Whether you travel to Israel for a beach holiday or for religious regions, Israel offers a lot of variety for all kind of travelers. The differences among areas in Israel couldn't be any bigger -- from the liberal city of Tel Aviv where the conflict doesn't seem to exist, to some of the world's holiest places with the multicultural Jerusalem as its centre.
Hostels in Israel can be found in each of the bigger cities; especially in the main cities like Tel Aviv, Jerusalem, and Haifa, travelers can choose from many hostels with basic amenities to more luxurious hostels, and from big dorms to private rooms.
There's a lot to see in Israel, and travelers will need at least a few weeks to cover all the main sights. Traveling from one place to another is very easy. as Israel has a good train and bus network throughout the country.
The country can be divided in several areas -- the south is mainly desert and offers some spectacular scenery. The south is also home to the resort town Eilat. In the west, some beach destinations can be found; Tel Aviv being the most popular with an infamous nightlife. The northern part is home to the student city of Haifa, the Sea of Galilee, and the Golan Heights. Jerusalem is the religious capital of Israel. Information on Palestine, with destinations such as East Jerusalem, the Dead Sea Bethlehem, and Jericho can be found on an individual page.
Tel Aviv is where most travelers meet Israel, as it is where the international airport is located. Tel Aviv is the most laid-back destination in Israel, and if you're not aware of the conflict prior to arrival in Israel, you may not even notice at all. Tell Aviv has a nice beach and boulevard, while the district of Jaffa is basically the Old Town with the nice small alleys.
Despite being only one hour away, Jerusalem seems like a different planet compared to Tel Aviv. Jerusalem is where Jesus was crucified and is home to many holy religious sites of Christianity, Judaism, and Islam. It's a great mix of the religions, and you can clearly see the different neighborhoods. The conflict is more visible here for visitors, as you can see many armed soldiers and police on the streets, but the conflict normally doesn't bother any tourist here. Jerusalem is a must-see for every visitor to Israel.
The south is totally different from the rest of Israel, as it is mainly desert. Beautiful sand desert and canyons can be explored in this region. It is possible to book an Israel hostel in the middle of the desert and stay there for a few days. Eilat, in the very south, is a popular beach destination on the Red Sea. It is also and access point to Egypt and Jordan.
The main attractions in the north are Haifa, the Golan Heights, and the Sea of Galilee. Haifa is a student city and sunbathing on the beach is possible. The city is built on a steep hill, providing many beautiful views over the city. The Bahá'i Garden is a must-see. Akko, with a beautiful Old Town, is only half an hour from Haifa. The Golan Heights offers beautiful scenery and is close to the border with Syria. The Sea of Galilee plays a big role in the bible, and in the towns near the lakes, visitors can find a laid-back atmosphere and nice boulevards.
Israel offers for both religious and atheists a lot of places of interest, and even a few weeks in the country may not be enough!
Hi, I'm Martin Straatman,
the Hostelz.com local expert for Israel hostels. Welcome.
I lived in Tel Aviv for 8 years. It is a fantastic city with brilliant nightlife and loads to do. The "City that never sleeps" says it all I think. A haven for backpackers.
The ride along the Dead Sea Highway offers beautiful views of the Dead Sea in Wadi Arava and across to the Red Rose Mountains of Jordan. The Dead Sea is a must visit on your itinerary in Israel. Take a bottle of water with you and wear your swimsuit under your clothes.
Jerusalem is stunning, get there any way you can. I backpacked for less than $20 per day.
I enjoyed my travel in Bethlehem -- it is great, please go there and enjoy.
I visited Mitzpe Ramon in September 2003. And I was the happiest woman in the world there. There it is -- pure, genuine, wonderful paradise.
If you go to Eilat, you will fall in love with the town, its beaches, the desert on the back, its nice bars and promenade...Don't miss the dolphin reef and have a drink at 3 Monkey's-- the best pub in town!