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Travelling soon - itinerary help

Amsterdam, The...
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Travelling soon - itinerary help

Hello Tripadvisors!

I am very much looking forward to visiting Israel for the third time, this time I will be travelling alone.

I am leaving on Thursdah 13th September arriving in Tel Aviv at 16:55 and leaving for the Netherlands on 24th September 2012.

I have a very short time to prepare this trip.

The last two times we visited Jerusalem quite extensively. This time I would like to travel around by public transport, not renting a car.

I was thinking of visiting a choice of Tel Aviv/Old Jaffa, Haifa, Caesarea, Massada, Tiberias, Nazareth, Sde Boker. Finally, I would like to stay the last few days in Jerusalem.

I would very very much appreciate input on how to put this in a schedule and would also be grateful if someone could offer some accomodation reccomendations. I need to book accomodations pretty soon.

Also I have noticed that Rosh Hashannah is form 16//18th September. Does this mean that public transport is not available?

kind regards,

Olaf

Tel Aviv, Israel
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1. Re: Travelling soon - itinerary help

On the 16th, as on the 14th and the 21st, buses and trains will stop running a couple of hours before sunset, and will resume operation an hour or two after sunset at the end of Shabbat and on the 18th, at the end of the 2-day holiday. However, there are Arab bus lines in the north and they will continue to operate on Shabbat and holidays, so you could probably get from Haifa or Akko to Nazareth and to Tiberias. For the rest, you need the Jewish bus/train routes or taxis. You will be here for 10 full days, of which 4 are Shabbat or holidays and 3 are Friday or holiday eve. It will be a bit of a challenge to get around.

Caesarea is best reached by train to a nearby station and then a taxi to the park. You would need to make arrangements with the driver to pick you up after your visit and drive you back to the train station. This is better as a day trip from either Tel Aviv or Haifa on a day when trains are running. There is no place to store your luggage if you are "between hotels."

You can get to Massada by public bus from Jerusalem, again only on those days with full operation (not Friday or holiday eves). Another alternative would be to take a bus tour to the Dead Sea for a day, from either Tel Aviv or Jerusalem.

Also note that we will be ending our summer time on the 20th, so sunset will be an hour earlier for your last few days here.

This is a very busy time, so I suggest you start making lodging reservations as soon as possible. Without knowing your budget, it is difficult to make any suggestions. Perhaps best would be to use this website to look for hotels.

Israel
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2. Re: Travelling soon - itinerary help

I suggest rethinking the car rental option as you will find the constraints of travel due to lack of public transportation may be very frustrating. Furthermire, you need to check site opening hours during this period has many sites have shorter hours or are closed all together.

Tell use your interests and we will attempt to help you plan your days.

Chana

Israel

Israel
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3. Re: Travelling soon - itinerary help

I cannot emphasize enough that right now your primary consideration has to be arranging for hotels. You are coming at a very busy time, demand for hotel rooms in great, prices are high and some hotels will also have minimum stay requirements.

Make sure you have a place to stay and then you can fine tune your itinerary.

Also - rethink renting a car, it will make a world of difference.

Eilat, Israel
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4. Re: Travelling soon - itinerary help

Make sure that by sunset of the 16th you are in Nazareth and spend the 17th there - on the 18 take a bus to Acre (Acco) spend at least half a day there then on to Haifa.

Work the rest of your schedule around that constraint.

NYC/Israel
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5. Re: Travelling soon - itinerary help

There is nothing to do in Nazareth for a full day!

Amsterdam, The...
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6. Re: Travelling soon - itinerary help

Thank you very much for your input. I have been thinking about my itinerary and have come up with the following:

Tuesday 13 September -> arrival at the hotel in the evening in Jerusalem (visit Kotel). Hotel confirmed.

Friday 14 - Saturday 15 September -> organised tour visiting Nazareth, Cana, Capernaum, Tabgha, Yardenit site, Acre, Rosh Hanikdra, Haifa, Carmel Mountain, Bahai Gardens, Caesarea (hotel included). Tour confirmed.

Sunday 16 September -> take bus to Bethlehem and visit Bethlehem (hotel in Jericho)

Monday 17 September -> take bus from Bethlehem to Jericho and visit Jericho (hotel in Jericho)

Tuesday 18 September -> take bus from Jericho to Hebron and visit Hebron (hotel in Hebron)

Wednesday 19 september -> take Egged bus 160 to Jerusalem and continue itinerary.

I think I have worked my way around the non availabilty of public transport because of Rosh Hashana. Any safety concerns about visiting Jericho and Hebron?

The rest of my itinerary I am yet unsure of. I would like to visit Sde Boker (Ben Gurion's grave) and Ein Avdat. Also want to visit Old Jaffa and Massada and the Dead Sea.

Days left are from Wednesday 19 September until and including Sunday 23 september. Flight home is on Monday 24th September. I would once again very much appreciate your advice!

Looking very much forward to the upcoming trip!

kind regards,

Olaf

Israel
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7. Re: Travelling soon - itinerary help

Be sure to check that the Arab buses you plan on taking run between the cities you plan on visiting so you won't have any surprises. On the 20th you can take a bus to Be'er Sheva and from there a bus to Sde Boker and Avdat (getting off and back on the bus). Take note of operation hours. You will need to come back to Tel Aviv, visit Jaffa on Friday and on Saturday take a guided tour from Tel Aviv. In any case you will find it difficult to get from Avdat to the Dead Sea on public transportation (you would also need to stay overnight somewhere along the way) and be back north before the buses stop running on Friday afternoon.

Chana

Israel

Tel-Aviv
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8. Re: Travelling soon - itinerary help

Why stay in hotels in Bethlehem, Hebron & Jericho ? Simply go back to Jerusalem every evening and stay in the same hotel (note that you have to go through Jerusalem anyway to go from one city to the other) That way you won't have to carry your luggage with you on those three days.

Israel
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9. Re: Travelling soon - itinerary help

This was last year:

ynetnews.com/articles/…00.html

I don't know whether the same will happen this year. If so, buses and other vehicles will not be running between Jerusalem and West Bank cities on the afternoon (or even the morning, depending on the time of a possible closure) of September 16, as well as September 17 and 18.

Amsterdam, The...
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10. Re: Travelling soon - itinerary help

So by going from Bethlehem to Jericho to Hebron I should be able to avoid possible closuse of acces to West Bank cities from Jerusalem?

Can anyone offer some thougts on the security situation in these cities during Rosh Hashana?

Can anyone tell me if buses run from Hebron to Be'er Sheva and Tel Aviv? Following Chana's idea I can perhaps travel from Hebron to Be'er Sheva directly or from Tel Aviv as a day trip, so that I can visit Avdat and Ben Gurion's grave and after that visit Jaffa/Tel Aviv.

thanks again

Olaf