The ExploreIsrael.com family has some great suggestions for anyone looking to experience Israel and do it in style. First thing – a great place to stay. The King David Hotel in Jerusalem is consistently found on lists of the best hotels in the Middle East. Built in the 1920s, the King David is a synthesis of old world refinement and modern conveniences. The hotel is located on a hill and offers an unparalleled view of the Old City landscape. It’s central location makes it easy to get just about anywhere in Jerusalem.
Once you’re happily ensconced in the King David, enjoying a steaming cup of Turkish coffee while looking out at the minarets of the Old City, you are ready to explore Israel. The number one and two travel destinations in Israel are the Western Wall and Yad Vashem Holocaust Memorial. Both are incredibly powerful places not to be missed.
After you’ve explored the Old City, come into the modern city of Jerusalem and check out the art galleries, shopping, off-beat museums (Israel has the highest number of museums per capita in the entire world) and very fine dining. You can visit classic art galleries or lesser known, experiential ones, like Jerusalem House of Quality, located in a charming historic building originally built by the Order of St. John of Scotland and redolent with untold stories. The building and courtyard now serves as a showcase for artisans and Israeli art and there is always a live show of some kind going on there. The famous Bezalel School of Art is also located in Jerusalem. If art is your passion, you can come have a great vegetarian meal in Nocturno, which is located in a cooperative of about 12 different artist workshops. You can see and purchase some one of a kind art and get a great latte at the same time.
One dining experience not to be missed in Jerusalem is Eucalyptus. Chef Moshe Basson opened this destination eatery and serves up gourmet fare with a bit of a Jerusalem twist. All the food created at Eucalyptus has a biblical connection. Chef Moshe likes to walk around the restaurant and talk to customers, so when you are eating the Wild Mallow or Rigella, ask him what the biblical source for your meal is.
The best thing about staying in Jerusalem is that it is literally in the center of the country. You can definitely fill entire weeks just exploring Jerusalem, but you can also easily reach the rest of the country when based at the King David. Book private luxury jeep tours of the Negev Desert and check out the Ramon Crater, a one-of-a-kind sight in the world that is not to be missed. Jerusalem is a short 40 minute car ride from Tel Aviv with its beautiful beaches, fabulous shopping and nightlife. Tel Aviv was voted the one of the 10 best party cities in the world by Lonely Planet. Some unconventional things to do in the White City? Tel Aviv Rollers. Every Tuesday night at 10 pm in Habima square, about 300 people meet up for a 30 – 35 km roller-blading route that changes every week through the city. The route ends at a nightclub, where the party continues to the wee hours.