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Ashdod/Jerusalem/Haifa

Winnipeg, Canada
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Ashdod/Jerusalem/Haifa

Our party of six will dock in Ashdod Sept 2 2013 and Haifa Sept 3 2013. Can anyone recommend a tour company or guide to take us to Jerusalem, Bethlehem and possibly Nazareth?

NYC/Israel
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for Israel
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1. Re: Ashdod/Jerusalem/Haifa

With six people you should definitely take a private tour. Financially it will be the same or less than the ship's tours and you will be able to see exactly what you want to see. Also, a group of six moves much faster than a group of 40 ( full bus) Are you planning on spending the night of the 2nd on land. It would save time, but it is right before the Jewish holiday of Rosh Hashonnah, so it may also be hard to get a hotel.

Right now you are in the Jerusalem forum. If you go to the Israel forum ( just click the appropriate bread crumb) you will find on the upper right a section called"Top Questions" The 7th or 8th question down is about private tour guides. You will find loads of recommended names and a guide I wrote to finding and hiring the guide that would work best for you.

Tel-Aviv
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2. Re: Ashdod/Jerusalem/Haifa

Your best option is to stay overnight in Jerusalem to save time traveling back and forth from the ship. Tour the Old City on Sept 2. Note that driving time from the centre of Jerusalem to Haifa port is about 2.5 hours, i.e you only have a half day available on Sept 3 so you probably have to choose between Bethlehem and Nazareth.

Haifa, Israel
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3. Re: Ashdod/Jerusalem/Haifa

A useful link might be the Israel Incoming Tour Operators Association with selection of hundred operators

http://www.israeltravel.co.il/

Ottawa, Canada
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for Jerusalem, Galilee, Tel Aviv
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4. Re: Ashdod/Jerusalem/Haifa

Having a private guide do a 2 day tour for you will make the best use of your time and budget.

There are private guides who do this this kind of tour on a regular basis. They will have their own vehicles.

Try Moti moti@travel-israel.info or Oreet seeingisrael@gmail.com They are both regular contributors to this forum and get great reviews.

Regardless of who you hire, you should interview your guide by phone or skype (and it is expected) before you hire them. Are they a good fit with you? Are they easy to understand? Do they listen?

The guides listed above have many very positive reviews but they still need to be a 'match' for your group.

Israel
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for Israel
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5. Re: Ashdod/Jerusalem/Haifa

While hiring a private guide is a possibility you may want to contact a tour operator such as Guy Tours who offer private shore excursions for less than the group tours sold on board. They can be contacted at: guytours@barak.net.il

Chana

Israel

6. Re: Ashdod/Jerusalem/Haifa

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Haifa
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7. Re: Ashdod/Jerusalem/Haifa

Let’s start with the fact that you don't have too much time to organize your excursion. Since HAL had diverted the Noordam from Egypt to Israel we gat tons of requests for tours on your dates. So you must close this ASAP!

As a party of 6 I wouldn’t even bother to look for a shared tour. A shared tour cost per person for a party of 6 will sum up the same of a private one!

Plus, taking the option of a private tour not only allow you a full control over the itinerary, it also allow you to see much more than a group tour. You hardly loose time when you are on a private tour; you can add more sites taking the advantage of this.

One thing I beg you not to do and that it to listen to HAL warnings regarding private tours. I know from more than one passenger from your cruise, that decided to take private tour or an overnight, that HAL had informed them that they have no obligation to the independent travelers and in Israel “being an place of an unrest” there is always a potential of an event that will cause the ship leave immediately and in this case HAL is responsible only to the passengers onboard the ship excursion and the ship will not wait to the independent travelers in a case of an evacuation needed. I have never heard or encountered such an outrages way to fright people not to take a private tour from any cruise company. HAL really rise above all other with that.

Find yourself a guide and arrange everything by yourself. You are going to save a lot of money and enjoy more!

Welcome to Israel.

Israel
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8. Re: Ashdod/Jerusalem/Haifa

Olegna, thank you for your lovely photographs. Dub, as Mottibt noted you would be better off arranging a private tour which should be done sooner than later. If Olenga was trying to refer you to the illegal guide mentioned in her post, don't even think about using his services. The person is not only forbidden from driving tourists, is not licensed by the Israeli Ministry of Tourism but also not by the PA authorities (this has been checked, they have laws there similar to in Israel).

Either use an operator familiar with tours from the ports or search for a guide on Israel Tour Guides websites. But for your own peace of mind, do so as soon as possible. Don't worry about ship warnings, they are not warranted.

Chana

Israel

Ottawa, Canada
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for Jerusalem, Galilee, Tel Aviv
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9. Re: Ashdod/Jerusalem/Haifa

Note that in addition to the 2 private guides mentioned, Chana is also a guide to consider for your trip.

10. Re: Ashdod/Jerusalem/Haifa

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