Israel Information Centers

Though it is available online, basic tourism information about Israel can be remarkably difficult to find. Following is a list of many (not all) of the tourist information centers in Israel, courtesy of the Israeli Ministry of Tourism:

Ben Gurion Airport

Entrance Hall
Telephone: 03-9754260
Fax: 03-9754264
E-mail: doritk@tourism.gov.il
Opening hours: All the time (24/7)

Jerusalem
Address: Jaffa Gate, Omar Katab Square in the Old City
Telephone: 02-6280403 ; 02-6271422 ; 02-6276429
Fax: 02-6271362
E-mail: orenm@tourism.gov.il
Opening hours: Sun-Thu : 8:30am-5:00pm; Fri: 8:00am-1:30pm

Nazareth
Address: Casanova st.
Telephone: 04-6750555
Fax: 04-6753078
E-mail: ronnye@tourism.gov.il
Opening hours: Mon-Fri: 8:30am-5:00pm ; Sat. 9:00am-1:00pm

Eilat
Address: 8 Beit Hagesher st.
Telephone: 08-6309111
Fax: 08-6339122
E-mail: eilatinfo@tourism.gov.il
Opening hours: Sun-Thu : 8:30am-5:00pm ; Fri 8:00am-1:00pm

Golan
Address: P.O.Box 175, Katzerin 12990
Telephone: 04-6962885
Fax: 04-6963630
E-mail: tour@golan.org.il
Opening hours: Sun-Thu: 8:30am-5:00pm ; Fri: 8:30am-1:30pm

Upper Galilee
Address: 70 Tel Hai Blvd. Kiryat Shemona
Telephone: 04-6817152
Opening hours: Sun-Thu: 8:00am-5:00pm : Fri: 8:00am-1:00pm

Upper Galilee
Address: Mahanayim Junction
Telephone: 04-6903737
Opening hours: Sun-Sat: 8:00am-4:00pm

Upper Galilee
Sefat, Hazor, Rosh Pina Tourism Association
Address: Center of the Galilee Mall, at the entrance to Rosh Pina
Telephone: 1-800-323223 ; 04-6801465
Fax:04-6391917
E-Mail:zhr@zhr.org.il
Opening hours: Sun-Thu: 8:00am-4:00pm

Tiberias
Address: Habanim st. Archaeological Park
Telephone: 04-6725666
Fax: 04-6725062
Opening hours: Sun-Thu : 9:00 -16:00, Fri: 8:30 – 12:30

Nazareth
Address: Han Al Basha Building
Telephone: 04-6011072
Fax: 04-6469308
E-mail: board@nazarethboard.org

Jordan Valley
Jordan Valley Regional Council
Address: Comercial Center, Zemah Junction
Telephone: 04-6752727
Fax: 04-6709454
E-mail: tour@j-v.org.il
Opening hours: Sun-Thu: 9:00am-4:00pm : Fri, Sat & Holidays: 9:00am-2:00pm

Haifa
Haifa Tourist Association
Address: 48 Ben Gurion st., The German Colony
Telephone: 1-800-305090
Internet site: http://tour-haifa.co.il/
Opening hours: Sun-Thu: 9:00am-5:00pm : Fri: 09:00am-1:00pm ; Sat: 10:00am-3:00pm

Carmelim
Carmel Beach Regional Council
Kibbutz Ein Carmel
Tel. 04-8136239/40
Internet site: www.carmelim.org.il

Carmelim
Address: The Cave Strean Nature Reserve
Telephone: 04-9841750
Opening hours: Sun-Thu: 9:00am-4:00pm : Fri: 08:00am-1:00pm; Sat: 8:00am-5:00pm

Carmelim
Address: Hameyasdim st. Zichron Yaakov
Telephone: 04-6398892
Opening hours: Sun-Thu: 8:00am-1:00pm

Netanya
Address: 12 Ha’atzmaut Square, Netanya
Telephone: 1-700-709292 ; 09-8827286
Fax: 09-8874819
Opening hours: Sun-Thu: 8:00am-4:00pm : Fri: 09:00am-12:00pm

Tel Aviv
Tel Aviv Tourism Association
Address: City Hall, 69 Ibn Gvirol st., Tel Aviv
Telephone: 03-5218500
Opening hours: Sun-Thu: 9:00am-2:00pm

Tel Aviv
Tel Aviv Tourism Association
Address: Tel Aviv Promanade, 46 Herbert Samuel st.
Telephone: 03-5166188
Opening hours: Sun-Thu: 9:30am-4:30pm

Gush Etzion
Gush Ezion Tourism Association
Address: Efrat Industry Region
Telephone: 02-9938388
Fax:02-9309797
E-mail: tourism@gush-etzion.co.il
Opening hours: Sun-Thu: 8:00am-4:00pm

Beer Sheva
Address: Abraham Well, 1 Hevron Rd. Beer Sheva
Telephone: 08-6234613
Opening hours: Sun-Thu: 8:00am-4:00pm

Dead Sea
Tamar Regional Council
Address: Public Solarium, Ein Bokek
Telephone: 08-9975010
E-mail: tamar266@bezeqint.net
Opening hours: Mon-Sat . Winter – 9:00am-4:00pm Summer – 10:00am-5:00pm

Arad
Address: “Paz” gas station, Industrial erea, Arad
Telephone: 08-9954160
E-mail: meida@arad.muni.il
Opening hours: Thursday-Saturday, 09:00am-05:00pm

Negev High Region
Negev High Region Reginal Council
Address: Enterance to Sdeh Boker College
Telephone: 08-6554418
Opening hours: Sun-Sat: 8:00am-4:00pm

Negev High Region
Negev High Region Reginal Council
Address: Avdat National Park
Telephone: 08-6551511
Opening hours: Sun-Sat: 8:00am-4:00pm

Negev High Region
Negev High Region Reginal Council
Address: Mitzpeh Ranon Visitors Center
Telephone: 08-6588698
Opening hours: Sun-Sat: 8:00am-4:00pm

Negev High Region
Negev High Region Reginal Council
Address: Negev High Region Reginal Council offices
Telephone: 08-6571470
Opening hours: Only on Succot And Passover Holidays

Arava
Arava Regional Council
Address: Bottom of the Scorpion Slope
Telephone: 08-6581546
E-mail: tourism@arava.co.il
Opening hours: Only on Saturdays
Telephone Information Center: 1-800-225007
Opening hours: Sun-Thu: 8:00am-4:00pm : Fri: 08:00am-12:00pm

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An Awesome Online Guide to Tel Aviv

Tel Aviv Beaches 5

One of the best website/blogs I have ever seen is Tel Aviv City Guide. I can’t tell who runs it/writes the content, but it is a site to keep in your hip pocket if you are visiting Tel Aviv.

Tons of useful tips, insider guides, and advice, including where to shop, play, and eat. It’s the kind of information you can only get from someone who knows Tel Aviv like the back of their hand.

The website is located here.

Underground Clubbing in Tel Aviv

The Tel Aviv club scene is confusing for an outsider, but I have come across a few good recommendations for underground clubs in the city.

The Penguin Club (at 43 Yehuda Halevi St., Tel. 03-566-1450, krembo.galofer@gmail.com) is a popular underground haunt with awesome electro and house DJs. Unfortunately it doesn’t seem to have a website in English (or Hebrew) and its Facebook page is only in Hebrew.

http://profile.ak.fbcdn.net/hprofile-ak-prn1/c15.14.183.183/s160x160/64335_384507434912697_575544144_n.jpg

People who have gone (I haven’t been there yet) say that it is a good spot to drop by on a Wednesday or Thursday night. But Tel Aviv is apparently a city of serious night owls, so you shouldn’t head out until about 2 a.m. or later. You can count on the party going strong until closing time at 6 a.m. The Penguin Club is officially member’s only, but there seems to be some leeway for determined  tourists.

Another option is Block (at 157 Salame St inside the Central Bus Station) with its high-quality analog sound system, and a seriously hefty lineup of international DJs. Time Out Tel Aviv calls Block’s bizarre location “cutting edge.”

Useful Tel Aviv Food Guides

A photo from Tel Aviv Food:
http://telavivfood.wordpress.com/category/the-cizer-kobrinsky-scale/4-forks/

Tel Aviv is filled to the brim with tons of cafes, restaurants, pubs, bars, coffee shops, and on and on. If you are coming in cold to the Tel Aviv restaurant scene, it is very helpful to get a few tips from locals who love to eat out and share their experiences.

It complicates matters further that many restaurants in Tel Aviv do not have websites or social media sites in English. It can take quite a while to find basic information like an address. It can take even longer to find out whether it would be worth your time to go and try a place.

Two of the best and most useful blogs I have found while researching contact information for my book are TelAvivFood and Tel Aviv Food (no relation!). TelAvivFood is written by a Russian expat/part time student/part time office worker who loves to eat out, find deals, and then share information on her blog.

Her blog is categorized in a very intuitive way, allowing you to browse categories ranging from “moderately priced” to “pricy fancy” to “royal fast food.” A recent review from the blog about Nana Bar says:

Finally I went to the Nana bar. After about two years of anticipation I finally purchased two coupons on groupon and we went for my boyfriend Ayals birthday. Considering the interior everything I heard was completely true. It is a very romantic and cozy place combining natural elements with antique furniture with a very cool bathroom. The service was friendly and the food came fast, maybe even too fast. I received the food before I received my glass of wine.

The other Tel Aviv Food is written by a young couple who just love to travel, eat, and share their experiences using a fork-rating system to rank it. They also provide a large number of photographs of the food they ordered, with a blow-by-blow account of how the food in the photographs ranked. A recent review from their blog went something like this:

R2M group opens a new place, an event that food lovers like us will never skip. It’s true, it took us a while and a lot of recommendations from the people around us (usually we are the recommending side), but we got there and we will be back.

The new place is located in Yehdua HaLevi street, not really the hottest street in Tel Aviv, despite the “5 minutes walk from Rothschild”. Nevertheless, Ruti and Maty manage to bring this boring street to life.

Both sites are very, very useful for visitors and locals alike. Keep up the great work, guys!

 

Dancing in the Street in the Village of Ein Kerem, Israel

At the end of the Sukkot holiday while in the village of Ein Kerem (just outside Jerusalem), I came upon a large crowd of people dancing in the street. They were mostly men, and were holding a copy of the Torah (the Jewish holy bible). Ein Kerem is a very small village that is just a 15 minute drive from Jerusalem, but it is very typical of Jerusalem, where different religions exist peacefully side by side. Just up the street from where these men were dancing, monks were standing outside the gate of their monastery and talking with Christian pilgrims.

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