USEFUL INFORMATION

Entering and Crossing the Border

Passport

Israel requires foreign passports to be valid up to six months past the entrance date into Israel.

It is recommended to carry your passport on you at all times, if not a photocopy. Security guards, checkpoint guards, and police officers may ask to see your passport.

Travel Between Middle Eastern Countries

Some countries in the Middle East do not grant visas or entry if you have a stamp from Israel. Passport control at the Ben Gurion Airport now gives visitors entry slips instead of stamping passports. Some people carry two passports for travel between conflicting nations.

It is highly advised to check news and embassy reports on safety when crossing international borders in Israel. Conflicts can arise on certain holidays and sometimes unannounced, which can be dangerous for those around the borders.

Dress Etiquette

While Israel is a very westernized country, it is also religious and traditional in many parts of the country. Specifically in Jerusalem and other religious neighborhoods (such as in Beit Shemesh and Bnei Brak), and mosques and churches, one should dress appropriately to local sensitivities. Men and women should cover their shoulders, hiding the collarbone. Bare arms and legs, and shorts or trousers for women, can bring protest and security guards may block one’s entrance to religious sites.

Most parts of Israel are completely westernized, such as Tel Aviv or Caesarea. Dress is so casual that even at nice restaurants, one should not worry about special dress codes.

Tipping

The going rate for tipping in Israeli restaurants and cafes is between 10-15%. 10% is usually the minimum, and 12% is usually the average. Restaurant wait-staff usually only accept tips in cash, so it is recommended to carry small change, even if expecting to charge meals to credit card.

Taxi drivers do not expect to be tipped.

Driving

On Friday afternoons and Saturdays in “Haredi” (ultra orthodox Jewish) neighborhoods, driving may bring stares of disapproval from local residents. On Fridays, Saturdays, and Jewish holidays, the Haredi streets in Jerusalem or Hadera are usually blocked by gates.

Drivers are generally aggressive in Israel. Don’t take offense but drive carefully and defensively. Blinking green light signal a change to yellow. And before a green light, yellow and green appear together to signal the end of a red light.

Important: It is not legal to turn right on a red light.

Keep car doors locked at all times for safety.

Change

Converting foreign currency can be done at the airport, local venders, or banks. Local vendors typically have the best rates and are located in bigger cities on main streets or shopping malls.

In Caesarea, cash can be withdrawn directly from an ATM at the Bank Hapoalim in the city center, or at ATMS (“Caspomats”) in the old city. Most ATMs charge 6 NIS fees per withdrawal, and your bank may charge both a conversion fee and commission as well.

It is important to let your bank and credit card companies know you will be using the card overseas so that they do not prevent transactions for fear of fraud. Always bring a list of emergency hotline numbers for your credit cards and bank accounts incase of loss or theft.

It is not recommended to bring Travelers Checks as they are not accepted at local venues, and banks charge high fees if they are accepted.

Credit cards can be safely used at malls, major shopping centers and major hotels, or restaurants. Cash is recommended for purchases at small shops, kiosks, and food stands. Bills greater than 100 NIS are not always accepted at these smaller venues, parking lots, or on public transportation.

Bank Hapoalim: Caesarea

Hours

Sun, Tues, Wed        08:30-13:15

Mon, Thurs               08:30-13:00, 16:00-18:30

Fri, Sat                      Closed

Address: Rothschild, Commercial Center, Caesarea

Phone number: 03-653-2407

www.BankHapoalim.com

Back to top Post Office

Post Office: Caesarea

Hours

Sun, Mon, Wed, Thurs   08:00-12:30, 15:30-18:00

Wed                                    08:00-13:00

Fri                                       08:00-12:30

Sat                                       Closed

Address: Rothschild, Commercial Center, Caesarea

Phone number: 04-626-0492

http://www.IsraelPost.co.il/

Package tracking is available on Post Office website (above)

Renting a Car in Israel

The most convenient way to rent a car upon arrival is at the Ben Gurion Airport. Car rental companies’ counters are located on the first floor of the East Gallery in the Greeters’ Hall. The service operates 24 hours a day, 7 days a week.

Tips for Car Rental

  • One week rentals are approximately $300-$500 for a mid-class car depending on the season.
  • Drivers must be 24 years or older to rent a car. Foreign licenses are generally accepted without an international driving license (for up to 1 year during a visit to Israel). Check with your country to make sure your drivers’ license is valid in Israel.
  • Airport rental agencies charge approximately $27 airport fee, and are usually open 24/7. Local rental agencies are usually only open 8:30-17:00 and closed on Saturday and holidays.

Getting to and Around Caesarea

Public transportation in Israel is very adequate and cheap, but the most convenient way to get around is by car. The roads are modern, parking is available (but hard to find in big cities like Tel Aviv or Jerusalem), and distances are short.

By Car

From Ben Gurion Airport (52min, 75 km)

The most convenient way to rent a car upon arrival is at the airport. Car rental companies’ counters are located on the first floor of the East Gallery in the Greeters’ Hall. The service operates 24 hours a day, 7 days a week.

  • Exit the airport and head West on Highway 1 towards Tel Aviv
  • After 15 km, merge onto Ayalon North/Highway 20
  • After 9 km, just north of Tel Aviv at the Glilot Interchange, exit to toward Highway 5, keep left at fork, and merge onto Highway 2.
  • After 43 km, at the Or Akiva Interchange, exit right
  • At the roundabout, take the 3rd exit, under the overpass, onto Sderot Shidlovski
  • To the city center/country club: After 1 km, at the roundabout, take the 1st exit onto Rothschild and the shopping center will appear on the right at the second roundabout.
  • To the old city: Continue to the park entrance.

From Jerusalem (1h30, 128 km)

  • Take Highway 1 towards Tel Aviv
  • After 50 km, merge onto Ayalon North/Highway 20
  • After 9 km, just north of Tel Aviv at the Glilot Interchange, exit to toward Highway 5, keep left at fork, and merge onto Highway 2.
  • After 43 km, at the Or Akiva Interchange, exit right
  • At the roundabout, take the 3rd exit, under the overpass, onto Sderot Shidlovski.

From Haifa (35min, 43 km)

  • Take Highway 4 and merge onto Highway 2.
  • After 32 km, at the Or Akiva Interchange, exit right.
  • At the roundabout, take the first exit onto Route 6511, Sderot Shidlovski

From Tiberias (1h15, 83 km)

  • Head west on Route 77 for 30 km.
  • At the roundabout, take the 1st exit and stay on Route77 for 9.5 km
  • Take a slight towards Route 75 for 2 km
  • Turn left onto Route 722 for 5 km
  • Turn left onto Route 70 for 32 km
  • Head south on Highway 2 towards Tel Aviv for 9 km
  • At the Or Akiva Interchange, exit right.
  • At the roundabout, take the 1st exit onto Route 6511, Sderot Shidlovski

By Train

  • In the Ben Gurion Airport, the train station is located on Level S of the Landslide Building, adjacent to the Greeters’ Hall.

Tickets can be purchased at the stations. Adult fares from the Ben Gurion Airport Station to the Binyamina or Kesariyya/Pardes Hanna (Caesarea) stations are approximately 37 NIS adult.

Taxi to the stations in Binyamina or Kesariyya/Pardes Hanna are approximately 45 NIS.

Hours of operation:

  • Trains to Binyamina run between 20 – 60 minutes intervals and all throughout the night on weekdays.
  • Kesariyya/Pardes Hanna trains run less frequently about 45 minutes to an hour apart during the weekdays between 05:00 and 23:00.
  • On Fridays trains typically stop running between 14:00-15:00. Friday evening and Saturday day-time trains are not in operation. On Saturday, trains start again between 21:00-22:00.
  • Trains do not operate on holidays, and schedules change around holiday seasons.
    Check online for exact information at www.rail.co.il/EN

By Bus or Sherut

Buses along the coastal route run approximately 30-45 min apart. Sheruts are a combination between a bus and taxi in Israel. They look like a large yellow, orange and red minibus. They run along common bus routes but come much more frequently and stop at passengers’ requests. Prices vary similarly based on distance (between 14 NIS to 30 NIS).

  • From Tel Aviv or Netanya take any bus along the coastal Highway 2 towards Hadera or Haifa. Get off at the Or Akiva Interchange (Bus No. 826, 909,910). Approx. 1 hr, 25 NIS.
  • From Haifa take any bus along the coastal Highway 2 heading South. Get off at the Or Akiva Interchange (Bus No. 784, 921,947). Approx. 30 min, 20 NIS
  • From Jerusalem take a bus from the Jerusalem Central Bus Station the Or Akiva Interchange (Bus No. 947). Approx. 2hr, 30 NIS.
  • From Tiberias take a bus to Hadera and transfer at the Hadera/Olga junction (Bus No. 835). Catch a northbound bus and get off at the Or Akiva Interchange (Bus No. 826,909,910,947). Approx. 2 hr, 50 NIS.

Taxi fares between the highway bus stops and Caesarea city center are approximately 30 NIS each way. Be sure to distinguish the Caesarea city center from the Caesarea Industrial/Business center.

Weekends: Buses stop running around noon on Fridays and begin around 17:00-18:00 on Saturday evenings.

Check online for exact information at http://mslworld.egged.co.il/eggedtimetable/

Public Transportation within Caesarea

The Caesarea shuttle operates Sunday through Thursday through various neighborhoods to the Caesarea center and back.

Podróżowanie:

Pociągi z lotniska do Cezarei: www.rail.co.il/EN/Pages/HomePage.aspx

Pociągi z lotniska Ben Gurion: połączenia bezpośrednie do Cezarei, terminal number 3 (przyjazdy)• odjazd: regulatnie co godzinę: xx:53

Caesarea’s History

Antiquity

  • The city originated as a Phoenician settlement in the 3rd or 4th century BC.[1]
  • It was inherited by Herod, who began rebuilding the city in 22 BC.[1]
  • The city was dedicated to the Roman emperor Augustus Caesar and was built to be the most grandiose city in his honor, daring to challenge nature’s heavy Mediterranean storms on the rocky seashore.[1]
  • ­The ancient harbor served as the second largest port in the known world, encompassing 40-acres and designed to accommodate 300 ships.[2]
  • The Promontory Palace served as a “magnificent palace” for Herod, jutting out into the waters with a nearly Olympic sized-pool filled with fresh water.[2]
  • An aqueduct brought fresh water to the city from springs at the base of Mount Carmel, some 10 miles away.[2] The ruins of this ancient aqueduct are still prominent along the beach leading from the old city.
  • Following Herod’s death, the city became the local Roman capital.[1]

Christian Significance

The ancient city of Caesarea holds significance in Christian history as a place of tremendously tragic and uplifting events.

  • While it serves as both the location of the Holy Spirit’s outpouring on the Gentiles, it was also the place of torture and execution of tens of thousands of persecuted Christians.
  • The first place that the New Testament identifies Caesarea is the home of Pontius Pilate, the Roman prefect from AD 26 to 36. In fact, in the ruins of the theater, one can find Pontius Pilate’s inscription in stone. [1]
  • Caesarea was the place of the Apostle Paul’s imprisonment before his trip to Rome (Acts 23:35).[2]
  • It is the site of the first converted Gentile, a Roman centurion garrison, baptized by Peter (Act 10).[1]
  • During the growing tensions in the Roman Empire, a pagan sacrifice in front of the synagogue in Caesarea lead to massive protests. Later, Roman troops marched on Jerusalem, killing thousands of Jews throughout the Land.
  • After the First Jewish Revolt (AD 66 to 70) against the Romans, tens of thousands of captives were executed in Caesarea’s amphitheater. [1]
  • The arena continued to be a place of cruel entertainment as Jewish sages were tortured some 65 years later.[1]
  • In the aftermath of the Second Judean Revolt, many Jews were sold into slavery taking port in Caesarea and being dispersed all throughout the world, resulting in the Jewish exile that would last for nearly two-thousand years.

Middle Ages & Ottoman Period

  • In 640 AD, the city was seized by Arabs.
  • In 1101 the Crusaders took Caesarea after finding a relic they believed to be the Holy Grail.[1] The green-glass bowl was believed to be the vessel from which Jesus drank at the Last Supper, and is now kept a the Cathedral of St. Lorenzo in Genoa.[1]
  • In 1251, King Louis IX of France captured the city, and during that year, he added most of the fortifications visible today.[1]
  • Only a decade later, the Mamluk sultan Beybars broke through the Crusader defenses and destroyed the city.[1]
  • From this point, the city remained deserted and became subject to the shifting sands blown in by the Mediterranean winds.[1]
  • More than 600 years later, groups of Bosnian refugees inhabited the area from 1878 until the Turks were driven out during the 1948 war.[1]

British Mandate

  • The rediscovery of Caesarea is due thanks to the establishment of the Kibbutz Sdot Yam.[1] The ancient fortifications were found by farmers while tilling the land.[1] Soon, archeologist followed, rewarding local children with sweets for finding valuable pieces.[1]

The State of Israel

  • Today, the foundations of Caesarea are open to the public for tours and leisure.
  • Since the purchase of the land of Caesarea by Baron Rothschild in 1875, Caesarea remains to be the only city in Israel that is managed by a private organization, the Caesarea Development Corporation, rather than a municipality government.[3]

[1] Lonely Planet

[2] BiblePlaces.com

[3] Wikipedia

Local Attractions

  • Golf Course (within 1 minute)
  • Magnificent Ancient Ruins (within 2 minutes)
  • National Archeology Park with Amphitheater, Hippodrome, Straton’s tower, Aqueduct, and Harbor. Guided tours, audiovisual self-guided tours & short videos, restaurants, shops & galleries, and concerts (within 2 minutes)
  • Rally Museum featuring well-known art & sculptures from artists such as Picaso & Salvador Dali (within 5 minutes – Free entrance)
  • The most exquisite Mediterranean Beaches (within 1 minute)
  • Gourmet restaurants and cafés amongst the Roman ruins (within 2 minutes)
  • Caesarea Diving Center & underwater park with archeology research and underwater trails (within 2 minutes)
  • Hof Dor HaBonim Nature Reserve (within 20 minutes)
  • Famous wineries at Zichron Yaakov (within 20 minutes)
  • Pioneer Museum at En Shemer (within 20 minutes)
  • Ein Hod’s Artists village (within 20 minutes)

Local amenities

  • City center with bank, post office, grocery mart, fitness country club (within 5 minutes)
  • Mall with local shops for clothing, shoes, grocery supermarket, medical center, bookstore and food-court (within 10 minutes)
Name Location Cuisine Deliver Kosher Phone Hours
Agenda Gas Station Breakfast, Sushi, Grill 60-120 Yes Yes 0579444000 Su-Th:24 hr, Sa:Closed
Aresto Port Italian, Coffee Shop, Fish 50-100 Yes 0579444067 Su-Th:09:00-close,Sa:Closed
Bandy Business Park Fusion, Meat 60-120 Yes No 046372460 Su-Sa:11:45-close
Beach Bar Port Breakfast, Mediterran. 60-120 No 046363989 Apr-Oct:9:00-close
Citadel Sushi Bar & Grill Port Meat, Fish, Seafood, Grill, Sushi 50-120 Yes No 046100022 M-F:12:00-close; Sa:11:00-close
Crusader Inn Port Meat, Fish, Seafood, Grill, Mediterran. 60-120 No 0579443555 Su-Sa:10:00-24:00
Helena Port Meat, Fish, Seafood 60-120 No 0579443013 Su-Sa:12:00-23:00
Kujau Business Park Meat, Hamburger, Stews 50-250 Yes No 0579440605 Su-Th:11:30-24:00;Sa:Closed
Minato Sushi, Japanese 60-120 Yes No 0579424689 Su-Th:12:00-16:30;18:00-24:00; Sa:Closed
Nagomi Country Club Sushi, Asian fusion, Bistro, Bar restaurant 60-120 Yes No 0772060790 Su-Th:8:00-00:00
Albatros Golf Club Meat, Fish, Seafood, Grill, Bistro 60-120 No 0579444055 Su,W-Sa:8:00-23:00
Port-Café Port Breakfast, Meat, Fish, Israeli 60-120 No 0579440575 Su-Sa:8:30-23:00
Shulla Business Park Meat, Fish, Seafood 60-120 No 046377715 Su-Sa:12:00-24:00
Vila Bar Caesarea French, Gourmet, Fish, Seafood 155 + No 0505569040 Reservation only

Activities in & around Caesarea

  • Underwater SCUBA diving treasure hunting in ancient harbor
  • Snorkeling
  • Boating
  • Paddle boarding
  • Surfing
  • Kite surfing
  • Fishing
  • Tidepools
  • ATV excursion in the dunes
  • Local hikes
  • Wine tours
  • Concerts at the Caesarea Amphitheater (click here for events)

Top 11 Places to See in Israel

  1. Western Wall, Temple Mount and Church of the Holy Sepulcher in Jerusalem – The most sacred place for Jewish people. The location of Jesus’ crucifixion and tomb.
  2. Church of the Holy Sepulcher in Jerusalem – The most significant place for Christians as the location of Jesus’ crucifixion and tomb.
  3. Yad Vashem – The largest Holocaust museum and memorial in the world. One of the most moving experiences in memory of the Holocaust.
  4. The Dead Sea – The saltiest body of water and lower place on Earth. Float in the lake while reading the newspaper, treat yourself to a spa with the dead sea mud. Hike the beautiful canyons and swim the freshwater springs of Ein Gedi.
  5. Masada – Herod’s desert & mountain palace and last-standing fortress of the Second Rebellion.
  6. Tel Aviv & Old Jaffa – Tel Aviv: The most westernized and metropolitan city in Israel. Jaffa: One of the oldest cities in the world. Mixed with Arab, Ottoman, and Jewish heritage.
  7. Mount Carmel Region – Beautiful scenery, hiking trails, home of Elijah, and Druze villages. Beautifully painted doorways in Haifa.
  8. Caesarea – The Capital during the Roman rule.
  9. Sea of Galilee – Stomping grounds of Jesus.
  10. Nazareth – Pilgrimage with the church of annunciation.
  11. Eilat – Israel’s Riviera on the Red Sea. Great place for snorkeling. The Timna Natural Park is a historic park of copper mines and fun activities.
  12. Ramon Crater – one of the largest and deepest canyons on earth. Camels, wildlife, and a gorgeous sunset on the basalt plugged crater.

Emergency Hot-lines in Israel are separate.

            Police : 100

            Ambulance : 101

            Fire brigade : 102

            Home-front Command : 1207

These numbers are free of charge from all public pay-phones, local landlines, and local cellular phones.

Before your trip to Israel, identify the nearest location of your country’s embassy in case of emergency. Check for announcements and alerts prior to and during your visit for your safety.

In Case of Car Accident

When there are injuries, help the injured.

Call 100 for the police. Identify yourself and your location. Do not hang up your call before instructed to do so.

Vehicles involved in an accident with casualties may NOT be moved without explicit order by a policeman.

When there are no injuries, all involved vehicles should be moved out of the way to a safer place. Use firm interaction with involved drivers or participants.

If there is a damage claim by one of the involved drivers, all involved drivers must submit their details to each other:

  • Driver’s identification number (Israeli ID or foreign passport number)
  • Driver’s license number
  • Vehicle license plate number
  • Insurance policy number

If possible, take photos of the damage caused by the accident from both vehicles.

If you cannot identify the documents, ask a local. Should an involved driver refrain from submitting his/her details, call 100 for the police.

It is recommended to copy the details from the original papers; do not count on the driver’s words.

Shalom (שלום) = Hello, goodbye, peace

Boker tov (בוקר טוב) = Good morning

Erev tov (טוב ערב) = Good evening

Lyla tov (טוב לילה) = Good night

Todah (תודה) = Thank you

Todah raba (רבה תודה) = Thank you very much

Bevakasha (בבקשה) = Please & you’re welcome

Lahitra’ot (להתראות) = Goodbye

Eifoh hasherutim (השרותים איפה) = Where are the toilets?

Lama? (למה) = Why?

Ma nishma? (נשמה מה) = What’s up?

Ma koreh? (קורה מה) = What’s up?

Ma hamatzav? (המצב מה) = What’s up?

Beseder (בסדר) = Ok / fine

Balagan (בלגן) = A common uniquely israeli word meaning mess/chaos.

Nachon (“ch”, a deep throat “h” sound) (נכון) = That’s right, correct

Misada (מסעדה) = Restaurant

Tafrit (תפריט) = Menu

Café hafuch (“ch”, a deep throat “h” sound) (ךפוק קפה) = Cappuccino

Al tagid li shtuiot (שטויות לי תגיד אל) = Don’t tell me nonsense

Kama ze oleh? (עולה זה כמה) = How much does it cost?

Ein bai’yah (בעיה אין) = No problem

Na’im me’ode (מאוד נעים) = Pleased to meet you

Mi’ym, bevakashah (בבקשה מים) = Water, please

Eifo tach’hanat autobus? (אוטובוס תחנת איפה) = Where is the bus stop?

Bishvil matana, bevakashah (בבקשה מתנה בשביל) = Please gift-wrap this item

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RESERVATIONS

Shalom and welcome to Caesarea Villa.

We hope you enjoy your stay with us and hope to see you back in Israel soon.

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