Israel the Enigma

By Deena Levenstein

Israel has been in the news more than usual the last couple of months and yet it’s one of the five happiest countries in the world. How does that make any sense?

Israel has always been, and remains, a complicated place. But a lot of us Israelis often ask ourselves, how do we get across how normal day-to-day life actually is here?

barood live music by deena levenstein
A live Saturday morning performance in downtown Jerusalem a couple of weeks ago (Photo by Deena Levenstein)

“Despite a complex political situation that seems to live in the headlines of international media, everyday life is astonishingly normal… There is a thrumming, modern and future-forward element that takes many visitors by surprise,” Patricia Schultz wrote in her recent article on travel to Israel.

That’s the thing about Israel and her people which you need to experience first hand in order to get – many of us are working feverishly on setting the ground for the future of our dear little country. From innovative artists to hi tech entrepreneurs, we’re working on building, on fixing and on creating a beautiful society.

One thing is for sure - Israelis know how to have a good time. (Photo source)
One thing is for sure – Israelis know how to have a good time. (Photo from

In Schultz’s article, Joe Yudin, founder and CEO of Touring Israel, makes the point vis a vis the booming local culture of wine and cuisine:

“I specifically see a huge change in culinary and wine tourism. Twenty years ago you really had to look hard for a great meal and a superb Israeli wine.”

Not so anymore, said Yudin. “There has been a huge upswing in quality restaurants and wineries as a result of Israelis returning home from long trips abroad and melding that experience with local, ancient traditions.”

Israel is an inspiring enigma which you’ll begin to understand, and definitely begin to fall in love with, once you start experiencing it for yourself.

Israel is waiting for you!

The article in Travel Weekly


Deena Levenstein

Deena Levenstein is a writer and social-cultural entrepreneur in Jerusalem. She creates and hosts events and runs "Things to do in Jerusalem," a Facebook group of handpicked cultural events in the city. In her spare time she blogs at

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