Israel is certainly one of the most fascinating places in the world. A truly Meditteranean country, rich in history and blessed with its people. Here, the past meets the present as modern shops and amenities line ancient cobblestone streets near ancient ruins. If you’ve looked through Airbnb vacation rentals in Israel but have no clue what to do then you are in luck. Here are the 5 best activities you can do in Israel.
Explore the Old City of Jerusalem
Jerusalem is one of the most ancient cities around the world. This makes it the prime destination for tourists who love history and culture. Here are some notable sites you should definitely check out.
The Temple Mount is a major Islamic site and is considered one of the religion’s holiest places. The site is home to the Al-Aqsa Mosque and the visually striking Dome of The Rock. This shrine houses the Foundation Stone on which the prophet Muhammad was said to have ascended into heaven.
Just a few meters away is another major religious site. HaKotel—more commonly known as the Western Wall—is considered as the holiest site in Judaism. It was once part of the western wall of the Second Temple and is now a major pilgrimage site. Today, pilgrims visit this holy place to leave behind prayers and wishes in the cracks of the wall.
Finally, in the Christian section of the old city, there is the Church of the Holy Sepulcher. It is said that the church houses the tomb of Jesus and a piece of the stone that blocked the entrance of the tomb. Many Christian denominations administer the church with each holding daily masses.
Discover its natural beauty
For travelers who want to step away from the cities and instead explore the Mediterranean outdoors has to offer, there are plenty of fun places to check out.
First up is the Rosh Hanikra. This agricultural commune boasts of breathtaking cliff-faces and grottoes shaped by the oceans for thousands of years. Many rock formations and caves can be found in the area all in different incredible shapes and sizes. The commune also offers common tourist amenities and even a restaurant.
Another point of interest is the Ein Gedi Nature Reserve. This wildlife sanctuary is the home to various local animals like wolves, birds, and the mascot Ibex. The site is a popular hiking destination with two hiking routes each which caters to both beginner and seasoned hikers alike.
Finally, there is the Timna Park. The park is a unique take on Nature parks. Instead of trees and vegetation, it is filled with geological wonders and amazing rock formations. This includes the tall Solomon’s Pillars and the bizarre-looking Mushroom rock formation.
Spend a day at The Dead Sea
The Dead Sea is undoubtedly one of the most recognizable names in the world and rightfully so. This body of water is technically not a sea but rather a large lake. It is entirely land-locked and it also happens to be the lowest point in the world (430 meters below sea level). This means water goes into the lake with nowhere to go except evaporate. This leaves behind minerals that the water carried into the lake with salt being the most abundant. Because of the highly salty water, no fish can survive in the lake that is why it got its name.
Incidentally, the high salt content makes it easier to float. That is why you see pictures of tourists casually reading newspapers while leisurely floating on the water surface. The waters and the mud of the lake are also thought to be therapeutic. A lot of visitors come to try its supposed rejuvenating qualities and healing properties.
Try out some adrenaline-pumping activities
For adventure-seekers, Israel also has a lot of things to offer. All of them guaranteed to be truly adrenaline pumping from start to finish.
Because of it’s rocky and dry terrain, Israel has a lot of canyoneering spots for enthusiasts of all ages to try. One such spot is the Black Canyon in the Golan Heights. Formed thousands of years ago when the are was still volcanically active, this impressive canyon is now an adrenaline junky’s paradise. Experienced guides help you reach the top where you can rappel down or jump into the refreshing waters below.
Skydiving is another popular activity especially for thrill-seeking tourists and locals alike. Experienced instructors help you conquer your fear of heights as you jump out the plane at 13000 ft. This 40-second free-fall gives you a stunning 360-degree bird’s eye view of the Sea of Galilee and surrounding areas.
Snorkeling and scuba diving in the Red Sea is also another popular choice. Eilat is pretty accessible for tourists, and the dive and snorkel spots are quite near the shore. This makes any scuba diving excursion really easy, especially for beginners. The beaches too are trendy among tourists and locals alike.
Visit ancient ruins
Finally, no trip to Israel will be complete without visiting ancient ruins. Israel has been a crossroads of culture many of whom left their legacy in the form of artifacts and ancient ruins. For an Indiana Jones experience, here are places to check out.
Masada Fortress is an impressive structure at the top of a plateau. This ancient fortress was said to be built by Herod The Great and has been a scene of a major battle against the Romans. Most of the structures are still present to this day which can be visited through tours or on your own. The fortress has a stunning view of the dead sea below and the surrounding landscape.
Another point of interest is Tel Meggido. This used to be a major human settlement that dates back to the Chalcolithic period. It has since then become a host of many different cultures like Canaanites, Egyptians, and ancient Israelites. Megiddo is open to the public all year round and it even has a museum that houses the several artifacts they found in the area.
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