The Carmelim region is the area between the Carmel mountain chain and
the beach strip that extends from Haifa to Caesarea. It is one of the
most beautiful of all regions in Israel and is a short drive from Haifa
or Tel Aviv, and not more than an hour and a half from Jerusalem. One
can manage a visit to a goat farm, a winery or two, have lunch and visit
a few museums and still have time to go for an afternoon swim and catch
the sunset while horseback riding.
Tel: 057-576-0026 firstname.lastname@example.org
Me Ez Ve’ad Hayom is the
brainchild of Yossi Lepar of Binyamina. His grandparents, Naum and Gila,
started the dairy farm in 1946 in the part of Binyamina called Nahalat
Jabotinsky. Back then, they had mainly cows on the farm. Today, Yossi’s
father and brother raise and milk the goats, while he runs the visitors’
center and a small cheese-making center. The farm offers visitors a
short and very interesting film, a tour that follows the milk from the
goats all the way to the supermarket, and a hands-on milking experience,
awarding the brave participants a milking expert certificate. At the
end of the tour there is a workshop for kids and a delightful cheese
provides another family-oriented activity in the area. In her chocolate
workshop, she teaches visitors how to create pretty chocolate petits
fours, providing all the necessary ingredients and toppings. The
fun-filled workshops are very popular with locals, who hold birthday
parties there, as well as weddings, anniversaries and fun mornings for
friends. After the two-hour workshop, everyone has his/her own box of
handmade chocolates to take home (if you can resist eating the lot in
Located in the Binyamina industrial park.Call for reservations at (04) 628-8689; www.avitalpetifurs.com
who are not interested in chocolate- making can enjoy a bicycle tour of
the area. You can either rent the bikes and get a map or join a guided
tour with Haim, who will take you into the vineyards, a nearby stream or
around the moshava.
(04) 638-8239; www.btb.co.il
is recommended to end the tour in the Binyamina Winery visitors’
center, which underwent a major face-lift recently and now offers not
only a beautiful wine and liquor store but also a great family
restaurant. (04) 610-7535
great stopping point is the artists’ village of Ein Hod. Recovering
from the horrific fire in December 2010 that damaged a few of the
houses, this pretty village is home to many artists, musicians and
There are a few well-known museums here, such as the
Janco Dada Museum, the main gallery and the Nisco Museum of Mechanical
Music, which features dozens of antique working mechanical pianos and
music boxes, as well as a lovely shop.
Nisan Cohen, founder of the museum, is American-born and gives his tours in English.052-475-5313.
in Ein Hod, do not miss Doña Rosa, a meat restaurant situated in the
center of the pretty village. The restaurant, owned by brothers Uri and
Doron Rochfleish, serves Argentine-influenced food, which they say is
inspired by what their grandmother Rosa used to serve at home in
Argentina. The (non-kosher) menu offers excellent beef dishes and many
South American dishes such as empanadas, chorizo sausages, fish and
seafood, as well as delicious desserts.Doña Rosa (04) 954-3777
recommended bistro is located in the center of the old part of Zichron
Ya’acov. Haneshika (The Kiss), provides a serene haven where tired
tourists and locals can relax in the attractive interior dining areas or
the lovely garden. Offering a fantastic continental cuisine, chef Ronen
Raviv, a native of the place, is inspired by the dishes cooked in his
parents’ and grandparents’ kitchens, as well as by the local Arab dishes
he grew up eating. Try the lamb stew – it’s excellent. And don’t
hesitate to ask for the recipe – Raviv will be glad to give it to you.
Not kosher.Haneshika (04) 639-0133
are numerous hotels, hostels and guest rooms in the area, catering to
many different budgets and tastes. Try the Dor Beach cabins. Their
location is the best, right on the beach, but their prices are high
accordingly and the rooms, although recently renovated, are not worthy
of the high-season prices. Off season, their prices are much more
reasonable. The wooden cabins all have a kitchenette and shower,
television and a sitting area outside with BBQ areas. There is also a
camping area and other guestrooms with varying prices.
New in the
area is the holistic spa Derech Halev, operated by Dvorit Lusky and
colleagues. They offer a variety of treatments and classes, such as
massage, healing and dance therapy.
If you stay there or nearby, a
recommended breakfast spot on the beach is Yamas (“cheers” in Greek),
where you can have a full-course meal or just a beer on the deck
overlooking the beach (052-434-2080).
places of interest include the organic farm Mekora and the adjacent
Amphorae Winery at Kerem Maharal. We do not usually like referring to
areas of Israel as Little Tuscany or Provence, but this is an exception.
impressive stone building in which the winery is located, the
surrounding herb garden and the large organic farm all have that
European charm about them. A guided tour of the winery and a wine
tasting are available. And if you reserve in advance, they will also
prepare a cheese buffet with the wines. Call before you go. (04) 984-0702.
The fishing park at Ma’ayan Zvi is a great place to spend a day with the kids.
at the mouth of the Daliya River, there is an ancient flour mill that
was powered by water. Now the park’s theme is fishing and wildlife.
While the little kids run around on the lawns, the older kids and
grown-ups can go fishing, learn about nature, watch the birds, ride
horses, have lunch and even get a fish pedicure in the shallow pool.Open daily between 8:30 a.m. and 5 p.m. (04) 639-1603.
can also start your horseback ride here. The Dor riding ranch has
trained horses, and you don’t need to have any experience to ride them.
So enjoy a slow ride between the fish ponds and along the beach at
sunset – it’s a winner. Call 054-354-4325.
but not least, if you haven’t been to the The Atlit Detainee Camp,
which has been turned into the Ha’apala (“illegal” immigration) Museum,
do yourself a favor and take time to go there. It is a must-see for
Israelis and visitors alike. The Atlit national monument is a restored
detention camp from the time of the British Mandate period. First built
as a military camp in 1938, it was later used by the British as a
temporary holding facility for thousands of illegal Jewish immigrants.
over the years, it was declared a national monument in 1987 and now
operates as a museum, telling the story of the struggle of Jews fleeing
Europe from Nazi persecution, trying to reach British-controlled
Palestine, only to be incarcerated in camps similar in appearance to the
Nazi concentration camps of Europe. On the site there is a ship that is
similar in size and appearance to those used to transport immigrants to
Israel. This provides a more authentic experience for visitors to
understand the events connected with the camp. Besides the ship,
visitors can also view a model of the original camp, restored barracks,
the reception facility where new immigrants went through the trauma of
removing their clothes for disinfection and had to shower before being
admitted, a computerized information database and much more. Get your
hankies ready – it’s a very moving experience. For more ideas, hotels, restaurants and touring information, call Carmelim (04) 984-1114 or go to www.carmelim.org.il