|Most popular in||July||High demand for flights, 13% potential price rise|
|Cheapest in||February||Best time to find cheap flights, 2% potential price drop|
|Average price||C$ 941||Price for this month|
|Cheapest price||C$ 774||From Toronto to Tel Aviv|
C$ 969 - C$ 1533
18 - 33 °C
0 - 105 mm
Travelling to Israel is a spiritual journey, one that usually involves a trip to the Western Wall, a swim in the Dead Sea or a visit to Jesus’ childhood home of Nazareth. And travellers of all faiths and all walks of life book flights to Israel year after year to experience this ethereal place.
For centuries Israel has served as a centre for religious and political tension which poses a common concern for those planning a trip to the country. However, it is safe to visit and remains a very popular tourist destination. Of course, it is always good to keep your common sense and wits about you.
When visiting Israel there are some cultural and religious sensitivities to bear in mind. Jews cannot eat dairy and meat together, and Muslims and Jews are forbidden from eating pork at any meal. Common foods found throughout Israel include falafel and schnitzel and if you’re visiting on a Friday night, remember that it’s the Sabbath (the Jewish Holy Day) and observant Jews are not permitted to cook so many family-owned restaurants will be closed.
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Direct service from Toronto to Israel Tel Aviv Airport takes approximately 10h 25m travel time. Most one-stop flights have a duration of 14h 5m to 14h 45m. Budget travelers should be conscious of added travel time, as substantial increases can cause some flights to Israel to take 30h or more. Check out any Israel travel deals prior to booking to avoid excessive flight times.
There are direct flights to Israel available from Toronto Pearson International Airport (YYZ). This airport runs four nonstop flights per day, via Air Canada. A number of other flights are available with one stop or multiple stops, including those from Turkish Airlines, LOT, and Lufthansa. Vancouver, London, Montreal, and Ottawa offer service to Tel Aviv and other destinations in Israel, as well.
Intercity bus travel is the preferred method for easy, quick travel between all of the major cities. The train service from Jerusalem to Tel Aviv and Haifa is available but doesn’t have the best service. Select buses, such as the Jerusalem to Dead Sea route, has to be booked in advance. Egged Bus Company is responsible for connecting most cities and operating city buses in Haifa and Jerusalem. They also work with Dan Buses in Tel Aviv. Driving laws and parking are such a mess in Israel that having a car is almost a burden. Taxis are available in urban areas. Also available are sheruts (shared buses or taxis) that can be picked up from a number of cities and destinations.
Israel is home to plenty of ancient ruins and historical landmarks, including the must-see Jerusalem Old City, which offers 220 acres of walled history, culture, and spirituality. The White City in Tel Aviv offers early 20th-century architecture and has been designated a World Heritage Site by UNESCO for its largest concentration of Bauhaus buildings anywhere in the world. The Tel Aviv Museum of Art is another popular attraction for visitors to Israel, as are the many mosques and religious sites throughout the country. Jaffa offers great dining and water views in this once old city that has been made new again. The Baha’i Gardens is the most famous attraction in Haifa, offering a beautiful garden and shrine, with stunning views of the Galilee and the Mediterranean.
Any Canadian national visiting Israel must present a valid passport at their time of arrival. Passports must be valid for a minimum of six months after the expected date of departure. Travel rules are the same for Canadian citizens visiting the Gaza Strip or West Bank. Tourists do not need visas when staying for less than 90 days. Business visas are also not required. All international travellers will be issued an entry card upon arrival to Israel, which they must keep with them during their stay.
Israel has a typical Mediterranean climate with hot, dry summers, and short, wet, cool winters.
Israel’s main cities and towns are year-round destinations, though they may become very hot and humid during summer.
The beach resorts in Israel enjoy warm temperatures even in the wintertime, so this can be the perfect time to visit. The areas in the mountains do get cold though.
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Between Eilat, Tel Aviv and Haifa there are a few domestic flights available operated by airlines El Al, Arkia and Israir.
The bus company Egged runs inter-city trips and fares are reasonable and the journey is fast. Tickets can be bought in advance at the bus stations or just direct from the driver.
The rail service, run by Israel Railways, is less extensive but gradually expanding. Tickets must be bought in advance, but you can reserve a seat when you do so.
If you happen to be visiting during Shabbat or public holidays, there is no rail or bus service on those days.