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Things to do in Israel

Things to do in  Israel

Welcome to Israel

Combine beautiful natural landscapes with holy sites for three of the world's major religions and you have Israel. What some would call the heart of the Middle East has much to offer travelers. In Tel Aviv—the cosmopolitan hub on Israel's Mediterranean coast—sightseeing tours highlight UNESCO-listed architecture and culinary hotspots, while the Dead Sea region boasts the oasis of Ein Gedi, ancient Masada, and, of course, one of the world's oldest natural spas. Nazareth, Jericho, Masada, and Bethlehem are popular day trips from both Tel Aviv and Jerusalem, perfect for those who want to immerse themselves in the region's religious history.

Top 15 attractions in Israel

Caesarea

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With a huge Roman-era theater, an ancient aqueduct framing a golden beach, and more, Caesarea is home to some of Israel’s most striking ruins. Built by Herod the Great around the time of Christ, the remains of this once-thriving port extend beneath the ocean, while waterfront restaurants and bars let you soak up the views in style.More

Western Wall (Wailing Wall)

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An open-air synagogue where worshippers recite prayers, Israel’s historic Western Wall (Wailing Wall) is where travelers come to kiss pale gold stones the color of the Negev desert and to stuff paper prayers between the stones. The beating heart of the Old City of Jerusalem, this is a must-see sacred site in the Jewish Quarter.More

Old City of Jerusalem

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The ancient winding streets of Jerusalem’s Old City house some of the world’s most sacred religious sites for Jews, Muslims, and Christians, including the Temple Mount, Church of the Holy Sepulcher, Via Dolorosa, Dome of the Rock, and the Western Wall. Plus, each of the district’s four quarters has a unique character well worth experiencing.More

Way of the Cross (Via Dolorosa)

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The Way of the Cross (Via Dolorosa) is an ancient path in Jerusalem’s Old City, where it’s believed Jesus carried the cross to his crucifixion. Also known in Catholicism as the Stations of the Cross, it’s a pilgrimage that’s been followed going back to the fourth century. The route has changed over the years, and today there are 14 stations along the path, each marked with a plaque detailing what took place at that location.More

Dead Sea

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The Dead Sea, home to the lowest point in the world at 1,269 feet (383 meters) below sea level, also ranks as one of the world’s saltiest bodies of water. This hyper-salinity that is so unique to the Dead Sea attracts visitors from all over the world who come to experience the unusual buoyancy, as well as access the nutrient-rich mud on its banks.More

Kidron Valley

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Set on the outskirts of the Old City of Jerusalem, the scenic Kidron Valley is an ancient burial ground renown for its religious significance and natural beauty. The valley divides the Temple Mount and the Mount of Olives and is prominently featured in both the Old and New Testaments, making it an important stop on many religious pilgrimages.More

Coral Beach Nature Reserve

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Home to some of the world’s most northerly tropical coral reefs, Coral Beach Nature Reserve offers Eilat’s—and likely Israel’s—best snorkeling. Seagrass patches draw hawksbill turtles, seahorses, and more; hundreds of different coral species lure aquarium favorites including lionfish, angelfish, and clownfish.More

Jerusalem Jewish Quarter

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Home to the Western Wall, Judaism’s most sacred site, as well as synagogues, religious schools, and a Byzantine-era stretch of the ancient Cardo thoroughfare, the Jerusalem Jewish Quarter is one of the Old City’s traditional four quarters. Rabbis, scholars, and ritually clad Orthodox Jewish believers still stroll its ancient streets.More

Garden of Gethsemane

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According to the Christian faith, Jesus prayed in the Garden of Gethsemane on the night before his arrest. Today, the Church of All Nations guards this sacred site at the foot of the Mount of Olives, where Franciscan friars stroll past gnarled olive trees alongside pilgrims from around the world.More

Christian Quarter

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The walled Old City of Jerusalem is divided into four major quarters: the Jewish Quarter, the Muslim Quarter, the Armenian Quarter, and the Christian Quarter. The city’s Christian Quarter contains around 40 religious sites holy to Christianity, including the Church of the Holy Sepulchre at its heart. The church is venerated as the site where Jesus was crucified, buried, and resurrected and remains a place of pilgrimage for Christians from all over the world. For many it is regarded as the religion’s holiest site.Pilgrims often follow the Via Dolorosa, the path Jesus walked to his crucifixion, stopping at shrines and small sites along the way. Many churches, monasteries, schools, and museums are dotted throughout. You’ll also find residences, souvenir shops, cafes, and other pieces of daily life from those presently residing in the area. There is also an iconic, colorful market patched between the stone walls and narrow streets.More

Rosh Hanikra

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Perched 210 feet (64 meters) over the Mediterranean Sea in northwestern Israel, the Rosh Hanikra kibbutz is part of the Achziv Natural Reserve. The area is known for its interesting geological formations—namely sea caves and limestone grottoes made over millennia by the sea washing over rocks and creating tunnels and caverns in the cliffside.More

Masada

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The UNESCO World Heritage Site of Masada, an ancient fortress built by King Herod the Great, dates back to 37 BC. It’s location on a cliff overlooking the Judean Desert and the Dead Sea is a spectacular spot from which to watch the sunrise.More

Church of the Holy Sepulchre

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The Church of the Holy Sepulchre in Jerusalem’s Old City sits on what is thought to be the site of Jesus’ crucifixion, burial, and resurrection. Christianity’s holiest site, the church stands at the end of the Via Dolorosa—the route Jesus is believed to have taken on the way to his crucifixion.More

Church of the Nativity (Basilica of the Nativity)

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The Church of the Nativity encompasses a grotto where, according to Christain scripture, Jesus was born. Situated in Manger Square in Bethlehem, on the West Bank of the Palestinian territories, the UNESCO World Heritage-listed church is one of Christianity’s holiest places.More

Bethlehem

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An ancient city in the West Bank in the Occupied Palestinian Territories, Bethlehem is home to many significant religious sites, including the Church of The Nativity in Manger Square, believed by Christians to be the birthplace of Jesus.More

Trip ideas

Top Holy Sites in Jerusalem

Top Holy Sites in Jerusalem

How to Spend 3 Days in Jerusalem

How to Spend 3 Days in Jerusalem

How to Spend 1 Day in Jerusalem

How to Spend 1 Day in Jerusalem

Top activities in Israel

Day tour to Petra from Jerusalem

Day tour to Petra from Jerusalem

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From
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Bethlehem Half Day Private Tour - Pick up from Jerusalem/Tel Aviv/Ashdod
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Day Tour to Petra from Eilat

Day Tour to Petra from Eilat

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Ashdod Shore Excursion: Jerusalem and Bethlehem - for cruise ship guests only
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Private tour : Jerusalem Old city day trip from Jerusalem
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Ashdod Shore Excursion: Jerusalem and Dead Sea - for cruise ship guests only
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Private Tour: Best of Jerusalem and the Dead Sea from Tel Aviv
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Top Destinations

Top Destinations

Recent reviews from experiences in Israel

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Great tour!
Erik_S, Nov 2022
Day Tour to Jerusalem and Bethlehem from Tel Aviv
This was a great way to see Israel and Bethlehem in a short amount of time.
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A good tour if you have limited time
RISHI_A, Jul 2022
Jerusalem, Dead Sea and Bethlehem from Jerusalem
The tour is a good value for money if you have a very limited time to explore major attractions of Israel.
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Memorable tour
Theresa_D, May 2022
Jerusalem & Bethlehem Tour from Haifa Port 2023 - Small Groups
Our guide luckily was aware and designed the perfect plan that allowed us to see the most important sites along with keeping us safe.
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Great perspective on Israeli life, Masada, and the dead sea.
Tim_H, Oct 2022
Ashdod Port Shore Excursion: Masada and the Dead Sea Day Tour from Ashdod Port
Guide and driver worked well together to provide a very informative and enjoyable trip to visit the ancient site of Masada along with some beach time at the Dead Sea.
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Hassle-Free and enjoyable!
Ingrid_J, Oct 2022
Private Tour: Nazareth, Tiberias and Sea of Galilee Day Trip from Tel Aviv
For example, you get to see the original entrance to Nazareth.
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Great sampler tour of the northern coast of Israel!
Santi_K, Sep 2022
Highlights of Caesarea, Haifa, Acre and Rosh Hanikra Tour from Tel Aviv
We weren't able to go into the Baha'i Gardens since it is closed on Mondays and Tuesdays, but we went to a few view points to see it from different angles outside.
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Masada/Dead Sea Tour
Jordana_M, Sep 2022
Masada and the Dead Sea Day Trip from Tel Aviv
We even got to see Jericho which was very cool & slightly scary as a Jew, but it was completely safe expierence all around.
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100% Recommended this Tour!
Thomas_H, Aug 2022
Day Tour to Jerusalem and Bethlehem from Tel Aviv
Fantastic experience and well worth the cost to see so much of Jerusalem in one day.
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Highly recommended tour with a great guide
Rick_M, Jul 2022
Travel to Bethlehem Half Day Guided Tour - Daily Trip from Jerusalem
We got to see many of the major sites of Jesus in and around Bethelehem and the tour guide was very good at explaning where everything had taken place.
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Fabulous tour company. Andrea and Mohammed are amazing and very responsive.
Prema_R, Jun 2022
02 Days with 01 overnight Petra and Wadi Rum Tour from Eilat Border
My family was travelling to Israel and while we really wanted to visit Petra, we were nervous and anxious about several things including the fact that we would be in a different country altogether, this was still during Covid times and none of our contacts in Israel could personally recommend any guides in Jordan.
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Great tour!
Susan_B, Jun 2022
Private Tour -Haifa to Follow Jesus steps-to the Sea of Galilee-up to 6 guests
We were able to visit the Church of the Holy Sepulchre, which was one of the main sites we wanted to visit.
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Tel Aviv Urban Art Tour
pdrouet, Feb 2020
Tel Aviv Urban Art Tour
It gave me a chance to see a part of Tel Aviv that I wouldn't have seen otherwise.
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Favorite part of our trip
Jesse_B, Feb 2020
Masada Sunrise Ein Gedi and Dead Sea Tour from Jerusalem
This was one of the most fun things on our entire trip in Israel.
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Dead Sea is a must!
mjcook419, Feb 2020
Masada and the Dead Sea Day Trip from Tel Aviv
It’s nice to see Masada and get to know the history.
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Beautiful Tour
John_M, Dec 2019
Caesarea, Haifa, Rosh Hanikra, and Acre Tour from Jerusalem
This tour is a good way to see the northern part of coastal Israel up to the Lebanon border.
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Good way to see a lot in a day
Marsha M, Dec 2019
Unforgettable Tour to Caesarea, Haifa, Acre and Rosh HaNikra from Tel Aviv
Got to see numerous sites.
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Very interesting tour!
Dawn_M, Sep 2019
Travel to Bethlehem Half Day Guided Tour - Daily Trip from Jerusalem
Not only did we get to see the birthplace of Christ, Milk Grotto and Shepards Field, we got an inside view of the West Bank including some of Banksy's work at the Israeli barrier wall the encloses Palestine.
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Excellent service
annenewzealand, Aug 2019
Private Arrival Transfer from Tel Aviv Ben Gurion Airport to Tel Aviv City
I don’t think he could speak English and we couldn’t speak Israeli but we managed to communicate without problems.
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Nice tour!
ALVARO_C, Jun 2019
Jerusalem and the Dead Sea from Tel Aviv
Excellent choice of tour if you don't have much time to visit the country.
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Amazing intro to Israel
Johanna_G, Aug 2018
Jerusalem and the Dead Sea from Tel Aviv
This trips gives you a great foundation for what to see in Israel and what to do for a future trip.
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All about Israel

When to visit

Israel is a country of microclimates, meaning no matter when you decide to visit, you’ll always have somewhere to go. Oven-hot in summer, southern Eilat is ideal in winter. Jerusalem is visitable year-round but most temperate in spring and fall. Tel Aviv has mild, rainy winters and hot Mediterranean summers. Just keep your eye on the Jewish calendar, because most businesses close and public services stop during major festivals such as Passover and Rosh Hashana.

Getting around

The national Egged bus line goes just about everywhere and is comfortable and climate-controlled. More intrepid travelers can opt for a sherut, or shared minibus, which keep irregular schedules and only depart once the vehicle has filled up. Car rentals are also easy and affordable, with pickup and drop-off available in Ben Gurion Airport or major cities. And you’ll find plenty of tours for all-inclusive options to popular destinations such as Masada or the Dead Sea.

Traveler tips

Visiting the West Bank is easier and safer than many travelers realize, and it has many worthwhile attractions. From Jerusalem, buses and shared minibuses depart regularly from Damascus Gate to Ramallah and Bethlehem. Many group day trips are available. Bear in mind that car rentals in Israel are usually forbidden from crossing into the West Bank. And it’s always a good idea to keep an eye on the latest security alerts.

Currency
Israeli New Shekel (₪)
Time Zone
IST (UTC +2)
Country Code
+972
Language(s)
Hebrew
Frequently Asked Questions
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