Israel features an abundance of history, religious significance for many different faiths; 21st century amenities and infrastructures, advanced innovations, high-tech technologies, and unique landscapes.
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is an affluent city in the central coast of Israel, at the Northern part of the Tel Aviv District known for its robust start-up and entrepreneurial culture. In 2016 it had a population of 93,116. Named after Theodor Herzl, the founder of modern Zionism, Herzliya covers an area of 21.6 square kilometres (8.3 sq mi). At its western municipal boundaries is Herzliya Pituah, one of Israel's most affluent neighborhoods and home to numerous embassies, as well as prominent Israeli business people.
Jerusalem is Israel’s foremost tourist destination, drawing one-and-a-half million visitors a year, or roughly 70 percent of all persons who visit Israel. It is also Israel’s most popular site for international conferences, hosting about 50 percent of all such events.
Jerusalem is a city of overwhelming emotions, a city that promises a religious and spiritual experience, excitement and pleasure, interesting tours and entertaining adventures. Here, alongside Jerusalem’s fascinating historic and archeological sites, there are amazingly modern tourist attractions for all lovers of culture, the arts, theater and music, architecture and gastronomic delights.
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Tel Aviv – Jaffa
Situated on a 14-kilometer-long strip on the Mediterranean seacoast, Tel Aviv extends beyond the Yarkon River to the north and the Ayalon River to the east.
One hundred year ago, Tel Aviv was only sand dunes, today it is the city that never sleeps. It is a lively city with entertainment, culture and art, festivals, and amazing night life. It was the first modern Jewish city built in Israel, and is the country’s economic and cultural center.
The city has more than 20 museums, the most important of which are the Land of Israel (HaAretz) Museum and the Tel Aviv Art Museum. Other Tel Aviv museums include the Museum of the Diaspora, the Israel Defense Forces History Museum, the Etzel Museum, the Haganah Museum, the Palmach Museum, the Lehi Museum, and the Nachum Guttman Museum.
The city hosts the Israel Philharmonic Orchestra and the Israeli Opera Company, as well as most of the national dance and theater companies.
Tel Aviv is also the national center for night life and entertainment and is filled with restaurants, pubs, coffee houses, night clubs, movie theaters, auditoriums, and concert halls.
The beachfront of Tel Aviv has bathing beaches and a romantic waterfront promenade.
Israel’s third largest city and one of its prettiest, Haifa has a lot to offer visitors. It has the country’s largest port, a particularly active beach and is the home of the World Centre of the Bahai Faith.
Surrounded by abundant nature sites, the city contains an interesting mix of modern neighborhoods and older districts; churches and mosques; mountain and sea.
With residents from the three largest religions as well as from various minority faiths, Haifa is also a symbol of outstanding co-existence and tolerance. Nine percent of the population consists of Arabs (Moslems and Christians) who reside mostly in three neighborhoods: Khalisa, Abas and the famous Wadi Nisnas whose charming alleyways have turned it into a tourist spot. The annual Holiday of Holidays marking the city’s special lifestyle is held there.
The Christian presence in Haifa, with its many churches, also contributes to the city’s image. A Maronite church is located next to Kikar Paris (Paris Square); adjacent to that is the Carmelite church dedicated to the Prophet Elijah; and not far from there is Saint Mary’s Greek Orthodox Parish Church. The Sacre Coeur Catholic school on Allenby Street has a well-tended garden and building, in front of which are impressive statues of Saint Mary. Atop the Carmel, holy to Christians, is the Stella Maris Carmelite Monastery. In the monastery’s Baroque-style church is a cave considered by Christian tradition to be the grave of the Prophet Elijah, and in the monastery is a small museum dedicated to his life.
Dead Sea and Masada
Lying 400m (1320ft) below sea level and spanning the border between Israel and Jordan, the Dead Sea is a natural wonder. The Dead Sea is the lowest place on earth, a place of beauty. It contains more minerals and salt than any other stretch of water
in the world, and thus it is possible to float on top of the water. Its natural properties make it a prime centre for spa treatments and relaxation therapies and there are a number of resorts in the area. The Dead Sea has strong Biblical connections: here the Dead Sea Scrolls, the oldest Biblical documents known to be in existence, were discovered at Qumran and King Herod built his palace of Masada.
Masada is a UNESCO World Heritage Site and an ancient fortress occupying a breathtaking strategic location high on a flat plateau above the Dead Sea. Masada is one of the greatest archaeological sites in Israel and, perhaps, across the world.
The fortress of Masada was built in the year 30 BCE by King Herod, whose architectural feats have left their mark throughout the country. At the beginning of the great revolt against Rome in the year 68 CE, the site was conquered by a group of Jewish zealots, and Masada became their last stronghold. In the year 72 the Romans besieged Masada and succeeded in reaching the steep fortress after constructing a huge earthen ramp on its western side.
The remains of the fortress of Masada are well-preserved and have been reconstructed. The most impressive structure on Masada is King Herod’s northern palace, built on three rock terraces overlooking the gorge below. Near the palace is a large Roman style bath house with a colorful mosaic floor and walls decorated with murals.
Over the years, the city of Eilat has become the ultimate resort city with Eilat hotels and beaches packed with thousands of Israeli vacationers and tourists from around the world, who come to relax in the country’s southernmost spot.
The modern city of Eilat was established in 1950. In the early 1950’s, a quay was built in the new city, and subsequently a port which became the basis for the new city’s economy. Towards the end of the 1960s, the tourism industry started developing in the city, and today Eilat is a paradise for tourists, travelers and vacationers.
In the winter it mainly attracts tourists from Europe who prefer vacations in a warmer and more pleasant climate while Israelis flock to the city in the summer. The secret of this little city’s charm is its special location in the northern end of the Bay of Eilat. The combination of a hot climate, a tropical sea and a breath-taking background of wild, bare granite mountains has turned it into a tourist gem all the year round.
Eilat’s location made it strategically significant during the many historical periods in which it served as a port – starting in the days of King Solomon (who built a large fleet of ships which he sent to Ophir), through the Nabataeans, the Romans, the Arabs, and the Crusaders, all of whom ruled the Land of Israel.
The bay is one of the major attractions, thanks to the beautiful beaches, the developed water sports and some of the best diving spots in the world. In the south of the city is the Coral Reserve, with splendid tropical fish among the reefs. Within the precincts of the reserve is the Underwater Observatory, with a marine museum that displays collections of fascinating sea animals. Not far from the observatory is the Dolphin Reef with its resident school of dolphins.