The Israel Tour Guide Exam Part One: The Written Exam Part A (Summer 2014)

Many readers of this blog, and friends, have asked me about the details of the examination to become a tour guide.

The exams are held twice a year by the Ministry of Tourism, and are in two parts.

First is the written exam, taken by hundreds of candidates simultaneously in Jerusalem’s International Convention Centre. The written exam itself consists of two parts. Part A is a series of 50 multiple choice questions testing your knowledge of history, geology, geography, flora, fauna, religion, politics and culture, and lasts for one hour. It is worth 30% of the exam. After a short lunch break, you return for Part B, a grueling three hour marathon where you have to build an itinerary for one of three groups, fill in a table with details of timings, logistical points (payments, toilets, advance reservations etc) and the outline of your guiding. A whopping 20% of the marks for the exam are awarded for an ‘elaborated point’ in this section – you choose one part of one site in your itinerary and write a full page of A4 with exactly the text as you would guide it. For Part B, you are allowed to bring in a map of Israel, but the rest has to come from your memory.

Assuming you hit the 65% pass mark (and many don’t) in the written exam, you are then invited to a 30 minute oral exam in the Ministry of Tourism offices. More on that to come!

Having now taken (and passed – hurrah!!) the written exam, I feel happy to share some details of what I went through. For now, I have uploaded Part A of the written exam (the multiple choice) I took for you to test yourselves and see whether you might be able to qualify as a tour guide in Israel! If you are interested in Part B (the itinerary), keep an eye on the blog and I shall post it next week.

[please note: all the spellings have been copied from the test I was given – I took the exam in English and the translation from the original Hebrew as not always the best!]

Iyar 5774
May 2014


Part A: Knowledge Questions – Total of 30 Points

Time allotment for this section: 1 hour
Auxiliary material: non-electronic dictionary only.

Please select and answer no more than 45 [although in this online version you will have to answer all of them I am afraid!] of the 50 multiple-choice questions below. Select the most correct answer. Each correct answer is worth 0.66 points.


  1. Thanks this was fun! I already am a tour guide so I guess 80 % is not too bad. Some questions I had no clue about… Always good to learn more. Good for you that you passed! Good luck with the oral exam!

  2. Ron says:

    Thanks.Would you say speaking different languages is an advantage as a tour guide or tourism companies have their own tour guides for partuclar language?
    As I understand you can’t take a license exam in Spanish or Russian for example,but speaking these kanguages is an advantage to be more competitive,isn’t it?

    • Samuel
      Samuel says:

      Hi Ron
      Sorry for the delayed response, I was out with a group and your message somehow got lost.
      Definitely speaking different languages is a huge advantage, particularly Chinese which is in big demand at the moment.

What do you think?