The best time to visit Israel

Updated: 12th June 2019

Spring flowers in Jerusalem - Israel - On The Go Tours
Spring flowers bloom outside Jerusalem's old city walls

Seasons and Weather

The winter months of November to March are the coldest in Israel with snow in the northern reaches of the Golan Heights, and occasional snow fall in Jerusalem. The coast experiences the heaviest rainfall at this time though temperatures in places like Eilat are reasonably pleasant still.

Jerusalem and other highland areas are splendid in the summer (June - August) when temperatures are high with balmy evenings, and little chance of rain. Tel Aviv and the far south of the country are usually several degrees warmer, making it the perfect place to soak up the sun beach side. If you plan on visiting the Dead Sea or Negev Desert be sure to pack a hat to protect you from the sun.

The seasons of spring (April and May) and autumn (September and October) are the best time to visit Israel when temperatures are pleasantly mild throughout the country. During these spring and autumn months pack clothes that you can wear in layers, so that whether sunny skies or cool weather you will always be prepared.

Thinking of visiting Israel? Download a copy of our Middle East and North Africa brochure for inspiration.

Climate | Jerusalem


JanFebMarAprMayJunJulAugSepOctNovDec
Temp Min °C66812151718191816128
Temp Max °C111215212527292928241814
Rainfall (mm)1331189324300001560105

Climate | Tel Aviv

JanFebMarAprMayJunJulAugSepOctNovDec
Temp Min °C9911141821242423191511
Temp Max °C171820242629313130282419
Rainfall (mm)10980371320051104487

Upcoming events

To help plan your visit to Israel, here's an overview of the festivals and events taking place over the next year. This is by no means an exhaustive list so if you are thinking of heading to Israel outside of these dates and want to know what's on, check out this comprehensive list.

2019:

August 28th - Jerusalem Beer Festival (Jerusalem)

2020:

May 29th-June 16th - Israel Festival (Jerusalem)
June 14th - Tel Aviv Pride (Tel Aviv)
July 16th-18th - Karmiel Dance Festival (Karmiel)
June 25th - White Night Tel Aviv (Tel Aviv)
August TBC - Klezmer Music Festival (Tzfat)

There's also a number of national holidays in Israel and on these dates many businesses and some tourist sites will close for the day so plan your visit accordingly.

Festivals and Events

Steeped in religious significance, Israel is home to numerous sites of historical and cultural significance to Jews and members of other religions. Yet Israel is far more than just an open-air history museum, as can be seen by vibrant cities like Tel Aviv that have their finger on the pulse and are embracing modernity at a spectacular rate. Israel is the perfect blend of the old and the new and its festivals fully reflect this attitude.

What is the Israel Festival?

Originally established as a music festival, the Israel Festival has now become the leading Israeli event of the year and is the country’s chance to showcase the hottest, freshest talent in a multitude of different disciplines. Dancers, musicians, actors and artists all take to the streets and stage to display their phenomenal skills, each contributing to the prestige of the festival and the excitement of the program.

What is White Night Tel Aviv?

Tel Aviv has so much to offer and is such a lively and bustling city that someone decided, why not keep the city open all night so people can enjoy it for even longer? Thus, the creation of White Night Tel Aviv came about. Shops, restaurants and historical points of interest stay open all night long with parties on every street corner across the city. Pulsing music will flow through the airwaves all night long as the city of Tel Aviv forgoes sleep for this exciting festival.

What is the Karmiel Dance Festival?

Once a year, Karmiel hosts one of Israel’s biggest dance festivals as 250,000 people from all over flock to witness the non-stop performances that take place over the course of three days. Showcases, workshops and competitions all make up the agenda for this lively festival with every genre imaginable finding its place somewhere in the program. Make your way to one of the venues for a visual treat, suitable for people of all ages and backgrounds.

What is the Klezmer Music Festival?

Held in the Old Jewish Quarter and the Artist Quarter of Tzfat, the Klezmer Music Festival lasts for three days with a program consisting of free performances that take place between 9pm and midnight. There are also workshops and jam sessions for those looking to learn a bit more about traditional forms of Jewish music. Bringing children along? Not to worry, the festival caters well to young ones with various activities on offer such as magic and storytelling shows and demonstrations of some of the unusual Klezmer instruments.

What is the Jerusalem Beer Festival?

With over 100 beers on offer, lovers of this marvellous tipple will be well provided for at this unique Israeli festival. International brewers will flock to Jerusalem during this event to hawk their produce, allowing the curious to taste before purchasing. The evenings will be filled with music by local and national artists, providing some entertainment to accompany the merry-making of the festival’s attendees.

When is Tel Aviv Pride?

Fast becoming one of the world’s top gay destinations, every year in June Tel Aviv hosts the most fabulous of pride celebrations complete with parties and performances, all dedicated to the LGBTQ community. At the end of a week of events, the pride parade takes place in an explosion of sound and colour. The Middle East might not be the most obvious place to embrace everything other than heterosexuality, but Tel Aviv Pride is sure to leave you breathless as you party into the night.

See Also

To help you plan your trip to Israel, take a look at our other handy resources:

Best Places to Visit - our top 10 destinations in Israel
Tourist Visas - what you need to know to enter Israel
Top Travel Tips - including info on money, health, food and shopping
Israel Video Lounge - a view of the Holy Land from behind the lens
Travel Alerts - latest updates on safety and security in Israel
Traveller Reviews - see what our passengers have to say

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