We arrived in Israel on May 31st through the Wadi Araba border crossing between Aqaba and Eilat. It was a national holiday in Israel and we were a little worried we wouldn’t be able to get a seat on a bus to Tel Aviv but the gods were with us and we had no problems. The bus ride was about 5 hours and took us through moonscape in the South into lush agricultural lands as we slowly proceeded North West towards the Mediterranean and the city of Tel Aviv. We found a lovely boutique hotel, the Blue Sea Marble located one block from the beach. We were going to only spend two nights and then try to get an Airbnb to save some money but after spending several hours looking through dozens of listings we realized we should stay where we are. All the listings we saw for under $160.00 were dumps! People were obviously just trying to make a buck during the summer. The pictures showed unmade beds, dirty kitchens and cluttered bathrooms, if they showed any bathroom pictures at all. Our hotel includes breakfast, is convenient to the city centre and beach and we get room service every day if needed. In this case, Airbnb was not worth the hassle and the likely unwanted surprises we would likely encounter. We will be doing some full day tours on the 5th and the 7th and in between will be lots of beach time and exploring Tel Aviv. Next week is Gay Pride Week with the grand finale next Friday the 9th being the Gay Pride Parade.
After a relaxing evening and expensive meal on the beach side promenade with undoubtedly the worst service we have ever experienced we headed out the next morning to explore the Old Town of Jaffa, the southern and oldest part of Tel Aviv, and ancient port city and it’s nearby flea market. Jaffa is famous for its association with the biblical stories of Jonah, Solomon and St. Peter as well as the mythological story of Andromeda and Perseus. Jaffa is one of the oldest port cities in the world.