Top 10 Family Activities in Israel

December 20th 2011

Top 10 Family Tour Activities in Israel

Striking the balance between serious and fun when planning family trips to Israel might at first seem difficult: there is so much to experience in Israel yet a limited period of time to do it all. It doesn’t have to be. In fact, striking the balance is increasingly easy with activities across the country that effortlessly educate in a way that’s fun, memorable, and often inspirational, for everyone!

1: Jerusalem Scavenger Hunt:

Explore Jerusalem’s famous Old City and quaint Nachlaot neighbourhood in a different light with a Jerusalem Scavenger Hunt. These Israel tours allow you to forge your own individual memories and relationships with Jerusalem. Split into teams, participants use clues and a map to explore the city, stopping at designated sites along the way. Offering a unique way to experience a unique city, Jerusalem Scavenger Hunts are fun and very memorable for children and adults alike!

2: Archaeological Dig for a Day Experience:

The hills near Jerusalem offer the chance for you to become Indiana Jones for a day. The Dig for a Day experience gives you the opportunity to learn to dig, sift, and excavate, three key archaeological skills in the real-life archaeological excavation at Beit Guvrin National Park. Participating in an archaeological dig for a day literally gives you the chance to dig through history and maybe even uncover something of great importance.

3: Masada Challah Baking & Torah Workshop:

Primarily a feature of Israel Bat Mitzvah tours, this is a unique experience in which an oven is taken to the top of the iconic and important site of Masada, which stands majestically alongside the Dead Sea. The ceremony of baking challah is thousands of years old and, in separating the challah as you customarily do, and in so designating a small portion for holiness, you are symbolising the giving of one’s self, a perfect thing to do at the time of a Bat Mitzvah.

4: Genesis Land Camel Rides & Desert Dinner:

Experience and partake in the story of Genesis! At Genesis Land, we can meet Eliezer, Abraham’s servant, who will welcome you aboard his camels taking you to Abraham’s tent where you will enjoy Biblical hospitality in the midst of the Negev Desert. You can meet Joseph and his two brothers just before they throw him into the pit, witness the matchmaking of Isaac and Rivkah by Eliezer, and experience many other familiar stories from the Bible. You can even stay overnight in the desert in style if you like.

5: Otzar HaStam Scribe Center in Tzfat:

The Otzar HaStam visitors center in Tzfat is the only one of its kind in the world. It opens a window to the fascinating world of “STaM” – the ancient art and tradition of the Jewish Scribes, writing the Sefer Torah (Torah scroll), Tefillin and Mezuzah.

Board the moving seats and embark on a fascinating journey: Learn the mysteries of the holy letters of the Hebrew alphabet, starting with… Creation, on to Mount Sinai, and right up to our own day! Meet a hologramic scribe living in ancient Egypt. Watch a 3D presentation about the process & secrets of parchment and then, on a giant 180-degrees screen, see an amazing presentation, celebrating the annual cycle of Jewish life. Don’t miss the Trivia Game Show and the Scribe’s Workshop,where you will meet a real scribe and – with real feather-quill and parchment – will try out writing for yourselves!

6: Friday Night at the Western Wall & Old City Shabbat Dinner

The Western Wall, the last remaining wall of the Temple in Jerusalem, is the holiest place in the world for Jews. Experiencing this on Friday nights, as Shabbat begins, is somewhat magical. In a typical week, this is the busiest time to go to the wall, and the magical tunes of the many hundreds of religious Jews who come to welcome the Sabbath can be heard for some distance around. This unique experience can be enhanced even further with an Old City Shabbat Dinner experience whereby you will be able to enjoy Friday Night in the hospitality with a Jewish family living within the Old City!

7: Banias Waterfalls Nature Walk:

A quiet walk is always a great way to spend time with the family. Whilst Israel is criss-crossed with hiking trails, the Banias Waterfalls Nature Walk is one of the most special passing through the shaded forests which pass by the cool, refreshing waters of the iconic Banias waterfall in Israel’s Golan Heights region. This will surely be one of those (many!) magical moments on your Israel tour where everything in the world seems just right.

8: Kfar Kedem Talmudic Village: Donkey Rides & Pita Baking:

In the Galilean Hills lies Kfar Kedem, a recreated village originally dating from, and mentioned in, the Talmud. Great for kids, this village brings the Bible to life with the opportunity to dress up, ride donkeys, and even bake pita bread. Kfar Kedem is a unique Israel travel attraction that might not be for everybody, but is certainly somewhere that nobody would forget.

9: Jerusalem Old City Ramparts Walk:

The walls of Jerusalem’s Old City were rebuilt in 1538 by Sultan Suleiman the Magnificent and rise up to fifteen meters above the windy lanes, stone houses, and places of worship below. Two sections of wall can be explored in person providing an adventure through which visitors are rewarded with a panoramic view across the rooftops of the Old City and beyond. From up above, it becomes far easier to understand the development and layout of the Old City.

10: Temple Mount Sifting Project:

Take part in the first ever archaeological project examining finds from the Temple Mount, the holiest spot in the world for Jews, and also holy for Muslims and Christians. Following a botched construction project in the 1990’s in which earth was unsympathetically dumped in the Kidron Valley, the Temple Mount Sifting Project was established to literally sift through in order to identify archaeological artefacts. The process has been ongoing since 2004, and is reliant upon the help of volunteers, so why not take a day on your Israel trip to help in an important project which will undoubtedly be educational, fun, and deeply meaningful.