June 28 - July 19
Come explore Israel the Eden Village way – with kindness, love, spirituality and adventure! We will be joyfully dancing and drumming and eating and farming our way across the country, connecting with the land, its diverse peoples, ourselves and our ancient roots with hearts wide open. Join us on a trip like no other!
$5,825 *after $3,000 RootOne Voucher
Days 1-4: drop into intention
After a group flight from the NY area, we start our trip literally shepherding sheep in the foothills at Neot Kedumim before heading North to the Galilee region for a day of spiritual exploration as we prepare for our first, mystical Shabbat in Tzfat.
Days 5-7: Exploring the galilee
In our first full week, we start in Galilee, engaging with the diverse landscapes and people in the region. We visit Kibbutz Sde Eliyahu to learn about innovative organic agriculture technologies, raft the Jordan River, and hike in the Nahal Mearot National Park. We experience interfaith cooperation and food foraging in the Nekofa Valley, pick and press olives with Jewish and Arab women at Sindyanna of the Galilee, are hosted by a local Druze family for a traditional home meal, and explore the ancient city of Nazareth.
Days 8-11: Jerusalem
We finish the week with four days in Jerusalem, visiting ancient sites, exciting new projects, and creating spiritual space for our own unique Jewish identities. We start with a visit to the Jewish, Muslim, and Christian Quarters of the Old City, including a hummus lunch in the Christian Quarter. We explore the many food traditions in the Machaneh Yehuda market and volunteer with Jerusalem Food Savers. We craft our own unique mezuzot in a local art studio, visit Yad Vashem, and spend a connective Shabbat in Jerusalem.
Days 12-17: dynamic people & places
Our trip continues with several days in Tel Aviv, including scavenger hunt and Mizrachi cooking workshop in the Carmel Market, a walking tour of Jaffa, and a sunset drum circle at the beach. We meet local activists challenging the kosher orthodoxy; explore the diverse LGBTQ+ community in Tel Aviv, and meet with the Orchard of Abraham’s Children. We spend a day in Bethlehem with a local Palestinian tour guide, visiting the historic city, eating at the Jala Jungle, and meeting with “Friends of Roots’ at the Tent of Nations. We spend our final shabbat on Kibbutz, building our experiences so far to create a unique, introspective Shabbat experience.
days 18-21: High & low
Our last week takes us South to the top of Masada and the rapidly disappearing Dead Sea. We spend a day with a local Bedouin guide visiting the Bedouin community, including visits to Wadi Attir and cooking a traditional Bedouin dinner with a local family. We visit Kibbutz Lotan and the Arava Institute. After floating in the Dead Sea, we learn about the environmental crisis at the lowest place in the world.
What's Included in the price?
The trip cost includes flights from a NY airport, all program costs, and all meals. Teens should be a small amount of spending money for laundry, souvenirs, and other personal items.
You are responsible for own travel costs to get to the NYC departure airport.
Do I need to be a previous Eden Village camper to participate?
Absolutely not! Our trip is designed for both teens new to Eden Village and long-time campers. Our goal is to bring the love and spirit of Eden Village into our program, but craft an original and unique experience for all participants.
Can I extend my trip?
Deviation requests must be made in writing no later than April 20 to the trip operator. They will make all reasonable effort to accommodate timely requests for deviations from the group air travel itinerary. Typical requests include a change of departure and/or arrival airport(s), travel dates, airline carriers, and/or requests for the parent/guardian to assume responsibility for booking their teen’s airfare. The ability to accommodate deviation requests will be limited by the deviation rules of our airlines. For any deviation from the planned group flight arrangements, there will be a $250 administrative fee, which covers extended health insurance coverage, plus any additional transportation costs that are incurred.
Is the trip kosher and shabbat observant?
Yes, just like at Eden Village, the trip is kosher and Shabbat observant.
As part of our cultural exchange, there will 3-4 meals during the trip with Arab, Palestinian, and Bedouin communities which will be vegetarian, but not kosher. A kosher pack-out meal will be provided for any participant who needs one.
Are there scholarships available for this trip?
Yes, scholarships are available, but due to the cost structure of the trip, Eden Village scholarship funds are extremely limited. Families should not expect to receive as much funds as previous summers at camp.
Fortunately, most local Jewish federations and synagogues offer generous scholarships – many which are not need-based. Please let us know if you need assistance accessing these resources.
What is RootOne?
RootOne is a program which supports Jewish teens to travel to Israel on a summer program. All Jewish teens who are not enrolled in orthodox day schools are eligible for a $3,000 voucher. To receive the voucher, teens most complete some pre- and post-trip work. We’ll send you more details on the program after you register.
Is it true I won't be able to use my phone?
Unlike most other teen trips, we will be bringing the Eden Village “Unplugged” culture with us on our trip. You will be able to call home at least once each week, but otherwise we are going to keep our phones powered off and our hearts tapped into community and exploration. Bus time and free time are times to engage with each other, sing songs, make connections – not dive into your phone.
Is this trip smaller than other programs?
Yes, the trip will have about 30 teens, much smaller than other programs with more than 50 teens on each bus. This allows us to have more intimate experiences and workshops, while building deep connections within the group.
Where will we be sleeping?
We will be staying at Kibbutz hotels, hostels and hotels. We will have one overnight camping journey as well.
Will we have any free time?
Yes, in each city campers will have a couple of hours to explore within boundaries. We will hand out spending money to get lunch in a couple of these cities as well.
What is Yallah! Israel?
This year, we are running our trip in partnership with Yallah! Israel, a program of the URJ. All the programming and staff will remain the same, but Yallah! Israel will be the end-to-end program provider – all registration, payments, and trip management will be through Yallah! Israel, which supports trips to Israel for more than 700 teens every summer. (The trip will also continue to follow all Eden Village shabbat and kosher practices). This will allow our staff to focus on the program and curriculum, while Yallah! handles all the logistics and details. Registration and payments will all be processed by Yallah! Israel.
Who is eligible?
High-school age teens attending 10th-12th grade in the school year preceding the summer program may attend Yallah! Israel. Participants must turn at least 15 years old as of the first day of the program and may be no older than 18 as of the last day of the program
What is the cancellation policy?
At time of enrollment, the $500 administrative fee becomes non-refundable. Through March 1 of the calendar year of the program, a $500 cancellation fee will apply and all remaining tuition paid will be refunded (see exclusion regarding travel insurance premiums below). After March 1 of the calendar year of the program, a $2,500 cancellation fee will apply and all remaining tuition paid will be refunded. After May 1 of the calendar year of the program, no refunds will be issued for withdrawal from the program.
Who holds and dispenses medication?
Participants are responsible for holding and dispensing their own medications. We understand teens have varying levels of experience managing medications, and so our staff are prepared to provide age-appropriate support in building this essential life skill, such as reminders to take medications on time and reminders to double-check medication is packed before leaving for a new hotel. Our staff will directly assist participants who have medications that require special handling, such as refrigeration.
What is the vaccination policy?
All camp and travel program participants, staff and faculty are required to be immunized, as per the most up-to-date Yallah! Israel and URJ policies.
Will I still be eligible for Birthright if I go on the Eden Israel trip?
Yes, participation in this teen trip does not affect your eligibility for Taglit-Birthright Israel trips when you are older.