Israel December 2010 trip notes w/recommendations

Dec 29th, 2010, 04:38 AM
  #1  
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Join Date: Aug 2003
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Israel December 2010 trip notes w/recommendations

Just (barely) got back from Israel. Went to Tel Aviv, Galilee, Jerusalem, Bethlehem. We would like to highly recommend the services of two independent guides. David Gurevich for Galilee and Jerusalem at [email protected] and for getting around Bethlehem and Palestine Sam Salem at [email protected]. These are two keepers.

We are independent travelers and made our way around Tel Aviv (port of Jaffa, Carmel market) using the shared ride sheroot transportation. Hotel recommend is Tal Hotel. There's not a lot in this city which is a cross between Los Angeles and Panama City, FL.

We picked up a car rental with David and saw Caesarea, Mt. Carmel, Nazareth (which is 98% traffic and 2% sites to see.) Some people parachute, some run marathons, I rent cars in foreign countries for a rush.

Spent night at Hotel Ramot in northeast Galilee, the most peaceful view in the world. Then hit all holy sites in Galilee and made it to Beit Shean which is the coolest archeology dig we've seen since Pompeii.

We rented an apartment in Jerusalem that was superlative. VRBO.com number 191207. Right by pleasant Arab neighborhood at Damascus Gate. Ate at Al-Quds daily. David took us through each step from Mt. Olives to Church of Holy Sepulchre. Don't miss the "disputed ladder" story.

Sam took us into Palestine including Herodian and then Bethlehem. He knows everyone. Then we hit Masada and Dead Sea.

Advisories: Watch Friday nights and Saturdays are shabbat and things close. Don't answer questions that weren't asked by soldiers or customs people. Tell your guides to avoid "bus stop restaurants." There are no Starbucks in Israel. And fill up on Taco Bell before you go (you will miss it amongst all the hummus.) Travel while you're young (these hills will kill your knees).

Sam was extremely helpful is getting us accommodations when weather cancelled our flights. BTW, St. George's Guest House is a great place to stay, especially for families.

This is my second time to Israel and it just keeps getting better.

Nashville, TN, December 2010
Semiretired is offline  
Dec 29th, 2010, 05:12 AM
  #2  
 
Join Date: Dec 2010
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Please clarify what you mean by "there's not a lot in this city" WRT Tel Aviv. It is Israel's cultural, culinary, and financial hub. IMO, it is more comparable to a medium-sized European city, than to any US city.
seb731 is offline  
Dec 29th, 2010, 05:30 AM
  #3  
 
Join Date: Sep 2005
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Taco Bell ?!?!?!?! You are on vacation to experience something different
Just out of curiosity, who asked you what questions?
mbgg is offline  
Dec 30th, 2010, 07:41 PM
  #4  
 
Join Date: Jul 2010
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Thanks for sharing your experiences and so glad you had a wonderful time.

I must point out that Sam Salem is not a licensed tour guide and as such is not legally permitted to guide. This has nothing to do with his knowledge or guiding, however, without a license he is apt to be stopped and you will be left without a guide in the middle of your tour.

Also - there is no such legal entity as Palestine. There are areas that under the Palestinian Authority such as Bethlehem, Ramallah and Jericho. Herodian is in Israel and requires no special arrangements to visit there.
Oreet is offline  
Jan 1st, 2011, 08:46 AM
  #5  
 
Join Date: May 2009
Posts: 233
There's not a lot in this city"- Tel Aviv????????????

You had the wrong guide!!!!!!!!!!!
yasronit is offline  
Jan 1st, 2011, 11:34 AM
  #6  
 
Join Date: Nov 2003
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Love the 'Advisories', LOL. Very practical.
Femi is offline  

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