There is nothing that can be more exciting than visiting a place you have never seen before. It is an adventure to explore new sites and discover a culture utterly different from yours. And if you are planning a trip to Israel, you can be sure that you will be embarking on an amazing journey to a place rich in history and religion. Israel, also known as the Holy Land, is a tiny country with so much to offer its visitors. With its biblical landmarks to historical sites, it is a country worth visiting at least once in your lifetime, especially for Israelis who live in different parts of the world. If you are a first-time visitor, you can find Jewish Educational Tours to make your trip enjoyable as you learn more about the country and its people.
While this may be a thrilling prospect for the first-time traveler, it is essential to know about a few things before going on the trip. Because it is a new country, there are rules to follow. Additionally, there may be certain things that you are accustomed to, certain conveniences, that may not be readily available here. Being prepared beforehand ensures that you know what to expect and feel confident enough to know what you should and shouldn’t do during your stay. Below are a few things you need to know before your first Jewish trip.
- The Shabbat
The Shabbat or the Sabbath is a day of rest for the Jewish people starting a couple of minutes before the sun sets on a Friday, lasting until the appearance of the first three stars on Saturday. This is when the Jewish people spend the day at home. Therefore, first-time visitors can expect most business establishments to be closed, including most shops and dining places. Public transport may also be at a standstill. Thus, there may not be much activity to expect on the weekend. However, visitors can enjoy the quiet respite wandering around the Holy City and witnessing how the religious Jews begin the Shabbat on a Friday evening at the Western Wall.
- Wear modest attire
A visit to Israel would include going to religious locations such as churches and other biblical sites. It is only proper to dress up appropriately to not be frowned upon by the local Jews. It shows respect for their culture and the places that they hold in the highest regard. After all, this is the Holy Land, and it is expected that visitors show the same reverence for the sacred places they visit. Long skirts, pants, and long-sleeved shirts are the recommended attire. When visiting the Western Wall, tourists will find religious women offering appropriate clothing to those not dressed modestly.
- Be prepared to spend
Contrary to what most people think, vacationing in Israel is not cheap. Board and lodging, food, and shopping can be expensive. Still, there are ways to save a little on expenses, such as sharing taxi rides, buying food at the local markets, or opting for hotels that offer complimentary breakfast as part of their package deals. Of course, to be on the safe side, it is always best to have extra cash with you when you visit.
As with any country you decide to visit, preparations are necessary to make your trip as enjoyable and comfortable as possible. Your first Jewish trip will be an unforgettable one when you know what to expect and what is expected of you.