Jerusalem Summer is Festival Time

Jerusalem Summer is Festival Time

Summer in Jerusalem, Israel, means it is festival time.

“Dream Herzl” is being held this week at the Har Herzl Museum on Har Herzl.

Har Herzl Museum with actor dressed as Herzl

Would or could have Herzl ever dreamed of any of these?

Entrance to Botanical Gardens for Playmobil Jerusalem Israel summer

PlayMobil Festival at the Jerusalem Botanical Gardens is opening July 23.

New building at Botanical Gardens Jerusalem

The new center is getting closer to completion.

Jerusalem Israel Botanical Gardens wedding photos

Brides pose near the pond for wedding photos.

Summer 2018 pirate ship in Jerusalem Botanical Gardens

A PlayMobil pirate ship is ready for youngsters to climb.

Jerusalem Botanical Gardens sign for Playmobil summer event

The big sign is up, and grandmothers have arrived with young children, only to be told it is not open yet.

Children who live in Jerusalem from families with Yerushalayim discount cards can get in for free.

Will have to see if that is for the special summer festival also.

Jerusalem Theatre art display Ethiopian photos

Also free and open now are the galleries at the Jerusalem Theater. One foyer has black and white photos of Ethiopian Israelis.

Haredi art at Jerusalem Theater

Upstairs at the Henri Crown Auditorium is an exhibit called “Haready Made.”

Contemporary Jewish religious art of the Hamiklat, ArtShelter Gallery, is on display until July 7.

Outline Illustration and Word Festival in Jerusalem

The Outline Festival has 150 illustrators, animators, writers and poets, providing 15 exhibits in various locations.

Sign for Jerusalem Israel Iceland

Not free, but starting July 8, for the entire summer is IceLand.

Do you think Herzl would ever have imagined people would be ice skating in Jerusalem in August?

Performances and meetings in the park for children all summer in Jerusalem Israel

All summer, Jerusalem public parks will be hosting weekday events for children at 5:00 pm.

Rock, Paper and Scissors is a new exhibit opening at the at Tower of David Museum.

Haneviim Chazanut Festival in Jerusalem Israel

Three days of Chazanut, cantorial music, called HaNaviim, the Prophets, will be at Beit Avi Chai.

Then there is the Jerusalem Film Festival from July 26-August 5.

The annual Streetball Festival is the end of July.

Blood Moon over Jerusalem is on July 27 for Tu B’Av.

More than Herzl or the ancient prophets ever could have envisioned, is happening in Jerusalem.

However, today is July 4th.

Liberty Bell Park memorial for Yoni Netanyahu Jerusalem Israel

Entebbe and Yoni Netanyahu are remembered in Jerusalem’s Liberty Bell Park.

I decided to end with the US anthem from a special program honoring First Responders at the King David Hotel.

The program honored Israeli and US security, police, fire and EMT, all working together to make the world safer.

Best of Passover in Jerusalem

Best of Passover in Jerusalem

The Passover holiday in Jerusalem, Israel, is always a busy time with so much to do.

After days of cleaning and shopping, and a late night seder, what next?

This year I decided not to spend hours in the car along with millions of other Israelis going to lush camping sights and sandy beaches, but rather to stay home and explore what Jerusalem has to offer.

Now to share with you some of the best of Jerusalem for Passover this year 5778.

Where else to start, but with food.

Jerusalem Israel humus shop closed for Pesach

Some restaurants like this new humus place were closed tight for Passover.

Kosher for Pesach Holy Bagel and Shwarma in Old City for Pesach

But not to worry, in Jerusalem, there was an abundance of kosher for Passover places to eat. This Holy Bagel in the Old City is not only mehadrin kosher, but “KOSHER without fear of legumes!”

Pesach pizza and matza in Mamilla Mall for Pesach

With baskets of matza on the table, this potato crust pizza looked good enough to eat. People were standing in lines for seats to taste for themselves.

Pesach in Jerusalem food displayed in window for Pesach

Pizza, rolls, sandwiches, pies, cakes and more…one of the best places for Passover food is in Jerusalem, Israel.

Pesach crowd in Mamilla Mall in Jerusalem, Israel, with two Muslim women walking through the mall

Mamilla Mall was busy and crowded with local shoppers and international tourists, plus entertainment and performances for children.

Pesach in Jerusalem, people dressed in varied clothing

Another favorite was seeing the clothing in the Old City, with many dressed in their holiday finest, wearing every type of outfit imaginable.

View of Tower of David inside Citadel on spring day of Passover

With so many activities for families, it was hard to decide what to do first, as dozens of museums and sites were free for children. The Tower of David had families walking, touring, and climbing.

Ramparts walk in Jerusalem on Pesach

From the Tower of David you could see the Old City ramparts walk with tourists going along the top of the walls of the Old City.

Volunteers pouring water to give away to visitors to Old City on Pesach

Days were warm and the sun beat down midday. But volunteers were in several locations in Old City offering cups of water, free to all who walked by.

Menorah in Rova in front of Hurva Shul for construction of new elevator to Western Wall Kotel

The Golden Menorah was moved near the Hurva Synagogue, where tourists were busy taking photos.

Construction fence at site of new elevator for access to Kotel near steps where menorah had been before in Jewish Quarter

This menorah is a photo posted near where the gold one was located. The Western Wall elevator is to be constructed here.

Remember I said every type of clothing imaginable? How about a Betar uniform from the 1920’s?

Pesach crowd in Kotel plaza after Birkat Kohanim on Pesach

It was reported 100,000 people were at Birkat Kohanim, the Priestly Blessing, Monday morning.

Afternoon of Chol HaMoed Pesach at Kotel

In the afternoon and for most of the week, the Western Wall Plaza was still filled with families.

Visitors to Western Wall Plaza from Rova on afternoon of Chol HaMoed Pesach

All day long tens of thousands of people came and went from the Old City.

Visitors line up to go to Temple Mount on Passover afternoon

This line was not at the security entrance leading to the women’s section, but just a long line of tourists waiting to access the Temple Mount.

Pesach afternoon and egalitarian space at Western Wall was empty

The egalitarian section, however, was almost empty. On the right of this photo, if you look very closely, you can see children playing near the stones from the Second Temple.

While so many were in the Old City, other Jerusalem locations were also holiday destinations.

Gan Sacher on Pesach with people grilling and lounging

In Gan Sacher, Sacher Park, smoke filled the air with dozens of extended families grilling meat for large meals, with boxes of matza on the tables.

Passover in Jerusalem, Israel, in Gan Sacher

Children were playing as family members and friends were sitting and talking or playing sports.

Another extremely popular destination was the Jerusalem Botanical Gardens.

Botanical Gardens pond on Passover

Thousands of people wandered the grounds over Passover.

Pond lily in Jerusalem Botanical Gardens

I was fascinated by these flowers in the pond. There is so much beauty in what was formerly a garbage dump.

Jerusalem Botanical Gardens children's activity on Passover

There were planned and supervised activities for children,

Boy and girl looking at flowers in Jerusalem Botanical Gardens

as well as colorful flowers to capture their attention.

Jerusalem park on Pesach with people eating and grilling

Nayot Park was one of dozens of Jerusalem parks where grills were going, smoke was rising, and matza was on the table.

One parking spot is worth standing until your car arrives in Jerusalem on Passover

Driving in many locations took much longer than usual. Finding parking was not always easy. A free parking spot in a good location was worth saving.

There were varied musical events at night, too numerous to list.

Old places like Hansen House were full of activity.

So much was happening in Jerusalem this Passover week.

More photos: Old City HERE    Gan Sacher HERE   Botanical Gardens  HERE

I will end with a video of the Birkat Kohanim,

Pesach in Gan Sacher two little boys palying

and one of my favorite photos, of these young cousins getting to know each other at a Gan Sacher picnic.

Wishing all a good holiday and Shabbat Shalom