Have you ever thought you were in Europe but actually in Israel?
Have you already visited Jerusalem during Hanukkah? Every year, when winter comes, Jerusalem turns into a real European capital! And on Hanukkah, a variety of activities and festive candle lightings for the whole family await you.
Every year, when winter comes, Jerusalem turns into a real European capital! The winding alleyways and the stones of the ancient walls create a special atmosphere. The magical light seen through the clouds, combined with the Jerusalem atmosphere and the delightful aromas of the wonderful winter dishes found in every restaurant on the streets of the city.
At this special time, the Old City takes on another dimension of magic. Whoever walks through the picturesque alleyways, will discover a different Jerusalem, full of events and visitors from Israel and around the world.
Throughout the city, there are a variety of activities and festive candle lightings for the whole family. You can enjoy a tour of the alleyways around Mahane Yehuda Market and the Nachlaot neighborhood, especially in the alleys of the Old City, where, the tradition of lighting the menorahs takes place every year without exception. For those who have not yet seen the ancient alleyways during this time, a real surprise awaits.
This is a great opportunity to discover the familiar places in Jerusalem in a new light. Liberty Bell Park, Mahane Yehuda market, the Western Wall, the Mount of Olives, the Peace Forest and the City of David National Park, put on their winter garments, and offer sights and experiences that are usually reserved for winter tourists who come from around the world. These gems are often hidden from the eyes of local tourists, who visit Jerusalem mainly during the summer.
An even more powerful experience awaits those who arrive during Hanukkah, when the holiday lights paint the city in bright, festive colors. And when the light of the menorahs in the windows flickers in every corner, you can also enjoy tours in the Old City’s alleyways. For those arriving in groups, we recommend registering ahead of time for a special menorah tour.
The archeological experience at Emek Tzurim: Unique and out of the rain
During Hanukkah, plays, festivals and shows, which appeal mainly to the youngest members of the family, pop up from all over, but at this time, there is a golden opportunity for unique Hanukkah activities – in which all members of the family can participate, enjoy a truly valuable experience and also connect with the stories of Hanukkah. A great example of a place like that is the archaeological experience in Emek Tzurim. The site is covered, and there is plenty of convenient and organized parking nearby, so that you can enjoy the experience in any weather!
At Emek Tzurim, anyone can be an archaeologist, and uncover real finds from the underground at the City of David with us! The activity is suitable for all ages and is perfect as a family bonding activity. Many rare finds have already been uncovered by visitors from Israel and abroad, and continue to be discovered all the time. It is important to know – this activity is fully accessible for people with disabilities, including special accessible screening stations, so that the experience is complete and rich for everyone.
During Hanukkah, you can come and sift findings from the Hasmonean period! Also, a particularly sweet Hanukkah surprise awaits the children, both for those who make discoveries and those who don’t.
European style with Jerusalem mountain air - not only for children!
The Hallelujah Fire and Water night show continues throughout the winter, and this is a wonderful opportunity for those who haven’t yet seen it, to bring a blanket, indulge in a cup of hot, steaming coffee from our buffet, and enjoy an extraordinary experience that brings the winter magic of Europe to us!
Those who come to the City of David during the day can go on an adventure and walk in the depths of the Siloam Tunnel or the Herodian Canal. Since the tours are held underground, they are also perfect for rainy days, so no matter what the weather is like outside – the tours are held exactly the same all through the year.
A 2,700-year-old inscription discovered in the City of David
Archaeological excavations conducted by the Israel Antiquities Authority in the Gihon Spring in the City of David, within the area of the Jerusalem Walls National Park, revealed a layer rich in finds, including thousands of pottery shards, lamps and figurines, dating back to the days of the First Temple.