EIN YAEL Sukkot festival (photo credit: Ein Yael)
EIN YAEL Sukkot festival (photo credit: Ein Yael)


Sukkot: Fabulous family activities happening this holiday

Sukkot is a magical time to be in Jerusalem, when the streets come alive with concerts, festivals and special events. Hol Hamoed is the perfect time to explore museums, take a holiday-themed workshop, go to a theater show or a music concert, or any one of the special Sukkot events and festivals happening in and around the city.

Whatever you decide to do, I suggest you plan ahead and make reservations in advance. 

Sukkot events

❦ Hapoel Jerusalem basketball clinic with Tamir Goodman

Hapoel Jerusalem Basketball Club is hosting a basketball clinic at the YMCA with “Jewish Jordan” Tamir Goodman and some of the club’s best players. It’s open to the general public. Shoot some hoops, have your photo taken with the players, get signed autographs, buy club merchandise and sign up for your season tickets – all under one roof! 

When: Wednesday, October 12, from 11 a.m.-12 p.m.
Price: Free
Details: [email protected] 

❦ Birkat Kohanim – Western Wall

Thousands of people will come together to receive the priestly blessings from thousands of Kohanim. This event happens twice a year. The festivities end with a celebration in the Jewish Quarter.

When: Daily
Price: Wednesday, October 12, 9:30 a.m. and 10:30 a.m.
FIJ tip: Plan to walk into the Old City and to walk back. 

❦ Safra Square sukkah

Safra Square is home to the largest sukkah in Israel and is the main sukkah for the city of Jerusalem. The municipality hosts a Sukkot Festival with workshops for children, magicians and sensory artists, live concerts and an open house with Mayor Moshe Lion. 

 Safra Square sukkah (credit: JERUSALEM MUNICIPALITY) Safra Square sukkah (credit: JERUSALEM MUNICIPALITY)

When: Tuesday, October 11 to Friday, October 14 
Price: Free 

❦ Jerusalem March

This is an annual pilgrimage through the streets of Jerusalem. There are kids’ activities at Sacher Park from 10 a.m. to 4 p.m.

When: Thursday, October 13 at 3 p.m.
Price: Free

Concerts, shows & festivals

❦ Matan 35th Anniversary Gala Concert with Ishay Ribo

Matan, The Sadie Rennert Women’s Institute for Torah Studies, is celebrating its 35th anniversary milestone with a gala concert at the Jerusalem Theater, featuring popular singer and entertainer Ishay Ribo.

It’s a wonderful opportunity to toast Matan and mark its achievements with song and festivities.

When: Saturday, October 8 at 9 p.m.
Price: Tickets start at NIS 850
Details: [email protected] 

❦ ‘Hope – The Musical’ Jerusalem premiere

Hope is a matter of choice. The question is... whose? An original musical about people who have big dreams but are well and truly stuck! A musical drama with touches of comedy and nostalgia. It’s on for one night only at the Jerusalem Theater. 

When: Thursday, October 13 at 8:30 p.m. 
Price: Tickets start at NIS 115
Details: [email protected] 

❦ Spectacular sukkot at Mamilla & David Citadel hotels

This year, there is a biblical theme running through the five stunning sukkot at the Mamilla and David Citadel hotels. Hol Hamoed reservations are available to non-hotel guests at the Happy Fish and Veranda restaurants. You’ll need to pre-book. 

Kashrut: Veranda is Rav Rubin meat and shmita l’humra. Happy Fish is mehadrin.
When: Tuesday, October 11 to Thursday, October 14
Details: [email protected] & [email protected] 

❦ The Leket Sukkot street festival

Kol HaOt’s Sukkot street festival, Leket, is back at the Artists’ Colony. Live performances will weave through the colony, while participants are sent on a colorful treasure hunt through the artists’ studios seeking the Four Species used on Sukkot. There will be circus performances, mosaic workshops, plus a sukkah with more surprises for the whole family.

When: Wednesday, October 12, and Thursday, October 13 from 12 p.m.-5 p.m.
Price: Free
Details: [email protected] 

❦ Ein Yael Harvest Festival 

Ein Yael is holding its annual Harvest Festival over Sukkot. It’s a great way to experience the connection to nature, time and space.

The ticket price covers all the activities and workshops, which include gathering the summer crops in the sukkah, preserving the sweet fall fruits, weaving mats using lulav (palm branch) leaves, preparing for the winter rains, special activities at the beehive, and archaeological theatrical performances. There’s also a play corner for younger kids and a kosher sukkah on site.

When: Tuesday, October 11 toThursday, October 13 from 9 a.m.-4 p.m.
Price: NIS 45 (free for children under age three); 50% discount for disability cardholders
Details: [email protected]

❦ Meshek48 – Gush Etzion, Rosh Tzurim

David and Devorah Katz, founders of Pat BaMelach, have started a new venture called Meshek48. Their new space brings together artists and artisans focusing on the worlds of food, arts and culture. This Sukkot, they offer two workshops: a one-hour Bedazzled Focaccia workshop and a two-hour From Pita to Falafel workshop. 

When: Tuesday, October 11 at 10 a.m. and 2 p.m.
Price: Bedazzled Garden Focaccia workshop – NIS 100 per person. From Pita to Falafel workshop – NIS 130 per person. 
Details: [email protected] 

❦ Creative Crafts Café – Kfar Etzion, Gush Etzion

The Creative Crafts Café has relocated to a fabulous new indoor sit-down, air-conditioned location in Kfar Etzion. Dana and the team offer the same menu of arts and crafts activities for all the family, including glass mosaics, glass fusing, glass painting, tie-dye, Shrinky Dinks and slime-making. Booking required. 

Price: Starts at NIS 50 per person (depending on the activity)
When: Tuesday, October 11 to Friday, October 14 from 10 a.m.-4 p.m.
Details: [email protected] 

❦ Farm Festival at Bikurei Shiloh

There’s fun for all the family at Bikurei Shiloh’s special Harvest Festival. Harvest grapes and make grape juice, pickle your own olives, pick and eat raspberries, milk goats, try your hand at archery, workshops and more! Shmita tours and tractor and wagon tours at an additional cost.

When: Tuesday, October 11 to Thursday, October 13 at 10 a.m.-6 p.m.
Price: Children, NIS 46; adults, NIS 39
Details: [email protected] 

❦ Yvel factory tour – Mevaseret Zion 

Yvel invites you to enjoy a special tour of the world-renowned jewelry factory. Explore the Megemeria Craft Center with artistry demonstrations. Enjoy guided tours in English of the Megemeria School of Jewelry & Art and Yvel Design Center.

When: Daily, 10 a.m.-3 p.m. Booking required
Price: Free for tourists with passports; NIS 25 for locals.
Details: [email protected] 

❦ Bethlehem Road Festival

Celebrating the 100th anniversary of the Arnona-Talpiot neighborhood, there will be street performers, food stalls, live music, arts and crafts, workshops and more. The street will close to traffic and open to pedestrians to enjoy the festival.

When: Tuesday, October 11, from 5 p.m.
Price: Free 

Holiday-themed tours & workshops

❦ Jewish festival tours at the Israel Museum 

Learn about the Tishrei holidays: Rosh Hashanah, Yom Kippur, Sukkot and Simhat Torah through Jewish art and archaeology on a Tishrei tour of the Israel Museum with Nachliel Selavan, aka The Museum Guy. Explore the connections between the agriculture, history and Torah-readings of this special holiday-rich period of time.

When: Tuesday, October 11 at 10 a.m. and 12:30 p.m.
Price: Public Tour tickets start at NIS 50; Private Family Tour tickets start at NIS 580
Details: [email protected] 

❦ Honey Spoon Glassblowing Workshop

Learn to make your own glass honey spoon in honor of the holidays at a glassblowing and flame working workshop. Learn about the art of glassblowing and flame working from Yael, a Bezalel graduate. Pre-book the workshop. It’s very popular.

When: Tuesday, October 11 toThursday, October 13, at a time of your choice.
Price: NIS 600 per couple. Each additional participant is NIS 190.
Details: [email protected] 

❦ Time Elevator

Sukkot is one of the three pilgrimage festivals that saw Israelites visit ancient Jerusalem. Step back in time, with a visit to the newly reopened Time Elevator – an amazing multidimensional journey through the rich 3,000-year history of Jerusalem. Inside the Mamilla Mall. 

When: Daily. You choose the time.
Price: Tickets start at NIS 46
Details: [email protected] 

❦ United Hatzalah concert 

United Hatzalah’s Sukkot concert with Avraham Fried, Mordechai Shapiro and Lior Suchard at the Jerusalem International Convention Center. It’s sure to be a memorable event, raising money for a great cause. 

When: Thursday, October 13. Doors open 6:30 p.m., concert at 7 p.m.
Price: Tickets start at $120

❦ Shwekey at Sultan’s Pool

Yaakov Shwekey is coming to Jerusalem for one night only, at Sultan’s Pool, with a special guest appearance by Akiva. All proceeds to the Special Children’s Center. 

When: Wednesday, October 12. Doors open 7:15 p.m., concert at 8 p.m.
Price: Tickets start at $100 

Just Outside Jerusalem

❦ Kakadu Sukkot Festival – Eila Valley 

Choose from a variety of wooden art pieces to decorate, and artist Reut Shachar at Kakadu will make sure you take something special home: trays, bowls, cutting board, challah trays, runners, wooden mats, boxes and more. Reservations are required.

When: Tuesday, October 11 to Friday, October 14 at 10:30 a.m. or 12:30 p.m.
Price: NIS 50 per person (additional fee for place mats and floor mats)
Details: [email protected] 

❦ Moshav Country Fair – Moshav Mevo Modi’im 

This annual fair takes place in the moshav where Rabbi Shlomo Carlebach lived. There will be live music, entertainment, kids’ workshops, arts and crafts and lots of fun. 

When: Wednesday, October 12, starting at 11 a.m. till late.
Price: Adults, NIS 70; kids, NIS 50; family deals available.
Details: www.themoshavcountryfair.com

Now it’s up to you to choose which activities your family will enjoy. Whatever you do, you’ll be sure to have fun in Jerusalem this Sukkot! 

For a full listing of events in Jerusalem, visit the Fun In Jerusalem Calendar: www.funinjerusalem.com/sukkot

For a listing of our FUN Favorite activities that require advanced reservations: www.funinjerusalem.com/fun-favorite/

Joanna Shebson is the founder of Fun In Jerusalem (www.funinjerusalem.com). She lives in Jerusalem with her husband and three kids and loves to inspire family fun. [email protected]

Ronit Ansbacher is the content, sales manager at Fun In Jerusalem. She lives in Efrat with her husband and two kids and loves promoting all the fun stuff going on in and around Jerusalem. [email protected]

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