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Hebron on your own

Hong Kong, China
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Hebron on your own

Hi All, I am trying to plan by trip to Israel in late Nov I am looking for the information for the few days in Jerusalem.

One of these few days, I would like to visit Bethlehem and Hebron. I have located a lot of information to travel to Bethlehem but there are not much information regarding Hebron on-your-own trip. I have been searching for long but most information I could find is guided tours but it I don't really want to get a guided tour if it is possible to manage it by myself.

If I want to visit Bethlehem and Hebron in one day, shall I visit Bethlehem or Hebron first? If I take 160 Egged bus to Hebron, is it possible for me to go to and from H1 and H2(I'll take my passport of course)? By the time when I am leaving from Hebron, where can I get a bus/serveece/taxi back to Bethlehem or Jerusalem.

My information gathered so far can guide me to Bethlehem but I please kindly help me a bit for Hebron. Thanks very much for all your help.

Jerusalem
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for Jerusalem, Israel
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1. Re: Hebron on your own

You can visit Hebron by yourself if you like. If you go to Bethlehem first, you can continue by servees to Hebron, cross over to the Israeli-controlled section, and return by bus 160. If you go to Hebron first you can do the reverse. As a foreign national you can cross the dividing line, with your passport as you mention.

Generally most people on the forum recommend not visiting Hebron alone. It's a complicated and tense city, and all the more so at the moment following the kidnapping of three young Israeli settlers and the large-scale operations in the city and elsewhere by the Israeli army. It's difficult to understand some of the things you see without some kind of explanation. But again - if you are a confident independent traveler and wish to do so, you can go on your own. You will find many residents from both communities who will be very happy to share their thoughts and beliefs, and by combining all you hear and see you can form your own understanding of the city.

Hong Kong, China
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2. Re: Hebron on your own

Thanks very much for your information :)

Gippsland, Australia
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for Jerusalem
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3. Re: Hebron on your own

I have been to Hebron three times now and really think you are better to go with a guide or a tour. It is a very sensitive area politically, and it is also a very confusing area to navigate through. The market area on the Palestinian side is a maze to navigate. When you get to the Cave of Machpellah (which I presume you want to see) then there are no signs in English to tell you exactly whose tomb you are looking at and we certainly would not have seen some of the things we saw or understood exactly what we were looking at if they had not been pointed out and explained by a guide.

Apart from the tomb of Machpellar there are other historical places to visit - eg the ancient City Gate of Hebron dating back to the time of Abraham. This is in an extremely sensitive area, with extra army presence and you may well get stopped and questioned.

For more modern history, there is a little museum commemorating a difficult time in Hebron's history, but even if we had known about it in advance we wouldn't have found it without a guide.

Because we have been on different occasions we have been able to go with both private guides (Israelis) to the Jewish side, and to the Palestinian part of a Hebron with a tour. By doing this we have been able to hear both sides of the situation there, and it is important that you hear both sides if you go. There is a day tour done by www.abrahamtours.com which is a dual narrative tour which goes to both sides on the same day. I would recommend this.

NJ
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4. Re: Hebron on your own

I agree with the others. It's best to be with a guide/group.

Just a correction to PRSV's post. The 3 teenage boys that were kidnapped (and now have been confirmed murdered) were not "settlers" they were all residents of Israel "proper". Although they were in the West Bank (Judea) when they were abducted.

israel
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for Tel Aviv, Galilee, Israel
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5. Re: Hebron on your own

amm101 - lets not go into a debate about settles etc... The boys were murdered. This is the important, sad fact.

NJ
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6. Re: Hebron on your own

agreed

Richmond, Michigan
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7. Re: Hebron on your own

We visited Hebron last Saturday from Bethlehem. We then returned to Bethlehem and spent the night at The international Jacir Palace. Was a very nice place to stay, all the creature comforts and the service was outstanding

We did Hebron with a guide, Sam Eli Salem, he was very good. Has a outstanding knowledge of the area, and keeps the politics out of it.

I posted a trip report on it on the Palestinian Territories site if you'd like to check it out. Would also be happy to pass along his email on private message if you'd like it.

Edited: 30 June 2014, 20:04
York, United Kingdom
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8. Re: Hebron on your own

We took a taxi on the Palestinian side of the border at Bethlehem and our driver was very good at helping us around (he was NOT a guide before I am shouted down) and he knew where to take us in car and on foot - both Bethlehem and Hebron. It was a cheaper way of doing it rather than book a guide - these tend to be extortionate and way out of our price range. We had our own guide books.

It worked for us but the purists on here were super critical. Not that I cared a twig about that.

Pinetop-Lakeside...
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9. Re: Hebron on your own

nerv0usflyer, thank you. That might be another way to do it, but when did you go? Was it recent? As in within the last week or so?

Cincinnati, Ohio
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10. Re: Hebron on your own

Be aware that in the next few weeks, the situation in the territories may be volatile because of the murder of the Israeli boys and likely responses.

Douglas Duckett