To catch you up to speed, check out these earlier posts about my trip:
Israel I: Modern Tel Aviv
Israel II: Jaffa (the Old City)
Israel III: Modern Art and Bauhaus Architecture
After spending two days in Tel Aviv, it was time to start our loop around the northern part of the country. We rented a car using a rental company that is based in the lobby of the Tel Aviv Hilton (that makes it easy!) and loaded up the car to head north. After spending our first 2 days in Tel Aviv using taxis, I think we were all a little nervous about how driving would work here. They have similar signs and there’s usually an English translation so I wasn’t worried about that… but the drivers were very aggressive and often jumping from lane to lane (or just driving down the center). But once we were outside of the city, it became a lot more like driving in America.
Before we knew it, we were in Caesarea. HERE‘s a map of out journey. We parked at the Caesarea Maritima and made our way into this fortress. You have to pay to get in, although I can’t remember the price it couldn’t have been much.
This fort has such a history and it’s a large piece of land which currently has shops, restaurants, and of course the ruins to explore. I highly recommend the free video telling the history of the land, which we saw in the building on the left above. It has been conquered and changed so many times throughout history and the video helps you see how it looked during each period of time.
Above you can see the ruins extend out into the harbor. On the other side of the harbor (not pictured) you can see archeologists actively digging and unearthing more ruins.
After watching the video of it’s history, we explored the ruins. It’s such a maze of passageways along the coast.
You can see the modern buildings built over the ruins to make this a true destination for tourists.
Ruins, ruins, ruins…
We made our way over to the theatre, exploring the ruins.
After we had our fill of ruins we made our way over to one of the cafes. I had a traditional Israeli egg dish, shakshuka, which I had seen on many menus since arriving in Tel Aviv. HERE‘s a great recipe for it on Smitten Kitchen. Humus, coffee and shakshuka, yuuuum.
Once we had our fill we got back in the car and made THIS trek more up north to Haifa. Since it gets dark so early (like 3:30/4ish) we were trying to move quickly, as we still have a few more places to see before we were at our hotel in Tiberias.
We went directly to the Bahai World Centre in Haifa. It’s gardens are on Mount Carmel which gives great views of the city. The gardens were closed when we arrived, but you can see how beautiful and well manicured they are.
In a way, I think it was good we couldn’t go into the gardens because it meant the photos I have are all tourist free. While we were taking photos from the top of the garden many buses of tourists arrived and were also taking photos. It’s a Haifa must-see spot.
Okay, so one tourist got in my photo-me! I didn’t take many photos of myself on the trip, but I love the view from the top so I had to take one.
Beautiful gardens overlooking Haifa… be sure to stop here if you’re in Haifa.
Next up, we rush up to Acre (Akko) to see the city before the sun fully sets. Then in the dark we make our way to our hotel in Tiberias.