Languages:
Follow us on facebook

Northern Israel - Annual events


Information about Haifa | Places to visit | Culture & Leisure | Annual events | Hotels | Useful links


The North of Israel offers visitors a rich array of events and festivals throughout the year that highlight its unique cultural identity and history. Although there are plenty of events throughout the year in Northern Israel, We try to choose for you the top of them.
Click the events and festival links below for further information.

January | February | March | April | May | June | July | August | September | October | November | December

January


Tiberias Marathon

The International Tiberias Marathon is considered to be one of the oldest marathons in the world. The Tiberias Marathon usually takes place on January. The Tiberias Marathon has grown from under 100 to over 1,000 participants with runners representing 20 countries. The course of the marathon is flat and fast, allowing participants to achieve outstanding results and personal bests. The out and back course takes runners through the scenic south side of the Sea of Galilee, the world's lowest fresh-water lake. The start/finish is located in the heart of Tiberias.

Festival of Tastes in the Valleys

The annual Festival of Tastes in the Valleys (since 2005) promises a unique culinary fiesta. It suggests continues fiesta of food and tastes. During the festival's days, many restaurants in the Galilee and in the Valleys suggest choice of unique menus and gourmet meals in surprise prices. In addition, diverse food events are held (not in restaurants), among it: chefs competitions, open houses that suggests local cooked food, tours, chef’s workshops, lectures and more.

February


British Film Festival

The British Film Festival is returning to Israel with a programme of some of the most talked about British films of the year. The Festival - the flagship arts event of the British Council in Israel - will feature Ralph Fiennes' directorial debut, 'Coriolanus', Paddy Considine's 'Tyrannosaur' - one of the biggest Sundance Festival winners of 2011 and 'Perfect Sense' starring Ewan McGregor and Eva Green. For ten days in the middle of the month the Rosh Pina and Haifa Cinematheques show a wide variety of British films which were released in the previous year.

March


Purim in Haifa

this is Israel’s equivalent of Halloween for people of all ages. Adults and children alike put on outrageous costumes and party in their own respective ways. The parties often go on for 3 days or more right in the middle of the month.
Tsu BaHutz, Pourim carnival in the streets, with live music, costumes, colors and activities for young and old. Taking place in Merkaz HaCarmel, Haifa. Besides this there is also the traditional Ad Lo Yada, the parade begins at Oren HaCarmel- Nesher with street artists, attractions and costume contest.

April


French Film Festival

the Haifa Cinematheque puts on this week long film festival dedicated to the latest and greatest pieces of cinematic art to come out of France.

Ein Gev Festival

Ein Gev festival takes place every year in the intermediate days of Passover since 1990 in Kibbutz Ein Gev, Sea if Galilee (Kineret lake). The three days festival on the lake with Tens of bands and choirs participate in a unique vocalic music meeting based totally on Hebrew singing. For more information about the festival you can also visit the old kibbuts website (Hebrew).

Passover

this is one of the most important holidays in the Jewish calendar, and one of the longest. It is a holiday celebrating liberty. In particular, the time when the Jews fled Egypt and made their way through the dessert to the land of Israel. Since this is a family oriented holiday, almost every shop in the country will be closed on the first day of Passover, though some restaurants remain open for the tourists. During the 7 days of Passover in the middle of the month, you are not supposed to eat bread. Only matzo is allowed, in memory of the flight of the Jews. This is a great time to visit, as spirits are high and festivities abound.

Mimouna

this traditional North African holiday falls at the very end of Passover and focuses on the art of hospitality. The locals make vast amounts of delicious Moroccan food on the night of Mimouna and leave their doors open in invitation to any stranger who wishes to join the celebration. The next day sees a traditional outdoor barbeque, and again, the food is offered freely to anyone passing by.

May


"First Fruits" Wine and Cheese Tasting Festival

This festival is held during the months of May-June when wineries, wines and foodstuffs of the Land of Israel are presented. Wine and food lovers will enjoy the quality products highlighted by many wineries, starting from garage wineries and boutiques, to the largest leading wineries in the country, in addition to booths of boutique cheese makers, chocolatiers, olive oil, and wine accessories. The Festival combines a culinary experience with workshops and lectures given by leading professionals in the wine and cheese industry, and with films from the gastronomical world. The main objective is to promote wine culture in Israel in general, and in Haifa and the north in particular.

Jacob's Ladder Folk Festival - Kinneret

Jacob's Ladder Folk Festival is a unique musical and social event for lovers of all aspects of folk music from Bluegrass to World music, from Irish jigs to Country Rock, from Blues to Renaissance. This annual international festival usually takes place in May. Beginning on Thursday evening and continuing until late afternoon on Saturday, it includes activities for all the family on six different stages or activity centers.

Student Day of the University of Haifa

Student day in Israel is held usually close to the end of May. University of Haifa provides a day of many various activities for students, from free tours, open markets, free entrance to many places and museums and many concerts. Above all these there is the main concert which includes performances of many famous Israeli and world artists.

Israel Indigo Festival

Indigo Festival promises an unforgettable experience of music, dance, friendship and love. On three stages the visitors can enjoy challenged world music played by guest bands from overseas. The event is held in open air in a shadowed camping area with children activities, workshops and surprising presentations. The Festival takes place in the Kinneret.

Independence Day

as in every country, this is a day full of food, drink, celebration and fireworks. On May 3rd, hundreds of kids run amok with plastic hammers, which are symbols of their patriotism. Party people will find lots of special events at the city’s nightclubs on the eve of the 2nd. On the day itself, every person in the country settles down outside and cooks a barbeque, or Al-haesh, as it’s called in Hebrew.

June


Shavuot

the charming Jewish holiday which celebrates harvest time falls at the beginning of the month. It focuses on nature and it’s customary to wear white clothing and eat lots of fruit and cheese. Children can often be seen wearing little wreathes of flowers on their heads as they trot off to school.

Sunbeat Music Festival

The Sunbeat Festival will take place at Kibbutz Alonim in the Lower Galilee. The gates open at 3pm and the festival ends at 11.30pm. The festival presented to its mostly Israeli audience some of the most energetic world music acts from Israel and beyond. Split into three events, taking place at 6 week intervals throughout the summer, festival-goers head to the beautiful setting of Israel’s Lower Galilee for some fine music. The festival has quickly become known for its warm, positive & open minded crowd who originate from Israel and beyond.

In the Paths of Wine

A celebration of wine in Galilee, Golan and Valleys! The region of Galilee, Golan and the Valleys is a region of vineyards and wineries for hundreds of years. The Paths of Wine events celebrate the region's richness and products and are dedicated to the love of wine. During the festival the public is invited to tour, celebrate, enjoy and toast Israeli authentic wine glasses. The festival is taking place from May till mid of June in Rosh Pina.

Healing Music Festival

The Healing Music Festival is an exciting music event in Duga Beach on the Sea of Galilee. The festival is three days of music frequencies and sound celebration The festival will host many artists playing live shows on stage off stage and in jam sessions with the crowed.

Maestro Festival in Ein Hod

The 'Maestro Festival in Ein Hod' which takes place on June since 2008, offers music events performed by some of Israel's top musicians and will include: chamber concerts, original Israeli pieces, dialogue between contemporary and classic music, concerts and musical plays for children and parents and for all ages, as well as a wide variety of music and dance performances which is open to the general public.

Laughter Festival

Once a year, in Givat Haviva, Israel's laughter yoga leaders offer a 3 day festival with laughter, humor, dancing and other fun activities. Beside the colorful program you can enjoy the pool, the chai (tea) shop or a good massage. Special program for children. Accomodation in tents or airconditioned rooms. The laughter festival is an excellent opportunity to meet the Israeli people in a most positive way.

July


Voice of Music Festival

Organized showing Voice of Music Festival that is held in Kfar Blum in the Upper Galilee, presents chamber music concerts played by the best Israeli artists together with leading artists from overseas. In addition to the main festival's events, another festival is held - Voice of Music Festival for Children which is an assembly of unique musical events dedicated for the young guests.

Cinemania

Organized showing of movies during the summer months for the public at large, on the square at Hecht Park. The event is free and taking place usually between July and August.

The Circassian Festival

The Cherkasy (Circassian) community holds an authentic traditional fiesta that presents its reach culture. Folklore events of singing, dance and culinary take place in the festival. In addition to the musical and culture events, the visitor can enjoy the hospitality, the traditional welcome and the authentic taste of the Cherkasy food. During the week of the festival that take place in the villages Rechania and Kfar Kama, in addition to the festival’s events, the visitors can enjoy workshops for children, dance, hiking, travel in horse carriages, visit in the Cherkasy tradition museum in Kfar Kama. For more information about the festival you can also check the North Tourism Center website.

Osho Festival

The annual Osho Festival, since 2008 in Givat Haviva, has become a tradition. It has become known as a unique concept of combining deep, quality workshops during the day with a full-on celebration festival at night. The workshops are guided by the best instructors from Israel and guests from abroad.

The Maccabiah

The Maccabiah is an international Jewish athletic event, held in Israel every four years under the auspices of the Maccabi Federation, affiliated with the Maccabi World Union. The third Maccabiah, scheduled for 1938, was delayed until 1950 due to the rise of Nazism in Europe and the outbreak of the Second World War. The Maccabiah has been a quadrennial event since 1957. Maccabiah is open to Jewish athletes as well as Israeli athletes regardless of religion.

August


International Klezmer Festival - Tzfat

Tens of thousands of international and local visitors are attending every year to the International Klezmer Festival in Tzfat, the biggest festival of Jewish soul music in the world that is since 1987 in Tzfat. The Klezmer Festival is no doubt one of the biggest events in the Israeli cultural calendar. Numerous unique musical performances are given by the best Klezmer musicians from Israel who perform with other international Klezmer greats. Stages are set up in the old historical alleys of Tzfat which lend a special atmosphere to the festival.

Karmiel Dance Festival

A yearly event since 1988. The festival is usually held for 3 days and nights in July, and includes dance performances, workshops, and open dance sessions. The festival began as a celebration of Israeli folk dance, but today it features many different dance forms from all around the globe, and attracts thousands of dancers and hundreds of thousands of spectators from many countries.

Puppet Festival in Haifa

This festival has been taking place every year at the end of August since 2005. The main activity is held in Haifa Auditorium in Central Carmel, where children's performances, puppet shows and outdoor events are held for free, as well as an exhibition of masterpiece artistic puppets. Other artists (puppet makers and designers) from all over the country present their puppets that are made of different sizes, using different materials and diverse techniques.

Be'er City Festival in Haifa

This festival takes place every year during the last week of August on Students Beach, including performances by artists and, of course, beer and food booths. Each year tens of thousands of people attend the Festival, enjoying quality beers from Israel and all over the world and celebrating with the country's leading music artists.

Among the Vineyards Festival

Among the Vineyards (Bein HaKramim) Festival is held every year on the Jewish Love Holiday (15th of Av). The festival is known as one of the attractive summer festivals in Israel. Various music shows performed by the best Israeli artists and bands take place in the festival since 2007. In addition to the music shows the visitors can enjoy guided tours and tastes in the Galilee Vineyards, rural food in the colorful farmer fair and more. The events are held in number of villages in Merom HaGalil Regional Council (Upper Galilee).

Keshet Eilon - Violin and String Festival

Keshet Eilon Music Center holds, every year, a stringed instruments festival. The concerts are performed by chamber ensembles including major teachers who play together with gifted talent young artists. In addition to the concerts, there are master classes led by well-known artists.

September


Haifa International Film Festival

The Haifa International Film Festival is the city’s most anticipated annual event. Attracting directors, cinematographers and actors from all around the world, Haifa’s film festival takes place every October, timed to correspond with the Jewish holiday of Sukkot. The awards given are very prestigious in the industry and competition is stiff – all in all the festival screens over 200 films.

The Cross Kinneret Swim

A long-established tradition, the Cross Kinneret (Sea of Galilee) Swim has been held annually since 1953. The largest amateur sports event in Israel, it includes amateur heats as well as two competitive award heats held under the supervision of the Israel Swimming Association. The swim is among the world's 100 major open-water swimming events. The event takes place usually on September. For more information visit the officail website (Hebrew)

Renaissance Festival

The annual Renaissance Festival during Sukkoth ( on September or October ), takes place in the National Park of Yechiam Castle in the west Galilee. The visitors can enjoy various concerts of ancient music played by local and guest musicians and compositions, choirs singing and other activities. In addition the musical shows, it is possible to enjoy a great variety of events like workshops, street performances, guided tours in the castle, experiencing ancient crafts, hearing stories and more. For more information call: +972-4-9521175

Wood Carving Festival - Derech Ha'Etz

"Wood Way" festival takes place in Shadmot-Dvora during Sukkoth. It's a creative festival dedicated to sculpture and woodcarving. The visitors can enjoy meeting and observing the work of the best carving artists. Children are allowed to build figures and objects from wood using various creative methods. In the park large wood labyrinth, picnic areas, wooden amusement devices and more surprises.

Rosh HaShanah

Rosh HaShanah (Jewish New Year) is one of the most important religious day of the Jewish year. It is a day of celebrating the new Jewish year, accouring to the Jewish tradition the day is counted since the birth day of Adam (Genesis). There is a special reverent atmosphere around the country as people wear white and go to synagogues.

October


Acco (Akko) Festival of Alternative Israeli Theatre

Just up the road from the Haifa Film Festival is the Acco Festival of Alternative Israeli Theatre. This well known and large theatre festival is now in its 30th year. There are shows, street theatre and the chance to enjoy art and Acco (Akko) (a very special historic and cultural town with stunning views over the port and the fortress.) The festival runs usually on October during the Holiday of Sukkot.

Olive festival

The olive Product Festival will be held after Succoth. During the festival the Israeli olive conference will be held for the first time with the cooperation of Tel Hai College. The olive product festival sponsored by the Authority for the Development of Galilee and the olive council will take place during the olive picking season in Oectober until mid December all over Galilee, Golan and valleys.

Paprika Festival in Spicy Way Farm

Every year, in the intermediate days of Sukkoth, Spicy Way Farm in Beit-Lechem-Haglilit (Near Haifa) holds a fiesta of tastes and colors. The visitors can participate in creation and food workshops focused on the red pepper known as Paprika, guided tours in the Paprika fields, tastes of food based on Paprika and more. The festival is aimed for the whole family. Entrance is free of charge.

Harmonica and Guitar Festival

Harmonica and Guitar Festival promises to all music lovers a unique culture experience. The festival is held in the open air with the unique atmosphere of the national park Beit-She'arim (Near Nahalal). The most known harmonica players play in a various compositions and various styles, folklore songs, blues, classic and country music.

Round Western Galilee bike tour

The annual Round Western Galilee bike tour takes place on October in Rosh Hanikra. The event offers various routes for the whole family: a 68 KM (42.5 Miles) round road route and a 26 KM (16.25 Miles) road route. There are also routes for children and families. In addition, a variety of activities will take place at the site such as arts and crafts workshops for children, food stands, massage tents and free use of the cable cars. You are invited to take this wonderful opportunity to enjoy the magical scenery of the Western Galilee, and experience the rich cultural and creative life of the region.

She'an Nights Festival

She'an Nights Festival is held every year in the intermediate days of Sukoth in Beit She'an. Three evening shows are raised in the old Roman Theater in the Beit She'an National Park. In addition, every afternoon the festival holds various free events like: juggling, creation workshops, food and handmade crafts, happening and children's activities and more. The festival's program, lineup information is present in the Beit She'an's municipality website (Hebrew).

Yom Kippur

Yom Kippur (Day of Atonement) is the most important religious day of the year for Jews. It is a day of fasting and to ask for forgiveness. There is a special reverent atmosphere around the city as people wear white and ponder over their deeds of the past year. The hotels will still serve food, but literally everything else all over Israel shuts down on this day.

Sukkot

this important holiday is another harvest festival which has been celebrated since biblical times. During this 7 day holiday, it is tradition to build a tent made from palm leaves and white sheets. Children decorate the interior with colourful paper art and the whole family is supposed to eat and sleep in the Sukka throughout the week. Sukkoth is one of the most eventful holidays, with dozens of festivals and interesting cultural events taking place all over the country.

November


Haifa Flute Festival

The arts are given another moment in the spotlight at the Haifa Flute Festival , celebrating Israel’s most talented flautists as they play classical music from around the world.

Biking around Kinneret

Biking around the kinneret is one of the biggest annual cycling event in Israel since 1977. The event is taking place usually on November and every year has thousands of participants. For more information and reservations call 04-6757630 /1 or visit the website (Hebrew).

The Hula Valley Bird Festival

It is common knowledge among bird lovers that the Hula Valley in Northern Israel is one of the most important stopover and wintering sites for southbound migrants through the Great Rift Valley. It is here that complete populations of birds stop to “refuel” before reaching the desert strip to the south. The region serves as a migration flyway for thousands of Common Cranes, White Pelicans, Ducks, Waders and Passerines every year. Over 300 species are seen here annually including some of the rarest European birds of prey. Species like Greater Spotted and Eastern Imperial Eagles, Pallid Harrier, Long-legged Buzzard and more winter in the valley and can be easily found with patience.

Dona Gracia Festival

Dona Gracia's Festival takes its visitors to the 16 century. This event raises, every year, the story of the Jewish leader Dona Gracia, a daughter to the Marrano who was born in 1510 in Lisbon Portugal. Dona Gracia who was married to a wealthy banker was very active in saving Jews who were distress only because they were Jews. One of her significant activities was to rent the city Tiberias (in Israel) from the Turkish Sultan and turn it to a shelter for Jews. The event is commemorated, among other, in Dona Gracia Museum in Tiberias.

December


Ta'am Kinneret Food Festival!

The Ta'am Kinneret Festival (Taste the Sea of Galilee) is a great opportunity to indulge in some of the culinary delights of the area - and there are plenty! The Festival runs in December during the holiday of Chanukah. For more details, call 04-6752727 or see the main site (Hebrew only)

Jacob's Ladder Folk Festival - Kinneret

Jacob's Ladder Folk Festival is a unique musical and social event for lovers of all aspects of folk music from Bluegrass to World music, from Irish jigs to Country Rock, from Blues to Renaissance. The festival usually takes place in May. But more intimate than the Spring Festival, this relatively new event, held for the first time in 2004, is a cozy Hotel Weekend of great live music and Jacob's Ladder style fun held at Nof Ginosar in December. Most activities take place inside the main building and sports hall. The Winter Weekend includes concerts, sessions, singing, dancing, a variety of workshops, children's activities and Crafts Fair.

Festival Haifa

The festival, now in its 16th year, takes place in Haifa's mixed Arab-Jewish Wadi Nisnas neighborhood during the holiday season of Hanukkah, Christmas and Eid al-Adha, celebrating the three festivals and the spirit of good neighborly relations that characterizes the mixed city. The festival is produced by the Haifa municipality and Gefen House (a Jewish-Arab center in Haifa) in cooperation with the residents committee of the Wadi Nisnas neighborhood.​​

Hanukkah

this Jewish holiday serves a similar function as Christmas does for Christians. A favorite of children, Hanukkah is actually the celebration of a miracle. When the Israelis recaptured the Temple from the Greeks, they had only one small vessel of oil left to light the temple. Yet somehow this tiny amount lasted for 8 days until more oil could be made. Thus, the holiday’s main focus is on light and oil and the return of power to the Israeli people. During these 8 days, Northern Israel offers many activities and parties for kids and adults.

Sylvester Eve

New Years Eve in Israel has become bigger and bigger in recent years, and whilst not officially celebrated, and there are now hundreds of New Years Eve parties across Israel, as well as many other special events, which cater to all musical, cultural, and social tastes. New Years in Israel is known as Sylvester, and parties are known as Sylvester parties. From the bustling Sylvester parties in Northern Israel's many nightclubs to special concerts and local events, if you want to see in the New Year in Israel, you will find a celebration for you.

Holiday of Holidays Festival

The Holiday of Holidays is celebrated, every year, on the weekends of December, from Thursday to Saturday. The colorful events mark the tolerance and unity of the three monotheistic religions (Judaism, Christianity and Islam). The visitors can enjoy various activities as guided tours, exhibitions, street parties and performances, fairs, shows and concerts. The events that are held in Wadi Nisnas in Haifa close to Christmas and Hanukkah leave the visitor a wonderful cultural experience of winter. .

Christmas in Nazareth

Among all Christmas events in Nazareth that are held every year, the visitors can enjoy colorful Christmas market that suggests typical decorations and presents for the holiday. The decorated and lightening stands are opened from late morning till late evening. The stands are located from Mary's well square, that protrudes with a lighted Christmas tree, along the near by streets till the old city. In addition, a festival with street performances for children and the whole family takes place.










Home About us Contact us
About Israel History of Israel Geography of Israel Demography of Israel Israeli Government Israeli Economy
Main cities Jerusalem Tel Aviv Northern Israel Southern Israel
Places to visit in Jerusalem Places to visit in the Center of Israel Places to visit in Northern Israel Places to visit in Southern Israel
Culture & leisure in Jerusalem Culture & leisure in the Center of Israel Culture & leisure in Northern Israel Culture & leisure in Southern Israel
Annual events in Jerusalem Annual events in the Center of Israel Annual events in Northern Israel Annual events in Southern Israel
All hotels in Jerusalem All hotels in the Center of Israel All Hotels in Northern Israel All hotels in Southern Israel
Useful links Useful links Useful links Useful links
Useful Israeli websites Governmental websites Israeli newspapers online Israeli radio Medical Centers Israeli dating sites
Israeli TV Israeli Flat hunting
Tourism Popular places to visit Historical and biblical sites All hotels in Israel All Tour guides in Israel Taglit (Birthright)
Useful links
Aliyah Aliyah from North America Aliyah from South America Aliyah from Europe Aliyah from South Africa Aliyah from Australia and N.Zealand
Aliyah from Ethiopia Aliyah from India Aliyah from Arab Countries
Studies in Israel Ulpan Universities Jewish studies Other studies
Ulpan Programs Overseas programs Online Jeiwsh studies High School studies in israel
All Ulpanim in Israel Academic colleges Advance studies in Israel
Online Hebrew learning
Volunteer Long term volunteering Military service Kibbutz volunteering List of all Kibbutzim
Short term volunteering IDF volunteering programs Kibbutz programs National service
Conversion Orthodox conversion Conservative conversion Reform conversion Conversion programs in Israel Theological questions
Useful links


Copyright © 2011 www.israelforus.com,  All Rights Reserved.