Jerusalem With Kids guide contains a list of 23 POI, including places you can visit on a rainy day, and a Saturday. Let’s begin!
How It All Started
My wife loves Machane Yehuda Market and the surrounding area (Nachlaot). And one of the best times to visit the market is on a Friday morning. On Fridays, many people go to the market to buy fresh goods before Saturday. Therefore, this is reasonably the busiest day with the best produce.
To be early at the market on a Friday morning, we decided to take one night in a nearby hotel. This way, we extended our trip to Thursday, and half a day on Friday. Furthermore, since we were traveling with our daughter (she is in the first grade), we started to look for new attractions for children. And this is how the idea for Jerusalem with Kids post was born.
Indoors Attractions For Rainy / Hot Days
Our trip was during the winter, and we ordered the hotel for about a month in advance. But several days before the planned vacation, the weather forecasts predicted heavy rains, low temperatures, and even a possibility of snow. We also considered canceling the hotel, but we would lose most of the money. Thus we decided to continue according to the plan. But we had to look for indoor attractions. So here is the list of attractions for the rainy or very hot days.
- Bloomfield Science Museum is a great museum with a variety of hands-on exhibits and workshops for the whole family.
- Israel Museum is one of the best and the biggest museums in Israel. And if you are interested in archeology, ancient findings or Judaism then this definitely should be it. And though these topics do not sound child-friendly, it can be a good option for older kids.
- Hebrew Music Museum due to its tangible exponents, virtual reality exposition, and tablet for each visitor, can be a good fit for kids.
- The Museum For Islamic Art beyond numerous beautiful crafts offers workshops for both kids and adults.
Other POI In Bad Weather
- Western Wall Tunnels Tour is an excellent opportunity to see the underground world. But as we learned during Hanukkah Western Wall Tunnels Tour, this option is better suited for older kids, probably teenagers. Moreover, you will have to walk towards the Western Wall Tunnels entrance in the Old City. Thus, it suits less for days with heavy rains.
- Israel Aquarium is located near Jerusalem Biblical Zoo, but unlike the zoo, the whole aquarium complex is within one building. Moreover, nearby parking and train station make this attraction ideal for bad weather.
- Knesset – The Parliament Tours – there is a variety of tours and for all ages in the Knesset.
- Time Elevator shows Jerusalem’s historic turning points. That is done in via a movie with motion-based seating.
- Live the Bible is an atelier where you can take a picture of you and your family in a biblical scenery.
Outdoors – Attractions During Good Weather
And now let’s go over the places that you can visit with children in good weather.
- Jerusalem Biblical Zoo is one of my favorite zoos in Israel. And it is a lovely place for the whole family.
- The Ramparts Walk in Jerusalem offers a new and exciting way to see the old city. While walking in the old town may be dull for kids, I learned that walking on the walls is much more interesting for my daughter.
- Ein Yael Living Museum offers various workshops and demonstrations for kids that show how people lived two thousand years ago. We visited Ein Yael during Jerusalem Knights Festival.
- Night Experiences at the Tower Of David can be a great alternative. But, keep in mind that you will be outside. Thus, bring hot clothes when needed, and it is not suitable for rainy weather.
- The Jerusalem Botanical Gardens can be a good alternative for families that love nature.
- The City Of David offers different routes, but IMO most of them should be done in good weather. For instance, Archaeological Experience in the Emek Tzurim National Park preferably should be done while it is not too hot and not rainy. And walking in the water at Hezekiah’s Tunnel is an excellent attraction for warmer days.
- Jerusalem Bird Observatory is located between Knesset and Wohl Rose Park. Best time to visit it is during migration season, as most of the birds are not local. And during severe weather, most likely that you will not see anything.
- Ammunition Hill National Memorial Site offers tours for kids and adults.
- Machane Yehuda Market may not sound like something that is suitable for children. But if you convert the visit to a tasting tour, then most kids will love it.
- The Old City can be also a good alternative as long as you tell the kids good stories (at least this works in our case).
Though we did not leave the city, you can consider it. As not far from Jerusalem, you can find several POI for kids.
- Near Jerusalem, at Kibbutz Tzuba, you can find Kiftzuba Amusement Park. We visited it twice in recent years, and it is a lovely amusement park. It is not significant, but you can easily spend a half day there. Moreover, online coupons will make your visit much cheaper. Check various credit card clubs.
- Avshalom Cave Nature Reserve shows stunning Stalactites Cave not far from Beit Shemesh. Attending it will be interesting both for kids and adults.
- Beit Guvrin National Park also offers a visit to the underground world. And since most children and adults love exploring caves, this can be a good place for the whole family.
- Mini Israel Park is a miniature park. A place where children can discover all of Israel in just two hours.
Open On Saturday
Most of the museums that I mentioned above, as well as the zoo and the aquarium, are open on Saturdays. Moreover, all the “Further Away” attractions are open as well.
In the Mamilla mall, you can find different masterpieces from different artists. Most of these masterpieces are for sale and there is a phone number next to each one. I especially liked this sculpture:
So far, I listed many different options. And now, I will go over the places we did visit. Also, keep in mind that we visited Jerusalem many times before, thus decided to skip some of the indoor attractions.
We started Thursday morning with a visit to the Knesset – The Parliament Tours. And after the tour, we checked in to the hotel. As I mentioned, the hotel was at the Nachlaot neighborhood, and parking is very problematic in this area. Finding free parking is nearly impossible, and paid parking costs 18-25 NIS per hour. And for overnight parking, we used the one recommended by staff from our hotel, and the cost was 60 NIS per night (after 19 and till 9 AFAIR).
Graffiti at Nachlaot:
We left luggage at the hotel and went to the market for lunch. We picked one of our favorite places, the Hachapuria Georgian restaurant. I wrote about it and even photographed Khachapuri at my Machane Yehuda Market guide.
As we left the restaurant, the rain started to pick up. Thus we could not stay at the market. Instead, we headed to The Museum For Islamic Art (click the link to see my post). And when we ended this visit, it was quite late. So we returned to our hotel and went to Mahane Yehuda for dinner. There are many restaurants and pubs in this area, so you can easily find a place for a snack (at Machane Yehuda Market guide you can also find a list of restaurants).
We parked at the Mamilla mall, and as you walk through the mall, you can always find art. Usually, these are statues for sale.
We headed through the market to the Church Of The Holy Sepulchre.
Church of the Holy Sepulchre
Church Of The Holy Sepulchre may not seem like the best place when visiting Jerusalem with kids. But if you keep in mind that children and adults like stories, then you can turn a visit almost to any site interesting for kids.
We wanted to head to the Western Wall, but it started raining, so we decided to return to Mamilla parking and head home.
I hope this post gave you ideas about what places to visit in Jerusalem With Kids. And though attractions for children is not the first thing that comes to mind when you think about Jerusalem, there are many different options.
What are your favorite attractions when visiting Jerusalem With Kids? Tell us in the comments below.
That’s all for today, and I’ll see you in future travels!
Here are several resources that I created to help travelers:
- Israel Trip Planner is the page that will help you to create your perfect travel route.
- National Parks And Nature Reserves page lists and put all national parks on the map. There is also a top list, information about ticket types and campsites.
- If you are looking for things to do, here are the pages for Jerusalem, Tel Aviv, Haifa, Sea Of Galilee, and Makhtesh Ramon.
- Wondering what events are there in Israel? Here is the Events And Festivals By Season guide.
And if you have any questions then check out Useful Information For Tourists To Israel.