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Israel is so full of unique things to see and do, and tour schedules are so packed, it is sometimes difficult to find time to just relax. Well, if you can make the time, there's no better place than the beaches of Netanya, some of the most beautiful in Israel.

Since it doesn't have any major tourist attractions, the city is sometimes overlooked, but it is a convenient stop, just one hour from Jerusalem, thirty minutes north of Tel Aviv and twenty minutes south of Caesarea.

Netanya was founded in 1929 by citrus farmers, but is now is primarily a center for tourism and the diamond trade. Israel is one of the world's largest exporters of diamonds (this is the country's principal export to the U.S.), and Netanya is home to many diamond-cutters and polishers who came to Palestine primarily from Belgium before and during World War II.

Israel Fact

Netanya was named in honor of philanthropist Nathan Straus, the owner of Macy's department store in New York at the turn of the century.

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