My wife and I were able to get some last minute time off from work around a family wedding in NY. We thought it would be fun to wrap in a new destination and continue our great trips. With about 3 weeks to plan a whirlwind 6 day tour, Joe Yudin and Touring Israel came up BIG! What an outstanding trip to Israel!!! This was our first time in Israel - and we can't wait to go back!
Joe and his team put together a fantastic itinerary for us - we only had a few days as I mentioned, and they managed to cram in an amazing amount of stuff for us to see and do and EAT (thanks, Yasmin for all the restaurant recommendations and bookings!).
Our guide, Gil Haran, was wonderful! We truly enjoyed spending time with him, and learning about Israel and many thousands of years of history. Gil also shared many personal stories about his life and that of his family which also helped bring many of the stories and places to life. As Gil mentioned to us, there are a lot of old things to see in Israel, but it is the stories behind them that make them interesting. Gil is a former medic/paratrooper, about 6' 5", and as full of energy as anyone we've ever encountered. It's like spending time with a long lost family member - and a history book with a smile. I would definitely recommend Gil as a guide for anyone who has a desire to learn about what makes the places you visit on the tour special - and for a complete history, regardless of religious or political orientation (we covered a lot of Jewish, Christian/Catholic, and Muslim topics/places - and we talked a lot about past and current events). Gil also gave us his opinion (and stated it as such) on many topics - from politics to interpreting the meaning of some of the sites. This was great as it caused us to have some very interesting discussions and also to consider alternate views. A lot of fun as we traveled throughout the various stops.
It's hard to see everything in Israel - especially on a short trip - but if you're up for a bit of intensity, you can try! We saw Caesaria, Haifa, Nazareth, Zichron Yaakov (very cool place!), Tiberias, an architectural dig at Migdal, Capernaum, Safed, Golan Heights, Masada, the Dead Sea (great experience to bob along in the water - and what a great view), Ein Gedi Oasis, City of David and underground tunnels, South Wall Excavations, Hurva Synagogue, Israel Museum (and Dead Sea Scrolls), exploring the Jewish Quarter, Western Wall and tunnels, Via Dolorosa, Arab Market, Church of the Holy Sepulcher, Yad Vashem, and a little casual time in Tel Aviv (Old Jaffa, Train Station, Palmach Museum).
We definitely recommend taking a tour with Touring Israel! You will have a great trip!
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC