50 essential tips for traveling to Israel in 2022 - The Family Voyage (2023)

Israel is an incredible country, and one that brings with it many unknowns for first-time visitors. I've been there seven times and I've learned a thing or two. We hope these Israel travel tips demystify the experience a bit and leave you open to being surprised, amazed and moved by what you will find.

Want to skip all the planning and access my detailed Israel itinerary with daily plans, great things to do, and travel tips? Click the button below.


Is it safe to visit Israel?

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is to saveDon't believe the hype you see on the news.Israel is generally a safe country to travel to.🇧🇷 Just use Street Smarts and turn on the news. Stay off the beaten path and you should be fine. The US State Department advises that it is okay to travel within Israel, albeit with extra caution in the Old City of Jerusalem. As with any place you visit, nationally or internationally, it's important to keep up with what's happening in the news.Ynetnoticiasis the English edition of the country's largest newspaper, Yedioth Ahronoth. that doesn't mean that"Is it safe to travel to Israel?"is usually answered with a"sim"but barring a big outburst of hostility, you'll be fine.

Soldiers are part of everyday life.Between the ages of 18 and 20 or 21, most Israelis serve in the military. Throughout your time in Israel you will see soldiers. Don't be nervous, these are young adults wearing a uniform. The weapons you see on the street are there because the soldiers need to keep an eye on them (or keep them behind several padlocks) at all times. In addition to these requirementsNot much of a "gun culture"and there are strict restrictions on gun ownership in Israel.

The country has more to offer than its geopolitical location.This is perhaps the most important of our Israel travel tips. While the geopolitical situation is very real and cannot be ignored, it is notidentityfrom Israel. Israel is home to an innovative tech sector, world-renowned agriculture, and incredible diversity. Explore Israel with your eyes open and don't be afraid to connect with the people.

The water is as safe to drink as any other developed country.Unless otherwise stated, the water in Israel is drinkable. If you are traveling to more remote areas, check with your lodge or the National Park Service.

Like the rest of the world, Israel has experienced its own COVID roller coaster.In recent years, borders have been closed, opened and closed more times than anyone can remember. make sure of yourselfcheck hereFind out about the latest regulations and get travel insurance that covers travel interruptions and medical expenses.

Airport security can be intense... or it can be nothing.I think most travelers have heard of this friend of a friend's second cousin who was held up at the Tel Aviv airport for four hours.If it happens🇧🇷 But it is far from the standard. In the United States, everyone must remove their shoes, unpack their suitcases, and be subjected to indiscriminate searches (this happened to me once while bringing coffee from Hawaii on a domestic flight).

The approach in Israel is different. Instead of applying full security measures to everyone, they apply full security measures to those who arouse suspicion. The guards are trained to read microscopic changes in facial expressions when people answer (seemingly) random questions. Certain passport stamps definitely increase the likelihood of further checks and questioning.

It's not better or worse, it's just different. It's never been a long process for us, and sometimes faster than in the US, where there seems to be a new random rule every week. On the other hand, I know a man whofezHe was held for hours because of a plethora of passport stamps he had accumulated on business trips from "enemy" countries. It didn't help that he got aggressive when asked about the seals (as he told me).

(Video) Israel Travel Guide: Everything You NEED TO KNOW Before Visiting Israel 2023

Israel no longer stamps passports🇧🇷 And not for a few years! there is enoughMiscellaneousCountries that do not wish to see Israeli stamps do not. Instead, they give you a little blue card that fits perfectly in your passport and shows your grainy photo, date of entry, passport number, etc. Try not to lose it, as it is your only proof that you are in the country legally, but we were never asked for it. You may need to use it for VAT refunds or to avoid VAT on hotels. Youdo not do itYou have to show this when you leave, but you will receive a corresponding pink card when you leave.

Important note if you want to travel to the region:Israel no longer stamps passports. But if you are using an overland crossing to Jordan (for example, for aPetra Day Tour),Jordanwill stamp your passport. It will be pretty obvious which country is on the other side of that border! It is not clear to what extent the Jordanian passport stamp could cause problems in the future; So if you're worried, it might be worth flying from Israel to Jordan (unless your passport is about to expire).

Use the interactive map to find apartments and hotels in Israel

What to take with you to Israel

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Don't forget your bathing suit.Israel has some phenomenal beaches and benefits from the warm waters of the Mediterranean Sea. Take time to go to the beach and relax if you are here from April to October. At other times of the year, you may still want to swim in the Dead Sea.

Dress modestly (in some places).Try to dress modestly in religious places and when walking in highly religious neighborhoods out of respect for those communities and to avoid harassment. Yes, there are reports of women being spat at (or worse) for visiting an ultra-Orthodox neighborhood.totalcover yourself - from the ankle to the wrist and collarbone

There are too many microclimates to confuse your packing list.When packing for Israel, keep in mind the time of year you are traveling. During the summer, the country is hot throughout the day, but the desert and the north can experience low temperatures at night, even in summer. Winter can be quite cold across the country - we've seen snow on the palm trees of Jerusalem. While Tel Aviv is known for being humid, Jerusalem is higher and drier.

Pack your bags!Check out our season-by-season guide on what to pack in Israel.

Get your coin from the airport machine instead of bringing it with you.Banks in the US don't exactly specialize in this.SchekelmiAgorot🇧🇷 You can use credit cards almost anywhere in the country, but for some cash just use the ATM at the airport. The exchange rate has been fairly stable in recent years at around 3.5-4 shekels (sometimes abbreviated as ILS, sometimes NIS for "new Israeli shekels") to US$1.00. There are 100 agorot per shekel. Be prepared to load your pockets: Israel uses coins up to 10 shekels!

Food in Israel

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The food is very good.Israel is a nation of immigrants and you can experience some of the best and most diverse cuisines in the world. You will find options for all budgets, from fine dining to street food. Just come ready to eat and eat well.

someone said wineIsrael produces excellent wines and they can be tasted in wineries in the Judean Hills, on the Golan or even in the desert.

Israeli breakfast isOne thing.Anyone who likes breakfast will love Israel. Delicious fresh vegetables, cheese, eggs, and bread are served in homes, hotels, kibbutz canteens, and restaurants across the country, at least on weekends.So good.Make sure you try the shakshuka at least once! This egg and tomato dish is one of my favorites.

You may have to choose between sabich and falafel.There is a great debate about what is the best Israeli street food. Sabich is a traditional Iraqi breakfast sandwich with sliced ​​boiled egg, potatoes, and grilled eggplant on a pita; modern versions now add salads and are served at lunchtime. Falafel balls are fried chickpeas served in a pita with salad. Both are excellent, quick and inexpensive lunches.

Druze food is amazing.The northern part of Israel is home to manydrusos🇧🇷 The Druze religion is unique in itself, although derived from Islam. They are amazing people and their restaurants have some of the best food in Israel. If you're too far north, check it out.Al Sultan em Maasade(and possibly laugh as your phone alternates between assuming you're in Israel, Syria, and Lebanon).

There is a strong coffee culture.There are many wonderful cafes in Israel. If you like a good coffee or a cup of tea, take a break. Whether it's Aroma, Caffit, or one of the many independent shops in trendy neighborhoods, you'll always find Israelis drinking.

(Video) 11 Things NOT to do in Israel - MUST SEE BEFORE YOU GO!

Lemonademaybethe most refreshing drink in the world for a hot day.You can cool down with a glass or bottle of this deliciously refreshing drink made with lemonade and fresh mint at most restaurants.

Kosher food is ubiquitous.Most of the groceries you buy in supermarkets are classified asedible according to jewish law– which means that it has been certified by religious authorities to comply with Jewish dietary laws. The main rules are that milk and meat cannot be consumed at the same meal (or on the same plates, even at different meals) and that certain foods such as pork and shellfish are prohibited.

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But not all restaurants are kosher.Throughout Israel there are kosher restaurants that are closed from Friday afternoon to Saturday night. Don't expect to eat cheeseburgers or pork chops at these restaurants, as both types of food are prohibited by Jewish dietary laws. These restaurants have a certificate stating that all food prepared in the restaurant is prepared in accordance with kosher laws. But... there are also non-kosher restaurants in Israel. In fact, Tel Aviv is where you'll find some of the most blatantly non-kosher restaurants, from fine dining to everyday dining.couldthey try to mock the country's often authoritarian religious authorities.

Israel gives your sweet tooth a chance.Thanks to the Israel melting pot, you will be able to taste sweets from all over the world. My personal favourites?Coffee– an Arabic pastry made of macaroni-like dough soaked in syrup and covered with cheese.rugelach– a rolled chocolate and cinnamon cookie.A medium– a sesame-based Arabic dessert with tahini paste that you can find at any large open-air market.

Tipping is required in restaurants.🇧🇷 Tipping is not as generous as in the US, but 10-15% is a typical tip in restaurants in Israel. Tips are preferred.

Do you want to learn more about food in Israel?Check out these 20 foods you can't miss!

the culture of Israel

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Israelis are friendly.it's.Most of the Israelis you will meet are friendly and willing to help if you have questions or get lost, so don't be afraid to ask. At the same time, Israelis are known for being direct to the point of bluntness. One of our top Israel travel tips? Don't be offended, and remember that it's okay to be shy (like when you're standing in line to get on the bus). You will belong!

Most Israelis speak English.extremelyWe will do it.Don't worry if your Hebrew or Arabic doesn't keep up. Almost all Israelis speak English (good) and would rather practice English with you than listen to you try to remember everything you've forgotten since the fourth grade of Hebrew school. You will have no problem traveling in Israel, even if English is your only language.

most israelisyou are notreligious (at least not in a stereotypical way).Yes, 75% of Israelis are Jews. But two thirds of them say they are not religious! What does that mean from a practical point of view? Throughout the country, you will see that most Israelis wear typical 21st century clothing and drive every day of the week. But you'll also find that Friday night is often reserved for dinner with family (or friends) at someone's house. Almost all Israeli Jews attend a PassoverSederFasting on Yom Kippur, don't eat pork.and never go to synagogue.

Some stores are closed on Shabbat.Don't plan long trips to shops or restaurants on the Jewish Sabbath (Friday night through Saturday night), especially in Jerusalem. In Tel Aviv there are more places open on Shabbat, and in the warmer months most of the city is open along the beach. Fortunately, there are still plenty of cultural facilities and outdoor activities throughout the weekend.

HayA lots ofJewish holidays.Because Israel is a Jewish state, many attractions are closed during Jewish holidays.Check the calendarto plan your visit outside of these periods (unless you are specifically celebrating the holiday). Accommodations book up faster during these times (see above that most Israelis are secular) and are also much more expensive. Passover and Sukkot are wonderful times to travel to Israel (hello mid season), but these are also weeks in which secular Israelis tour the country with their children. Do you want to know when is the best time to visit Israel?Discover it here.

Travel tips for Israel

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It is easy to fly to Israel.Tel Aviv Ben Gurion Airport is accessible from all major cities in North America and Europe. Airfares vary by season, but you canFind the best flight deals hereOn a trip to Israel.

Driving in Israel is very easy these days.The roads are first class and well maintained. Developed in Israel, the market-leading Waze GPS app helps you navigate even the most confusing city streets.The majorityrented carsThey are European models with all modern conveniences. If you have children with you, be sure to read all about it.how to travel with car seats.

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You do not need an international driver's license.An international driver's license is not required in Israel as long as you are not staying for more than one year. (Not an international driver's license that isn't real, just an internet scam.)

Don't want to rent a car? That's fine too.Israel is well connected by overland bus and train systems (although not on Shabbat, Friday night through Saturday night). There are also plenty of taxis, Ubers, and vanpools (Scherut) circle.Please note that taxi driversdo not do itExpect a tip, though rounding is fine.

Electric bicycles and scooters areeverywhere, everywhere, everywhere.Especially in the Tel Aviv metropolis, you can see loads of people moving around on electric scooters and bicycles. Don't hesitate to borrow yours and try it out! if you go too fastTake afreebicycleto explore the city for a few hours!

Don't be surprised if your rental car turns out to be more expensive than you thought.You just booked your car and you're bragging to all your friends that you only pay $9 a day. He shows up at the Tel Aviv airport and finds out that his rental company has a required daily insurance fee of over $20 per day.That happens to all tourists.Check with your rental company in advance to find out how much they charge.Obligatory insuranceto avoid unwanted heart palpitations (but unfortunately you won't be able to avoid fees!).Rental car prices can be found here.

It's actually not that big of a country.You can drive from the Red Sea to the Lebanese border in just over six hours. Due to the relatively small size of the country, this is possiblesee moremido morein less time when you travel to Israel.

Are you thinking of renting a car in Israel?Read these 10 important tips first!

There are so many things to do in Israel

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It's aaDetermination.Beach days, mountain walks, world-class cities and incredible landscapes...israel has it all.

The north is a paradise for traveling as a couple.Whether you enjoy waterfall hikes, wine tasting, or just cozy hours in your secluded cabin, you won't regret a few lazy days together. look at theseincredibleBroomand romantic innsperfect for lovers - we've enjoyed quite a few during our child-free trips to Israel!

You won't want to miss the national parks.With more than 60 destinations, from famous ancient sites to a stalactite cave, Israel's national parks offer incredible insight into the country's unique setting and history. Buy onegreen passportif you are there to visit several parks with a discount!

You can dive in a protected marine reserve.If you're heading to the southern tip of Israel, the city of Eilat offers excellent diving at Coral Beach; it is included with the discounted Green Pass.

Jerusalem has much more to offer than religious sites.While the Old City is worth a visit, the rest of the Jerusalem area also offers great walks, museums, open-air markets, and fun community spaces. Take time to explore Jerusalem beyond the Old City.

mathematicsit's kind of a pastime in Israel.Buy one before going to the beachmathematicsdefine. What is? Think of it like a paddle ball at the beach. do you hear the badgeping pingall weekend along the coast. Attempt! You fit right in... although it will take years of practice to reach the level of 20-year-old experts who play their whole lives.

Israel is home to the largest erosion crater in the world.In the far north of Israel's Negev desert you will find Makhtesh Ramon, a massive crater formed by multiple erosion processes over hundreds of millions of years. It's also home to wonderful hiking trails, fascinating wildlife, and a must-see visitor center.

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There are four different environments, and you should try to see all of them.In Israel you can experience deserts, beaches, mountains and urban environments, many of them in a single day if you are really ambitious. Part of Israel's appeal as a tourist destination is that there is so much to explore in such a compact country.

(Video) Temple Isaiah Family trip to Israel (June 2022)

You can swim in the water.Would you like to relax and detoxify your skin? Head to the Dead Sea, which straddles the Israel-Jordan border east of Jerusalem, and you'll feel weightless as you float in the salty waters. Mud from the Dead Sea is famous for its skin-friendly minerals and sells for a high price all over the world. Would you like to be pampered a little? Book a spa treatment while you're there!Learn about visiting the Dead Sea and other greatDay trips from Jerusalem.

Would you like to get closer to the Roman ruins?Yes, the Romans conquered the Holy Land and left behind some amazing ruins worth exploring. The ancient port city of Caesarea is a great coastal stopover and an easy day trip from Tel Aviv.Check out these other great day trips from Tel Aviv!

Walk down a street from Biblical times.Thanks to a rich tradition of archaeological excavations, Israel has uncovered fascinating glimpses of ancient history. Sign up for a Kotel tunnel tour and descend into another time through a narrow passage.

The Holy Land is also sacred to Christians.– Have you always wanted to see the room where the Last Supper took place? The street where Jesus carried the cross? Or maybe the tomb of Jesus? All of these sites are in Jerusalem and can be visited in one (very busy) day.

You will find one of the most famous mosques in the world.With its golden dome, the Dome of the Rock is the most visible point on the Jerusalem skyline. This site was built on the site of the Second Temple and is one of the most important sites in the world for Muslims. Non-Muslims are not allowed to enter the building, although everyone is invited to visit the complex at certain restricted hours. Check the tourism website to see when visitors are allowed.

The kibbutz system has changeda lot ofbut you can still taste it.When Israel emerged as a future nation, it created an economy based on socialist communities called kibbutzim. The kibbutz movement has grown over time to encompass everything from agriculture to industry, and members' daily lives revolve around collectivism, including things as personal as raising children together. Today, as Israel moves towards a free market economy, the kibbutzim are a shadow of their previous incarnations. You can still get a taste of kibbutz life by staying in one or even volunteering in one.

If you're looking for thrills, try rafting on the Jordan River.The river that separates Israel from its neighbor is a fun place to experience some rapids. Check out these great options.

Israel is part of the large bird migratory pattern.If you enjoy seeing a variety of birds, you should head to the north of Israel and visit the Hula Nature Reserve. Twice a year, the Hula swamps and lakes teem with birds of all kinds. Also try to spot a buffalo or capybara!

The markets are for tourists and locals alike.Jerusalem and Tel Aviv have large open-air markets called1🇧🇷 Here you can taste fresh and sweet products, exchange a shirt or a backgammon board or have a refreshing fresh juice, shoulder to shoulder with the locals (especially on Fridays when everyone buys Shabbat food). Visiting a shuk is a must when traveling to Israel. Jerusalem's famous shuk is called Mahane Yehuda and in recent years it has been transformed into a vibrant nightlife scene with pop-up restaurants and pubs.

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Plan your trip to Israel

Travel resources to save money:
Find the cheapest flights on Skyscanner
Book your rental car with a discount at RentalCars.com
4 simple tricks to save more money on booking.com

Read these helpful articles to plan your next trip to Israel:
The Perfect 10 Day Israel Itinerary
3 days itinerary in Jerusalem
2 days itinerary in Tel Aviv
Where to stay in Israel
50 things you should know before visiting Israel
What to pack for Israel at any time of the year
What is the best time of year to travel to Israel?
More than 10 essential tips for renting a car in Israel
20 Foods You Must Try in Israel
25+ Best Books on Israel
Where to stay in Jerusalem
What to do in Jerusalem on Shabbat
Israel With Kids: The Complete Guide
Visiting Jerusalem with children
Visiting Tel Aviv with children
The best day trips from Tel Aviv
The best day trips from Jerusalem
Your trip to Israel for (more or less) 10 days

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