Have you just decided to spend a year studying in Israel? If so then that’s awesome and please keep on reading. Besides the day-to-day student life, there are many particular events that will happen outside of the classroom, so be prepared. Some may be entertaining, some fabulous, and some just plain crazy.
Unlocking The Secret To Hebrew: What You Really Have To Know
Everyone arrives in Israel with the high hopes of speaking fluent Hebrew, but the truth is that the moment you enter a restaurant and the hostess hears your accent she will automatically place an English menu in front of you. You won’t request a change, as your secretly relieved because hey it’s so much easier. But, seriously putting all jokes aside, when you embark on an international program, your classes, homework, and main social settings will be primarily in English. (phew). Your real challenge will be ordering a falafel at the corner restaurant. In no time at all you will learn every single vegetable and salad by heart, sometimes, even forgetting the name in English.
If you grew up in a Jewish community, then you most likely already know this, but to others this might come as a shock. Everything closes early before Shabbat and other holidays. Also be aware that traffic can be a source of planning and at times stress. On the other hand, as frustrating as that may feel, it is indeed a truly unique and inspiring experience that you will only encounter during your year in Israel. Whether in Jerusalem, or Haifa, every week like clockwork, you will be overwhelmed by the delicious scents of freshly baked challah. But wait, the best is yet to come. At sundown you will see people walking together to meals, talking, laughing and relaxing, as they carry dishes of food to take to their meals. Indeed, a truly remarkable intimacy that is unique to this amazing country.
We are all used to the traditional 4th of July BBQ’s, Memorial Day sales and President’s day. But, nothing can compare to being able to celebrate being a part of a Jewish state. What does that really mean? Going all out to celebrate, crazy street parties, raves inside the shuk (local market), food, drinks, Israeli flags waving, you name it, you got it. It doesn’t matter if your secular or religious, everyone celebrates, and we all celebrate together as a united front.
If you are looking to enjoy a more relaxed night life experience, try out Rothschild Boulevard. Rothschild is a beautiful, wide, tree-lined boulevard that encompasses the Tel Aviv spirit-the love of life and ‘relaxed energy’ of Televivians. Day and night, Rothschild Blvd. is brimming with life; people strolling, dog-walking, biking and Israelis simply love to stopping at one of the multitude of restaurants, kiosks and bars lining the street for a drink or a bite to eat.
Just a normal day on the beaches of Tel Aviv and suddenly someone cranks up the music and things start to get crazy. USA today named Tel Aviv beaches the best beach party spot on the planet! If that’s not enough for you just ask any Israeli. Beaches here are like none other, during the day the beaches are full of sun chairs, umbrellas, outdoor gyms, showers, toilets and wait for it…free WIFI! If you think that’s great, there is more to come. Come nightfall, the beaches host more organized revelry on an even larger scale. So where is the action? The best places to go are usually between Hilton Beach and Gordon Beach. Bottom line, have fun and enjoy your year in Israel.
Hope that this survival guide was able to answer any questions that you were thinking but too afraid to ask. Don’t be shy, ask questions and feel free to keep us updated on your adventures. Hope you enjoy the read as much as I did. The best is yet to come!