Explore with activists, artists and women from all walks of life

Uncover diverse perspectives in Israel and the Palestinian Territories on this eight-day Women’s Expedition. With local female leaders and guides from Israeli, Palestinian and Bedouin backgrounds this tour will immerse you in some of the different cultures of the region through the eyes of incredible women. Meet Palestinian peace activists, break bread with Bedouin women and learn about Israeli women working to secure the right to pray at the Western Wall. Travelling in an all-female group means you can access spaces that are off-limits to mixed-gender groups and be part of cultural and religious discussions in an entirely new way.

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Terms & Conditions

Start
Tel Aviv, Israel
Finish
Jerusalem, Israel
Destination
Israel
Style
Original
Theme
Women's Expedition
Code
ENSF
Physical rating
Ages
Min 15
Group size
Min 1, Max 12

Why you'll love this trip

  • Visit female artists in Arad where the local community has developed a social tourism project that highlights what life is like on the edge of the Judaean Desert.

  • Take a tour with a local peace activist as she shows you the West Bank city of Ramallah. Then enjoy a home-cooked meal and discussion with activists from the Women Wage Peace organisation.

  • Immerse yourself in Bedouin culture and discover the secret art of henna, then enjoy lunch and discussion with Bedouin women involved in grassroots activities creating opportunities in tourism and agriculture.

  • Explore historical sites of Jerusalem on a unique dual-narrative tour, with female guides – one Israeli and one Palestinian – giving their perspectives on life in the city.

  • Check out the graffiti at the Separation Barrier to see how street artists have responded to the wall, and visit Banksy’s controversial Walled Off Hotel.

Is this trip right for you?

  • This is a Women’s Expedition that shows you Israel and the Palestinian Territories from a woman's perspective. It is a politically neutral tour, but you will be exposed to diverse local opinions and challenges faced by local women of all backgrounds.       

  • This trip is new to our range this year. Despite rigorous planning and research, new itineraries can sometimes throw us some surprises. More often than not, it’ll be a welcome surprise, but now and again there might be a hiccup. We like to think that’s what puts the ‘adventure’ in adventure travel.

  • This tour includes one night in a shared tent in an eco-camp on the edge of the Judaean Desert. The accommodation is quirky, traditional and comfortable with bunk-style beds, shared bathroom facilities and bedding provided.

  • The weather can be hot during the day and cool during the night in the desert. Please ensure you pack for a changeable climate.

  • We will be visiting and spending two nights in the West Bank (Palestinian Territories). Please refer to your travel advisory service for safety updates and your insurance provider to ensure you are covered for travel in this region.

Itinerary

Your Women’s Expedition through Israel and the Palestinian Territories begins in Tel Aviv, a modern city that truly never stops. With its lively cafe culture, relaxed Mediterranean beach scene and diverse nightlife, Tel Aviv is a great place to start your exploration. Your tour officially begins with a welcome meeting at 6 pm at your hotel, which is located close to the beach and the Carmel Market – both great places to start exploring on your own if you arrive with time to spare before the meeting. After the meeting, you can choose to join your leader and group and get to know each other better over an optional dinner.
Accommodation
  • Hotel (1 night)
Meals Included
There are no meals included on this day.
Special Information
It’s very important that you attend the welcome meeting as we will be collecting insurance details and next of kin information at this time. If you are going to be late please let your travel agent or hotel reception know. Ask reception or look for a note in the lobby for more information on where the meeting will take place. If you can't arrange a flight that will arrive on time, consider arriving in the city a day or two early so you can attend. We'll be happy to book additional accommodation for you (subject to availability).
Rise and shine for breakfast with your leader and fellow travellers. Get to know each other a little better over a coffee, then head out to begin exploring Tel Aviv. Visit Jaffa, now a vision of modernity but said to be one of the oldest port towns in the world. While in Jaffa visit the eclectic Ilana Goor Museum, a privately owned collection of curious and unusual art. Illana is an Israeli self-taught artist and lifelong collector, who long dreamed of establishing her own museum to showcase her art collection.
Later, continue on a short journey to Ramallah via Nablus. Once an important trade route city, Nablus has been settled since before the Roman era. Take a walking tour through the Old City. This is a great place to shop for local spices and olive oil soap, and if you’ve got a sweet tooth we also recommend sampling a slice of kunafa. Imagine if a cheesecake, a pizza and an orange blossom tree had a baby – trust us, it works. Continue to Ramallah and check in to your hotel.
Accommodation
  • Hotel (1 night)
Included Activities
  • Jaffa - Leader-led tour of Old Jaffa
  • Nablus - City Tour
Meals Included
  • Breakfast
  • Dinner
Special Information
This evening you will say farewell to the leader who has accompanied you so far on your tour and meet the new leader who will accompany your group during your time in Ramallah.
Founded in the 16th century (allegedly by a father who wanted to extricate his daughter from an arranged marriage) Ramallah today is a cultural and economic hub of the West Bank. Head out on a tour of this vibrant city with a local peace activist as your guide. Visit the Dar Zahran Heritage Building, Nelson Mandela Square and Arafat’s Tomb while your guide shares stories about growing up as a Palestinian woman on the West Bank. Enjoy a home-cooked meal and some discussion on the peace process from a woman’s perspective. After dinner, members of Women Wage Peace will speak about the Israeli–Palestinian conflict and their activism work, which is based on pillars of non-violence and respect.  
Accommodation
  • Hotel (1 night)
Included Activities
  • Ramallah - Women Wage Peace
  • Ramallah - Walking Tour
Meals Included
  • Breakfast
  • Lunch
  • Dinner
Embrace an early start this morning and depart Ramallah for a full day of travel to Arad, a town at the edge of the Judean Desert, with some incredible stops en route. First up is Masada, the spectacular cliff-top fortress built by King Herod around 35 BC, which we will reach via cable car. The fortress is of particular significance to Jewish people around the world because of a battle that is said to have occurred here during the First Jewish–Roman War. Continue to the Dead Sea Valley. Grab lunch and learn about local efforts to restore the regional environment to its former glory. Visit the Dead Sea and enjoy some free time during which you can take a float in the super-salty waters which are 423 metres (1388 feet) below sea level. Continue to your camp in Arad and check in. There are no scheduled activities this evening, but you can choose from optional activities such as a night walk in the desert.
Accommodation
  • Camp (1 night)
Included Activities
  • Masada - Masada visit
  • Dead Sea - Visit and float
Meals Included
  • Breakfast
  • Lunch
  • Dinner
Special Information
Your accommodation this evening will be in a Bedouin tent made of black goat’s hair. The tents are decorated in a traditional style and equipped with rugs and soft mattresses. The desert climate is comfortable year-round, with dry summer air by day and a cooler climate by night. In winter, all tents are rain-proofed and heated. Tents sleep 15 guests and toilets and shower facilities are located nearby.
After breakfast head to Arad City. Visit a social tourism project called Halonot La Midba (Windows to the Desert), and meet the artists for an informal chat about life in the desert and their community. Then continue to Rahat and join some Bedouin women to share a traditional lunch while discussing their involvement with a grassroots Bedouin–Jewish organisation that empowers young women. Learn how to make and apply henna and perhaps discover how local spices have been used in traditional medicine for generations. Munch on dishes like maqluba (upside-down rice), mansaf (lamb and yoghurt) and pickled vegies while you learn about what life is like for local Bedouin women. Continue to Jerusalem, where you will arrive in the late afternoon. Pay a visit to Sunbula, a fair trade organisation where marginalised women are supported through traditional Palestinian crafts. There are no scheduled activities for the rest of the day, however, you may wish to take part in an optional visit to West Jerusalem or a food tasting tour.
Accommodation
  • Hotel (1 night)
Included Activities
  • Arad - Artist Village of Arad
  • Rahat - New Dawn in the Negev
Meals Included
  • Breakfast
  • Lunch
This morning, travel into Bethlehem to visit the Church of the Nativity as well as Manger Square, which is the place where Jesus is said to have been born. Afterwards, discover a different side to Bethlehem on a graffiti tour at the Separation Barrier. Get your best ‘pondering art’ furrowed brow on and swing past Banksy's Walled Off Hotel, which is home to Banksy-themed rooms, local artists' work and a museum. Return to Jerusalem and drive to the Mount of Olives, which looks over the Old City, and visit the Garden of Gethsemane and the Church of All Nations – also known as the Basilica of the Agony. Pay a visit to the holocaust museum Yad Vashem in the afternoon and discover the history of the holocaust from a women's persepctive. The rest of your day is free for you to do what you please. You might wish to visit a hamam (Turkish bathhouse) or take part in an optional cooking class.
Accommodation
  • Hotel (1 night)
Included Activities
  • Bethlehem - Banksy Museum
  • Bethlehem - Church of Nativity
  • Bethlehem - Separation Wall
  • Bethlehem - Leader-led walking tour
  • Jerusalem - Yad Vashem Museum
  • Jerusalem - Mount of Olives
Meals Included
  • Breakfast
Take a full-day tour of the Old City’s Jewish, Christian, and Muslim holy sites with two guides – one Palestinian and one Israeli. During this dual-narrative tour you will visit the Dome of the Rock courtyard and the Aqsa Mosque/Temple Mount. Continue to the Western Wall to learn about how it became a place of worship and a source of debate, with input from a representative of Women of the Wall, a local organisation that wants to secure for women the right to pray at this holy site. After lunch, walk part of the Via Dolorosa toward the Holy Sepulchre, where you will learn about the ancient church, the history of disputes and ownership claims and the modern Christian community in Jerusalem. In the evening, meet with a Jewish Haredi woman for a Hafrashat Challah ceremony and get a hands-on lesson in this tradition. The mitzvah of separating challah is one of the three mitzvahs which are uniquely given over to women to perform – the other two are lighting the Shabbos candles, and Taharas Hamishpacha.
Accommodation
  • Hotel (1 night)
Included Activities
  • Jerusalem - Women of the Wall
  • Jerusalem - Hafrashat Challah
  • Jerusalem - Dual Narrative Tour Old City
Meals Included
  • Breakfast
Your Women's Expedition comes to an end today. You are free to leave the accommodation at any time after breakfast, but please ensure you check out by 12 pm.
Meals Included
  • Breakfast

Meals

7 breakfasts, 3 lunches, 3 dinners

Transport

Minibus

Accommodation

Hotel (6 nights) Eco Lodge (1 night)

Included activities

  • Jaffa - Leader-led tour of Old Jaffa
  • Nablus - City Tour
  • Ramallah - Women Wage Peace
  • Ramallah - Walking Tour
  • Masada - Masada visit
  • Dead Sea - Visit and float
  • Arad - Artist Village of Arad
  • Rahat - New Dawn in the Negev
  • Bethlehem - Banksy Museum
  • Bethlehem - Church of Nativity
  • Bethlehem - Separation Wall
  • Bethlehem - Leader-led walking tour
  • Jerusalem - Yad Vashem Museum
  • Jerusalem - Mount of Olives
  • Jerusalem - Women of the Wall
  • Jerusalem - Hafrashat Challah
  • Jerusalem - Dual Narrative Tour Old City

Dates & availability

Trip departures are unavailable.

There are currently no scheduled departures on our Israel & the Palestinian Territories: Women's Expedition trip. If you are interested in other trips in the region visit one of the links below.

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Important notes

SINGLE SUPPLEMENT
A single supplement is available if you’d prefer not to share a room on this trip. The single supplement applies to all nights on your trip and is subject to availability. Please speak to an Intrepid booking agent for further information.

ITINERARY
This trips starts in Tel Aviv and finishes in Jerusalem.

ACCOMMODATION
On Day 4 we spend the night in an eco-accommodation facility on the edge of the Judaean Desert. Accommodation is 'glamping' style in a tent with bunk beds and shared bathroom facilities. Bedding is supplied. 
 
WEST BANK 
Following recent safety incidents we recommend that you check your government's advice for their latest information on travelling in Israel (particularly within the West Bank) before your departure and ensure that your travel insurance covers you for all areas of your itinerary. We have links to prominent government travel advisories and regular updates on issues affecting this trip on our Travel Alerts page at www.intrepidtravel.com/travel-alerts

Essential trip information

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