The Galilee (Hebrew: הגליל HaGalil, Arabic: الجليل al-Jalīl) is a northern region of Israel, generally a forested highland area with relatively sparse population. Its landscape and historical associations make it a great draw for the traveller.
The Galilee region is composed of two sub regions:
- the Upper Galilee - a mountainous region characterized by high mountains (the highest of this region is Mount Meron) which borders the Mediterranean Sea in the west, Beit Hakerem Valley in the south, the Hula Valley and the Jordan Valley in the east and Lebanon in the north.
- the Lower Galilee - characterized by relatively low hills separated by valleys
Cities and villages
- Nazareth — the hometown of Jesus, now the largest Arab city in Israel
- Safed — this fascinating city is filled with artists and mystics, boasting home to ARI, who established Kaballah
- Qiryat Shemona — town in the far north of Israel, the name translates as "the town of the Eight"
- Tiberias — located on the western shore of the Sea of Galilee, a modern resort town with an ancient background
- Metula — known as being the northernmost populated place in Israel
- Amirim — a vegetarian village
- Gush Halav (Jish) - the only surviving Maronite village in Israel with Roman and Talmudic remains
- Korazim - a Talmudic town overlooking the Sea of Galilee. It features the remains of a lovely basalt synagogue.
- Pekiin (Buqe'a) - an old mixed city with Druze, Christian and Jewish sites
- Rosh Pina - a stylish touristic town with multiple restaurants and a 19th Century reconstruction site
- Mount Tabor - the site of the Mount Tabor battle between Barak under the leadership of the Israelite judge Deborah, and the army of Jabin commanded by Sisera, in the mid 12th century BC. It is believed by many Christians to be the site of the Transfiguration of Jesus.
- Beit She'arim National Park - the archaeological site of a Jewish town and a large number of ancient rock-cut Jewish tombs.
- Tel Dan - the largest water spring in the Middle East with a beautiful nature reserve and the remains of a Canaanite town. It includes the Gate of Abraham which is among the world earliest attested arch structures.
- Hula Nature Reserve - a world class site for migrating birds' birdwatching
- Mount Meron - Israel's highest mountain, if excluding the Golan Heights, at 1208 meters above sea level with several hiking trails
- Zippori - an archaeological site with the best preserved mosaics in a Roman town
- Belvoir Castle - a magnificently-located crusader castle located high above the Sea of Galilee
- Montfort Castle - a fortress built by the Crusaders during the times of the Crusader Kingdom of Jerusalem in Israel. The fortress is built on a narrow and steep cliff above the southern bank of Keziv stream in the upper Galilee region.
Hebrew. In some Arab villages you can talk Arabic. English is widely understood.
- A number of Druze villages have an interesting and distinctive culture.
- Rabbi Shimon Bar Yochai is buried in the town of Meron, near Safed. Once a year on "Lag beOmer" (around May), hundreds of thousands of Israelis gather to Meron to celebrate the rabbi and his legacy of kabbalistic learning.
- Tel Hazor — the largest ancient ruin in modern Israel and an UNESCO World Heritage Site
- Dvorat Hatavor - Honey farm, Moshav Shadmot Dvora (On road 767 just off the northern road 65), ☎ +972-6769598. 09:00-15:00. A unique visitors center located at the foot of Mount Tavor in the Galilee. A live demonstration of the production of silk and honey as it was done in biblical times and up to this day.
* The tour also include explanations regarding the healing capacities of honey and its products.
* The visitors center includes all the necessary facilities for the visitors convenience and enjoyment: toilets, kiosk, gift shop and an art gallery. The visitors center is open every day, call to schedule a visit.
- Sea to Sea hike
- By the river, Kibbutz Kineret (Near the baptism location). 19:00-00:00. A very nice local pub in the baptism site
Many visitors to the Upper Galilee sleep in a tzimmer - a kind of bed-and-breakfast place run out of a private house. Pretty much every town and village in the Galilee has a few of these.
- Halomot Naftali Boutique Hotel, ☎ +972-4-6802202.
- Mizpe Ha Yamim, P.O.B. 27 Rosh Pina 12000 (north of the Sea of Galilee, midway between the artist colony of Rosh Pina and the city of Sefat.), ☎ +972-4-6994555. In Eastern Galilee close to Hermon Mountains, Golan Heights, Sea of Kinneret and between the artist village Rosh Pina and the city of Sefad.
- Naftaly Estate, Moshav Ramot Naftaly, Upper Galilee. Naftaly Estate is an all wood-structured, boutique hotel built in 2000 on the Ramot Naftaly Moshav in the upper Galilee.
- Golden Crown, Mt. of the Precipice 2015 | Nazareth. The Golden Crown Hotel is situated at the southern entrance to Nazareth - one of the loveliest and most fascinating cities in the world
- Villa Galilee Boutique hotel, Hagdud Hashlishi 106 (Har Cnaan, Safed), ☎ +972-4-6999563. Villa Galilee boutique Hotel & Spa, This unique and charming hotel is desined in the traditional classic European stayle. Our professional spa offers a wide range of treatments. The Chef Restaurant La Marjolaine specializes in authentic Galilean cuisine.
- Golan Rooms (Rural), Moshav Ramot, ☎ +972-4-6731814. In a hillside in the Golan Heights overlooking the Sea of Galilee, we've built with love and care our 10 Guest Cottages suitable for both families and couples, and surrounded them by a large garden.
- East and North to the Golan Heights
- South-West to Haifa area
- South to Jezreel Valley which is an extensive inland valley, largely rural, extending inland from east of Haifa to the Jordan Valley
- North-West to the Beth Shean Valley which is the core of the north Jordan River valley
- West to Sea of Galilee (Kinneret)