Rehovot, one of the first communities founded in the modern State of Israel, is located in the center of the country. It is conveniently located about 20 kilometers south of Tel Aviv. The city has a population of 114,000 people and is known as the City of Science and Culture. It is also known as Israel's citrus capital and the city emblem displays a microscope, book and orange.
Rehovot was founded in 1890 by a group of immigrants from Poland, looking for land in Palestine without being under the control of Baron Rothschild. Sixteen years later, they were joined by immigrants from Yemen. Together, they built the city that is known for its agriculture and high-tech.
Between 1914 and 1991 the population rose from 955 to 81,000, and the area of the town more than doubled. In 1932 an agricultural research station was transferred here from Tel Aviv; 30 years later it became the Department of Agriculture of the Hebrew University of Jerusalem. In 1934 Chaim Weizmann built the Sieff Institute in Rehovot, which later became the Weizmann Institute of Science. He and his wife are buried on the Institute's manicured grounds.
Rehovot is considered a mid-sized Israeli city and is mixed religious/non-religious (Dati/Chiloni) with Datiim making up 30%. The city is known to be a community where people actually get along with each other. There are no areas that are completely religious or secular although there is a small area with streets that are closed on Shabbat. In 1995, there were an estimated 337,800 residents living in the greater Rehovot area.
The city is home to a number of historical buildings including a few examples of Bauhaus architecture.
Before making Aliyah people advised us to move to a place where there are other Anglos. We tend to take the road less travelled (and that has made all the difference) and moved to a nearby moshav with only one other Anglo family. It was a great experience and we learned a lot of Hebrew and enjoyed the peaceful existence but found that after a while we missed what was familiar to us.
The Rehovot Reporter was founded by David Froehlich 30 years ago and is a resource for both Rehovot residents and people looking to stay in touch with Rehovot.
We decided to move to Rehovot and are very happy we made that decision. Anglos make up about 10 percent of the population (which is a significant amount) without getting the feeling that you are living in downtown Manhattan. We also wanted a community where Datiim and Chilonim got along with each other and there were no serious divides between Ashkenazi/Sephardi/ Ethiopian/Yeminite/Russian... No city is perfect but we found that Rehovot has a lot going for it.
Until recently, visitors to Rehovot who needed a place to stay had to leave the city to find accommodations. But no longer!
Melonit Noa offers two self-catering apartments in the heart of the city that are ideal for business people, visiting scientists, and families. Quiet, private, and comfortably furnished, the lovely two and three room apartments are air conditioned and equipped with new kitchens and modern baths. Each apartment has a television in every room and Internet connection as well.
The apartments are located just steps from the center of Rehovot, close to the Weizmann Institute, the city’s hi-tech park, and to buses and trains. Parking is available nearby, as are shopping, markets, and cafes. To see photos of the apartments, look online at www.melonit-noa.dpages.co.il.
For more information and to check availability, call Noa at 052-5955230 or email her at firstname.lastname@example.org.
Rehovot is located close enough to Tel Aviv and Jerusalem to make it an ideal choice for anyone needing to reach either city. Jerusalem, is about an hour away when the traffic permits, Tel Aviv can be reached in 30 minutes or less. Beit Shemesh, Modiin, Ramle, Lod, Yavne, Gedera, Ashdod are all very close by.
There are minibuses that run frequently between Rehovot and Tel Aviv as well as Ashdod. There is a Tachana Merkazit (central bus station) centrally located in the mall with frequent buses to most cities.
At the northern end of the city is the train station with frequent trains across the current network. Travel to Tel Aviv is about 22 minutes by train, depending on which station you need.
Rehovot has a wide variety of government services for Olim Chaddashim. There is a Misrad HaPnim, Ministry of Transportation, Ministry of Absorption (in nearby Ramle) as well as a conveniently located city hall. The city hall switchboard number is: 106 from Rehovot.
Traffic in the most Israeli cities is becoming more problematic as the amount of private cars increase. On western side of the city, a new highway and set of interchanges currently being built, will provide direct access from Kfar Gevirol neighborhood to Route 42. Once you are on Route 42 is is a short trip north to Holon, Rishon LeZion and Tel Aviv.
On the eastern side of the city, there is a ring road (Kvish HaOkef) which goes from the south east neighborhoods up to the Science Park. The road avoids much of the traffic congestion on Herzl and connects the neighborhoods on the eastern side of the city. At this point the road does not connect directly to the highway (40) at the south end of the city although we understand construction is slated to begin soon. There is a dirt road however, that does connect to highway 40, which the adventurous driver can take to shorten the trip outside the city. The Kvish HaOkef, is surrounded by empty fields and orchards. On most evenings you can see people strolling on the sidewalk, kids cycling and joggers following the path. Today we saw a few camels, goats and a horse just as we were driving past the particle accelerator at the Weizmann Institute.
The city is very diverse with science and high-tech in a well established city, but on the edges you can still see the famous orchards and herds of sheep grazing on the sides of the road.
Rehovot has lots of stores on Herzl and at the Bilu Center. The Bilu Center is Israel's largest shopping plaza and is located about 5 minutes away from the southern end of the city. Bilu Center has everything you would need and the Home Center across the street is known to be one of the best stocked branches in the country. There are lots of choices for small neighborhood makolets and large grocery stores such as Supersol Deal, Mega and Yochananof.
The city is home to the prestigious Weizmann Institute of Science and to the Faculty of Agriculture of the Hebrew University of Jerusalem. There are also a number of smaller junior colleges in Rehovot that provide specialized and technical training. In addition, Kaplan Hospital acts as an ancillary teaching hospital for the Medical School of the Hebrew University of Jerusalem.
The Rehovot Internet discussion list is another great way to learn more about daily life in Rehovot. Subscribe through Yahoo Groups and e-mail other Rehovot residents.
Clore Garden of Science
On the grounds of the Weizmann Institute is a wonderful science park that will educate and entertain young and old. The Clore Garden of Science - the museum-without-walls is an outdoor museum with interactive science exhibits. It is best enjoyed by people over the age of five.
Just north of the city, tucked behind the shiny buildings that make up the new Science Park, is an important piece of modern Israeli history that has been hidden beneath the ground for many years. In 1946 the Haganah opened a secret underground bullet factory that produced over 2 million bullets between 1946-1948. call ahead for reservations. 08 940-6552.
The house of Abraham Dondikov, one of the founders of Rehovot, was built on the top of the hill called "Hirbat-Douran", at the beginning of Rehovot history. The restored Dondikov House operates as a gallery for temporary exhibitions of local artists. In the yard, there are few artifacts such as old Eucalyptus trees and part of the original garden wall. In the future, Dondikov House will act as a municipal museum, featuring the history of Rehovot.