Yesterday I opened “Backpack Israel” after thinking about it for over a month.
The idea popped up while I was travelling in South Africa.
“Remember that wherever your heart is, there you will find your treasure.”
― Paulo Coelho, The Alchemist
All along my trip, which lasted about two months, my heart was in Israel. If you ever had the chance to travel somewhere in the world, you must have heard the popular question: “So where are you from?” I, of course, replied that I was from Israel. The first number of times I replied with hesitation. We, Israelis, have the idea that people around the world don’t like us and that they will give us a frown or worse – hurt us – if we tell them where we are from. My parents taught me from a very early age to try and not speak Hebrew abroad and to not wear any Israeli symbols. They were fearful that that will bring anti-Semitism. So that is why I replied with hesitation at first, but I found out very quickly that there is nothing to worry about. All the travellers I met reacted very well when I told them I was from Israel. Some have even been here before, and others would like to come. When I told some travellers that we in Israel think that the whole world hates us, they told me that I was wrong. We are exaggerating. Not all the people take the news seriously and a lot of people know that they can’t really judge us.
Then we started talking about Israel. Most travellers I’ve met know nothing about Israel. They don’t know that there is a mandatory military service in Israel, they don’t know that Israel is more than a desert and they don’t know what language do we speak there. They think Israel is not safe, because all they heard about is that Israel is in an everlasting war. So is Israel safe? Yes, it’s very safe. If you’re thinking about travelling to Israel, the main thing you should worry about is not your safety, but rather your wallet. Israel is expensive. That is why I opened “Backpack Israel” – to try and give you tips that will hopefully make your visit to Israel more affordable. And to give you a lot more information about all the subjects you’ve always wondered about: Israeli politics, culture and history.