It seems that nearly all who come to visit Zichron Yaakov fall in love with the town, and it is easy to see why. Zichron has a world-famous winery, a quaint, brick-paved downtown district, and a stunning view of the Mediterranean coast. The town’s residents know that it has much more to offer, including beautiful homes, lovely neighborhoods, good schools, and proximity to places of employment. Zichron is also one of the oldest towns in the modern history of Israel.
It was founded as an agricultural settlement in the late 19th century by members of the Eastern-European Hovevei Tzion movement. When the community began to struggle, it was assisted by Baron Edmond de Rothschild, and was eventually named in honor of his father Yaakov.
Today, Zichron continues as a vibrant community with a wonderful mix of people. Olim feel a sense of belonging to the community almost immediately upon arrival. For Haredi families, there are two neighborhoods, Chassan Ish and Ramat Tzvi, which have English-speaking families.
Residents work mostly in the Haifa area, with a large percentage taking the train to the greater Tel Aviv communities, or driving to Yokneam. There is also a significant amount who are employed within Zichron itself, connected with the tourist trade.
Education / Youth
Zichron has many preschool programs. A Gan for children with special needs is also available to the community, as are private, English-speaking Ganim.
Religious elementary school aged children in Zichron generally attend the Yavetz school. Some children travel to the Noam school in Hadera. There are three secular schools – Nili, Hahita and Horesh – each catering to a specific neighborhood. These schools go through the 8th grade. Some families send their children to the pluralistic, democratic school called Keshet.
Students in junior high school and high school can attend the Pelech girls’s school or the local Yeshiva Tichonit. There are also Yeshiva high schools and Ulpanas within commuting distance in Hadera,Sdei Yaakov, Kfar Pines, and Haifa.
The city is highly vested in improving the educational options and facilities of the educational institutions in the city. A brand new, state-of-the-art secular high school was recently built.
In addition, there are plans to build a religious educational center in Zichron which will house Yaavetz, Pelech and the Yeshiva Tichonit.
The vast majority of Zichron’s residents have at least one car. The town is 10 minutes from the Binyamina train station, which can bring the commuter to work in Haifa or Tel Aviv within 40 minutes. Zichron Yaakov is a 15 minute drive away from Caesaria.
Bus service is available to each of these destinations, as well as to Jerusalem.
Zichron is now quite spread out, and growing rapidly, so navigating the town can be difficult without a car. There is no bus service available to transport residents within Zichron Yaakov.
Zichron Yaakov’s English-speaking community has always welcomed new residents. There is an English-speaking Aliyah coordinator who works in the municipality.
When not available in Zichron itself, Ulpanim are located in Haifa, Pardes Hanah, and Hadera. Government offices, including Misrad Haklita (Ministry of Absorption), are in Hadera.
Amenities / Services
Zichron has a lovely historic downtown area, with a wide selection of shops, restaurants, and various professional services. In a newer section of town, there are supermarkets and malls. Residents can get most everything they need in Zichron, but it is comforting for them to know that the commercial center of Or Akiva is only about 15 minutes away.
Zichron has a private country club with outstanding athletic facilities.
There are several dentists, optometrists, and alternative health practitioners in the city. Nearby hospitals are located in Hadera and Haifa.
Community and Religious Life
Zichron has an active community center with sports, music, and various other after-school activities for youth. It also offers a wide selection of courses for adults. The town is currently building a new library to serve the community’s needs.
Zichron has many Orthodox synagogues. A number have been around since the early days of the old Yishuv. There is also a wide range of learning options.
The active Conservative synagogue, V’Ahavta has a special welcome committee for Conservative Jews moving into the area.
Zichron’s Reform synagogue runs many programs including children’s camps and bar/bat mitzvah programs, as well as Kabbalat Shabbat with communities outside of Zichron.
There are two Haredi neighborhoods, Chassan Ish and Ramat Tzvi, in Zichron Yaacov. There are local Haredi preschools, two Talmud Torahs and two Beit Yaakov elementary schools. Some of the high school girls study in a local, small seminary, whereas many commute to the Beit Yaakov schools in Haifa and Hadera. A Yeshiva Ketana and Yeshiva Gedola are located in the city.
Most of the housing in Zichron is private or semi-detached homes.
Average rent for 4-5 rooms: 7,500 NIS
Apartments: Start at 1.8 million NIS
Cottages: Start at 2 million NIS
Houses: Range from 2.8 to 8 million NIS
Arnona is modest compared to other cities.
There are 5 main neighborhoods in Zichron.
The newest neighborhood, called Halomot (Dreams), is for those who have always dreamed of living in Zichron and are looking for a more affordable option. This neighborhood includes semi-attached homes, 4-5 bedroom apartments (some with gardens) and duplexes. There are plans to build a synagogue, sports center, amphitheater and a small shopping center as the neighborhood develops.
A number of English speaking families live in the HaChoresh neighborhood.
The Givat Eden neighborhood offers a wide range of housing beginning at 1.6 million NIS to mansions selling for over 10 million NIS.