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6 Things to Know When Visiting The Shuk

October 23, 2019 at 3:33 am
by Birthright Israel Foundation
Machane Yehuda

Marketplaces in Israel are widely known as “Shuks.” Shuks are magical and vibrant and sell everything from fresh fruit to clothing, and spices to electronics. They can seem intimidating at first, with all the smells, flavors and sounds, but once you get the gist of it, you’ll be a pro!  Whether you’re headed to the Carmel Market (Shuk HaCarmel) in Tel Aviv or Machane Yehuda on a crazy Friday afternoon in Jerusalem, here are six things you should keep in mind while visiting Israeli shuks.

1) Bargain!

Israeli’s will try to sell you anything for a pretty penny, but they’re open to hearing your suggestions on what you think a “fair price” is. Be confident (or at least seem like you know what you’re doing) and you could get a great deal on almost anything!

2) Only Bargain If You Know You Really Want Something

Be careful when you start bargaining! The second you start negotiating with a merchant, it signifies that you intend to purchase an item. Only bargain when you know you want to buy something!

3) Stay Close to Friends

Stay together. The shuk is pure madness… it’s easy to get separated or lost in the crowds.

4) The Best Time To Visit

If you’re looking for fewer crowds and better deals than visit the shuk at the end of the day.

5) Falafel Please!

If you’re walking through Shuk HaCarmel you will surely hear a man yelling, “Falafel, Falafel, Falafel, Seven Shekel, Falafel.” Get the falafel. Your taste buds will thank you.

6) Take a Guided Tour

One of the best ways to explore the market is to join a guided tour, complete with yummy samples! You’ll discover how Machne Yehuda transforms from food vendors by day to beer bazaars by night and you might even learn of the hummus shop located in an old synagogue in Tel Aviv.

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