Jisr az-Zarqa in the Lonely Planet


Israel has a number of great "off the beaten path" destinations, like Ramle, Jish, and Umm el-Fahm. And now, Jisr az-Zarka has made it to the holy of holies - the Lonely Planet. Named for the stone bridge over the adjacent Al-Wadi Az-Zarka (the Blue River), it is one of the poorest towns in Israel. Now, though, local residents are taking advantage of the town's surroundings to transform it into a tourist destination. They've set up a 'Jisr Trail' leading to the fisher's hamlet (the only one of its kind in Israel) and the town's magnificent beach; Palestinian cooking workshops, and dining with a local family. Juha's Guesthouse is a great and affordable place to stay, and sites like Caesarea and Zichron Yaakov are nearby, making Jisr az-Zarqa the perfect place to spend a weekend.

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