Israel is a country in the Middle East at the Mediterranean Sea. It is the land of cultures, empires and religions since the beginning of history.

Jerusalem

Jerusalem is the holy city of religions. Impressive was the Church of the Holy Sepulcher, the place where Christ of Nazareth was crucified, buried and revived. It is the holiest place of Christianity. The next highlight was the Western Wall, it is considered sacred, as it was connected to the Temple Mount.

Tel Aviv

The Mediterranean capital Tel Aviv impresses with the district of Jaffa, which is located directly on the Mediterranean Sea.

Travel Tips

Planning

  • I flew from Cyprus with Ryanair to Tel Aviv for less than 20 € to Ben Gurion Airport. My first destination was Jerusalem, where I stayed at Abraham Hostel to do a three-day tour to Jordan the next day. From the airport you can either take a shared taxi that will take you directly to your accommodation in Jerusalem. This costs around 16 € and you have to follow the signs to the buses at the airport. A slightly cheaper option is to take public bus 485. This is a modern coach and runs every hour. Finding the stop is not easy, you only pay 16 NIS (about 4 €). You have to buy the ticket directly on the bus and it can only be paid with NIS. Therefore, you have to withdraw money from an ATM at the airport. I took the bus 485 and it takes you directly to the bus station in Jerusalem. From there I walked in 15 minutes to the Abraham Hostel. I prefer to walk the last few miles instead of using public transportation or a taxi. This gives me the opportunity to explore the area and get used to a new city. Alternatively, you can use the tram. There is only one in Jerusalem and you have to go in the direction of the old town. When I arrived at the Abraham Hostel, I was astonished how many Germans worked there. It felt half the staff was from Germany and after a short conversation it turned out that many of the guests from Germany. The next morning the guided tour to Jordan started at 6 o’clock.
  • After the 3-day trip I arrived back in Jerusalem. In Jordan, I had unique impressions and explored fascinating places like the rock city Petra and the fire-red desert Wadi Rum with dramatic mountain formations. The next day I started after a good breakfast in the hostel my sightseeing tour. Travelers from the Jordan Tour have advised me to start exploring Jerusalem as early as possible, when there is still little going on. Their recommendation was already 5 o’clock, but I was so tired from the previous day that I started at 9 o’clock. At this time, it was still OK to explore the old town, but by noon, everything was already overrun with tourists. I was there on a Friday and the area with the Dome of the Rock and Temple Mount were unfortunately closed and only accessible to Muslims. The next day I took the shuttle bus from the hostel directly to the Abraham Hostel in Tel Aviv. I made a trip to Jaffa, which is right on the Mediterranean Sea. In the evening I went to the city center and the next morning with the plane over Istanbul to Germany.

Transport

  • You are very likely to arrive and depart from the airport in Tel Aviv. Israel has one of the strictest security controls and you have to plan extra time. Your passport will be checked very closely and if something is wrong, it will be followed by a hearing. On departure, the security check is very strict and you have to be at the airport at least 3 hours before departure. Your passport will be checked and you must answer questions about why you were in Israel and what you did. The baggage security check takes a long time, because your entire electronics baggage, such as headphones and cables, is checked for explosives. My flight left at 7:20, and I was already at 4:20 at the airport. The time was just enough for me to get through the security check and I had to go straight to the gate.

Do you have questions to plan your trip or suggestions? I'm looking forward to your commentary.

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