Public transport & highways in Israel


Below: GoogleMap: "Highways in Israel". Note: the road at the bottom of the map leads to Eilat. Israel has a great, modern road network which spans the width and breadth of the country which are signed in English as well as in Hebrew and Arabic making navigation easier for visitors. Israel drives on the right hand side of the road (like most of Europe and the US), and there are GPS and maps available in English.

As a rule of thumb, Israeli highways are numbered even for north-south, and odd for east-west. The major highways in Israel are:

  • Route 1 – Tel Aviv to Jordan River
  • Route 2 – Tel Aviv to Haifa
  • Route 4 – Erez Border Crossing (Gaza) to Rosh HaNikra
  • Route 6 – Kiryat Gat to Barkai
  • Route 20 – Rishon LeZion to Herzliya
  • Route 40 – Lotan to Kfar Saba
  • Route 65 – Caesarea to Afula
  • Route 70 – Zichron Yaakov to Shelomi
  • Route 90 – Taba Border Crossing to Metulla

Note: The IDF ordered the closure of Israel’s Highway 12, which runs along the border with Egypt, after a deadly attack by Islamic State-affiliated extremists killed over 70 Egyptian troops in the Sinai Peninsula.

Parking in Israel varies greatly from place-to-place. It is generally not a problem, however, can be tricky in the major cities, especially in Tel Aviv and Jerusalem. In these cities in particular (but across the country) parking is enforced on the road fairly strictly, and it is simple to establish whether parking is allowed from the color of the curb. Whilst these regulations are pretty general, and different municipalities can use them in different ways, they are a good general guide, however, be sure to pay attention to signs and if in doubt try to ask! To avoid all doubt, however, it is often easiest to find a car park where you can pay when you are finished and you save the hassle of searching around.

  • Red and white markings: parking is generally not allowed (but in some places you can park on them at night).
  • Red and yellow markings: spaces reserved for specific vehicles such as bus stops – so you cant park on these at any time.
  • Blue and white markings: parking is allowed if you buy a parking permit. Often you can get these from machines at machines at the side of the road, but in other places you’ll have to buy them from kiosks.
  • Never park over at the side of the road, in a handicapped bay, or over a driveway.

There are 48 designated Israeli highways. Most of these are open-access arterial expressways, which may be entered from ordinary junctions. Some are limited-access freeways, which may be entered from interchanges. Six highways are freeways, six are partially limited-access freeways and partially expressways, and the other 35 are expressways. There is only one three-digit road in the country classified as a freeway, Route 431. Highway 6, the Trans-Israel Highway, is the only toll road. Two of the expressways (Highway 57 and Highway 60) are divided into several separate sections as a result of an IDF decree forbidding Israelis from traveling on certain stretches of these highways (see Notes below).

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