Winter Fun in the Holy City

Over the summer in Jerusalem, there is an abundance of festivals, concerts and other fun to be had in and around the Holy City but as the winter sets in and the city empties of tourists, there are still some fun things to look forward to.

Jerusalem Knights in the Old City

Taking place over 4 Thursday evenings on October 18, 25, November 1 and 8, 2012, the Jerusalem Knights in the Old City returns for a 3rd year.

Wander the streets and alley ways of the Christian Quarter and discover knights, princesses, dragons and other medieval characters.  Performances include flame throwers, sword fights, medieval dancing and other weird and wonderful acts.  This year the Festival is taking place in conjunction with artists from the Venice Festival.  Admission is free, for more information, click here.

Open House Jerusalem 2012

Also called “Houses from Within”, this event is every voyeur’s dream and is being held over the weekend of 25-27 October, 2012.  It will feature over 100 interesting public buildings, historical monuments and unique homes.  The event this year seems to be less focused on architecture and private homes and more on tours of neighborhoods and historical sites.  The weekend allows people to explore the hidden gems of the holy city from ancient ruins to contemporary buildings.

Sites on the outskirts of the city include a tour of the excavation site for the train tunnel into Jerusalem, the ancient village of Lifta and a house in a cave in Motza.

The Bishop`s Residence

In the center of town, you can see an exhibition of Anna’s Vienna at Ticho House, visit the Jerusalem Robbers Gallery on Rehov Yafo and The Bishop`s Residence on Rehov HaNevi`im.

Heading into East Jerusalem you can visit the Rockefeller Archaeological Museum, take a tour From Damascus Gate to Herod`s Gate or discover the Burial Caves and Monuments on the Mount of Olives.

Zedekiah’s Cave

Old City sites include The Austrian Hospice in the Christian Quarter, Rabbi Getz`s House in the Jewish Quarter and a visit to Zedekiah’s Cave under the Muslim Quarter.

Heading west, take a tour of the unopened Waldorf Astoria Palace Hotel with the site foreman (reservation required) or the nearby Hebrew Union College.

There are various sites to visit in and around the Israel Museum and Givat Ram campus as well as the Ein Kerem area.

This year the event start on the Thursday and as well as additional tours during the day, there are also interesting night tours like Nighttime in Mahane Yehuda and Ghost Tour: Alternative Culture in Deserted Houses.

Full information on all the open houses can be found here.


The Hamshushalayim events begin on December 6, 2012 will continue for four weekends in December.  Special events take place all over the city including street theater and guided tours.    Many of the city’s museums and other tourist sites are open to the public, free of charge until late at night.

Many of the city’s restaurants offer reduced priced set menus and there are also package weekend deals at hotels.  The website has not yet been update with this year’s schedule but keep checking here.


3 thoughts on “Winter Fun in the Holy City

  1. Pingback: Open House Jerusalem 2012 | singleintheholycity

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