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Middle East » Israel » Jerusalem District » Jerusalem April 29th 2018

So last day in Tel Aviv...what to do? After a wonderful breakfast I headed back to the beach. I spent the next couple of hours walking in the water, looking out to the Mediteranian and enjoying the peace that comes with the water. Then it became decision time...because I am not Jewish, nor am I familiar with their customs, when I was planning this trip, I planned my travel days on Saturday. Big mistake! Why? Because of Shabbat! Pretty much everything shuts down Friday night and doesn't start up again until Sunday. So that means no public transportation. Private taxi it is then. With that comes more freedom of choice. So, do i go early or later? I decided to head back to Jaffa and go later...benefit of traveling alone, I get to make all the ... read more
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Middle East » Israel » Tel Aviv District » Tel Aviv April 29th 2018

Last day in Israel, packed our bags and said our farewells to Michal. After a wonderful stay with them, John drove us to a local train station for the 20 minute trip to HaShalom Station. He was kind enough to come in with us and assist us with the luggage and in buying the correct ticket. The train wasn’t very full as it was just after 9am and we got into the last carriage as John suggested and got the side section which saved us carrying our bags up or down stairs. When we got to HaShalom the lift was right in front of us so it was all perfect. Then we asked about lockers and found 2 large ones available for 30NIS each. Put the bags in and then went to the shopping centre (next ... read more
Tel Aviv Government Complex
Sarona
Office Buildings behind Sarona

Middle East » Israel » Jerusalem District » Jerusalem April 29th 2018

I was so excited to get to the old city I was out the door by 8am! And considering this was the first night I slept the whole night through and didnt get up until 7:15, you can see I was anxious to get out the door! Stopped at the Train Station for coffee and off I went to explore... The Old City is a little over a mile away...perfect. As I was walking I couldn't help but admiring the view and when I was able to spy the walls of the old city...breath taking! Along my walk I met an older gentleman that was walking my way and we fell into conversation. I informed him that my goal was to tour the Tower of David today and then explore. He was so very gracious about ... read more
Old city!
Park
Walkways in Old City

Middle East » Israel » Tel Aviv District » Tel Aviv April 28th 2018

Had my first sleep-in on this trip and woke up at 8am thanks to our comfortable accommodation at the Bostock house. Had some of John’s muesli for breakfast which was great as it’s my usual type of breakfast. John then drove us to the old port of Jaffa which we had only briefly visited the day before. This time we had a leisurely walk through the whole area which was great. Very interesting walking through the Ottoman era alleys and admiring the views of Tel Aviv. We then drove to the Neve Zedek area which was the first area of Jewish settlement when Jaffa became too crowded. There are many original houses, some needing a lot of restoration work. It was very interesting walking through and seeing all the families out and about as well. It’s ... read more
Old Jaffa Port
Old Jaffa Port
Old Jaffa Port

Middle East » Israel » Tel Aviv District » Tel Aviv April 27th 2018

Isreal Delicious...what an apt description for this tour! If any of you who are reading this comes to Tel Aviv, this is a must...without a doubt! A group of 7 met our tour host at the mouth of the Carmel Market. However, she took us around the outskirts of the market to get samples of all her favorites. (I will be going back to the market later today to just take it in.) With all her knowledge of food and relationships with the shop owners, this was an incredible experience. We started off at a juice bar, but this was no Jamba Juice! Hearing the background of the shop owners to the history of their products was incredibly interesting...and samples of course! Then, off to her favorites bakery. We were able to sample the original bagels ... read more
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Middle East » Israel » Tel Aviv District » Tel Aviv April 27th 2018

What can I say other than senses overload! The colors, sounds, atmosphere and people...so much of everything! Almost chaos with the amount of energy around this market. It was hard to take everything in, let alone take pictures. It didn't help the it was Friday afternoon and the market was dealing with Shabbat happening soon. I made it through once and had to refresh and hang out for a half hour before going in again! I suppose this is what a middle eastern market is all about. Vendors yelling, people shopping and eating. There was all sorts of fruits, vegetables, spices, breads and pastries and candy. Household items, paper products, clothes and souvenirs. I am not sure how people were actually able to buy anything with the mass of humanity roaming...but they did! After this experience, ... read more
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Middle East » Israel » Haifa District »  Caesaria April 27th 2018

Last day of the tour and we start off at 8am for the short walk to the Church of Annunciation which has mosaics contributed by many countries around the world including Australia which has it’s contribution inside the church. The church is built over a Byzantine era then crusader era church which in turn houses the remains of what is believed to be the house of the Virgin Mary and the location of the Annunciation by angel Gabriel that she would give birth to the son of God. Then walked down to our waiting bus (another van had taken our luggage down) and we headed off to Haifa on the Mediterranean coast to look at the Bahai Gardens that go up Mount Carmel and then a drive to the top where we had a great view ... read more
Church of The Annunciation
Church of The Annunciation
Church of The Annunciation

Middle East » Israel » Tel Aviv District » Tel Aviv April 26th 2018

Whelp...I made it! The flights and layovers were long but everything went smooth. Had a 5 hour layover in Munich and the highlight there was the showers! Yup...showers! For 15 euro, you can use a dressing room/washroom/walk in shower. Equipped with towels, body wash and shampoo along with a blow dryer. And after a long 10 hour flight, this was heaven! Also had the best pizza. Crazy I know, but it sounded good so I got it...ate the whole bloody thing...I am on holiday after all! The flight from Munich was a short 3 1/2 hours and then it hit me...I am a foreigner in a foreign land! While there were some English signs here and there, there were not as many as I was hoping in the terminal. However, by following the crowd (and trying ... read more
Waiting for Pizza
Dinner!
Tel Aviv

Middle East » Israel » Tel Aviv District » Jaffa April 26th 2018

After taking a short nap I awoke with a start to realize that I needed to get moving! The plan was to do a 2 hour walking tour in Jaffa. So, change of clothes, brush of teeth, grab an orange and water and out the door I went. Not too much thoughts were running through my mind other than getting to the meeting point. And in retrospect, that was a good thing. I will admit to some trepidation of being here alone and wandering the city. But with cell phone in hand (Google maps) I just went out the door without any reservations! The walk to Jaffa was about a mile or so but along the coastline. The Mediterranean Sea is gorgeous! I made it to the meeting point with no time to spare and off ... read more
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Middle East » Israel » Tel Aviv District » Tel Aviv April 26th 2018

From what I read about sites to see, the street art was a must in Tel Aviv. Great thing was, I didn't have to go looking, it found me on my way to dinner and back!... read more
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