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This post is part of a larger trip report from my week long trip to Israel back in November 2012.! I realized that I never posted this trip report from forever ago, so here you go!
- Two days in Jerusalem
- Quick stop at the Dead Sea and Masada
- Exploring the North (Sea of Galilee/Golan Heights)
- Wandering around Tel Aviv
- Sheraton Tel Aviv & Other Tel Aviv Hotels
- Mount Scopus – I went there at 16 years old and remember getting a great view of the city
- Mount Olives – Another area to get a view of the Old City and is associated with Jesus’ last week on earth
- Western Wall Tunnels – From my understanding, there are two tunnel tours, one where you walk through water and get one where it is dry. We didn’t do either, but probably something worth looking into. I heard if you are claustrophobic you might not like it!
- Tower of David Museum – Museum right across from the Jaffa gate and was used for the military.
If you are looking to use your hotel points, this might not be the best city for you. When I was there in 2012, there were only two American chain hotels: 1) Ramada by Wyndham Rewards – located on the outskirts of the city and will require you to take the train places (not recommended); 2) Crowne Plaza – while located closer to the main attractions, it will still require a decent walk to get placed, it also doesn’t get the best reviews (again, probably not recommended). Today there is now a Waldorf Astoria which is in a great location but requires 80,000 points for a free night!
I threw my hotel status out the window and stayed at the Prima Royale hotel. Prima is actually an Israeli-based hotel chain and has a handful of hotels throughout Israel. This was actually a great hotel, especially for the price ($126/night)! The location was great and was probably a 10-15 minute walk to the Old City and a 10-15 minute walk to the Shuk/Ben Yehuda Street. While it was a no frills hotel, it was actually very nice, very clean, and had a nice lobby. It also has a massive Israeli-style buffet breakfast (complimentary) and free wi-fi in the lobby. It was right across the street from the Dan Panorama hotel. There is free parking as well, but there really is no reason to have a car in Jerusalem. The Prima brand also had a Prima King hotel down the street in a maybe slightly better location. I have no idea what the inside of the hotel is like, but if the reviews are good and price is the same, I’d pick it simply for the slightly better location.
If you are looking for a top-notch high end hotel, you can look into the King David, David Citadel, or Mamilla hotel, but they all run $350+/night – no where close to worth it in my opinion!
We had falafel at least once a day and ate pretty low-key for all meals, so no specific restaurants I can recommend. The fresh pomegranate juice was also amazing so make sure not to miss it!
Overall, we really enjoyed Jerusalem! You could pack it all in and do it in one day if you wish, but there is also enough to do for a week! If you have any other recommendations, feel free to comment for other readers.