Even before you step off the plane you know what it will feel like. The heat hits you like you have just opened the door of a giant oven, warm and welcoming; you squint at the sun’s lustrous rays and take it as nature’s subtle sign that your stay will be a pleasant one; you instantly hear the chatter of the local language and know you are in your ‘home away from home’. In Israel. This time feels just like the last time (when you came on another holiday) or the time before that (when you were here visiting your sister) or every time you have come back over the years since the very first visit (perhaps as a 16-year-old who embarked on that rite of passage which is Israel Tour, that so many young members of the Community undertakes at that age).
But what if this time wasn’t like the other times? What if the next time you stepped off that plane you got to experience the wonders of the Holy Land just like you did as that teenager – eager, enthusiastic and inquisitive.
This March you will have just that opportunity on ‘The Maccabi GB Walk n’ Tour’ - a unique, one-of-a-kind, nine day trip around Israel with bespoke walks, rides, hikes and excursions where participants will see the country like never before.
From the moment you land you start your experience on the front foot with an Urban Walking Tour of the Sarona Complex – one of the newest and most innovative hotspots in the heart of Tel Aviv - before visiting a UJIA ‘Equaliser Project’ for Jewish and Arab people. The visit will be the first of many, all designed to take you deep into the seams of Israel, allowing you to open your senses to parts of the country which lie away from Banana Beach or the Kotel. As you hike along the Jilabun River in the Golan Heights, you would be forgiven for thinking you had landed in South America; a jeep ride through the Jordan Valley will have you feeling a sense of awe to accompany your rush of adrenaline; and those who consider themselves ‘foodies’ are sure to have their appetites quenched during a trip to a Chocolate Workshop in Kibbutz Deganya and whilst baking challah for Shabbat in Jerusalem – that is, of course, if you manage to be tempted away from a pre-Shabbat bike ride through the capital’s hidden historical landmarks. If that was not enough, how about a visit to the exciting Galilee Circus, taking part in a water hike through the stunning Ein Tina nature reserve or spending your last morning of the Walk ‘n Tour with Former President Shimon Peres in the Knesset.
Perhaps next time you land in Ben Gurion your trip will be similar to the last. However, those who chose to go on the Maccabi GB Walk ‘n Tour will never see Israel in the same light again.
To find out more and to book visit www.maccabigb.org/walkntour