park.

Haifa is a mixed religion city, there are more than five different ethnic groups and religions living in the city. One of them is the Bahai faith community. Visit the Bahai Gardens (the best view is from downtown at the German Colony).

Bahai Gardens, Haifa

Masada Street, for the city's gay scene.

The German Colony; try Fattush restaurant or grab a bite at Brakha Sandwich.

Walk the old streets of Haifa downtown and enjoy the restaurants variety. Visit Haifa Flea Market and try Abu Maron Hummus.

Hike the Carmel Mountain or Spend a day at the Beach.

F O O D;

Talpiot Restaurant for fine dining

Pizzeria Talpiot- for lunch

Cafe Palmar for breakfast

Venya Bistro for lunch

Rola - for fine Arabic food

Milahouse Cafe- for the best spot to drink coffee, don't miss Bat Galim's promenade.

Golan Highest

Drive 2h north to Majdal Shams and Birkat Ram (Lake Ram) for a Druze village experience

Go on a wine tasting at Golan Highest Winery/ Odem Mount Winery /Pelter Winery (my favorite) This area is the capital of Israeli wine.

During the cherries and Berries season go on a fruit picking.

Hermon Mountain- our version of ski site. Take the lift to see the view of Golan Heights.

If medieval fortresses are your pleasure, then Nimrod Fortress is one not to miss.

Visit Mount Bental for a fabulous view.

The Wine Capital of Israel, Golan Highest

Jerusalem Eat breakfast at The American Colony Hotel.

Visit the Western Wall and Tunnels, explore David old city and the Tower Museum.

Mahne Yehuda Market for local food tasting, eat at Machne Yuda restaurant (book in advance)

Visit The Israel Museum for a taste of art.

F O O D;

Kadosh Cafe for the sweetest pastries

Muma Restaurant (outside of Jerusalem)

Cafe Shraga for breakfast or lunch

Satya for fancy dinner

Tacos Luis for lunch

Cohen's Deli for the best sandwiches

City of David, Jerusalem

From Jerusalem drive 30 min to the lowest place on earth (-417m below sea level) The Dead Sea, float in the salty water and cover your skin with the famous mud. I recommend Kalia beach.

The Dead Sea

Visit Enot Tsukim Nature Reserve for a bath in natural pools (Good for Kids). Drive another 50min along the coast of the Dead Sea to Masada National Park (UNESCO Heritage site).

Ein Avdat

Drive 2h south and stop at Ein Avdat National Park for a beautiful hike.

from Ein Avdat to Mitzpe Ramon; enjoy one-of-a-kind experience in Berersheet Hotel and Spa. It's pricey but worth it. Hike in Ramon crater ( the world’s largest erosion crater).

Beresheet Hotel and Spa, Mitzpe Ramon

One last beautiful stop is Timna Park for a colorful desert experience.

Eilat, Israel and Sinai peninsula, Egypt

If you're into diving in isolated island destination, head south to Sinai Egypt (cross the border through Eilat - Taba and check for visa requirements before you travel). Taxi's are available after the border. Dahab beach area (3h drive) has the most beautiful site for Safari Diving.

Eilat; enjoy the Red Sea shore, visit the Dolphin Reef beach and if you're lucky, you might meet the local tenants. Book a Watsu magical water treatment at the reef- highly recommended! Another cool beach is Mosh Beach.

The Dolphin Reef, Eilat

Sinai Peninsula, Egypt

If you're into a royal kingdom historic sites, visit Jordan. Cross the border near Eilat at Yitzhak Rabin terminal crossing to Petra, Jordan one of the oldest cities in the World. (Check for visa requirements). Hike amazing Wadi Rum and visit a 2000-years-old Byzantine empire ruins.

Petra, Jorden

The best month to visit the Middle East is May; warm enough to enjoy the beach and cool enough to hike the mountains while it still blooms and green. October-November has comfortable temperatures, avoid traveling during the Jewish holidays.

July-September is very hot and humid, so prepare for a summer trip.

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