Allergy-Free Zimmer Rooms
If you’d like to visit Israel but are allergic to pollen, it’s important to note that Israel has two seasons of pollination, from February to March and from October to November. During these periods, pollen counts can rise to 8000 pollen grains per cubic meter of air. The worst offenders are trees in the cypress family and since there are many varieties of cypress, cypress pollen can be present in the air at almost any time during the year.
During the summer months, the main culprits contributing to pollen allergies are olive trees, leafy weeds and grasses. Grass pollen is another allergen that saturates the air most of the year. In autumn, pollen contamination comes mostly from eucalyptus and pepper trees, wormwood (Artemisia) and thistle weed.
While the olive tree doesn’t give off the most pollen, it is certainly responsible for the majority of allergy symptoms from pollen. If you or your family members suffer from pollen allergies, a helpful solution is to stay in an allergy-free room at one of Israel’s budget-friendly guest homes, known as Zimmers. There are two Zimmers in the Galilee that offer allergy-free rooms.
One zimmer is a bed and breakfast set into a mountainside with a view that encompasses the Golan Heights, the Sea of Galilee (Kinneret), and the quaint village known as Rosh Pina. There are several different types of rooms on offer, but make sure to ask for the allergy-free room
. Guests can order a special kosher menu.
Just a five-minute drive from the Safed town center, the bed and breakfast has such amenities as a glass-enclosed indoor pool room, sauna, and free WiFi. There’s a spa and wellness center and you can order a massage. Need a trouser press? Just ask. Need to send a fax or make a photocopy? The staff is very obliging.
Local attractions in Safed include the HaMeiri Cheese Shop, a family-run operation which is over 170 years old; the famous Safed Candles shop where one can buy hand-dipped and woven beeswax candles; and the Art Lishma studio where you can create your own pottery.
Photo: Ahuza BaMarom®
The zimmer in Tiberias is another mountainside location with an allergy-free room. Just a short ten-minute drive from Tiberias, the air-conditioned rooms are fully-outfitted for a comfortable stay with refrigerator, coffee corner, cable TV and free WiFi.
A kosher Israeli-style breakfast buffet is included with your stay including salads galore, eggs to order, breads, cheeses, and yogurt. Other meals can be ordered. Parking is free, but there’s no public transportation to this zimmer. Your best bet is to rent a car for getting around.
Hamat Gader – Crocodile Farm
The facilities at Tiberias are tailor-made to please families with children. There are gaming facilities, a vending machine for soft-drinks and juices, and a ping-pong table. It’s also centrally located to take advantage of some of the best local attractions including the Hamat Gader crocodile farm with its more than 200 crocodiles of all species, the hot springs known as Hamei Tiberias located 212 meters below sea level, and the Luna Gal Water Park near Tiberias which boasts the longest tubing track in all of Israel.
Did You Know?
The swimming pool at the zimmer in Safed is heated to 34 degrees Celsius making for a swimming experience that is something like taking a dip in a hot spring!