Here it is, my first most basic list of things to do in and right around Jerusalem. I hope to continue adding to this list, but for now just wanted to get this information out to you. Keep checking back for updates!
Also, please note, that although we have done many other activities in Jerusalem these are my favorites so far. I Weill not post anything on this list that we did not absolutely love!
LOL AND POP
Rechov Haroe 43, Ramat Gan
By appointment only
Sun-Thurs 2:00 pm – 8:00 pm
Fri- 9:00 am – 3:00 pm
What is LOL AND POP?
Lop and Pop is custom candy shop owned by two pastry chefs who happen to be recent Ukranian immigrants, Igor and Katerina.
They run hands on candy making workshops. The workshop begins with boiling the sugar and ends in a delicious variety of different shaped, customizable candies.
Their candies are made with the best quality natural ingredients and besides being beautiful are also really delicious!
We went with my three big kids (ages 6-9) and all five had a blast. Even Eli and I couldn’t hold back from playing with the candy.
The workshop is fun, interactive, informative and obviously yummy!
You do need to book an appointment with them before going. You have an option to drive to Ramat Gan which can take around hour, give or take Israeli traffic, or you they will pack up and come to you!
They also do workshops for parties, big and small and make custom candies for events, care packages, and parties.
JERUSALEM ROPES COURSE
Givat ha-Takhmoshet, Jerusalem
By appointment only
What is the Jerusalem Ropes Course?
The Jerusalem is a series of climbing and swinging activities set up around ammunition hill. There are rope ladders, ropes that pull you up and then swing you down, tight walking ropes and of course zip lining. We brought ten kids with us ages 4-8 and all of us had a great time. It took us about two hours to get through the course and at no point did we feel bored. The kids were happy, and the guide they randomly assigned us to take us through the course was phenomenal with them. He was patient with the children that were slightly nervous and excited and cheerful at every child’s turn.
What eli and I liked best, besides the fact that we spent the money to bring the kids their and it was a success (because we all know what the alternative is), is that it is in Jerusalem, easy to get to, parking was a breeze and we didn’t waste our whole day. It’s the perfect activity for an ere yuntif, or a day where you still want time to get other things done!
JERUSALEM HILLS ATV
Leave from the HOTEL YEHUDA
Rechov Chaim Kulitz
By appointment only
What is Jerusalem Hills Atv?
Its an off road ATV/Jeeping adventure in and around the hills of Jerusalem. It is very local, across form the mall, and actually a hidden treasure of an activity. We took everyone with us, plus a few extras (ages 1&1/2 – 30 something??), and ALL of us had a blast. The scenery was breathtaking and so enlightening. It is one thing to know that Jerusalem is built on a series of hill but to actually drive through them and see them laid out before us was just spectacular.
What do I wish I had known before going?
DO NOT WEAR A SHEITEL. Actually, do not wear anything that you don’t want to wash. Lets just say that my dark brown sheitel looked like the color of, well, dirt, blonde dirt. And our clothes resembled potato sack like garments that people may have worn in biblical times.
Dont get me wrong, all this dirtiness was a HUGE bonus for every child involved, I may had worn a tichel and sneakers had I been warned!
In fact, it was so beautiful and so fun that is actually an activity we plan to do again!
JERUSALEM SNAPPELING (RAPPELLING)
Meeting point: The bridge in between the Herzel Museum and the Mount Zion Hotel
By reservation only
What is snappeling?
Actually, I’m not exactly sure what the difference between snappeling and rappelling is, but I don’t really think it matters. All you need to know is that you are attached to two, very sturdy ropes via a secure harness and you lay your body back side down over what feels like the tallest mountain in the world (fear not, it is in fact not even close to that), and proceed to walk down the mountain all why looking up at the beautiful blue skies that envelope the old city. Did I slightly romanticize what it feels like to hurl yourself over a mountain? Yes I did.
Why, you ask?
Because in reality that first moment of getting over the mountain is incredibly terrifying. However, Once you take that first step and you feel the security of the rope, all the fear melts away and you can focus on how cool you are because youre currently rappelling off the hills of Jerusalem.
I took 5 kids with me, ages 6-9 and not only did they all love it, but they each did it a second time. Had I let, they would have stayed there forever. Or at least until dinnertime.
The guide that brings you is incredibly sweet and patient and we all felt very safe in his hands. For kids that are too afraid or two young, you can actually go down in pairs. It is not a typical activity, but I promise it is one all of you will remember for a long time!
BY appointment only
What is Eretz Bereishit?
Its a step back in time to the days of Avraham, Yitzchok and Yaakov. The adventure starts with changing into the “appropriate” attire and mounting a camel for a ride down the curvy hill. Aside from your cell phone, which you probably need for pictures, from that point on, there is very little else to remind you of what era we are actually living in. From sitting on mats in tents, to writing on parchment to baking pitas with out conventional equipment it is a fun and informative activity for children and adults.
Because Eretz Bereishit is anyway a two minute drive from Nahal Prat we always end our day at the Nahal. See the next activity for info.
NAHAL PRAT, WATER HIKE
Two minutes past the right turn into Peretz berieshit.
Park anywhere on the mountain. You will see cars parked on the side as well.
NO APPOINTMENT NECESSARY!
What its Nahal Prat?
Nahal Prat is one of our favorite “hikes” in Israel. When I first told my kids that I was putting together this post, they couldn’t decide on whether everyone needs to know about this, or if we should keep this hidden gem a secret so that it never gets overcrowded! Lucky for you, we decided to share!
Aside from the 1 minute walk down a very steep hill to begin the water trail, the entire walk is flat.
I know, flat land in Israel is a parents dream. There is a few mile stream with small waterfalls sprinkled on the edges every once in a while through the beautiful valleys surrounding Jerusalem.
A lot of the walk is shaded by overgrown bushes that create an arch of some sort shielding you from the sun.
We have seen deer up on the mountains on top of us and thew smell of fresh lavender growing all around the stream perfumes the air in the most satisfying way.
Since it only takes 35 minutes to drive their this is one of our favorite activities. It’s close by, gets us moving, involves getting wet (which is a huge bonus for us), and is really beautiful.
THE SHUK, MAHANE YEHUDA
The center of Jerusalem, between Rechov Yaffo and Rechov Aggripas
Daytime shopping roaming and eating 9:00am – 6/7:00pm
Nighttime eating, bar hopping 9/10:00pm -……
What is the shuk?
The shuk is the central outdoor market place in Jerusalem. It is comprised of two main streets, with alleyways that snake all through out it. Over the years the shuk has grown to also include the surrounding streets and neighborhood.
Over the last 5 years the shuk has had a renaissance of sorts. The technical infrastructure was and still is undergoing a complete overhaul by the Jerusalem Municipality. This means, more electricity, better plumbing and drainage and most importantly room for restaurant growth.
The number of street food vendors that have opened around the shuk is not measurable simply because there are new places opening daily.
Aside from having the selling produce, the freshest fish and the yummiest delicacies the shuk has become a local and tourist designation.
Its a place to go whether you have a shopping list or not. You can wonder endlessly up and down through the aisles, taking in all the smells, colors and sounds or you can treat yourself to a tasting tour. Just keep your eyes peeled as your walking and every few steps you go you’ll find something to taste.
From day to night the shuk goes through a complete transformation. It starts out as a housewife, kid friendly, friend lunching area to a giant millennial after party. All the vendors are closed, aside from restaurant proprietors and bars. The beer scene is booming which means hundreds of different beers to choose from and taste. Even if you are not a drinker it is fun to just walk around.
Whether you go day or night, you should definitely go. It is my absolute most favorite place in the whole city!
MORE ACTIVITIES/IDEAS THAT ARE SELF EXPLANATORY AND DO NOT NEED APPOINTMENTS:
THE BIBLICAL ZOO
Derech Aharon Shulov 1, Jerusalem
Sun-Thurs 9:00am – 6:00 pm
Fri 9:00am – 4:30pm
THE FIRST TRAIN STATION
Rechov David Remez 4, Jerusalem
Because of the variety and constant change in attractions (restaurants, concerts, festivals, fairs, children activities) there it is best to look upon specific hours on their website.
THE ISRAEL MUSEUM
Derech Rupin 11, Jerusalem
Sun-Mon & Wed-Thurs – 10:00am – 5:00pm
Tues- 4:00pm – 9:00pm
Friday- 10:00am – 5:00pm
THE CHILDRENS SCIENCE MUSEUM
Sderot HaMuze’onim 3, Jerusalem
Mon-Thurs 10:00am – 6:00pm
Fri-10:00am – 2:00pm