Yes, It’s Perfectly Safe to Take a Trip to Israel Right Now

As I turned on the television to discover news of the latest violent Israeli-Palestinian clashes over a religious site in Jerusalem, my heart sank – not only for the people losing their lives or sustaining injuries in this latest wave of tension, but upon thinking about how this will reflect on the region now, when people around the globe turn on their TV sets and are met with the scenes of blood, violence and tears. Certainly, taking a trip to Israel is not going to be the first consideration that enters their minds.

Yes, it's safe to take a trip to Israel now
The dome of the rock, an iconic sight in old city Jerusalem

Having just returned from Israel, looking at these images of Al Aqsa mosque where I had stood obnoxiously taking selfies just a week before, now a battlefield shrouded in the smog of tear gas instead of the peaceful, serene garden I had witnessed, I felt deeply saddened.

Saddened because I had spent time in both Israel, and Palestine’s West Bank, and these images that I saw dancing across the television set simply did not reflect the Israel and Palestine that I got to know and fell in love with. Saddened because these places as I know them never get the opportunity to show their faces in the media and their true identities remain concealed behind this ill fitting mask of danger. As an experienced solo traveler, little fazes me but I accept that for many people , this instance alone is enough to put them off taking a trip to Israel in favor of “safer” destinations.

The Israel that I know almost doesn’t exist in the eyes of the Western media. The incredibly welcoming, kind Israeli people, and the jaw dropping scenery which extends from the rugged Golan heights in the North, all the way down to the beautiful beach resorts in the South were among my highlights during my trip to Israel, but you never see this beauty in the media or splashed across the front of tabloids.

Why is that? Well, because shocking tales of violence, war, conflict, sex, or anything generally outlandish is what sells in the media, whereas stories of friendly locals, flavorful foods, and scenic hiking trails do not. It’s as simple as that. People want to read sensational news, and Journalists want to sell stories. It’s a twisted supply and demand of which one unfortunate byproduct is a narrow, skewered version of reality causing us to not consider travelling to these regions, and damaging their reputations.

Unfortunately, for all of the work that Tourism boards and those working in the travel industry can do to remedy this, their reach and scope is often not as far and wide as tabloid newspapers, making it difficult to put out these fires.

In Israel itself, it’s business as usual. In Jeruaslem’s Mahane Yehuda market, the fragrant aroma of spices lingers high in the air, a cloud of saffron, cumin, and caraway seeds. The savvy local shopper haggles with the Jewish trader, determined to ensure that he is not out-witted in his negotiations, adamant that he will secure a competitive price for the ingredients of his Shabbat dinner.

Passing through the narrow walkways observing this scene, a Mother straightens up the crumpled dress of her fidgeting daughter on their way to meet family. These regular, not especially interesting scenes depict the reality of life here 99.9% of the time – the media may have one assuming that Israel is something of a war-torn state, but in actuality, it’s a country filled with people, just like you and I, simply living and going about their daily lives. As with many countries around the globe, particularly during these turbulent times we find ourselves in, incidents do happen in Israel from time to time, but they are certainly not the daily norm.
I hope that you can take the opportunity to take a trip to Israel, if it should arise for you, and see that the situation on the ground is far different to that on the TV screens. (For a few tips before you go, click here)

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Yes it's safe to travel to Israel

Note: My trip to Israel was kindly organised and sponsored by Abraham Hostels and Abraham Tours who hosted me for ten days. I would certainly recommend using them if you are headed to the region. They have hostels in several major Israeli cities and offer shuttles between each. Dedicated tour and activity staff on site at each hostel can offer expert recommendations on things to do while you’re in town, and help you make the most out of your trip. 

  1. Israel is on my bucket list. I love learning about different cultures. I hope this barriers against countries / religion will be resolved and we’ll all live in peace <3

  2. I recently canceled my official trip to Isreal thinking it might not be safe. Had I checked your post before, I would have enjoyed my official cum personal trip. 🙁

    Hopefully, will visit it next time 🙂

    Stunning images!

    1. Oh no I’m really sorry to hear about that! I can understand it though. In the UK at least, there is quite a “dangerous” image of Israel and it’s nothing like the reality. Hope you get chance to visit some other time. Israel has been one of my favourite trips so far so I definitely recommend it! <3

  3. You got a rich cultured post here, It’s so inspiring to see travelers like you who makes it more easier for us to see the other side of Israel. nice post .

  4. Thank you for sharing this! It is so important to go beyond what is being portrayed in mainstream news media, as this does not always accurately portray what is actually going on in a place. Israel looks and sounds amazing, and I would love to visit someday!

  5. Not only is it safe, but it looks absolutely incredible. It’s my dream to visit Isreal! Your pics are amazing and capture the place so well!

  6. I agree with you that there’s another picture of Israel pushed by the media. Well, people just need to visit that incredible country to see it with their eyes.

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