5 independent reviews for Israel holidays, small group tour

Reviews for Israel holidays, small group tour

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review 11 Apr 2017

1. What was the most memorable or exciting part of your holiday?

The most exciting for me was learning about the history of the Jewish people and seeing Jerusalem, the old city.

2. What tips would you give other travellers booking this holiday?

Be prepared for long days that are very tiring. It was very warm whilst we were there, April but doing all the sight seeing would have been hard work in 40c !

3. Did you feel that your holiday benefited local people, reduced environmental impacts or supported conservation?

We stayed in a Kibbutz hotel so that would have helped and most of our tour group bought lots of souvenirs so that would have helped too.

4. Finally, how would you rate your holiday overall?

I really enjoyed the holiday, it packed a lot in within the week.

review 19 Dec 2016

1. What was the most memorable or exciting part of your holiday?

No one part. Whole thing amazing.Having never visited Israel before we had little idea of what to expect, our impressions being mainly informed, if that is the right word, by the tragic scenes of conflict so often projected in our home media. However, since of late there seemed to be a bit of a lull in this strife we saw this as a suitable window of opportunity to get some first hand insights. And for this purpose we could have faired no better than to have had Aharon as our guide. A trained archaeologist with scholarly knowledge of the bible, a passionate love of his people and country, and a wonderful gift for story-telling, he kept us enthralled for a week of incredible sights and experiences. His audience for the minibus tour was mainly Americans with just a couple of Brits. To meet the busy schedule we did have to pick up our feet and maintain a brisk pace but the rewards were plenty as one breathtaking sight after another rolled by and snapshots of thousands of years of world-shaping history were vividly revealed. Looking back at the checklist it seems incredible that we packed it all in - Caeserea, Megiddo, Haifa, Akko, Tiberias, Capernaum, Ceasarea Phillipi, Nazareth, Beit Shean, Jerusalem Old and Now, Bethlehem, Qumran, Masada and muddy finish in the Dead Sea. I for one have never taken so many photos on a single overseas trip, let alone just a one week tour.

2. What tips would you give other travellers booking this holiday?

Travel light using layered clothes. In winter you need a lightweight windproof jacket, comfortable shoes obviously and an umbrella if possible. Worth having a basic first aid kit. Elderly member of our party cut head in fall. Don't forget your phone and camera chargers. Strangely for us bottled water is not supplied in the bus so take one with you every day and top it up as you go along. Practically all shops take US dollars. Take property security seriously even in your hotel. My wife's perfume vanished from our room.

3. Did you feel that your holiday benefited local people, reduced environmental impacts or supported conservation?

Certainly benefitted local drivers, guides, shops, cafes etc. Where the holiday did score was in helping us get a better understanding of the effects of climate change, and some man-made contributions, at desert floor level.

4. Finally, how would you rate your holiday overall?

Unforgettable. I know I'm banging on about Aharon but he made it come alive, coping manfully with a battery of questions. He always ensured his answers were fully made and were forensically accurate. Where accepted tradition and either written evidence or science were in conflict he would clearly explain each side of the argument so we could be our own judge. The quality of his input made the tour an exceptionally interesting and sometimes thought provoking experience. Of course it was always going to have a profound effect on us all but when on occasion he suggested that we would be changed by what we saw and heard I think he hit the nail on the head. It was a very special tour.

review 13 Apr 2016

1. What was the most memorable or exciting part of your holiday?

No one thing stands out because it was all good.

2. What tips would you give other travellers booking this holiday?

Be prepared to do plenty of walking. Get Israeli currency before leaving home.

3. Did you feel that your holiday benefited local people, reduced environmental impacts or supported conservation?

No.

4. Finally, how would you rate your holiday overall?

Excellent. The only downside was the Rent-a-Guide Mercedes bus which was cramped, noisy and lacking in shock absorbers.

review 4 Mar 2015

1. What was the most memorable or exciting part of your holiday?

Masada & Ben Shean

2. What tips would you give other travellers booking this holiday?

See if you can have Hilik as a guide

3. Did you feel that your holiday benefited local people, reduced environmental impacts or supported conservation?

Benefited local people, yes. Environmental impact, probably neutral at best, but any travel is bad! Supported conservation, yes as with out visitors they won't conserve, that is clear.

4. Finally, how would you rate your holiday overall?

Very, very, very good. Regarding the stars below, I am not sure about reborn, or the best I have ever been on, but it is one that I would definitely not wanted to have missed and I will recommend it to friends.

review 9 May 2014

1. What was the most memorable or exciting part of your holiday?

There were lots of memorable moments. We visited many sites spanning about 5000 years of history. Our guide was very knowledgable and aimed to bring history to life with clear explanations without getting bogged down with minutiae. He was able to answer questions for those who wanted more information. I liked the varied mix of people in the group with eight different countries represented. Just picking out a few hightlights: the boat journey on the Sea of Galilee on a beautiful warm and sunny Spring morning listening to Amazing Grace on the music system. Staying at a kibbutz also very interesting as was watching/taking part in baptisms at the River Jordan.

2. What tips would you give other travellers booking this holiday?

This was a very busy tour visiting many sights. It's very much a 'taster' of what Israel has to offer rather than an in-depth study. Be prepared for some long days with a lot of travelling. A sun hat is essential and drink lots of water. At some of the religious sites it's necessary to have knees and shoulders covered and no low cut tops. This applies to men and women. In some places men need to wear head covering. Most places in the main tourist areas would accept US dollars as well as shekles.

3. Did you feel that your holiday benefited local people, reduced environmental impacts or supported conservation?

The tour was provided by an Israeli company using jewish, palastinian and arabic guides and drivers so presumably the money stayed within the country. We had opportunities to shop in local shops and the suk and eat in local cafes and restaurants. Where possible we were encouraged to stay on designated paths to avoid excess damage to surrounding areas.

4. Finally, how would you rate your holiday overall?

This was a comprehensive tour with a predominately christian bias. There was much to see and experience. My only real critisism is that it tries to pack too much into too little time. I would have liked longer at many of the sites. I think the tour would benefit from being a few days longer which could possibly give the opportunity to visit a synagogue and a mosque.

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