Israel is full of adventures to be had, from the Dead Sea to the desert. Beautiful Mediterranean beaches in Tel Aviv and religious sacred sites for Judaism, Islam, and Christianity in Jerusalem are just a few reasons to spend part of high school overseas in Israel.
Between the easy access to archaeological find and the country's pristine preservation of ancient culture, Israel is great for all sorts of students with a wide range of interests, including religious studies, history, international relations, the arts, and even dance.
Students eager to spend time in Israel while in high school can choose from the following programs:
- Teen Travel
- Summer Program
Spend a few weeks traveling through Israel while connecting with other teens and locals in the community through shared meals, cultural events, and excursions. While participating in a teen travel program, you'll have the chance to learn about the diverse history of Israel and travel through its various landscapes.
Summer programs can last anywhere from 1-2 weeks to over a month long, usually focusing on one overarching theme. Unlike teen travel, this program type may focus primarily on academics, language learning, or a specific subject like performing arts.
Planning Your Trip
The country's second largest city, Tel Aviv is surrounded by beautiful beaches and amazing food in every direction.
Great for those itching to visit a historically significant city, Jerusalem is considered the holy land to many major religions and the gatekeeper city to the history of our world.
A port city boasting the famed Baha'i shrine and gardens, Haifa is the model city for Jewish-Arab coexistence, filled with breathtaking urban landscapes.
Though a tourist visa is not required for US students who plan to stay in Israel for at most 90 days, the following travel rules and precautions are necessary:
- Passports must be valid for 6 months after the student's arrival in Israel
- Passports must have at least one full blank page
- Upon request, travelers may be asked to share their email and social media accounts with Israeli government officials
- Citizens with previous travel history through other parts of the Middle East may be subject to additional questioning
We recommend that travelers consult the Department of State's website for more information about the travel around the West Bank, Gaza, and other parts of the Middle East, as travel to other parts of the region may result in difficult re-entry to Israel.
Students who choose to participate in short term travel programs through Israel will sleep in a range of housing options, including hotels, hostels, and guest houses. While attending a short term program in one city, students may live in either student dormitories or an apartment. Housing fees are typically included in the program costs.
The cost of high school abroad in Israel ranges from program type and duration. Short term teen travel costs around $3,500 for two weeks. A summer program ranging from two to six weeks typically costs between $2,000-$6,000. If traveling with a program provider, costs include housing, food, and excursions, but not flights.
Israel is often praised for its mild weather, which makes traveling to the country ideal for any time of year. Summers usually range from low 80s to mid 90s, where as fall and spring ranges from 60s to 70s. Winters in Israel are often in the 50s and low 60s, with little chance of snow.
We recommend packing the following:
- A pair of jeans and a few shorts
- A few dressy outfits
- Bathing suit
- Type H travel plug
Health & Safety
Make sure you're up to date on routine vaccinations at least 4-6 weeks before you travel to Israel. This includes chickenpox, polio, influenza, MMR (measles, mumps and rubella) and DPaT (diphtheria, pertussis and tetanus). It is also recommended to get vaccinated for Hepatitis A and B, as well as rabies if you're going to be working with animals or traveling long-term. Consult your travel doctor for more information personalized to your own itinerary.
Like most countries in the Middle East, it is advised that travelers take caution when traveling through Israel, especially near the borders with other countries. Students should stay vigilant in public places such as restaurants, coffeeshops, and public transportation, and avoid protests and public demonstrations, which can quickly spiral out of control. Check your government's website for updated precautions to take in Israel, as well as areas to avoid.
Contributed by Danielle Ortiz-Geis
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