One of the best parts of doing a gap year in another country is getting the chance to explore the local culture. Israel’s culture is particularly rich and interesting, with so much to see and experience for visitors to the country. For adventurous students, it’s a prime pick for a study abroad destination.
Already having a bit of an understanding of the culture upon arrival can be a useful thing for students who want to study in Israel. It can help you become comfortable with the local people and your surroundings more quickly, and to establish a routine that will help you flourish.
Want to learn a little about Israeli culture before going on your gap year? Here are a few important things to know.
During Your Gap Year Program, You’ll See Israeli Hospitality is Second to None
Israel is renowned around the world for its incredible hospitality. It is not uncommon for new acquaintances to be invited to an Israeli home for dinner, where guests are frequently treated to large and delicious spreads of food – often mainstays of Israeli cuisine, like kebabs, shakshouka, and falafel. It is also very common for new friends to be invited to join Israelis for social outings, or even special occasions, like holidays.
When doing a gap year in Israel, you may find that local strangers are more open to conversation than people from back home, so don’t be afraid to approach people to say hello. You could start building a friendship that will let you see firsthand just how good Israeli hospitality can be.
Israel’s Markets are Unique & Amazing Places to Shop
In Israel, outdoor markets called shuks are both iconic cultural settings and excellent places to go to buy food and other goods. Fresh produce, spices, baked goods, and many other delicious ingredients and foods can be found at a shuk, often at a very low price.
Better still, every shuk has its own unique identity, making each one a great experience in itself. Visiting a shuk and buying a tasty local treat from one of the vendors is a great way to get a taste of Israeli culture, and a fun adventure for any newcomer to the country to enjoy.
Israeli Culture is one That Embraces Education & Innovation
An important quality of Israeli culture is its embrace of education and innovation. About 50 per cent of Israelis have a tertiary education, which is quite a bit higher than the OECD average of 36 per cent. Further, Israel is known as a start-up and tech capital of the world, boasting one of the highest rates of entrepreneurship of any country.
This makes Israel a perfect place to go to do a gap year program that will be both fun and intellectually stimulating. At institutions like Technion International, which is one of the premier universities in the world, students on a gap year can enjoy quality instruction in areas like computer programming or materials engineering, while still having plenty of time to take in the sights and culture of the country. These experiences can be a nice mix of socialization and intellectual pursuit that are fairly representative of Israeli culture as a whole.
Are you a recent high school graduate looking for a fun year abroad?
Contact Technion International to learn more about our gap year for high school graduates!