From high-tech to agriculture, Israeli innovation continues to influence the world. See it firsthand on your trip to Israel.
By Abigail Klein Leichman, Israel21c
We at ISRAEL21c always strive to bring you the latest news about innovations coming out of Israel in diverse fields, from healthcare to agriculture, fashion tech to fintech.
But there’s nothing quite like seeing it for yourself.
Several tour operators offer innovation tour packages for groups from across the world, such as this one.
Individual or family DIY tourists generally cannot get access to startups and innovation hubs that tour operators can arrange, but never fear – there are options open to anyone outside of group tours.
Consider adding some of these stops to your itinerary for a firsthand look at how Israeli innovation has made – and is still making — the world a better place.
1. The Israel Innovation Center at the Peres Center for Peace and Innovation, Jaffa
Discover the most cutting-edge Israeli startups and developments, brought to you in exhibitions contributed by government ministries, multinational corporations, and the Israeli startup community.
2. Start-Up Tel Aviv walking tour
Urbans by Yalla Basta will put together a three-hour tour for your group with stops including a social urban project; an inspirational exhibit of Israeli achievements; a luxurious high-tech hub; a unique high-tech company employing the ultra-Orthodox; and a discussion about Tel Aviv’s entrepreneurial ecosystem and its influence.
3. Bio-Tour, Kibbutz Sde Eliyahu
Kibbutz Sde Eliyahu, founded in 1939 in the Valley of Springs in northern Israel, is a pioneer in commercial organic farming and biological pest control.
On the tour, you’ll see date orchards where donkeys do the pest control, barn owl nesting boxes supporting a natural, effective solution to field rodents, and the kibbutz’s BioBee company — a world leader in developing and commercializing beneficial insects for agriculture and bumblebees for pollination.
4. Levinson Visitors Center at the Weizmann Institute of Science, Rehovot
The center offers high-tech exhibits and state-of-the-art multimedia presentations that take visitors on a journey into the world of this renowned research institute’s scientists as they uncover the secrets of nature and decipher the codes of the universe. You can even buy souvenirs.
To pre-arrange a tour, call + 972 (0) 8-934-4499 or e-mail firstname.lastname@example.org.
5. David and Janet Polak Visitors Center at the Technion-Israel Institute of Technology, Haifa
Watch a movie and see presentations on inventions that have come out of the Technion – often called “Israel’s MIT” — in the past 100+ years, contributing much to Israel and to the world.
The center is open 8:30-15:30 Sunday through Thursday. Register online or by emailing email@example.com at least 72 hours in advance of your requested tour.
6. Vidor Center, Arava
How did Israel make the desert bloom? Find out at the Vidor Center, housed in a former greenhouse at the Arava Research and Development Center in this agriculture-rich region of the Negev.
Among the center’s many interactive multimedia exhibits is a “smart” sand table, where visitors can use Kinect technology to create a dynamic map demonstrating how topographical changes affect water flow across various terrain types.
7. Desert Knowledge Path, Ramat Negev near Ashalim
Here’s a double-header: A tour focusing on the achievements of desert agriculture innovated at the Ramat Negev Agricultural R&D Center, and a tour of the three-site solar power station at Ashalim that supplies 4% of Israel’s energy needs.
The agricultural tour includes movies and tastings (sweet cherry tomatoes, strawberries, peppers, pomegranates, grapes, herbs, and more, raised on brackish water).
The solar tour explores the three different technologies generating thermo-solar power, and how Israel creatively overcame the environmental challenges surrounding this massive project.
The combined tour lasts about two hours. For more information, call +972 (0)8-852-8852, email firstname.lastname@example.org or click here.
8. The Salad Trail, northern Negev
Agronomist Uri Alon and his team of professional guides show you the most up-to-date agricultural technologies and invite you to pick and sample the produce along the way. You’ll see tomatoes growing upwards, strawberries growing in the air, medicinal herbs, and multicolored carrots.
The Salad Trail includes activities such as making a Hawaiian-style necklace from kumquats, sending a message on the leg of a homing pigeon, finding your way through a passionfruit maze, baking pita and more.
The tour lasts from two to three and a half hours, suited to all ages around the year. To book a tour, call + 972 (0) 8-998-2225.
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