Taking a Tour through Israel is best done when you have a local guide, and Chris Froome had some of the best he could ask for, including Israel – Premier Tech Roland Development rider, Yasmin Keren. She accompanied Chris Froome through Israel for forty-eight hours, showing him the Masada National Park and the Dead Sea, before travelling to Jerusalem to cycle through the old town to experience the cuisine and culture, and the buzz of Tel Aviv. Yasmin clearly revelled in the opportunity to show Froome her country.
“I was so happy to take part in these two days because I truly think Israel is incredible!
It’s a non-stop country with warm people that you shouldn’t miss. Every time I’m abroad for competitions and meet riders from other countries, I just talk about our country and how amazing it is.”
And whilst she knew how incredible Israel was and what she wanted to show to Froome, she felt it was daunting to be a tour guide for the seven-time Grand Tour winner, and one of her cycling idols, but Yasmin didn’t need to worry.
“At first, I told Froome that I couldn’t believe that it was him sitting next to me, and I was used to seeing him only on TV. He was the nicest in the world and calmed me down, though. It felt natural, and for a moment I forgot I was talking with one of the greatest legends in the world!”
The beginning of the trip had an early start so the explorers could see the sunrise above the mountains and desert. Whilst they felt more than a little tired, in Yasmin’s mind, it was definitely worth it, being her favourite site of the tour.
“For me, the most powerful part was climbing to Masada early in the morning and seeing the incredible sunrise over the mountains against the backdrop of the Dead Sea. The wonder of the Dead Sea and the history at Masada made it very special.”
And from the Dead Sea it was onto Jerusalem and Tel Aviv, where they could experience the culture and cuisine, as well as the people there.
“I loved most of all seeing people who were not familiar with Israel being amazed every time they saw something new. From the flavors, the food, and the tremendous joy in the streets of the Old City of Jerusalem, and one of the most vibrant cities in the world, Tel Aviv!”
But by the end of the trip, Yasmin had to concede that only forty-eight hours was not enough to see all of Israel and knew that there was more she wanted to show Froome. But no matter long they were there, Yasmin was sure he would be back soon. There was simply so much to do, and it was very accessible.
“I would have liked if we had made it to Eilat to experience a bit of the special sea there. The Red Sea, to dive and see the corals and breathtaking fish and do crazy water sports! But within a four-hour drive, you can see snow, and desert, and also be in the lowest place in the world. In short, if you’re coming to Israel, trust me, you won’t be bored for a second!”