This private tour covers sites on the Carmel Mountain range, a UNESCO biosphere reserve covered with lush forests, and quaint communities. The Carmel is dotted with fascinating sacred locations, archaeological sites, and communities. The tour starts with a drive north along the Carmel Coast, to Kibbutz Nahsholim. The kibbutz is located along a stunning stretch of wide beaches around curved bays between Haifa and Caesarea.
Nahsholim kibbutz is home to the Mizgaga Museum of Archaeology and Glass which is housed in a former glass-bottle factory built in 1891. The museum displays contemporary glass art as well as objects found at the adjacent archaeological site, Tel Dor. Take a brief tour of Tel Dor and the Nahsholim coast. The tour continues to Ein Hod, an artists’ village located at the foot of Mount Carmel, southeast of Haifa. The artists’ community was established in 1953 and consists of quaint cottages built among olive groves on the hillside overlooking the sea. Israeli sculptors, painters, and musicians have their studios in the idyllic pastoral village. There is the option of an art workshop with local artists at Ein Hod.
The tour continues through the pristine mountain forests to Daliyat al-Karmel, a village inhabited by the Druze community. The Arabic-speaking, esoteric ethnoreligious Druze have unique traditions that you can discover on a visit to the village. Take a walking tour of the village and visit the Druze market. Also stop at Oliphant House, the summer home of Christian Zionist, Laurance Oliphant (1829-1888) and his secretary, Naftali Herz Imber, author of the Israeli national anthem.
The last stop on this tour is Muhraka, on the highest peak of the Carmel where Biblical prophet, Elijah challenged the false prophets of Baal to create fire. Today the Carmelite Monastery stands on the peak overlooking Haifa bay. The Catholic Carmelite Order was established here in the 12th century in proximity to a grotto where Elijah is believed to have stayed. Before ending the tour take in the spectacular view from the top of the Stella Maris Monastery where you can see the Jezreel Valley, Mount Gilboa, and the hills of Galilee.
Additional Sites in the Area:
1. Khan Museum, Hadera
4. Zichron Yaakov, including a visit to a winery
5. Atlit Detainee Camp Museum
6. Hike on Mt. Carmel
7. Haifa attractions
8. Visit a winery