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Where do most English speakers live in Israel?


Learning a new language is difficult, and Hebrew, with its unfamiliar consonants and relaxed pronunciation, can be hard for American natives to master. While learning Hebrew is an important part of the aliyah process, that doesn’t mean you need to be in Hebrew mode twenty-four-seven. An increasing amount of immigration from the States and the United Kingdom means that a multitude of Anglophone communities can be found throughout the country.




About the Anglo community in Israel

When we think of Israel’s Anglo communities, we might think of a wealthy minority of American Jews who emigrated in the past ten or twenty years. While these do account for a large influx that makes up a great proportion of the community, it’s important to note that the Anglo community is far older and more diverse than this.


The first presence of Anglo Jews in Israel started before Israel. During the Mandate, immigrants from America and England joined kibbutzim and moshavim, and many more answered the call of duty during the Second World War, fighting in the Jewish Brigade of the British Army.


Those that settled mostly integrated post-independence, but there have since been several waves of immigration and emigration in and out of the country, motivated by everything from political factors to shifting economic opportunity.


Today, the Anglo community hails from over the world – the U.S, England and Scotland, and Australia – and encompasses people from all backgrounds and ages. Whether you’ve come as a lone soldier, a new family, or a retiree, there is certainly a community for you in Israel.


Jerusalem

Jerusalem draws many Anglophones, frequently religious or modern Orthodox immigrants who wish to put down roots in the Holy City. Good neighborhoods for Anglophones include:


The German Colony. A comfortable, luxe area full of schools, parks and cafés. It is also a frequently chosen neighborhood for embassies and consulates, making it a truly international neighborhood.

●Baqa. Located further south than the German Colony, Baqa properties are often newer, larger and better in value. Besides, the array of local amenities from cafés to delicatessens selling cheese, wine and delicious spreads is too much to resist.

●Talpiyot, Armon HaNatziv and Arnona. All of these are further out, but more affordable than the above – and you’ll certainly hear plenty of English even just walking along the street.


Tel Aviv

Tel Aviv is an international city, so fitting in won’t be a problem anywhere. That vast majority of people, Israeli or otherwise, will have a good standard of English and will be welcoming and accommodating. Because international businesses usually have their headquarters in Tel Aviv, there should also be no shortage of work in English, and even Israeli start-ups and new companies may be looking for a specialist with a native knowledge of English.




If you want a truly Anglo community, full of veteran immigrants who have gone through the same experience, the Old North is your best bet. A chic and central area, home to Tel Aviv’s port, central park, and a number of restaurants and cafés with an easygoing attitude, the Old North is a popular area and beloved by its residents.


Herzliya

Go on a walk on Herzliya beach and you will hear more languages than you would at an airport. Immigrants from France, South America, England and the United States have made Herzliya their new home, undoubtedly drawn in by the stunning stretch of coast and attractive properties.


Raanana

Raanana was founded as an American Jewish neighborhood before the State of Israel even existed, and has been a go-to location for English-speaking immigrants ever since. It has its own absorption and immigration center – a necessity for those making aliyah, as you will likely need to attend various meetings there. More so, though, it has a population of veteran immigrants who have formed a closely knit and supportive community.


Raanana is considered a good place to raise a family, with an emphasis placed on education. It also has several parks, including its central park known for its large lake.



Up-and-coming locations to keep an eye on

As Israel welcomes another influx of American immigrants, olim are seeking out new places to live. An increasing number after a home on the coast for a reduced price are settling in Ashkelon and Hadera, while those looking for extra space in the center of Israel favor Kiryat Gat and Bet Shemesh. So, while these areas may not yet be hotspots for English speakers, within a few years you can expect to see Anglophone bubbles emerging in neighborhood pockets.




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