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Not too touristy, active tour of Israel and Jordan

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posts: 46
reviews: 21
Not too touristy, active tour of Israel and Jordan


Can anyone recommend a 1-2 week tour of the above which is a bit more off the beaten track and active? I am not too keen on getting just the run of the mill tourist experience but of course I want to see some of the usual tourist attractions.

Thank you!

Destination Expert
for Israel
posts: 26,940
reviews: 18
1. Re: Not too touristy, active tour of Israel and Jordan

Most tours, by definition visit things that tourists are interested in. However, it is important to note that Israel is not a 'DisneyLand" and the places tourists go are also visited by locals.

You would probably be much happier as an independent traveler, renting a vehicle and supplementing it with some private day trips or private guide days 9 if you can afford that)

It will easier to help you if you tell us something about you, who is traveling and what are you interested in. Also, when are you coming. There is enough in Israel to keep people interested for months.

Thousand Oaks...
Destination Expert
for Israel
posts: 9,345
reviews: 14
2. Re: Not too touristy, active tour of Israel and Jordan


Is this your first visit to the region?

If it is, why did you choose it?

Destination Expert
for Israel
posts: 11,269
reviews: 36
3. Re: Not too touristy, active tour of Israel and Jordan

In order for you to get what you want out of your trip to Israel it seems that you would be happier traveling independently. You can do "off the beaten track" things on your own - we'll help and you can tour the "standards" either on your own or by joining organized day tours. You can also add one or two days with a private guide to achieve the trip you are thinking of.

posts: 46
reviews: 21
4. Re: Not too touristy, active tour of Israel and Jordan

Thanks to all for your replies. Sorry about the lack of info that I supplied!

I chose Israel and the middle east because I've never been to this region before and was looking for something culturally, architecturally etc different(I'm in Australia and have been to quite a few other countries).But am also interested in its unique religious and historical significance.

I am a reasonably active person and am hoping to find a way to see the region in a way that includes more than hopping on and off a bus to see sites (apologies if this is not how it is...I have no idea!). Some unique experiences (camping, hiking, other?) would be great.

I'll be travelling with a friend (so 2 females travelling alone) so not sure if there are any safety concerns. Also the attraction of a tour as opposed to private guide or independent travel is that we both enjoy meeting other travelers.

Actually we'd be happy to stay in the area longer (2-3 weeks) and see Israel and Jordan more in depth or perhaps add other countries (turkey?).

Am I asking for too much??!

Destination Expert
for Israel
posts: 10,996
reviews: 112
5. Re: Not too touristy, active tour of Israel and Jordan

You probably will not find a guided group tour answering to all of your requirements. I suggesy you plan on hiring a car and touring on your own using a private guide to help with your planning and perhaps a number of days using their guiding services plus a number of days using daily guides tours. Israel and Jordan are compatible touring countries as transfer from one to the other is simple. Turkey would involve flying on Turkish air which limits airfare possibilities.



Destination Expert
for Israel
posts: 7,659
6. Re: Not too touristy, active tour of Israel and Jordan

Safety isn't a concern. Just use your common sense.

Public transport is good and inexpensive, but of course some "off the beaten track" places are by definition not reachable by public transport, so a car would give you more flexibility. Also some out-of-the-way places have buses at times that are not suitable for tourists: out of the village in the morning and back from the town (workplace) in the late afternoon/early evening.

Note also that broadly speaking there is no public transport on Shabbat (late Friday afternoon until after dark on Saturday), so you'd need to work around that.

If you're interested in a moderately easy half-day hike in the Jerusalem hills with bus access at both ends (the route isn't circular), send me a PM with your e-mail address and I'll give you full details.

posts: 46
reviews: 21
7. Re: Not too touristy, active tour of Israel and Jordan

Excellent. Thanks again for taking the time to reply. Might post more questions when I'm clearer on what we are doing.

Washington DC...
posts: 110
reviews: 3
8. Re: Not too touristy, active tour of Israel and Jordan

I bet you'll find the answers in "Israel Handbook" by V. Betts, Dave Winter. I've got it from the library. Seems to me, it's tailored to a type of tourists like you.

As for me, I've decided to go to mitzpe ramon in negev for a (somewhat) "off-a-beaten path" part. I'm also doing standard stuff. can't imagine visiting israel and not visiting jerusalem, tel aviv, masada.... It's my first visit to israel.

Ottawa, Canada
Destination Expert
for Jerusalem, Galilee, Tel Aviv
posts: 5,030
reviews: 104
9. Re: Not too touristy, active tour of Israel and Jordan

If you like meeting fellow travelers and don't want to do an organized tour, you could consider the youth hostel route. Youth hostels in Israel are really nice. Many offer private rooms and ensuite bathrooms. You also have the dorms option which is considerably cheaper. A big plus is that you will meet plenty of other travelers like yourself and the hostels often offer well priced day trips or transportation to sites that are more difficult to get to. The Abraham Hostel in Jerusalem is an excellent example. It is in the heart of the city. Some hostels are in historic buildings, others in new buildings. All include an Israeli breakfast which is a large meal.

As a first time visitor to Israel, in 10 days you should consider staying in Tel Aviv, the Galilee, Jerusalem and if you have longer, then visit the south such as Mitzpeh Ramon for the desert experience. Israel has more hiking trails and national parks to visit than you could do in a lifetime. There is horseback riding, jeep tours, rapelling, kayaking on the Jordan (which is not really a physical activity), biking, and history upon history upon more history. What time of year are you planning to come?

10. Re: Not too touristy, active tour of Israel and Jordan

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