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Advice Please

Cornwall, England
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Advice Please

Shalom

Its me again, think we have got our accomodation sussed, we have been given a name of a place in the North by the Hadassah Hospital near Mount Scopus has anyone got a site for maps for Jerusalem, as we have no idea how far out this place is, but the place looks lovely in French Hills?? May well have this wrong.

Anyways all accomodation is stating us dollars or israeli shekals, as we are coming over from England we would like to know is it best we bring dollars or shekals, bearing in mind we will have to convert all back to GBP when we get back. All help gratefully received. Also does anybody have the prices of a day tour to Masada or entry fees into the Holocust Museum so that we can try to price things up before we leave, 30th August till the 13 Sept, and we are still coming !

Womanatthewell -- Maureen & Caryl

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Haifa, Israel
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1. Re: Advice Please

I wouldn't necessarily recommend staying in French Hill as a tourist as it's in the far northeast corner of the city, far from the centre of town (you'd need to take at least one bus to get anywhere), and it's not particularly near to any of the things you are likely to want to visit. Unless there are really good reasons to stay up there I'd probably look for something closer to the centre of town.

From UK - bring shekels, you can use them for everything (it should be fine to pay the dollar equivalent in shekels so you won't have to bring both) and the exchange rate is great right now. You don't need to bring them all in one go - you can use your normal cashpoint card to withdraw money here and credit cards also work here.

Avigail (Jerusalem)

Ft. Laud, Florida
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2. Re: Advice Please

Hi, Maureen & Caryl...

I have been trying to sign on to this Forum all day but I was having a problem with this website. I hope this attempt to answer your question will be more successful than my last 2 tries.

In response to your question about paying in dollars or shekels, it is my understanding that if you pay your HOTEL bill in shekels, they must charge you the VAT tax...which I think is about 16%.

If you pay in dollars.....cash or credit card....they do NOT charge you this tax. I do not know how it would work with GBP. You can ask at the hotel...or maybe someone else can answer that question for you.

The Yad Vashem Holocaust Memorial Museum does NOT charge any admission. However, the appreciate any amount that you can afford to contribute. Their website has information about the museum and visiting: www.yadvashem.org.

For visiting Masada....I believe that Egged is the largest bus company in Israel and offers day tours. United Bus tours also operates tours to Masada. There are probably other companies offering tours as well. I'm sure your hotel could provide more information. With the current situation in Israel, be sure you double-check all the schedules.

Egged: www.egged.co.il

United: www.inisrael.com/united/asg/Category_0.html

Good luck and have a wonderful trip. (Hope this note makes it to the message board this time.)

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Toledo
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3. Re: Advice Please

Hello Maureen & Caryl,

I will chip in my bit of advice also.

Regarding hotel accomodations, I agree with the earlier post that the Hadassah Hospital area is too far from the center of town. As I have stated in other posts of this forum, The 3 Arches Hotel operated by the YMCA in Jerusalem is a great location, very comfortable and a bargain. That said, I must mention that the Chagall Windows are located, I believe, on the grounds of Hadassah Hospital. If I am mistaken regarding this location fact , I hope a local will respond with correction. The Chagall Windows are seldom mentioned on this forum, however, they are certainly worth the bus trip from central Jerusalem to see them and hear the audio narrative that explains in detail the significance of the various elements as well as the history.

The day tour to Masada offered by United can be boarded directly in front of the 3 Arches Hotel and is an unforgetable experience.

Have a great trip

Ft. Laud, Florida
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4. Re: Advice Please

Hi, 2Goers... Good point about the Chagall Windows. However, there are 2 Hadassah Hospitals.....one on Mount Scopus and one at Ein Kerem. Both hospitals are on the outskirts of the central city of Jerusalem....but in opposite directions.

The Chagall Windows are located at the Hadassah Hospital in EIN KEREM. It is best to contact them to find out the schedule for viewing the windows and for when the tour is in English. They are closed on Friday and Saturday and closed during lunch. There is an admission fee....but I forget what it is. Here is the website.

http://www.hadassah.org.il/English/Eng_MainNavBar/About/Art+at+Hadassah/visit+hours.htm

Even if you've seen photos of the windows, you will find the "real thing" much more impressive with such vivid colors and design.

By taxi, the Chagall Windows are only a 5 - 10 minute drive from the Yad Vashem Holocaust Memorial Museum. The 2 sights could be combined.....providing you coordinate the time schedules for both.

I recommend leaving at least 3 hours for visiting Yad Vashem.

Pacosmom, Hadassah Life-Member

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Ein Kerem
Ein Kerem
Jerusalem District, Israel
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5. Re: Advice Please

Thanks for the clarification on location of the Chagall Windows. As you suggested we spent at least several hours at Yad Vashem, had late lunch in the cafeteria there and then took a taxi to see the Chagall Windows. The windows are certainly beautiful works of art but it is the audio narrative that explains the rich symbolism and jewish history that makes them so meaningful. As I recall the windows were badly damaged when war raged in 1967 (?) and when someone telephoned Chagall, he reponded by saying "you worry about the war and I'll worry about the windows". I believe at least one of the windows had to be completely rebuilt and one of the windows still has a bullet hole in it.

As you can probably tell, I have wonderful memories of our visit and hope anyone traveling to Jerusalem enjoys their visit sa much as I did.

Cornwall, England
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6. Re: Advice Please

Gosh, thank you so much for your helpful advice. Avigail chay & 2goers re French Hill - does this mean that we will have to bus everwhere from this area, is it that far out ? We thought it looked lovely and quiet, as we are not much for night life, and do not really need shops. Peace and tranquility and going on day tours to Holy sites is what we really wanted to do. How far out from the city is French Hill situated ? How hot is it in Jerusalem? Must admit its been exceptionally hot here in sunny Cornwall, England plenty of beach weather. Pacosmum thankyou for the information on shekels we will cetainly take note of what you have said, there is so much to remember. Will get myself a small notebook tomorrw of things we need to remember to do and points to remember for another trip in the future. I had never heard of the Chgall Windows so I will look it up to find out more information, we cettainly will be going to the Holocaust Memorial Museum, and will have to ask several different Tour Companies as I guess they must be in competition with each other ??Finally if at the French Hill area does it cost very much to come into the main area of town and would buses or forms of transport be working everyday ?

Thanks so much

womanatthewell -- Maureen & Caryl

we are on count down know less than 3 weeks before we arrive over there.

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Cornwall
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Cornwall, England
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7. Re: Advice Please

Hi Again, Have just checked out The 3 Arches Hotel the YMCA, that is out of the question well above what we can afford, we are doing this trip on a shoestring, very tight budget, wages in Cornwall England are really low, so as you can imagine we are bargain hunting.

I will have to find out how much the tour operators are charging.

Thanks again for your helpful advice, it is really appreciated.

Womanatthewell --Maureen & Caryl

Paragon
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8. Re: Advice Please

Park Plaza Hotel.........$60 per night per room.......includes a good breakfast. I have stayed there in the past and will do so again in October.

You can taxi to wherever you need to go at a reasonable price.

Kathy

Paragon, Indiana, USA

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Indiana
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Haifa, Israel
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9. Re: Advice Please

Womantthewell:

does this mean that we will have to bus everwhere from this area, is it that far out ?

Yes - it's too far to walk (especially at a hot time of year), plus the journey to the centre of town is along busy main roads, not places that would make a nice walk. There are buses (except on Shabbat); the bus no. 4 goes from French Hill to Jaffa Rd, King George and Emek Refaim, but it takes a disproportionately long time, stopping in all the neighbourhoods on the way. You can take other buses from nearer the University on Mt Scopus - there are fast routes from the University to the bank of bus stops on Jaffa Rd near the Old city, and there are routes to the central bus station. It's doable but pretty inconvenient - you would either need to take a lot of taxis or spend a *lot* of time hanging out at bus stops and on buses (you will need to take a second bus to get to places like Yad Vashem). A taxi to downtown (depending on location) would probably cost something like 25 shekels.

Peace and tranquility and going on day tours to Holy sites is what we really wanted to do. How far out from the city is French Hill situated ?

It's on the NE outskirts, as the crow flies about 2 miles from the Old City and 3 miles from downtown, but as I said above, buses can take a disporoportionately long time. For historical reasons (the university was founded there but then cut off from the rest of Jewish J'lem till 1967) the area is kind of disconnected from other Jewish parts of the city.

How hot is it in Jerusalem?

Very pleasant: 30-33 degrees daytime, 20+ degrees in the evening. You will need long sleeves on cooler evenings but not a coat - it won't rain here till about October. You can check out the forecast at www.ims.gov.il

Avigail (Jerusalem)

Cornwall, England
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10. Re: Advice Please

Thanks again Avigail(Jerusalem) and Kathy4HIM,

How many miles or kilometres is it into Jerusalem ? We are regular walkers, must adimit we prefer scenci routes rather than main roads, we might have a go at it just to see what its like, its okay for locals you would know all the different back lanes to get into town. The main roads are they single lane or doubles or triples and what is the regular speed over there? What about bicycle hire, we really did not want to hire a car over there as we have not allowed for that expenditure, but bikes might be good we do biking over here, is it quite flat to get into Jerusalem and are the roads safe to cycle into town from the NE. Could we possibly book a taxi for every day to take us into town in advance, do they do that in Jerusalem ? Its so many things we need to know before we get there, but at least we will have some knowledge beforehand from your helpful advice. We are going to go ahead and stay at French Street, the price and accomodation is wonderful, need to know how we will get to a place of worship on Shabbat, with no transport, maybe bikes would be the best bet, also what are drivers like on the roads there and is there plenty of bike parking? So I guess its how many km's from French Street in the NE into Jerusalem, how long by taxi to get into Jerusalem and price, to cut down on long journeys before going on tour for day, and are there bike hiring (thats push bikes!!!) places nearby ? Is it a safe area for walking, someone said beware of pickpockets I didn't think that was a problem in Jerusalem.

Kathy4HIM we could not afford that kind of money for a night, we have cut our cloth accordingly so to speak $30 per night B & B or under that was our limit, where we come from down here in Cornwall England is very low wages/salaries and I do mean low, one of the most beautiful parts of the country, close to beaches near Lands End but low wages, Caryl is retired and I am a support worker caring for those with MS, parkinsons, brain injuries etc and its hard work but low wages, beautiful views of St Michaels Mount near Marazion, Cornwall but lowest wages in the whole of the UK and highest water rates, still never mind, we are on our way to Israel something we each have wanted to do for a few years and in 20 odd days we shall be there.

Thankyou for your helpful advice, we really do appreciate all comments.

Womanatthewell - Maureen & Caryl

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