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Israel Travel

Interesting places to visit in Israel

Places to visit in Israel


A garden with purple flowers


German messianics including several Templers arrived in Haifa and settled in what is now called the German Colony in 1868. This was the beginning of Haifa’s introduction to industrialization. The Templers were the one who built a steam-powered station and opened factories. They also inaugurated carriage services to the nearby settlements of Tiberias, Nazareth and Acre. All of this played a key role in jumpstarting Haifa’s modernization.

Gardens on top of a city


The buildings hosting the spiritual as well as administrative headquarters of the Baha’i Faith are on Mount Carmel in Haifa. Designed by a Canadian landscape architect, they coordinate and govern the Baha’i Faith. The global teaching plans, the study and the translation of the Baha’i holy writings are all done here. It is where the Universal House of Justice is located, which is the Baha’i Faith’s supreme governing body. This is also a site of pilgrimage, attracting 1 million pilgrims of the faith every year.

A group of deers in their natural habitat




A top view of a big city

Photo by Itamar Grinberg

Israel Travel



Ancient buildings by the sea


Ancient Jaffa’s location gave it strategic importance in battles, having a broad view of the coastline. It was established in around 1800 BCE at the very latest. It has been mentioned in an ancient Egyptian letter from 1440 BCE that tells of the conquest of the city by the Egyptian Pharaoh Thutmose III. It exchanged hands several times between warring factions.

After renovations, the old port of Jaffa now teems with life and activity. It houses several bookstores, cafés, nightclubs and more.


The flea markets of Jaffa are where you can find an eclectic mix of wares. There are Persian carpets, African design shops, amulets to ward off evil, Israeli antiques, Israeli fashion design in the mid-range and inexpensive Middle-eastern clothes. In the Old Jaffa Hostel, you can get a nap in between shopping binges.

Girl shopping in an antique store





A balcony with people dining

Photos by Dana Friedlander

Israel Travel

Resort City of Eilat

Resort City of Eilat

Blue sea water against the blue sky

Places to stay

There are various types of accommodations for every budget, from budget-friendly hotels starting from 15 USD/night to luxurious hotels going up to 4,500 USD/night. Travellers looking for budget-friendly accommodations with a local flavour will find many listings on sites such as Airbnb. Eilat also has other affordable options of hostels for backpackers and families ranging from separate rooms to dormitories. Most of these hostels are near the city centre making it easy to get around.

Things to do

The main attraction of Eilat are the beaches with North beach and the South beach (Coral Beach) being the two most popular ones. At the beach, do not pass on the chance to stop and say hi to cute dolphins! The Dolphin Reef in Eilat offers tourists the opportunity to bserve dolphins in their natural habitat. The more adventurous tourists can opt for a closer interaction with the animals through guided scuba diving and snorkeling excursions. You can also visit the Underwater Observatory Museum for the most amazing  marine life experience.

Located north of Eilat, the Harei Eilat (Eilat Mountains), is popular with hikers and nature lovers. This destination offers breath-taking views of the spectacular desert routes with the rich yellow, red and brown colours of the mountains’ rocky landscape.

You can also visit Petra in Jordan while in Eilat for one or two-day tours or opt to visit independently. Tours to Petra are available every day, however, for independent visits you must pre-arrange your visa from your home country.

For those looking for a few minutes of respite, Eilat has a Botanical Garden with waterfalls and wooden swings. The garden is on a hill and offers a welcoming cool shade on Eilat’s hot days.

The international Red Sea Jazz Festival which usually takes place over four days is another thing that will draw you to Eilat if you are a music lover. With travel restrictions still in place in many countries, monitor their website to see whether a festival will be held this year.

People sailing on the sea

Things to do

Photos: Dafna Tal

Underwater museum in Israel
Israel Travel

The Gospel Trail

The Gospel Trail

Busy streets of a tourist destination


The trail begins in the ancient city of Nazareth, the birthplace of Jesus Christ. The closest airport to Nazareth is Tel Aviv. Throughout history, Nazareth has been home to a wide variety of people from different ethnic and cultural backgrounds. In the present day, Nazareth predominantly consists of Arab citizens of Israel and is the largest Arab city in Israel. The majority of its population are followers of the Islamic faith, while most of the others are followers of Christianity.

The Mount of Beatitudes

Winding across numerous places of importance from the life of Christ, the trail also takes hikers to the Mount of Beatitudes where Jesus delivered the Sermon on the Mount.

Lush trees and plants near the sea


The best aspects of Jaffa must be its restaurants where traditional Israeli and Levantine cuisine like hummus, shawarma, shakshuka, kebab or falafel abound. Jaffa residents will swear that the best hummus you’ve ever tasted is sold here. Traditional Arabic cooking is prevalent as well. Great fish restaurants are scattered over the port city, alongside Romanian restaurants, European cafés, Tunisian bistros and several places that specialize in high-end fine dining. There are bars for the wine and cocktail lovers, and the bakeries in the city will cater to your dessert cravings.


Israeli artists have been living in Jaffa’s Old City for decades, and the newer generation have moved in to join them. The artisans here sell locally made ceramics as well as crafts, high-end wares and fair-trade items.


There are several museums and galleries of note to visit in Jaffa. This includes the Frank Meisler Gallery, the Uri Geller Museum, Ilana Goor Museum, the Iris Eshet Cohen Gallery, the Jaffa Art Salon and more. All of these have beautiful art and pieces of Jaffa’s history on display for curious art lovers and tourists.


Jaffa is populated by Jews, Christians and Muslims. The Tabeetha School, established in the 1800s offers education to people of every religion and sect. Jaffa is a center of cross-cultural heritage that strikes a balance to ease tensions between the several conflicting sects in Israel. The Jewish Community Center brings Jaffa residents together to share their food, music and traditions.

Jaffa’s heterogeneous mix of people and cultures make it perhaps of the most dynamic places on the planet. If you’re looking for a good time on your visit to Israel, Jaffa’s culture and the variety of attractions here make it the hottest spot you should stop by.

A balcony with people dining

Photos: Dana Friedlander

Israel Travel

The City of Acre

The City of Acre

Bird's eye view of a city by the sea
A tunnel illuminated with dim lights

Photos: Itamar Grinberg

Israel Travel

Top 5 Must-Visit Wineries in Israel

Top 5 Must-Visit Wineries in Israel

Israel Travel

12 of the most beautiful secret spots in Israel

12 of the most beautiful secret spots in Israel

Flamingos flocking in a pond to eat
People bathing in the sea at night
Popular stone park near Egypt

1. Evrona evaporation ponds, Arava Desert

Fancy seeing a flamingo in the desert? Look no further than the evaporation ponds in Evrona near Eilat, which a group of previously migrating flamingos has decided to call home. The birds used to fly over the area on their way to Africa but over 20 years ago made their pit spot a permanent one thanks to the readily available food at the site. The pools are located right on the border with Jordan, meaning that the flamingos simultaneously receive audiences from both countries who in turn can also wave hello to one another. Coexistence, flamingo-style.

2. Kedem hot springs, Dead Sea

The Dead Sea is one of Israel’s best-known travel destinations, but it too is full of surprises, including deliciously hot springs dotted along the shoreline where the Kedem Stream meets the Dead Sea, some of them large enough to fit a family or a few friends and some of them just big enough to seat romantic couples. Getting there isn’t easy and requires going off-road and avoiding dangerous sinkholes, but that doesn’t seem to deter the brave few who venture out there, especially in the winter season.

3. Hamukei Nitzana, Negev Desert

Hamukei Nitzana (Nitzana Curves) is a natural park full of large, bright-white chalk rocks that form in curvy, smooth patterns reminiscent of, well, curves. Its location right on Israel’s southern border with Egypt means that it’s not flooded with tourists even in the most Covid-free of times, enabling enterprising visitors to walk around and enjoy the moon-like setting in peace and quiet. It’s also a great destination for a moonlight hike, when the chalky stones shine bright.

Massive desert against the blue sky
Cave surrounded by lush greenery
Ruins of ancient stone structure by the sea

4. Little Crater, Negev Desert

Despite its name, the Little Crater is quite a large secret location, coming in at 5 miles long, almost 4 miles wide and 1,300 feet deep. The crater is a rare geological phenomenon and is far less famous than its cousins, the Ramon Crater and the Big Crater. It was only deemed a nature reserve in 2019 following a decades-long struggle with Israel’s defense establishment, which opposed the move because some of the reserve belongs to the Negev Nuclear Research Center. It is home to unique geological forms, colorful rocks and endangered wildlife and is a wonderful site for a desert hike.

5. Alma Cave, Galilee

Alma Cave in the northern Galilee region is everything you could wish for in a cave: long, dark, cold and full of bats. It has a few legends surrounding it, such as the one claiming that Jews returned to the Land of Israel from their Babylonian exile through it (because it’s so long).

Fast-forward a few thousand years, and the cave is equipped with pegs and light reflectors to ease the way in for visitors, who should still come in long-sleeved clothes and anti-slip shoes. The cave is currently closed to protect its bat population, but once it reopens it’s well worth the descent.

6. Ancient fortress, Ashdod Beach

While the beaches in Tel Aviv are perhaps the most famous, the coastline in Israel in fact runs down a substantial part of the country. And the beach in Ashdod, half an hour’s drive south of Tel Aviv, even boasts its very own fortress.

First built by Arab rulers in the seventh century, the fortress was used in later centuries to unsuccessfully defend the Holy Land from the Crusaders, who after taking over the area also took ownership of the stronghold. Nowadays, the fortress remains strike a magnificent picture against an otherwise empty strip of sand, even leading couples to choose the venue to tie the knot in small, corona-era wedding ceremonies.

Magnificent view of Jerusalem
A church looming among lush trees
An amphitheater surrounded by trees

7. Austrian Hospice rooftop, Jerusalem

The Old City of Jerusalem has many rooftops from which to take in the breathtaking views, with one of the best – and relatively accessible – ones belonging to the Austrian Hospice. Opened in 1863, the building first served as the Austrian Catholic Church’s pilgrim hostel before turning into a military convalescent home during World War I, an internment camp during World War II, a hospital and again a present-day hostel with its very own Viennese coffeeshop.

While the coffeeshop is famous for its hot chocolate and apple strudel, those looking for a different experience would do well to saunter up the staircase to the roof, from which they can comfortably view the very heart of the Old City.

8. Saint Peter’s Church, Tel Aviv

The bright pink Russian Orthodox Saint Peter’s Church towering over treetops makes an unusual addition to an otherwise rather nondescript residential area of southern Tel Aviv. Built in the 19th century, the complex includes both a church and a monastery and is open to the public for only a short time each week, very much adding to its secretive status. Enjoyed mostly by locals, the complex and the surrounding park are a breath of fresh air in the metropolitan area.

9. Mount Scopus amphitheater, Jerusalem

The open-air amphitheater located at the edge of the Hebrew University of Jerusalem’s Mount Scopus campus is one of the university’s best-kept secrets, alongside its botanical gardens. The amphitheater originates in 1925, when a temporary wooden structure was laid down at the site ahead of the university’s opening ceremony, which included grandees such as the British Lord Balfour and General Allenby. The current stone structure was built 10 years later and withstood historic events such as Israel’s War of Independence and the Six Day War. Nowadays, visitors who make the endless trek all the way to the edge of the campus are rewarded with beautiful desert views stretching into Jordan.

Land with green grass by the sea
Beautiful valley during sunset
A hidden lake with deep blue waters

10. Midron Slopes beach, Jaffa

Located at the southern, less well-known side of Jaffa, the Midron Slopes beach rolling down from the Ajami neighborhood to the Mediterranean Sea boasts expansive grass lawns, bike paths, walking lanes and strips of sand, but somehow have yet to attract the crowds found elsewhere in Jaffa and Tel Aviv. The beach is best enjoyed early on Friday evenings, when families get together for dinner, couples go out on romantic dates and kids whizz around, all in a uniquely pleasant, local atmosphere.

11. Ein Sukkot Spring, Jordan Valley

Ein Sukkot is a wonderfully large spring surrounded by reeds, giving the whole place a very private and secluded vibe. The spring is located off-road in between a couple of settlements, making getting there a bit of a challenge, but is a firm favorite among travelers who absolutely cannot bear the thought of sharing an afternoon with the masses. Secret indeed.

12. Timna hidden lake, Arava Desert

The hidden lake at Timna is perhaps one of the most striking sights in Israel – a bright turquoise body of water surrounded by red mountains in the middle of the desert. Located a short ride outside of Eilat, the lake isn’t a natural one but was formed when the copper quarries at the site were flooded. Since the lake is situated among mines, it’s a little off the beaten track and isn’t the easiest place to get to. And yet, keen travelers are making their way there for a swim in the salty waters and even, as has become somewhat popular lately, for diving in the unusual location.

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A garden with purple flowers

5 not-so-well-known places in Paris

3 days in Paris and 5 not-so-well-known places you must see

By Riselle Celestina

A tombstone with offerings of colorful flowers

What you should know is that no matter how much I love my husband, we are complete opposites when it comes to traveling. I am all about exploring, sightseeing and running from one attraction to the next, sometimes sacrificing meals just to be able to get to the next big thing on my list, while my husband loves to take his time, stroll though unknown areas and stop to savor and enjoy different bars and restaurants along the way. A waste of valuable time, if you ask me, especially when you only have three days.

Despite our constant bickering, yelling and crying (the last one is my secret weapon to getting my way), we still got to see a lot and eat at some amazing places.

This is a list of spots you might want to add to your own Paris list of must-sees when you find yourself in the city of l’amour. I have excluded Paris’ most popular sites like the Arch de Triomphe and the Eiffel Tower which we still got to see despite the strict schedule we were on.

A tall building in the city

Tour Montparnasse

Tour Montparnasse is a skyscraper located in the Montparnasse area of Paris. The tower itself is neither old nor beautiful but what it lacks in looks and age it makes up for in views.You can purchase a ticket to the observatory deck for views of the entire city, including all of the Paris landmarks the city is so famous for.  Up to 2011 the Tower of Montparnasse was the tallest building with its 59 floors. It is quite funny to see the Eiffel Tower look so small from the top deck here.

Montparnasse Cemetery

We literally stumbled on this beauty when we got off at the wrong bus stop on our way to the tower.With about 47 acres and 35,000 graves, it is the second largest cemetery in Paris. Just like its bigger counterpart the famous Père Lachaise, the Montparnasse cemetery also has its share of famous eternal residents, including political figures, philosophers, artists, actors, writers and business moguls, including French automobile guy André Citroën.

Old mausoleum in a cemetery
The Eiffel Tower and its surrounding buildings

The Madeleine Neighborhood

My husband deserves all the credit for finding this neighborhood. He begged me to please stop chasing the stops on my list and to just stop at a random metro station on our way from the Eiffel tower. And so we ended up in the Madeleine area, which just happened to be one of the richest neighborhoods in the city. It is home to the Ritz since 1898 and is where you can find the Place du Madeleine and L‘Eglice de Madeleine, a famous catholic church. We, however, did not make it that far. We stopped to wonder at the clean streets, beautiful buildings and salivate over the shopping street with big fashion names but the truth was that we were famished. We decided that lunch was a must here and grabbed a table at a très Parisian looking brasserie called Triadou Haussmann, where we savored on onion soup, escargot and other delicacies. Well done husband!

La Promenade Planteé

Long before New York City even dreamt of introducing the High Line, Paris had La Promenade Planteé, the first green space constructed on an elevated viaduct.This linear park is also called the Coulée Verte or the Green Course and it goes on for two miles on what was once part of an old railway line. It is a must visit, even if it is not exactly on the way to any of the traditional must sees in Paris. The park is wonderful to stroll through and even has some art on display here and there.

Woman posing in arches of plants

Père Lachaise Cemetery

Both my husband and I are big fans of the Doors, so a visit to the final resting place of its front man Jim Morrison was a must for us. We skipped Montmartre to be able to fit the cemetery into our hectic schedule and are we glad we did. The cemetery is incredibly beautiful and we ended up spending quite some time here. Now, given, we were lost for the majority of the time, desperately looking for the grave of one of the 70’s most iconic artists. Still, thank Goodness we took part of the day to visit, because we saw so much more of the cemetery than what we initially planned to. We saw the grave of Oscar Wilde and that of Chopin, the tomb of Rossini and even a very impressive tomb dedicated to a dog by the name of Lick. Beautifully crafted tombs and incredible angel statues, all in a park-like space with tall trees and long pathways through graves and tombs and mausoleums, this cemetery is less morbid than you would think.

When we finally located the Morrison grave (hint: follow the Americans) we were a little let down. The grave is nothing compared to those of Oscar Wilde and Chopin, not even to the one dedicated to the dog. It’s a simple grave in between other not so impressive graves. What makes it stand out is the occasional hippy blasting one of the Doors hit songs, a tree of chewed gum (eww) that for some reason or another is supposed to be a way to pay homage to the fallen rock star and other “stuff” people decided to leave behind in honor of the Lizard King. There used to be a small head stone of Morrison, but it kept getting stolen. The cemetery also found it necessary to place barricades because of people sleeping, drinking and performing other activities on his grave. Still, no big The Doors fan can visit Paris without stopping at Père Lachaise cemetery to greet the American poet.


5 interesting facts about Venice

5 interesting facts about Venice

A boat in a canal in Venice