Israel travel / potental for visiting synagogue

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1. Posted by Salismyname (Budding Member 3 posts) 2y Star this if you like it!

The time has finally come! I'm planning a trip out of the country, in 1.5- 2 years.... yeah... due to unfortunate events I must postpone to at least 1.5 years from now, however since I am a meticulous planner this is not necessarily a huge negative lol. I'm currently looking looking at things to do there so advice would be greatly appreciated! Also if anyone is Jewish I have a few questions that Google gives conflicting results, the first one is if it's ok for a Christian to attend a synagogue for services (non holiday)? I can't remember the other question but I'll update when I do. Has anyone recently traveled to Israel? I'm slightly concerned about the conflicts there but I'm not sure about the reports coming out. I don't plan on going to Gaza or the West bank though. I'll update this when I remember the rest of my questions, it's 1:30 am here and I've been meaning to write this for a week lol, thanks in advance!

2. Posted by Teoni (Travel Guru 1604 posts) 2y Star this if you like it!

There is no problem for a non Jew to attend a service at a synagogues and from what I hear Shabbat is the one you want to view. Most synagogues are pretty open during service with people coming and going as they please so if you entered during a service no one would question if you are Jewish or not. Of course if you are male you should wear a kippa/yarmulka. The only time you might find an issue is if you try to enter a synagogue run by the ultra conservative sects of Judaism who believe deeply in segregating gentiles and Jews, but they are usually small community run synagogues where everyone knows everyone so they will probably at the door tell you no entry. If you stick to the bigger synagogues you should be fine. As a rough guide you should know there are basically two groups of Judaism, the Reform branch and the Orthodox. Most in Israel are Orthodox and that is the more traditional one and I guess if you want "authentic" Israel that is the one to attend.

I know you said you don't intend to visit any part of Palestine but I am assuming you plan on visiting Jerusalem in which case you are pretty much on the border, the West Bank to be fair is a lot more stable than Gaza and considering how many people visit Bethlehem and Hebron without much incident I don't think you should completely strike it off the list. Before Hamas took power there even use to be day tours to Gaza and when you consider how fluid the situation in Israel is and the fact your trip is so far into the future you should keep your options open for any unique opportunity that comes your way;).