Israel marathon madness: the best winter races

Put that fall training to the test with these winter 2018 marathons spanning the country from north to south

© Yoav Lavi
By Jennifer Greenberg |

When it comes to outdoor fitness, Israeli’s take their exercise seriously. While in the rest of the world, fitness buffs are forced indoors to stuffy gyms and tiny gymnasium tracks at the first sign of flurries, in Israel, running season is a year-long activity. Leading a healthy lifestyle is important in the Middle East (hence the various vegan restaurants), and the variety of fresh fruits and vegetables offered in its markets make eating well a cinch; but, that’s only half the battle. Stay in shape with our list of Israel marathons and races from north to south, January to March. From Israman’s trying triathlon to Ein Gedi’s family-fun 2k run, there’s a race out their for all ages and fitness levels.

The running room – Israel marathons this winter

tiberias marathon
© PR

Tiberias International Winner Marathon – Jan 5

It’s only fitting that Israel’s first ever marathon event is also the first of 2018. Kick off the marathon season with the lowest full marathon on Earth by celebrating its 41st anniversary the best way possible: to run in it. The course will keep you on your toes as it traces the Sea of Galilee shoreline and dips into the Jordan Valley.

© Zalem Oti

Israman Eilat – Jan 24-27

While Midburn is Israel’s answer to Burning Man, Israman is Israel’s answer to Iron Man. Among one of the toughest triathlons to date, this Eilat Ironman will test how ready you are to join the I.D.F. or how fitthe I.D.F.has truly made you. Swim, bike and run through 226 km of course or opt for the half-triathlon; either way, you’re in for a challenge.

Tel Aviv Marathon 2015
© Gilad Kavalerchik

Tel Aviv Samsung Marathon – Feb 23

Yet another citywide celebration for the nonstop party city, the Tel Aviv Samsung Marathon brings tens of thousands of participants to the Metropolitan Mecca for a beautiful beachside run along the Mediterranean shoreline. Expect more courses, promotional items, finish line parties and free swag than ever before this 2018.

jerusalem marathon
© Gregory Lifshits

International Jerusalem Winner Marathon – Mar 9

With courses selected specially to recount Jerusalem’s complex narrative, thishistorically rich race challenges both the body and themind. Now in its 8th season, the annual event will include several tracks, from a full marathon for elite runners to 5 and 10ks, to an 800 m community race. Join the 30, 000 post-Purim participants this spring.

Ein Gedi experience
© PR

Ein Gedi Experience – Mar 17

This event’s popularity can be explained by the range of options tailoring to every runner, including a big 30k,a half marathon, 10k runs and walks, a short 2k run and a family race. Throw in Masada and the scenic Dead Sea coastal view in the background and the Ein Gedi organizers dare you to come up with a valid excusenot to join in on the fun.

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