Israel and Palestinian tour
Late availability on these dates: 08 Apr, 15 Apr, 22 Apr, 26 Apr, 10 May, 13 May, 17 May, 20 May, 03 Jun, 10 Jun, 12 Jun, 21 Jun
Description of Israel and Palestinian tour
This small group holiday to Israel and Palestine dunks you into one of the most spiritual places on the planet, beloved of everyone from Sephardi Jews and Palestinian Muslims to Ethiopian Copts and Armenian Christians.
You’ll spend four days based in Jerusalem, climbing the church-topped Mount of Olives and walking the walled ramparts. A walking tour of the Old City gives you the chance to duck into the Dome of the Rock and trace the Wailing Wall. It’s a short drive to Bethlehem, where the Church of the Nativity is said to stand where Jesus was born. Your guide will also explain the politics around the West Bank and sprawling refugee camps here.
Other highlights of this Israel and Palestine holiday include a swim (or float) in the Dead Sea and a trip to Israel’s highest city, Safad – a forest-circled artists’ retreat. You’ll finish off in Tel Aviv, which hands out trendy Old Jaffa and Bauhaus buildings.
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1 Reviews of Israel and Palestinian tour
Reviewed on 23 Jun 2022 by Mary Luard
1. What was the most memorable or exciting part of your holiday?
I loved the ancient town of Pilov. And especially attending a concert at the Roman ampitheater.
And, sad as the story is, it was a happy ending to see the new life of the rescued bears in the sanctuary. The village dressing up in
costume and dancing was a bit of fun, even though it was pretty contrived, but fun nonetheless!
2. What tips would you give other travellers booking this holiday?
The tour is relatively short. I had a couple of extra days that I chose to use to stay in Sofia and do two day-long excursions: 1. to
Macedonia and 2. to Serbia. This added to my understanding of the complex and conflictual history of this part of the world.
Also, I personally found the mountain climb in snow too much, although I did my best to keep up.
3. Did you feel that your holiday benefited local people, reduced environmental impacts or supported conservation?
I hope so! I don’t use bottled water, myself and I carry my recycling until I can find a place to deposit. I believe firmly that our
drivers should be educated in the importance of turning off their engines when we are stopped. I appreciate that a local
homestay was part of the journey.
4. Finally, how would you rate your holiday overall?
I was glad to have chosen this trip. I would have liked it to be a little longer and to spend more time in Romania. It felt like we
were tagged on the end of the Hungary/Romania tour and in fact we only spent one night in Bucharest and left the country the
next day. Perhaps it should be renamed since “Eastern European” doesn’t really reflect the fact that it is actually Bulgaria.
Our guide, Dani, was helpful and knowledgeable. I will never forget that one our first night he took a bus ride and got me an
electrical outlet adaptor. He answered all my questions and researched what he couldn’t answer. He really went the extra mile
helping me navigate the train and bus system that I needed after our tour was over.
PlanetAs part of our responsible travel philosophy we use public transport wherever possible. However, when this isn’t an option we do our best to ensure that the private vehicles we travel in are suitable for our small group sizes. For instance, we wouldn’t use a 16-seater mini van if we only had five people on the trip with us. We also plan our travel routes so that we spend as little time as possible on the road, which helps to lower the impact of emissions on the local environment.
Given that Israel and Palestine are both very dry destinations, water is a precious commodity. To help our passengers to do their bit, our local tour leaders will always encourage them to take shorter showers. Reusing towels is also an easy way to preserve water, especially as we stay in the same hotel in Jerusalem for the first four nights of the trip making this a fairly effortless thing to do.
PeopleWe use a local operator that employs both Palestinian and Israeli tour leaders, who offer fair work practices in line with the local authorities. All employees have the opportunity to train further by making use of our online learning platform as well as annual face-to-face training sessions. Our local operator also supports local students by giving them the chance to join daily tours in order to broaden their experience.
Our philosophy is to act local and that means respecting the local traditions. It can be said that tourism encourages tolerance of cultures and this trip uses both a Palestinian and Israeli guides for the duration of the tour. This gives travellers the opportunity to talk to and mix with both Palestinians and Israelis, breaking down barriers and encouraging friendships between these two opposing cultures. By adopting this philosophy on our tours we’re working towards a more friendly and inclusive community.
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