Judith Goldcher-Bender is one of the experts who works behind the scenes at Shatour Israel Experience, organizing exciting Israel itineraries for incoming families and groups.
Judith moved to Israel from Paris and speaks English and French fluently. She studied Chinese language and culture at Tel Aviv University, and then spent a few years traveling around China and Asia to practice her language skills and really get to grips with the culture. When returned to Israel, she decided to take the official two-year tour guide course with a view to guiding English, French and Chinese tourists around Israel.
While taking the tour guide course, Judith met an American Israeli student Ari Bender, and they were married a short time ago. Coincidentally, Ari’s father Rabbi Arnie Bender is a close friend of the Shapiro family and helps out whenever Shatour needs a Rabbi to officiate at a Bar or Bat Mitzvah. He connected Judith with Shatour and they were happy to hire her.
Judith works with Nathan, Hanna and Lior Shapiro, tailoring trip itineraries for different groups. She takes great pains to understand what each individual and group is looking to get out of their visit to Israel, and then puts together the best possible itinerary to give them everything that they want and more. She enjoys working with the warm and welcoming Shatour extended family, because they are supportive and understanding.
“Whenever I have exams coming up for the tour guide course, which is very rigorous, they are lovely about giving me time off to study. They are invested in my success and they are always happy to answer my question. It is a privilege to work with people who know every aspect of Israel and are happy to share their knowledge.”
Judith consults with Shatour’s team of tour guides to discuss the details of each itinerary and to check that the timetable is realistic. She answers questions from Shatour clients about the best places to visit, and helps with the bookings and logistics for every group. If there are changes in the weather or the security situation, she consults with the team and makes last-minute alterations to the itinerary where necessary. Her expertise contributes to Shatour’s flexible and responsive approach to the needs of each group.
Judith herself enjoys touring the country and learning about new sites. “My favorite place in Israel is the Golan Heights, particularly the area around Lake Kinneret. We often go hiking in that area at the weekends. But, as a rookie tour guide, I love showing groups around Jerusalem and Acco – both fascinating cities with layers of history just waiting to be explored and explained.”
Judith and the Shatour team are just waiting to hear from you about what aspects of Israel you would like to explore, so that they can help you to put together your ideal itinerary.