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Day One

Arrive in Tel Aviv by Sunday afternoon and check-in to the Dan Hotel Tel Aviv at 99 HaYarkon.

6:15 pm Meet our group in the hotel lobby.

Welcome dinner at Salva Vida (restaurant in motion). Chef Yuval Fachler created a pop up restaurant that moved to different locations in Tel Aviv until settling at 88 HaYarkon. During dinner Janna Gur, Editor-In-Chief of Al Hashulchan, Israel’s leading food magazine and the author of ‘The Book of New Israeli Cooking’ and ‘Jewish Soul Food’, will introduce us to the Israeli culinary scene today.

You will also meet our wonderful guide, Judy Goldman, who has been our guide from our first culinary tour. She is the co-author of “The Flavor of Jerusalem” with Joan Nathan (quoted in “Jerusalem” by Yotam Ottolenghi and Sami Tamimi) and “The Underground Jerusalem Guide” with Janet Kaplan. She has also travelled the country writing many restaurant reviews for Fodor’s Israel.

Overnight: Dan Hotel

Day Two

Breakfast at the hotel. Experience the true Israeli breakfast that everyone talks about.

9:00 AM Meet Bonnie and Judy, in the lobby of the Hotel Dan Tel Aviv. Have your bags packed and ready to go!

Our first stop is Leket, Israel’s largest food recovery program. They rescue fresh, perishable food which would otherwise go to waste and distribute it to Israel’s needy. We will spend the morning helping at their distribution centre in Ra’anana.

On to lunch at Goats with the Wind, an organic cheese farm and restaurant in the Galilee. The restaurant is hidden under carob trees overlooking the Netofa valley – the perfect place to eat and learn about Israeli cheese and the sweetness of goats.

Our afternoon continues with a tasting of Kishor wines at Kishorit, a community of adults with special needs where there are many employment centres, the winery being one of them. We will taste and learn about the wine and the amazing community that is making a difference.

Check in to Mizpe Hayamim, a unique deluxe hotel on a 150 acre working organic farm with herb, vegetable and flower gardens, fruit trees, livestock and a dairy. They make their own cheese, jams, pastries and even soap. Dinner will be in their vegetarian + fish restaurant that uses their farm as inspiration and their market.      Overnight: Mizpe Hayamim.

Day Three

Breakfast at the hotel. This remains my favourite breakfast in Israel. And Israel has some great breakfasts.

Drive to Nazareth and discover the hidden secrets of this city with the acclaimed Nazareth-born guide Ghada Boulos. Arab desserts, spices, tahini and ceramics are just a few of the adventures.  Lunch along the way.

Next a visit to Magdala, one of the most significant archaeological finds in the Middle East and hear the story of how it was discovered. The first century synagogue is said to be where Jesus taught.

Dinner at Magdalena specializing in authentic and modern Arab-Palestinian dishes. The chef/owner, Youssef Hana, will join us to share some of his culinary secrets and how he started the restaurant. Magdalena is considered one of the best Arab restaurants in Israel.

Overnight: Mizpe Hayamim

Day Four

Breakfast at the hotel and check out.

Workshop with Erez Kamorovsky, one of Israel’s finest chefs and the baker that brought artisanal bread to Israel. At his eclectic home in Mattat we will discuss Israeli cuisine and his philosophy of good food. And eat some very good food too. We won’t want to leave.

Drive to Jerusalem and check into the Inbal Hotel.

Be surprised by a fantastic graffiti tour with a local street artist as he takes us through the closed market stalls of Machane Yehuda (the market) to discover the meaning behind the artwork.

Dinner at Machneyuda (the restaurant), the crazy delicious restaurant that changed the Jerusalem dining scene when it opened in 2009. They now own a number of restaurants in Jerusalem and opened Palomar in London England which took the city by storm. It will be extra exciting this evening because it is Purim. Let’s have fun.

Overnight: Inbal

Day Five

Breakfast at the hotel.

Start the day foraging in the Jerusalem Hills with one of Israel’s most renowned chefs. Moshe Basson has won Slow Foods awards for his Biblical cuisine and he is a founding member of Chefs for Peace.

Lunch at Chef Basson’s celebrated restaurant Eucalyptus with our bounty from the morning.

After lunch Judy will take us on a tour of the Old City walking through the souk, visiting the Church of the Holy Sepulcher, the Western Wall and so much more.

Dinner at the Mamilla Hotel’s rooftop restaurant with spectacular views..

Overnight: Inbal

Day Six

Breakfast at hotel and check out.

Start the day with a visit to the Israel Museum, one of the leading art and archaeology museums in the world. The Museum houses the Shrine of the Book with its priceless Dead Sea Scrolls and the Model of Jerusalem as it was during the Second Temple Period.

For lunch we will go to Majda, in the Arab village of Ein Rafa. Chef Michal Baranes and Yakub Barhum opened a Jewish/Muslim restaurant that was made famous by Anthony Bourdain and Yotam Ottolenghi.

On to Tel Aviv and check in to the Dan Hotel. Free time to prepare for Shabbat.

We will celebrate Shabbat at a private family dinner where we will learn about Shabbat traditions. This is part of EatWith – the Tel Aviv company, now in 200 cities around the world, that works in a similar way as Airbnb, but for dinners.

Day Seven

Breakfast at the hotel.

It’s Shabbat – take a leisurely walk along the Promenade and see how Tel Avivians enjoy the day of rest.

Our special event for Shabbat is a traditional Yemenite brunch with Israel’s beloved culinary journalist Gil Hovav. Gil will feed us wonderful food and his delicious family stories.

If time permits we will visit the newly renovated complex of Sarona, originally a German Templar Colony founded in 1871. Sarona is the site of the largest indoor culinary market with 91 shops and restaurants.

As Shabbat comes to a close we will take part in a private cocktail lesson with owner/mixologist Gilad Livnat, at the world famous Imperial Craft Cocktail Bar at the Imperial Hotel.

Then to Jaffa for dinner at Onza, located at the Jaffa Flea Market where one of Tel Aviv’s most popular chefs, Yossi Shitrit, combines the finest in locally sourced ingredients with Turkish flavours and techniques. Amit Aaronson, a popular food journalist and television host, will talk to us about the current Tel Aviv restaurant scene.

Day Eight

Breakfast at the hotel.

Meet Bob Goldman for a discussion about Israeli politics. Bob is the former editor of ABC TV news and an extremely well-versed news hound. Have your questions ready – he’s very approachable.

Walk or ride to the north Tel Aviv port for a workshop and lunch with MasterChef winner, Dr. Nof Atamna-Ismaeel. Hear Nof’s incredible story and learn her delicious Arab recipes with a modern twist.

Later in the afternoon we will have a master class in challah with baker Uri Scheft and/or his team, founder of Lehamim Bakery in Tel Aviv and Breads Bakery in New York. He will lead us in a hands-on workshop of Challah & Babka and more. Uri combines Israeli, Danish and French techniques that make his baking different and delicious. We will be able to taste his other specialties during a light dinner at the bakery.

No matter how full we are – there’s always room for ice cream. Just down the street from Lehamim, there’s the Bouza ice cream parlor where the Arab and Jewish owners offer diverse flavours such as pomegranate, fig and arak, pistachio, rose, hummus and much more.

Overnight at the Dan Hotel

Day Nine

Breakfast at the hotel.

We start our last day with a visit to Carmel market or Shuk Ha Carmel, Tel Aviv’s largest and most famous outdoor market. It has even become cool with so many chef restaurants and places to find hard to get ingredients.

Our last lunch will be with Chef Sabina Valdman at the new Danon Culinary Academy. Sabrina is the mentor of many talented Israeli chefs and we will learn some of her amazing home cooking recipes.

A guided tour of Independence Hall, a museum dedicated to the birth of the State of Israel. A guide will take us through the events of Friday, May 14, 1948, the day the State of Israel was declared.  Although I have been here many times, each guide tells the story a bit differently, according to their experience, and I always find it riveting.

On to Hangar 12 at the Tel Aviv Port for a quick tour of this upscale market. A great place to buy last minute gifts and see where the organic Farmers’ Market is held every Friday.

For our final dinner we go to Jaffa with the incredibly talented Tomer Niv, the chef at Rama’s Kitchen, one of Israel’s most loved restaurants which closed last year because of a terrible fire. Tomer is now involved in projects around the world but still cooks special meals for special groups at unique locations.

Overnight at the Dan Hotel

Day Ten

Breakfast at the hotel and check out.

Our tour is over, but our memories will last forever.


Hotel Dan Tel Aviv – 1 night Deluxe Room

Hotel Mizpe Hayamim  – 2 nights Classic Room

Hotel Inbal Jerusalem – 2 nights Superior New City Room

Hotel Dan Tel Aviv – 4 nights Deluxe Rooms


* Feb 26 Pick-up from the Hotel Dan Tel Aviv

* 8 full days of transportation in an air-conditioned vehicle

* 8 days of sightseeing with an English speaking guide

* Meals according to the itinerary

* Wine with meals where appropriate

* Evening transfers to restaurants

* Entrance fees as per the itinerary

* 9 nights hotel accommodation at the above-mentioned hotels based on double occupancy on a bed and breakfast basis

* Free wifi on the bus and at hotels

*All tipping is included except housekeeping and anything of a personal nature at the hotels


Airfare to and from Tel Aviv (not included)

Departure taxes, fuel surcharges and airport improvement fees

Insurance – A copy of your valid out of country health and travel insurance is mandatory

Arrival and departure transfers from and to Ben Gurion International Airport

Early check in – late check out at hotels

Single supplement quoted separately

Tipping for housekeeping at the hotels

Items of a personal nature such as room service and valet service

Any other services not mentioned

E. & O.E.

The above land price is based on a minimum number of participants. Should the number of participants booked fall short of the minimum number required, an additional supplement may apply. Should this occur, participants booked will be notified and will have the option to withdraw at no penalty.

The above itinerary is based on current tariffs and rates of exchange which are subject to adjustment where necessary. The day by day program is subject to change at any time due to unforeseen circumstances that are beyond Aufgang Travel’s control. Every effort will be made to operate the tour as outlined, but alterations may occur after the final itinerary has been issued.

Ontario Travel Industry Act – TICO # 50012754.