It’s raining, it’s pouring...and no one is swarming to the beaches in Israel. When the wet season storms into town, there’s nothing like curling up in a cozy café or catching an international film at the Cinematheque to hit that sweet spot. Just because the masses aren’t at the beaches in Tel Aviv or floating in the Dead Sea, doesn’t mean there aren’t plenty of indoor things to do in Israel, and some are even free. Whether you opt for a romantic dinner in your Jerusalem hotel to avoid stepping outside or spend the day at one of the quirkiest museums in Israel, don’t let the wet weather rain on your parade. Embrace the opportunity to try something new with our extensive list of rainy day activities – from movies to munchies.
16 rainy day things to do in Israel
The Eretz Israel Museum is more than a series of exhibits exploring the history and culture of Israel. Inside the multidisciplinary museum sits a magical place that is literally “out of this world.” At the Planetarium you can sneak a peek at the stars the same way that Galileo did through his telescope. Watch a riveting presentation about the mysterious galaxies that exist all the while spinning in revolving seats or learn about Israel’s first ever astronaut, Ilan Ramon, and view real time pictures of outer space provided by NASA. The Planetarium is a great place to bring your children and also expand your adult minds to the boundless worlds of science. English presentations are available by reservation.
It’s a not-so-white-winter in the White City. On a good day, that means crisp air, sunshine and a light scarf for comfort. On a bad day, it means gloomy skies, dreary rain and wild winds that make you want to bundle up in blankets and never leave bed. But sometimes, this grim weather calls for a pick-me-up: a cozy night out with friends at a restaurant with comfy vibes and heartwarming food. Here’s our guide to eating out in Tel Aviv on a cozy, rainy night.
While tourists flock towards the iconic Tel Aviv Museum of Art or The Israel Museum in Jerusalem to cross off their ‘Israeli culture’ checklist, the true hidden beauty lies in Israel’s more quirky museums and Israeli art galleries off the beaten path. Just outside of Tel Aviv, the quaint city of Holon houses some unique museums that feature everything out-of-the-ordinary from Israeli fashion design to cartoons and children’s games. Inside the cultural capital, Florentine’s hipster haven opened Tel Aviv’s very first street art gallery. And, up by Mount Carmel, the Ein Hod Artists’ Village has the works of Marcel Janco, one of the founding fathers of Dadaism, up on display. These museums in Israel are worth a visit, especially if you’re looking for a change of pace from giant crowds and long lines.
A new trend started in 2015, with the opening of the Sarona Market, where Tel Aviv welcomed its modern-day Israeli market renaissance and a new perspective at how much food culture can change overnight. Suddenly, dining at endless street food eateries by local chefs became popular, hard-to-find ingredients became readily available and places opened on weekends—yes, even on Shabbat! Now, fresh produce and exciting culinary offerings are available all the time. Shuk Tsafon, North Tel Aviv’s intimate market, opened last year, and the newest shuk on the block is the Rothschild Allenby market, sprawling over 1, 250 meters and housing 32 shops and eateries. Situated on one of the most walkable streets in the city in the middle of everything with offices and businesses a-plenty, the newest shuk treats Telavivians and city visitors to food from around the world with everything from South African curries to ramen. There are lots of little seating areas, an area for evolving pop-ups and events and a spacious sidewalk café with ready-made food to go. This eatery-busy market has so much on the menu. Here are some of our picks.
Looking for something fun to do with the kids after school? The Bloc Climbing Center is the perfect spot for indoor climbing and bouldering in Jerusalem! The Bloc team believes that recreational climbing should be accessible to everyone, young and old. The gym features 300 square feet of climbing walls, with tracks changing weekly in order to keep each visit exciting and challenging. Thick mattresses placed under the walls keep climbers safe, allowing them to develop their skills. Grab a coffee and relax while the kids climb at The Bloc’s small café. Suitable for ages three and up.
While Tel Aviv’s nightlife guarantees a good party and Jerusalem has its fair share of fun bars, sometimes, we could all use a break from the booze. That’s where escape rooms come in. The escape room fad in Israel is growing in popularity as families, friends and coworkers are taking their stab at cracking the code on difficult scenarios and working together to escape themed rooms within the allotted timeframe. From scary murder-themed rooms to family-friendly chocolate factories, these ten escape rooms offer fun options for every escapee. Can you beat the clock and get out alive? Or will you be trapped inside for all of eternity?
Cinema City is the largest entertainment complex in Jerusalem. Once you’re done shopping at its variety of restaurants, cafes and clothing stores, head over to the movie theater and check out its unbeatable VIP experience.
On a rainy day, instead of sharing your misery, share a meal with your loved ones to scare those rainy day blues away. Why not get in the happy spirit and share a meal with your friends and family at one of these five family-style spots: