The following article features 10 day Israel itinerary for my upcoming trip to Israel. On my Israel travel blog, I hope to give some useful guidelines and Israel travel tips to all travelers, especially to all independent travelers like me, who are planning their first trip to Israel.
If you are thinking of 10 days in Israel and planning your 10 day trip to Israel, I suggest taking a look at my Israel itinerary to get insights where to go in Israel, what to see in Israel, what to visit in Israel and what to do in Israel.
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Next two months I will be traveling Israel, Jordan, and Egypt.
Past few days I’ve been planning my upcoming trip to Israel and nailing my Israel itinerary. A good thing is my trip to Israel is not (so) tightened by time. My return ticket is from Cairo in two months. A not so good thing is that my trip could possibly become tightened by my budget. Apparently, Israel is an expensive country.
However, it seems like 10 days in Israel should be fine for a first-time visit to Israel. Or better to say, to get a glimpse of Israel. The point is, talking about the size Israel is not a big country at all. For example, Israel is the same size as Albania, smaller than Hawaii and even 3 times smaller than my Croatia. But beyond the shadow of a doubt, modern Israel is a unique fusion of various cultures accompanied by a long and hectic history. The diverse range of cultural influences in the Holy Land resulted, among other things, with modern Israeli cuisine which is one of the most appealing and delicious cuisines in the World. Meeting local people, learning about their history and culture, trying to understand their perspectives, views, and feelings of the World through their eyes and hearts is what travel is all about. And in that sense, contemporary Israel offers a plethora of exceptional and unparalleled experiences to its visitors.
- 10 DAY ISRAEL ITINERARY: 10 days in Israel & the West Bank
- Day 1-2: Tel Aviv
- Day 3: Haifa and Acre
- Day 4: Tiberius, Galilee Sea and Nazareth
- Day 5: Jerusalem
- Day 6: Bethlehem (the West Bank)
- Day 7: Jericho (the West Bank)
- Day 8: the Dead Sea, Ein Gedi, the Judean Desert, and Masada
- Day 9-10: Eilat
- MAP OF MY 10 DAYS IN ISRAEL ITINERARY
- RECOMMENDED READ – ISREAL TRAVEL GUIDES
- RECOMMENDED USEFUL TRAVEL ACCESSORIES FOR TRAVELLING ISRAEL
10 DAY ISRAEL ITINERARY: 10 days in Israel & the West Bank
ISRAEL IN 10 DAYS
I am planning to travel to Israel for 10 days by public transport as an independent traveler. The vast majority of my time in Israel I am going to use public buses. Because of that, I am going immediately on my arrival to get a Rav Kav Card.
Rav Kav Card is an Israeli top-up smart travelcard. It means, if I put 100 NIS (New Israeli Shekels) on the card, I will get 20% extra or 120 NIS travel worth to use. For someone who is going to use public buses a lot, what’s my case, this is a great deal.
But, let’s take a look at my draft of my 10 days Israel itinerary.
ISRAEL 10 DAY ITINERARY:
Day 1-2: Tel Aviv
I am flying to Ben Gurion Airport in Tel Aviv and my Israel trip is officially starting in Tel Aviv.
2 days in Tel Aviv should be enough for getting insights into the city for a first-time visit. Tel Aviv is famous for its nightlife, but I am not into parties and clubbing. I love the expression ‘Tel Aviv plays, Jerusalem prays‘ though.
But what I find interesting is that modern Tel Aviv is a creative and startup hub. Without any question, I am looking forward to checking out the ancient port of Jaffa, the Carmel food market, Bauhaus buildings of the White City, graffiti in Florentin neighborhood, arty and quirky Neve Tzedek neighborhood, Tel Aviv beaches and trendy cafes in Rothschild Boulevard.
Where to stay in Tel Aviv – recommended Tel Aviv accommodation:
Jaffa neighborhood (for history and art lovers) – PoliHosts Old Jaffa, KaliCasa by the Sea , House in Shalma, Margosa Hotel Tel Aviv Jaffa,
Florentin neighborhood (for arty personalities and hipsters) – Florentin House, Gal’s Studio,
Neve Tzedek (for trendsetters and shoppingoholics) – The Vera , Trieste Neve Tzedek Boutique Suites , Fabric Hotel – an Atlas Boutique Hotel, The Rothschild 71
Tayelet (for beach lovers) – The Spot Hostel, Shalom Hotel & Relax, Brightness and Fun Meet Luxury Touches by Namal Tel Aviv, Brown Beach House by Brown Hotels
Day 3: Haifa and Acre
On my third day in Israel, I am heading from Tel Aviv to Haifa and Acre (Akko) by train. Planning to spend half of the day in each.
First I am going to Akko and then Haifa. Since the following day, I am planning to take a bus from Haifa to Tiberias.
Akko is an ancient 4.000-year-old town with a long history tracking down Romans, Greeks, Crusaders, and Arabs. On my wish list is the Old Town of Akko with the old fishing harbor, the souk (market), the Crusader city, the citadel with the khan and the Al Jazzar mosque.
Later on, I would love to catch a ferry from Old Akko to Haifa Port to enjoy the views of the sea, the coastline (just to mention, Lebanon is only 20 miles away from the Akko), and the Caramel Mountain on my arrival to Haifa.
In Haifa, I want to walk magnificent terraces of the Bahai Gardens, to see the Shrine of the Bab, to explore the German Colony and to visit the Stella Maris Carmelite Monastery and the Elijah’s Cave.
Optionally I will take one day more to spend in this area.
It is easy to travel Haifa-Akko. The train ride between Akko and Haifa lasts about 20-25 minutes.
Day 4: Tiberius, Galilee Sea and Nazareth
My route is taking me from Haifa to Tiberius on the Galilee Sea and from there to Nazareth.
There is a direct bus from Haifa to Tiberias. Every 15-20 min Egged bus No.430 goes from Haifa’s Merkazit Hamifratz Central Bus Station (platform 10) to Tiberias. The ride takes about 70 min.
In Tiberias, I will have some Galilee lakeside time enjoying the views of the Golan Heights and ancient Gadara in Jordan, and probably taking a boat tour on the mythical and Biblical lake where once Jesus made the miracles of walking on the water and feeding a bunch people with only one fish.
Later in the day, I am proceeding with my Israel trip itinerary and going to Nazareth, the childhood home of Jesus. Buses No. 430 and No.836 go from Tiberias Central Station (near the market) to Nazareth Center (near the Church of the Annunciation).
Planning to take a night in Nazareth before departing to Jerusalem the next day early morning.
Day 5: Jerusalem
My next stop is Jerusalem. Egged public bus No 955 goes from Nazareth to Jerusalem.
Having a feeling I might fall in love with Jerusalem. I am trying my best not to have expectations though. Trying to be cautious about not getting disappointed.
I am excited (Ah, expectations! Need to bite my tongue – edit, re-edit, re-re-edit this…) to witness the Old City of Jerusalem, the Church of the Holy Sepulchre with the Tomb of Christ, the Via Dolorosa, the Mount of Olives with the Gethsemane Garden, the Room of the Last Supper, the Dome Rock, to leave a note with my prayers in between the wall’s cracks the Wailing Wall, to buy some fresh fruits on the Machne Yehuda Market in the New City … to say at least.
MAYBE YOU ALSO WOULD LIKE TO READ: Popular Holy Sites in Israel and the West Bank
Where to stay in Jerusalem – recommended Jerusalem accommodation:
BUDGET: Chain Gate Hostel, Stay Inn Hostel,
MID-RANGE: Jerusalem Hotel,
UPSCALE: The Sephardic House Hotel in the Jewish quarter, Jaffa 60 Apartments ( Jonathan Hotel Chain)
Day 6: Bethlehem (the West Bank)
Ok, I know. Bethlehem is in the West Bank. And I am renaming my itinerary to a ’10 day Israel & the West Bank itinerary’.
Usually, visitors take a half-day tour from Jerusalem to Bethlehem. It costs around 70 USD per person. I might take a public Palestinian bus No. 21 from the East Jerusalem Bus Station. The ticket should be around 1,40 USD (5 NIS). The tours are good for security concerns. But I am an independent traveler who prefers to do what local people do. And as long as local people go by bus, I am doing the same. However, so far my votes are going to taking a public bus. I even got a tip to stay in Bethlehem instead of Jerusalem, for Bethelem is much cheaper than Jerusalem. This is something to take into account. Most likely, I will be back in Jerusalem to take a sleep and on the next day, I will go to Jericho. The options are still open and I am going to decide on the site.
However, the Church of Nativity, the Milk Grotto, the Chapel of the Holy Innocents, the Mosque of Omar, the Coptic church, the Armenian monastery, the Greek Orthodox monastery … – I am coming! Ugh, this line just reminded me how much history there is in Bethlehem!
UPDATE: I took white-blue Palestinian bus No. 21 at East Jerusalem Bus Station next to the Damascus Gate in Jerusalem and went to Bethlehem. A one-way ticket from Jerusalem to Bethlehem was 1,9 USD 7 (NIS). The bus ride was perfectly safe with absolutely no disturbances or any kind of stress.
Day 7: Jericho (the West Bank)
Jericho is said to be the oldest town on the Earth. A more than 30.000-years-old town. Too good to be missed, I would add. Mountain of Temptation, Zaccheus Tree, Elisha’s Spring, Tel el-Sultan are sites to see in Jericho. I hope to check them all out.
There is also one more option. Heard of the possibility of visiting Jericho and Bethlehem in one day. There should be a bus opposite to the Damascus Gate in Jerusalem driving to Abu Dis. Just before Abu Dis the passengers who wish to proceed to Jericho, should get off the bus and take a 20-min walk or a taxi ride to Jericho. From Jericho, there is a bus back to Abu Dis and from Abu Dis to Bethlehem. Most likely at the time when I reach Jerusalem I will get better insights into this.
UPDATE: In Bethlehem, I have decided to visit Hebron instead of Jericho. So, in Bethlehem, I took a Palestinian shared taxi called ‘servicees‘ to Hebron. My one-way ticket from Bethlehem to Hebron was 2,7 USD (10 NIS). From Hebron, I went back to Jerusalem by public bus and paid the bus ticket 2,7 USD (10 NIS). Visiting Hebron and the Ibrahimi Mosque in Hebron unexpectedly brought one of the most memorable moments of my trip.
Day 8: the Dead Sea, Ein Gedi, the Judean Desert, and Masada
Egged bus No. 486 goes directly from the Jerusalem Central Bus Station (platform 5) to the Dead Sea, Ein Gedi and Masada.
Dead Sea beaches are only an hour drive from Jerusalem, but to be honest the Dead Sea is pending on my Israel itinerary. After Israel, I am heading to Jordan and there I could reach the Dead Sea. But, Ein Gedi’s natural spring in the Judean Desert on the Dead Sea is making me pondering on this.
If I decide to go directly to Masada, the ride will last only a few minutes more.
Photos of the Masada fortress on a rock plateau in the Judean Desert have been jaw-dropping for me all my life. And the story of the mass suicide of almost 1.000 people to escape slavery is one of the saddest stories in the history ever.
In the late afternoon after visiting Masada, I am heading to Eilat. A 3-hour bus drive takes from Masada to Eilat.
MAYBE YOU ALSO WOULD LIKE TO READ MY STORY OF Hiking Masada in Sunrise
Day 9-10: Eilat
In this draft of my Israel itinerary, I am taking 2 days in Eilat. Maybe one of the two days I will use for some of the options (one more day in Jerusalem, or Haifa)
Eilat is a well-known Israeli resort town on the Red Sea, especially famous for glorious sunsets and swimming with not caged dolphins on the Dolphin Reef beach. Besides that, unearthly Red Canyon with widely praised Red Canyon hikes is located nearby Eilat. But Eilat is also convenient for crossing the border with Jordan. The Yitzhak Rabin/Wadi Araba border is the border crossing between Eilat in Israel and Aqaba in Jordan. The border is located only 3 miles (5 km) north of Eilat and 5 miles (8 km) north of Aqaba. On the Yitzhak Rabin/Wadi Araba border I am planning to say Goodbye (or, See you again) to Israel and Hello to Jordan.
PS: Let’s stay in touch and follow my trip in Israel on my Israel travel blog.
UPDATE: I have crossed the Yitzhak Rabin/Wadi Araba border and entered Jordan from Israel. On the border, you need to pay the Israeli exit fee of 105 NIS (29 USD). Israelis don’t stamp the passport on the Yitzhak Rabin border, but entering Jordan overland you get Jordanian stamp on the Wadi Araba border what consequently confirms that you came from Israel.
MAYBE YOU ALSO WOULD LIKE TO READ: Popular Israeli Food
STEPS AND TRAVEL RESOURCES FOR YOUR PERFECT TRIP
1. Find and book your flight: Skyscanner
2. Find and book your stay: Booking.com, HotelsCombined.com3. 3. Get travel insurance (insure yourself against any accident, sickness, theft, and cancelled flight): WorldNomads.com
4. Find and book great guided day tours: GetYourGuide, Viator
MAP OF MY 10 DAYS IN ISRAEL ITINERARY
RECOMMENDED READ – ISREAL TRAVEL GUIDES
RECOMMENDED USEFUL TRAVEL ACCESSORIES FOR TRAVELLING ISRAEL
Do you like my DIY 10 day Israel tour?
Have you been to Israel? What were the highlights of your trip to Israel?
Do you have any suggestions for my Israel itinerary 10 days? Any other places to visit in Israel, things to do in Israel and things to see in Israel?
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