Israel Travel

Top Summer Cultural Events For The Whole Family



♦ June-July 28: “Jerusalem Season of Culture.” Highlights include International Philosophy Festival; Merce Cunningham Legacy Tour; evening performances in the Mahane Yehuda outdoor market every Monday during July, and Renee Fleming finale concert on July 28. For more details:

♦ July 7-16: International Film Festival, featuring 200 local and international films, which are screened at the Jerusalem Cinematheque. One of the most sought after tickets in town.

Israeli Hotels Putting Families First

New set summer perks for parents and kids at spots across the country.

Special To The Jewish Week

What if you were able to check in to a top Israeli hotel this summer, wave goodbye to the kids at the front desk and minutes later find yourself nurturing a fruity Mediterranean cocktail by the sun-kissed pool? A mirage? Nope, it’s the real deal.

A large number of quality Israeli hotels are now offering summertime family vacation packages with perks, including indoor and outdoor happenings for kids, chill-out spa and poolside experiences for parents and sumptuous culinary experiences for the entire clan.

Splashing it up at the Inbal Jerusalem Hotel.

For Kid’s Sake

Mini Israel and Deer Land let children blow off a little steam.

Israel Correspondent

Jerusalem — Summer vacation in Israel lasts eight hot weeks, and parents are always on the lookout for places where their family can have fun and the kids can burn off some energy.

To stay informed about family-friendly activities, English-speaking Israelis rely on a few trusted sources. Every Friday we check the Jerusalem Post and Haaretz, whose entertainment magazines include listings of events all around the country.

Rock-wall climbing and bungee jumping at Deer Land. Photos by Michele Chabin

Going Back To Basics With The Bedouins

For those looking for something a little different, spend a night sleeping under the big black canvass of a Bedouin tent.

Special To The Jewish Week

 It seemed like a crazy idea at first — to take the children out to the desert and spend the night at a Bedouin camp sleeping inside a big black tent. But within minutes of arriving at our remote destination and after being greeted in classic Bedouin hospitality-style with a refreshing cup of sweet tea, our initial fears were put to rest.

Almost at once the tranquil serenity of this nomadic lifestyle succeeded in wiping away (some of) the stresses of our city life.

A Bedouin musician plays a stringed instrument at Chan Hashayarot (Caravan Inn) near Beersheva. Photos by Ruth Eglash

Israel Travel June 2011

The Family Travel Issue
From roughing it in a Bedouin tent to getting coddled at the top hotels. Plus, funky beach towns near Tel Aviv and high-end kosher taking hold in culture capital.

Israel Travel June 2011


Staff Writer

Birders To Converge
On Eilat

Gearing Up For ’11, And Adding Perks

Special To The Jewish Week

2010 was record year
for tourism to Israel, with nearly 3.5 million foreign travelers coming to the Jewish state, and the Israeli hotel industry is hoping for a repeat performance in 2011. In fact, many major hotels are in the midst of upgrading their rooms and services in order to lure new visitors from North America during the ’11 tourist season.

Here is a roundup of what some of the top hotels in Jerusalem, Tel Aviv and beyond are offering guests.



The Boutique Difference

Growing number of intimate, arty hotels offer variety of experiences.

Special To The Jewish Week

One transformed a neglectED
Bauhaus-style Tel Aviv building that was the home of the old Esther Cinema. Another, in the mystical city of Safed, is built upon ancient Roman foundations. Still another showcases the work of local Israeli artists.

The lobby of the Cinema Hotel, top, complete with an old film projector. Above, the West Tamares Hotel in North Tel Aviv.

My House Is Your House

Home exchanges and ‘couch surfing’
are growing, and cheaper, travel alternatives
for those who want to see Israel like a local.

Special To The Jewish Week

Every summer when
she was a little girl, Lior Student and her family swapped their Mediterranean beachside house for an apartment nestled inside the walls of the Jerusalem Old City’s Jewish Quarter.

“To this day — and you have to understand I come from a secular family — that was my first experience with religious kids,” Student said. “I got to know the religious quarter by heart. My parents sent us to buy pitas from the Arabs in the market.”

Israel Home Exchange founder Lior Student’s Tel Aviv apartment.. Courtesy of Lior Student

Israel Travel January 2011

Jerusalem: The new capital of cool. Plus: apartment swaps for the cost-conscious traveler, boutique hotels spreading, and more.

Israel Travel January, 2011
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