For forty centuries, Israel has been perhaps the world's most extraordinary and enticing travel destination. Israel, perfectly located at the fulcrum of Europe, Asia and Africa, is a world-class destination for sophisticated travelers. Everyone has their own perception of what Israel and the Palestinian Territories (or just 'Israel' for brevity) is about: it's a travel agency package of beaches and sun; it's the Promised Land of the Jews; it's the birthplace of Christ... Israel offers cultural attractions on a par with Europe, the U.S. and Canada, luxury hotels, glamorous spas and a hot restaurant scene - all within an atmosphere that combines the very ancient with the ultra high-tech, and the exotic with the contemporary.
If you choose to visit Israel, be sure you are acquainted with the essential Passport/Visa information, given below:
Citizens of Australia, Canada, Ireland, New Zealand, South Africa, the UK, and the US need valid passports to enter Israel and to re-enter their own country, but do not need visas. Israel does not allow entrance if the holder's passport expires in under six months; returning home with an expired passport is illegal and may result in a fine. Typically, countries which have unfriendly relations with Israel (Syria, Lebanon, and Iran) do not allow travelers with Israeli stamps in their passports to enter their countries. If you're planning on visiting these countries, ask that your passport not be stamped.
Be sure to double-check on entrance requirements at the nearest Israeli embassy or consulate for up-to-date information before departure. Be sure to photocopy the page of your passport with your photo, passport number, and other identifying information. Also photocopy any visas, travel insurance policies, plane tickets, or traveler's check serial numbers. If you lose your passport, immediately notify the local police and the nearest embassy or consulate of your home government.
Visas are not required for citizens of Australia, Canada, Ireland, New Zealand, South Africa, the UK, and the US.
As requirements may vary for some nationals, it is advisable to check with nearest Consulate (or Consular section at Israeli embassy) for visa requirements before traveling to Israel.
Personal Security Issues
The situation in Israel and the Palestinian Territories remains volatile and, in many parts, dangerous. In particular, the West Bank and Gaza Strip are unsafe; Nablus, Jenin and the Gaza Strip should be considered off-limits, except perhaps for essential daytime travel to Gaza City. Prospective travelers are advised to check consular travel advice.
Consular Services in Israel
Australia Embassy in Israel: Europe House, 4th fl., 37 Sha'ul Ha-Melekh Blvd., Tel Aviv 64928 ((03) 695 04 51; fax 696 84 04).
Canada Embassy in Israel: 3/5 Nirim St., Yad Eliyahu, Tel Aviv 67060 ((03) 636 33 00; fax: 636 33 80).
UK Embassy in Israel: 192 Hayarkon St., Tel Aviv 63405 ((03) 725 12 22; fax 725 85 74). Consulates: Migdalor Building, 6th fl., 1 Ben-Yehuda Street, Tel Aviv 63801 ((03) 510 01 66; fax 510 11 67); 19 Nashashibi Street, Sheikh Jarrah, Jerusalem 97200 ((02) 541 41 41; fax 532 23 68); 14 Tzofit Villas, Eilat ((07) 637 23 44).
US Embassy in Israel: 71 Rehov Ha-Yarkon, Tel Aviv 63903 ((03) 519 74 57 or 75 75; fax 510 24 44). Consulates: 27 Nablus Rd., East Jerusalem ((02) 622 72 00); 18 Agron St., West Jerusalem ((02) 622 72 30); 26 Ben-Gurion St., Hadar, Haifa ((04) 853 14 70; fax 853 14 76).
Israeli Consular Services Abroad
Israeli embassy in Australia: 6 Turrana St., Yarralumla, Canberra ACT 2600 ((02) 6273 1309; fax 6273 4273). Consulate: 37 York St., 6th fl., Sydney NSW 2000 ((02) 9264 7933; fax 9290 2259).
Israeli embassy in Canada: 50 O'Connor St., #1005, Ottawa, Ont. K1P 6L2 ((613) 567-6450, 53, or 55; fax 237-8865). Consulates: 180 Bloor St. W., #700, Toronto, Ont. M5S 2V6 ((416) 640-8500; fax 640-8555); 1155 blvd. Réné-Lévesque Ouest, #2620, Montréal, Québec, H3B 4S5 ((514) 940-8500; fax 940-8555).
Israeli embassy in UK: 2 Palace Green, London W8 4QB ((020) 7957 9500; fax 7957 9555).
Israeli embassy in US: 3514 International Dr. NW, Washington, D.C. 20008 ((202) 364-5500; fax 364-5423). Consulates: 800 2nd Ave., New York, NY 10017 ((212) 499-5410; fax 499-5425); 6380 Wilshire Blvd., #1700, Los Angeles, CA 90048 ((323) 852-5500). More offices are in San Francisco, Miami, Atlanta, Chicago, Boston, Philadelphia, and Houston.