Days
5
Price from
$1,215NZD

Get a taste of the Middle East's contrasts on a trip through Israel

Kick off your Israel & Palestinian adventure eating your heart out at Jerusalem's lively Machane Yehuda Market. Walk the Ramparts for a different perspective of the Old City of Jerusalem. Hike the Iconic Masada Snake Path before taking a float in the rapidly evaporating Dead Sea. Head to Bethlehem's Church of the Nativity, and go on a Graffiti tour with your leader. Finish this short but sweet trip in cosmopolitan Tel Aviv known for its nightlife.


Start
Jerusalem, Israel
Finish
Tel Aviv, Israel
Country
Israel
Code
GEBB
Physical rating
Traveller’s rating
6 reviews
Ages
Min 18 , Max 29
Group size
Min 1, Max 16

Why we love this trip

  • Sample tasty local eats at the very cool Machane Yehuda Market where you can use your your bite card at any of the vendors.

  • Kick back in our central hostel in Jerusalem, complete with movie room and rooftop terrace.

  • Discover for yourself the town that everyone knows from the Christmas carol – Bethlehem – and find out about daily life in the epic city of Jerusalem as you chat with locals on the way to the Western Wall.

  • Graffiti has filled the walls in Bethlehem by many artists over the years, including British Artist Banksy. Check it out on a walking tour with your leader.

  • Float in the Salty waters of the Dead Sea.

  • Take a birds eye view of the Old City of Jerusalem as you walk the Ramparts. Its a great way to get a sneak peek into places you'd never see otherwise & also a chance to take in the stunning views of the areas outside the wall.

  • Hike the iconic Masada Snake Path for some epic views across the Dead Sea and Jordan.

Is this trip right for you?

  • Just one of the great things about this trip is that it gives you the power. There’s free time to do whatever you want, or optional tours to show you the way. Maybe budget a little extra cash for activities that aren’t included.

  • Accommodation on this trip is in dorm rooms with up to 12 travellers. They may not all be fellow Geckos travellers and your group could be split across different rooms. Where possible (and unless requested otherwise) we will accommodate you in same gender rooms.

  • There is a 1-1.5hr hike up the Masada Snake Path on this trip. If you're not up for it you can always purchase a cable car ticket instead.

  • You’re probably pro at packing light and smart, but just in case your tempted to bring a big, heavy bag, remember you’ll have to carry it to and from hotels, bus stops, train stations etc.

  • Israel & The Palestinian Territories is by no means a cheap destination and you should budget accordingly. The good news is that your expert local leader is on hand to help you uncover the best deals!

  • It’s not all hot desert days in Israel, as the winter months (December through to February) can be quite cold. Temperatures in northern parts of the country can drop to freezing overnight. Snowfall around these areas is also common. Be sure to pack clothes that will prepare you for varying temperatures especially during these months.

  • Sites can get congested during peak travel periods with coaches of large pilgrim groups. We do our best to plan our visits around these times but sometimes it is unavoidable. There may be delays, queue's and private services that prevent us from entering the site. Your trip leader will manage this as best as they can on the day.

Itinerary

This itinerary is valid for departures from 01 January 2018 to 31 December 2018. View the itinerary for departures between 01 January 2017 - 31 December 2017

Shalom! Welcome to Jerusalem, Israel. You’ve got the whole day free to explore this vibrant city (depending on when you get here of course) before you join up with your crew at a Welcome Meeting this afternoon (make sure you’ve got all your important docs and deets on you). Until then, hit the streets. Grab a coffee from one of the cafes, or a cold one from the many bars and restaurants near your hostel.

Meet your leader at the hostel at 4.30pm. After your meeting finishes head out on an orientation walk up to the very cool Machane Yehuda Market. Here you can sample tasty local eats using your bite card at any of the vendors. Your leader will leave you here so you can kick-on after dark. We recommend grabbing a beer in one of the many laneway bars and watch the market come to life in the evening, bar hop, or go for a wander to check out the amazing graffiti popping up on shop shutters.
Accommodation
  • Hotel (1 night)
Included Activities
  • Jerusalem - Machane Yehuda Market & Bite Card
Meals Included
  • Dinner
This morning drive to Jaffa Gate where you will start a walking tour of the Old City from above and below! Start with the Ramparts Walk from Jaffa Gate all the way to Herod’s Gate. This will take about 45 minutes. Go down at Herod’s Gate and walk along the Via Dolorosa (Stations of the Cross), stopping at the Austrian Hospice for a short break and go up to the rooftop for a view of the Old City, before continuing to the Church of the Holy Sepulchre. Walk to the Wailing (Western) Wall stopping at the 'Cardo' in the recently restored Jewish Quarter. The rest of the afternoon is free.
Accommodation
  • Hostel (1 night)
Included Activities
  • Jerusalem - Walk on the Ramparts of the Old City
  • Jerusalem - Western Wall (Wailing Wall)
  • Jerusalem - Church of the Holy Sepulchre
Optional Activities
  • Jerusalem - Israel Museum - USD12
  • Jerusalem - Yad Vashem Museum - Free
Meals Included
  • Breakfast
Rise and shine nice and early to drive out to the spectacular cliff-top fortress of Masada, near the Dead Sea. Kick off the day with an early morning hike up the Masada Snake Path which winds its way up approximately 400 meters from the lowest point on earth (The Dead Sea) to the Peak.
This UNESCO site is super important to the Jewish people, a symbol of their exile from the Holy Land and of bravery and self-sacrifice. The story goes that here a Jewish sect called the zealots held out against the Roman army in AD66. Rather than surrender, they either fought to the death or committed suicide, every last man, woman and child. It's kind of like Gallipoli for the state of Israel.
Catch the Cable Car back down then drive to the Dead Sea for a float in the salty waters.The story goes that Cleopatra used products from the area as part of her beauty regime, which also allegedly included asses' milk and almond extract!

Return to your hostel in Jerusalem.
Accommodation
  • Hostel (1 night)
Included Activities
  • Dead Sea - Dead Sea visit
  • Masada - Entrance & Cable Car one-way
  • Masada - Snake Path Hike
Meals Included
  • Breakfast
Special Information
The Masada Snake Path takes between an hour to ninety minutes to climb.
If you're not up for the hike you can always opt to purchase a Cable Car ticket.
This morning check out of your hostel and head to the Mount of Olives for a panoramic view of the Old City.
From there, drive to Bethlehem – no doubt you're familiar with it from all the Christmas carols and nativity plays. Drop by the Church of the Nativity (on top of the cave where Mary popped out Jesus) and the Shepherds’ Fields (where the angels appeared and told them to get their gold, frankincense and myrrh out).
On a walking tour with your leader, check out this slow-paced town in the West Bank, one of the world’s longest continually inhabited cities, and just try and wrap you head the fact that people have lived here for 11,000 years. Here Graffiti has filled the walls by many artists over the years, including British Artist; Banksy. Learn the personal stories behind some of the more prominent pieces. The walk will also take you past one of the largest refugee camps in the West Bank and previous conflict hotspots.
Continue on to Tel Aviv. Check out the ancient port city of Jaffa, the basis of modern Tel Aviv. Your guide will then check you in at your hostel before bidding you farewell.
Perhaps check out what else the cosmopolitan city has to offer on an optional 3-hour orientation bike tour. If that's not your cup of tea then we recommend a stroll to the Sarona Market. One of Israel's largest indoor culinary offerings, Sarona Market features premium imported goods, alongside the best local fare.

Tel Aviv is known for its nightlife, so maybe get amongst it tonight.
Accommodation
  • Hostel (1 night)
Included Activities
  • Jaffa - Town Visit
  • Jerusalem - Mount of Olives
  • Bethlehem - Grafitti Walking Tour
  • Bethlehem - Church of the Nativity & Shepherds' Field
Optional Activities
  • Tel Aviv - 3hr Bike City Tour - ILS180
Meals Included
  • Breakfast
Your adventure in Israel will come to an end today after breakfast.
Meals Included
  • Breakfast

Meals

4 breakfasts, 1 dinner

Transport

Private bus

Accommodation

Hostels (4 nights)

Included Activities

  • Jerusalem - Machane Yehuda Market & Bite Card
  • Jerusalem - Walk on the Ramparts of the Old City
  • Jerusalem - Western Wall (Wailing Wall)
  • Jerusalem - Church of the Holy Sepulchre
  • Dead Sea - Dead Sea visit
  • Masada - Entrance & Cable Car one-way
  • Masada - Snake Path Hike
  • Jaffa - Town Visit
  • Jerusalem - Mount of Olives
  • Bethlehem - Grafitti Walking Tour
  • Bethlehem - Church of the Nativity & Shepherds' Field

Reviews

Our Essential Israel & the Palestinian Territories trips score an average of 4.5 out of 5 based on 6 reviews in the last year.

Essential Jordan, Israel & the Palestinian Territories, October 2017

Emily Williamson

Essential Jordan, Israel & the Palestinian Territories, June 2017

Samantha Briggs

Dates & availability

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Important notes

SINGLE SUPPLEMENT:
An optional single supplement is available on this trip. Please refer to your booking agent for further information.

Following recent safety incidents we recommend that you check your government's advice for their latest information on travelling in Israel; particularly within the West Bank before your departure and ensure that your travel insurance covers you for all areas of your itinerary. We have links to prominent government travel advisories and regular updates on issues affecting this trip on our Travel Alerts page - www.geckosadventures.com/en-au/travel-alerts

Essential trip information

Want an in-depth insight into this trip? Essential Trip Information provides a detailed itinerary, visa info, how to get to your hotel, what's included - pretty much everything you need to know about this adventure and more.