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Hamat Gader – Hot Springs – Parrot Show – Aligator Park – Roman Antiquities

One of the most beautiful and popular health retreats in the Roman Empire was the spa at Hamat Gader on the southern ascent to the Golan Heights.

Today you can see the remains of the incredible Roman Baths and an ancient amphitheatre.

The popular modern hot springs and mineral baths fed by underwater springs are over 40 degrees celcius. There are no separate bathing facilities, however in the winter until Shabbat HaGadol, there is “men only” night on Thursday nights until 2am.

There is a lot to see and do even if you don’t use the Hot Springs or fresh water pool,

We watched the family-friendly parrot show, then took a stroll through the alligator park and petting zoo. There are lovely grounds for a picnic near the ancient Roman ruins.

It’s only 20 minutes from our Zimmers at Villa Rimona in Yavne’el.  Call or email to find out more and begin planning your vacation with us at Villa Rimona or buy your dream home in Israel.

Israel Economists: Interest rates to rise and Dollar to fall

If you are holding US dollars, now might be a good time to invest in Israel Real estate.

Many people are expecting Bank of Israel Governor Stanley Fischer (who is a candidate to be the new head of the IMF) to raise the interest rates gradually throughout the rest of the year. But there was an interesting side point in an article that appeared today in the Jerusalem Post.

Most economists are expecting the official interest rate to rise to 3.25% on Sunday (up .25%). That means mortgage rates will be going up as well. The factors behind the increase are inflationary considerations, rising housing prices, high economic growth and the recent recovery of the dollar against the shekel.

One of the goals is to help slow down the housing market and keep prices in check. However most analysts see price increases.

What got my attention in the article was the following prediction…

“USG Capital analysts Eli Ben- David and Shai Zakhaim predicted that the dollar would return to its downward trend against the shekel after it fell back below the NIS 3.50 threshold early Thursday.

They forecast that the dollar exchange rate would fall to NIS 3.40 within three months and hit NIS 3.30 within six months.”

That means a NIS 2,000,000 apartment today would cost you about US $570,000. Six months from now, the local price will very likely rise to NIS 2,200,000 but since the dollar may lose value, that same apartment could cost US 666,000 – an increase of almost 17%.

Even if the local prices stay the same in shekels, that US $570,000 apartment will cost US$ 606,000 six months from now.

Moral of the story: If you are holding US dollars right now and have been considering purchasing property in Israel, you may want to invest in Israel real estate sooner rather than later.

Click logo below for the full article…

Highway 98 – Golan Heights – Stunning Vistas – Exciting Switchbacks

If you love Highway 1 on the California coast, then you’ll love Highway 98 descending the Golan Heights from the top of the mountains down to Hamat Gader on the way back to Tiberias.

We recommend driving on the road from top to bottom (north to south) as you’ll see more stunning vistas that way. The highway is full of exciting switchbacks, so make sure the driver keeps their eyes on the road!

It’s only 20 minutes from Yavne’el and our Villa Rimona Zimmers. Take the road on your way back from Qatsrin to Tiberias and you can stop along the way to visit Ayit Falls, Peace Vista Lookout and Hamat Gader (see our other videos on our Village Israel Youtube Channel.

Call us for more info at 077-419-9001 or to book your Zimmers.

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Yom Ha’atzmaut – Israel Independence Day

My Rosh Yeshiva, Rabbi Noah Weinberg zt’l used to say that the State of Israel was the greatest gift that the Almighty gave to the Jewish People in 2000 years. What an opportunity to build a society in our homeland based on Torah values!

Well after 2000 years of exile, the Jewish people in 1948 were in pretty bad physical and spiritual shape, and confusion and dissention reigned among the ranks. Yet, there was still a lot of building that needed to be done – both physically and spiritually – with each subgroup building according to their understanding.

The result, sixty three years later is incredible. With the Almighty’s help, we have built glittering cities, the land has brought forth her fruits and Israel is one of the strongest economies in the world. And, there are more people in Israel studying Torah full time than ever in our history.

Rav Noah always insisted we have a festive “Seudah Hoda’ah” – a thanksgiving meal on Yom Ha’atzmaut to acknowlege to ourselves that the State of Israel is a miraculous gift from the Almighty and that it’s our responsibility to use that opportunity to unite the Jewish People.

Here’s a video from footage I took last year as we joined the Jewish People in preparing for our BBQ and watch the fireworks. Join the fun

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