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Revision as of 03:28, 1 September 2007 by Sahmeditor (talk | contribs) (Embassy bar)
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Hey all.. Just a little note about politics and the discussion thereof: There are lots and lots of forums on the internet for the discussion of politics. This isn't one of them. Sure, one of the reasons that we travellers are travellers is to learn as much as possible about a place and it's people and their problems, but here at Wikitravel the idea is to build a travel guide. That means we want a little background, but mainly we're interested in how to get around, where and what to eat, how to keep out of trouble, and where to sleep.

Of course your political discussions are not going to get deleted from the talk pages, and even if they are "deleted" from the actual article they are still there in the history, so nobody's getting censored here. Still political stuff will likely get deleted from the article regardless of how true or false or fair or unfair.

Basically we're on a mission here, and the crosstalk makes it hard to get anything done. Keep it down a bit! -- Mark 02:51, 4 May 2006 (EDT)

First takes

So, I removed the last bits of the CIA World Factbook 2002 import. I've copied the original version to Talk:Israel/CIA World Factbook 2002 import for easy reference. --Evan 09:02, 1 Dec 2003 (PST)

Bring some details and/or link to --Baruch Even

"all 3 monotheistic religions" implies that there are exactly 3 monotheistic religions, which is false. Should this be changed to "all 3 Abrahamic religions"? -phma 15:04, 13 Jun 2004 (EDT)

How about "Christianity, Islam and Judaism"? It's about the same length as "all three monotheistic religions" and is more accurate. (Note: in English alphabetical order.) --Evan 16:13, 13 Jun 2004 (EDT)

What's with the idiot who changed the order of the religions? What does it matter whether Jews are listed before Christians and Muslims, or after? This sort of behaviour makes me sick. Sorry, but I had to mouth off. -- Nils

The latest fixes seem to have resolved most conflicts about this page. Now we just have to figure out what to do about Jerusalem, since that page also states that Jerusalem is the capital of Israel, without qualification. Also, it might be problematic that it lists Jerusalem's location as in Israel without qualification, since that's not at all noncontroversial. -- Joakim Ziegler

Chronology got you down?? -- Unuser


I changed the (disputed) link on the capital name to just plain text. I don't think we should defer to Wikipedia to explain that situation. --Evan 17:39, 28 Sep 2004 (EDT)

That's fine by me - in incorporating a NPOV reference I was just trying to placate those (above) who saw the listing of Jerusalem as Israel's capital as being controversial and thereby forestall any heated arguments..... I'm sure you'd agree, the potential for these is there! Rather than make recourse to Wikipedia (you're absolutely right on this Evan!), I'll try to find time over the next few days to write up our own NPOV assessment of Jerusalem's status and place it somewhere in the Understand section..... People would then be free to edit that and debate the issues on this page if necessary. Would that be OK? Pjamescowie 18:16, 28 Sep 2004 (EDT)

How is the capital disputed?? -- 22:00, 1 May 2005 (EDT)

Well, for one, the US still has its Embassy in Tel Aviv [1]

Hey all. I just noticed that a non-logged in user made some potentially divisive edits this afternoon (Europe time). Can somebody with a better understanding of regional sensitivities have a look? I would plunge forward, but I'm afraid that my tendency toward irreverence could lead to unintended nastiness in this situation. Thanks. =-- Mark 14:09, 23 February 2006 (EST)

Monit Shirut

Somebody can find this info usefull It is similar to shuttle services provided in some countries but on larger scale. This service is available in all major cities, but in many cases is not bound by any scheduler. Usually you can ask the driver to stop at any point of the route. In many places the service is available on Shabbat. The price is indeed lower than bus, but after 10PM and weekends/holydays they charge more. In Haifa - to my best knowledge this is the only such place in Israel - Egged operates on Shabbat

Cellular phone

(there was change in the dialing system recently) GSM enabled cellular phones from Europe always work in Israel.


Ashdod - incredible sea shore.

Netaniyya - 40 minutes from Tel Aviv, train to the Tel Aviv center, bus to Tel Aviv every 10-15 minutes, shuttle to Tel Aviv every 5-10 minutes. Good beach, reasonable hotel prices.


Many edits to this article get reverted due to the political situation in Israal and the Middle East. The reason for these reversions is that anytime someone expresses an opinion on one side (example: "The United Nations Security Council has decided on numerous occasions that in these territories Israel is the "Occupying Power" and is bound by the 1949 Geneva Convention Relative to the Protection of Civilian Persons in Time of War.") someone else comes along and changes it to the other side. According to Wikitravel:Neutral point of view and Wikitravel:The traveller comes first, the official policy is that we try to keep articles neutral and relevant for travelers, and political edit wars accomplish neither.

Note that this does not mean that editors here are endorsing either side, nor does it mean that those who edit this site feel the debate is unimportant, it simply means that the primary goal is to produce a guide useful for travelers. Links are provided to Wikipedia and elsewhere where travelers may learn more about the political situation. As always, if you disagree with the policies feel free to discuss on the relevant talk pages. -- Wrh2 15:34, 10 Sep 2005 (EDT)


I haven't seen it in other travel guides so I was hesitant to add the information, but isn't it useful to provide information regarding the voltage/frequency used in all places (and including here in Israel)? Also, socket types. I find it interesting that one of (not so many) socket standards is type-H, uniquely Israeli, although it is also compatible with European type-C. Just wondering if I should add that information.

Yes, you should. One row in the Country template plus (if needed) more explanation in Cope would be great. Jpatokal 12:31, 11 Dec 2005 (EST)

I just wanted the author to know, that it was because of this section on electricity in Israel that I discovered the WikiTravel site for the first time! I did a Google search for Israel electricity and WikiTravel showed up and answered all my questions! I think it might be a good idea to add a blurb about electricty to most of the other national articles since that really is a big question for many people who are traveling. Elipongo 01:59, 18 Jan 2006 (EST)


Since the Palestinian Territories page has Jerusalem listed as "disputed" capitol and Ramallah as "defacto" capitol, it's only fair to make this page consistant with that. And you can't argue that it's disputed. The international community does not recognise Israel's occupation of East Jerusalem and it's claim of Jerusalem as its capitol. Embassies are in Tel-Aviv specifically because of this (some consulates are in Jerusalem, but embassies are the places that the embassador's are based in). - Asa

Does the Palestinian Authority actually operate its executive, judicial, and parliamentary branches in Jerusalem? Because it really doesn't matter what the International Community thinks, what matters is what does the traveller encounter? For example, there is no serious recognition of Transnistria, but we carry an article about it anyway because it exists in reality to a traveller visiting the area. If a traveller needs to meet with some portion of the government for whatever reason, where do they go? Where they go is the captial as far as the traveller is concerned. In Israel, despite the wishes of the international community, the capital is in Jerusalem as far as the traveller is concerned. Where is it for the PA? -- Colin 21:13, 28 February 2006 (EST)
"From a legal standpoint, East Jerusalem remains occupied territory, and the de facto capital of the Palestinian people." This doesn't make sense. There was never a state called Palestine and there hasn't been a country (other than Israel) that has called Jerusalem its capital for hundreds of years. So what 'legal standpoint' does this refer to? Please don't misunderstand me, I am personally quite anti-Zionist and I do not oppose the Palestinian right to have a state and I do oppose the settler movement, but this is just a plan lie. There is no 'legal standpoint' that says that Jerusalem is the capital of Palestine. Daniel575 26 March 2006
"the de facto capital of the Palestinian people" - de facto the capital is Ramallah. Regardless of theoretical rights or wishes, the parliament is in ramallah, not jerusalem, where the PA has no physical official representation.

I know this stuff is important to some people, but seriously can we please check our politics at the door? I think in general if contributors simply can't do that then perhaps they should consider contributing to articles about countries which are not involved in their particular pet crisis. It's a big world after all. -- Mark 08:54, 27 April 2006 (EDT)

Language concerns

How far can I go speaking just English in Israel? (Well, I've been studying Hebrew but I don't think I can get by with it alone just yet.) you'll do great ,many here speak english. we learn it in school from the 4th grade up.
English is a mandatory language in Israeli schools, and children start learning it as early as the 2nd grade. You have to learn it throughout high-school, and pass a test as one of the requirements for a high-school diploma. This means most young people, as well as adults, should have a fair grasp of English. Your knowledge of Hebrew will probably come in handy as well, because Engrew is not uncommon among people who can't find the words to express themselves completely in English. Alternatively, some people may find a bilingual dialog (they speak Hebrew, you speak English), as awkward as it may sound. Just apply common sense. Start with simple language (of-course, it isn't supposed to sound degradingly dumbed-down as if you're talking to an imbecile, just genuinely simple) and adjust your manner of speaking if you according to the oter person's level. You're better off speaking good English than not-as-good Hebrew. --User:Ramsobol

Getting there by boat

I read on several websites that ferry services to Haifa from Cyprus and Greece have been discontinued. Are there other places where you can take a ferry to Israel? MaartenVidal 10:56, 8 April 2006 (EDT)

As far as I know, the answer is no. I investigated this fairly extensively back in 2003 and had to fly from Israel to Cyprus for lack of better options, and I doubt things are any better now. Jpatokal 11:45, 8 April 2006 (EDT)

Security Concerns

Given the volatile situation in many parts of this country, and the potential for violence against foreign nationals, is it not advisable to have a more detailed section on the dangers of travelling to Israel?

I considered this page before making this suggestion. Perhaps some information could merely be dragged off that site and placed on this site? 21:46, 20 April 2006 (EDT)

As long as you don't travel to the disputed territories, there is little danger to visiting Israel, beyond suicide bombings, which are mentioned in the article. With regards to violence against foreign nationals - a foreign national is not more likely to get involved in a bombing than an Israeli.

Bahai Faith and Israel

While I agree that describing the Bahais as a "major" world religion is maybe a bit much, Israel is their home and the Gardens at Haifa are arguably the city's top attraction, even for non-Bahais. Jpatokal 00:37, 20 June 2006 (EDT)

Israel/Lebanon conflict

Should we put an alert message in this article about this conflict and advisory not to go there right now?

I'd say so. Please plunge forward! Majnoona 19:53, 17 July 2006 (EDT)

I toned down the language about Hezbollah and northern Israel - this article gets so many political edits that the less we can say about politics (while still serving the traveler) the better. If we add a warning about Hezbollah to this article then I can see us needing to add warnings to Lebanon, Syria, Iran, etc. about the potential for Israeli attacks. It seems like enough to educate the traveler about the tense situation in the Middle East and then advise them to make their travel plans according to current events. That saves us from having deal with POV edits from both sides. -- Ryan 19:12, 15 August 2006 (EDT)

Great point. Although, I don't think it would have been appropriate to have included Syria and Iran in with the Israel-Hezbollah conflict. -- Andrew Haggard (Sapphire) 19:14, 15 August 2006 (EDT)

Getting Around, by Car

I have written a pretty detailed section on traveling in Israel by car, including a fairly detailed discussion of the traffic laws and regulations. Please make sure the information is all accurate. Also, if someone could add information about car rentals, that would be great. EngineeringCat 21:16, 7 November 2006 (EST)

External links

I accidentally hit save without adding an edit comment, but the following links were removed in accordance with Wikitravel:External links:

-- Ryan 12:37, 27 January 2007 (EST)

Safety Message

Can someone please correct the message to a wikitravel standard (which I am unaware of). There is absolutely NO chance of Israel going to war with Egypt (as there is a peace agreement) and there has been no incinuation that any conflict between Israel and Pakistan was on the table. Can we link to the US Department of State, perhaps Flymeoutofhere 10:29, 24 February 2007 (EST)

Theres always the chance actually, MFO are holding the fort in Sinai but theres still tension, and pakistan/bangladesh don't actually recognise Israel, seeing it as an illegal movement. So conflict is HIGHLY possible in the near future, I don't like to cast an opinion on whether Israel has effectively "had it coming", but we all know the story... --MiddleEastern 08:58, 25 February 2007 (EST)
I would support it if it looked like conflict was imminent. Just not right now. Stay safe should have plenty of happy fun text though. -- Colin 13:54, 25 February 2007 (EST)


How "bicycle friendly" is Israel? I'm thinking about doing a bike trip from Turkey to Egypt, and I'm wondering if that is reasonable, and how accepted cycling is in those nations. Amssports06 15:30, 28 April 2007 (EDT)

  • I'm not sure about the other countries, but Israel is bike friendly. The Israel National Trail is a 940km trail running the length of Israel especially for bikes and walkers. Bikes can also ride on most roads - similar to biking on roads in Europe and parts of the US, I guess. Biking has become quite a popular hobby for Israeli's so you wont be alone Flymeoutofhere 03:49, 10 April 2007 (EDT)
  • I've just seen this article which might interest you [2]. Enjoy Flymeoutofhere 10:05, 11 April 2007 (EDT)
  • Interesting, thanks a lot! -Amssports06 15:30, 28 April 2007 (EDT)


I'm not sure if this is covered elsewhere on WikiTravel, but in my experience the statement in the money section that "ATMs are cheaper than traveller's cheques" needs correcting. My bank charges 2.5% as a transaction fee on top of the ATM fee for that machine. They add this in to the exchange rate so it is hidden for most people. VISA does this as well. Basically, there's no free lunch, and the article shouldn't imply otherwise. Neil 12:14, 9 May 2007 (EDT)

Are traveller's cheques a free lunch then? Most banks charge more than 2.5%+exchange rate commission to make them, and then you get gouged again when converting them to local currency. Jpatokal 16:55, 9 May 2007 (EDT)


I believe the wifi project in Jerusalem is complete, but I'm not sure. I've also added a mention on a similar one in Tel Aviv, which I believe is also complete. Can anyone verify this?

Embassy bar

I doubt this is true. Can the person that added it verify it? Sahmeditor 23:24, 31 August 2007 (EDT)