Israel 2017

Flying in from Krakow, Poland.

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With mainly Litvak friends

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The beachfront at Ramat Aviv

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Ramat Aviv – Wikipedia

Ramat Aviv (Hebrew: רָמַת אָבִיב‎, lit. Spring Heights) is a neighborhood in Tel Aviv, Israel. Ramat Aviv has expanded over the years and now consists of four quarters: Neve Avivim (Ramat Aviv Bet), Ramat Aviv Aleph, Ramat Aviv Gimmel, and Ramat Aviv HaHadasha.


Ra’anana (fontein)

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Litvak talk at IGRA
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Ra’anana – Wikipedia

Ra’anana (Hebrew: רַעֲנָנָּה‎, lit. “Fresh”) is a city in the heart of the southern Sharon Plain of the Central District of Israel. Bordered by Kfar Saba on the east and Herzliya on the southwest, it had a population of 70,782 in 2015.[1] While the majority of its residents are native-born Israelis, a large part of the population are immigrants from the Americas and Europe.


Down to Ashkelon by train

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Ashkelon – Wikipedia

Ashkelon (/æʃkɛloʊn/ also spelled Ashqelon and Ascalon; Hebrew:  אַשְׁקְלוֹן‎ [aʃkelon]; Arabic: عسقلان‎‎ ʿAsqalān) is a coastal city in the Southern District of Israel on the Mediterranean coast, 50 kilometres (31 mi) south of Tel Aviv, and 13 kilometres (8.1 mi) north of the border with the Gaza Strip. The ancient seaport of Ashkelon dates back to the Neolithic Age. In the course of its history, it has been ruled by the Ancient Egyptians, the Canaanites, the Philistines, the Assyrians, the Babylonians, the Greeks, the Phoenicians, the Hasmoneans, the Romans, the Persians, the Arabs and the Crusaders, until it was destroyed by the Mamluks in 1270.


With Jack Shmueli in Moshav Ohad

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Ohad, Israel – Wikipedia

Ohad (Hebrew: אֹהַד‎ or אוהד‎) is a moshav in southern Israel. Located in the Hevel Eshkol area of the north-western Negev desert near the Gaza Strip border, it falls under the jurisdiction of Eshkol Regional Council. In 2015 it had a population of 404.[1]


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Carmel Market – Wikipedia

Carmel Market (Hebrew: שוק הכרמל‎‎, Shuk HaCarmel) is a marketplace in Tel Aviv, Israel.[1]


Tel Aviv Beach

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Tel Aviv Promenade – Wikipedia

Tel Aviv Promenade (Hebrew: רצועת חוף תל אביב-יפו‎‎, commonly referred to in Hebrew simply as the Tayelet, Hebrew: הטיילת‎‎) runs along the Mediterranean seashore in Tel Aviv, Israel.


Leaving Israel

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Turkish Transit

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Special security flying into UK from Turkey!

Views of Israel


My arrival in Israel and some views of Gan Yavneh and Jerusalem



The Jerusalem Great Synagogue, the Hechal Shlomo Museum and views from the roof of the museum.



The Hurva Synagogue in the Old City.

My third Great Grandfather Avraham Shlomo Zalman Tsoref, a student of the Vilna Gaon, was responsible in 1836 for obtaining the rights to build the synagogue. He was later assassinated.

My great grandfather Michel Avraham Herison was a gabbai at the shul in later years.

The note from my friend Tony Sachs got me through security into the shul.

Once they found out about my ancestry – I showed them my family tree on my iPad –  I was introduced to the English speaking guide, Naama, who gave me a superb one to one tour of the shul.

It was amazing how quickly news travelled and several members of the guide staff came up to greet this Antipodean descendant of Tsoref’s!




Ronen and I drove up to Kibbutz Bar’am on the Lebanese border via the Dead Sea, the West Bank and the Kinneret. Here are some of the views.



Early the next morning I was back in the car first with Adi’s dad Moshe Harel to Herzlia and then with Eytan to Ashkelon:



Here are some of the views of Ashkelon and its rapidly growing community – thanks to an excellent tour by Gidon