Our first family tour review in the Middle East is from Israel to Petra, Jordan. Both these location offer opportunities for something exotic and different in the family vacation scene that can stimulate the desire for travel in both adults and children of varying ages.
The official Israel tourism video site offers a nine day plan for families. Each day is planned out and gives detailed instructions below each video. You can view the videos and plans here. The video playlist below will roll through he series of the series.
You can easily see how kids could become enchanted to the many ancient steps, corridors, alley and cobbled passages that make up the Old City of Jerusalem. While these can present a challenge to strollers those with more mobile kids will appreciate the moderate exercise.
Children will love strolling through the Market Place in Jerusalem and the samples of halva and cheese they are offered. Although markets are sometimes difficult with you children there are some tricks that can help. We have taught our two year old to touch with 1 finger. She knows if she grabs to hard she looses touching rights. Most of the times she is cooperative and all of us enjoy the market experience together. A trip to the market with our little one is usually filled up with many requests to return. You will find many local and exotic specialties as well as others you will know. The video below give you a taste sample. Opening hours are from 8am to sunset daily with an early 2 pm close on Friday to prepare for the Saturday day off.
VideoOsi stroll in Mahane Yehuda- Market in Jerusalem, Israel
A zoo which brings out the animals in pairs. Noahs Arc style. We could resist but add this for the kids.
Biblical Zoo in Jerusalem
While Tel Aviv usually plays second fiddle to Jerusalem in Israel family vacation planning the two locations work together quite symbiotically. The sandy beaches and endless sunny days contrast well with the equally attractive cultural experience.
Close to downtown and full of ways to enjoy the sunny outdoors the family friendly location occupies acres of the Yarkon river. This video offers a multidude of ways families can enjoy the park from hire paddle boats, skate parks to cycling.
The easiest way to travel is to catch a bus from Jerusalem to the party town of Eilat, and does not require much pre-planning and visa seeking compared to the than the Allenby/King Hussein border. While in Eilat check out the dive opportunities available and enjoy the Red Sea location. Simply take a bus over to the town. From there it is simply paying JD 55 or less with a little bargaining and taking a taxi up to Petra or Wadi Musa, which is the town that borders the national park.
You can also arrange for your hotels to make taxi bookings and book return trips to save on having to bargain. Alternatively arrange for a one to four day tour of Petra from a travel agency in Eilat. These are available in escorted and an un-escorted version that lets you plan your own journey.
Now in Eilat you have an easy taxi ride or bus trip over to Petra in Jordan. Most English speaking countries will not require you to have any special visas from this border crossing. The video below may help get you ready for Petra while the scens below may stimulate the kids sense of adventure.
Indiana Jones at Petra