The Israel Tour Guide Exam Part Two: The Oral Exam

As I mentioned last week, the oral exam, the final stage in the qualification process to become a licensed tour guide in Israel, is a pretty grueling experience. I was reasonably fortunate with the questions thank goodness. The ones that I can remember are below, in case it is of interest!

Questions on my itinerary:
What is unusual about the synagogue in Zippori? Why is it built like that? What does this tell us about Zippori in the Byzantine period?

What were the reasons for the blossoming of Tzfat in the 16th century?

Names of personalities in Tzfat – provide the name of the books they wrote and describe the books:
– Josef Caro
– The Holy Ari
– Chaim Vittal
– [some more whose names escape me]

Who wrote Lecha Dodi?

Tell me about Alexander Zaid.

What is Bar Giora?


General questions:
How do you do a check-in at a hotel?

What is a rooming list? What sort of information is on it?

At check-in, a tourist complains that they had requested a single room and have not received one. What do you do?

What are the borders of the Golan? What type of rock can you find there?

How was the Golan formed?

Where else can you find basalt in Israel?

Is there any advance procedure you need to do in order to visit the Hermon with tourists?

I will give you years and you will tell me who was in control of the Hermon: 1950, 1969, 1975.

What happened on the Hermon in the Six Day and Yom Kippur Wars?

Give two reasons for the importance of the Hermon for Israel.

You are driving from the north to Jerusalem through the Jordan Valley. Tell me about the following sites:
– Sartaba
– Qasr el Yahud
– The Inn of the Good Samaritan

Explain areas A, B & C

Give me an itinerary for a day of Islamic religion, history and culture in Jerusalem

Give me an itinerary for a day of Catholic sites in Jerusalem

Give me an itinterary for a day of Jewish sites in Jerusalem – dedicate the morning to ancient and religious sites; the afternoon to the modern period.

Describe the first Jewish neighbourhoods to be built outside the Old City walls of Jerusalem: names, order and characteristics.

Give me an itinerary for a day themed around Herod, without visiting Jerusalem

You are standing at the top of Herodion. What do you see (that is connected with the site)?

From what period is the synagogue at Herodion?

Is there a difference between Maresha and Beit Guvrin? What do you see at Maresha?

You are standing at the grave of David Ben Gurion. What valley do you see?

Tell me about David Ben Gurion.

I say a word and you tell me a place in Israel where you can go to see/talk about this topic:
– Wine
– Agriculture
– Desalination
– Science & technology

Name a viewpoint over the Gaza strip

How do you explain the current security situation to the tourists? Why are rockets being fired at Israel?

What happened yesterday in the Jewish calendar (it was Rosh Chodesh Av)?

What is this period in the Jewish calendar called?

A group in Jerusalem wants to visit sites where you can see physical signs of the destruction of the First and Second Temples. Where would you take them?

What is the history of the Egyptian border?

What do you think?

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