Celebrating Christmas in Israel is a unique, magical experience that every Christian should do once in their life. Though it’s not a pulbic holiday in Israel (the main religions of Israel being Judaism and Islam) and is missing lots of the commericalism of the western world, it’s an extremely meaningful place to spend Christmas. Israel is the actual land where the nativity story took place. You might be wondering where is best to spend Christmas during your visit. Whether visiting Bethlehem for Christmas, experiencing Christmas in Nazareth, spending Christmas in Jerusalem or Christmas in Tel Aviv-Jaffa, it is sure to be a memorable experience!
Christmas in Israel generally coincides with Hanukkah, the Jewish festival of light which diffuses a festive spirit across the land. This year, Christmas takes place on December 25, 2023 and Hanukkah takes place from December 7-15, 2023. We’ve put together this special Hanukkah evening tour so you can celebrate both holidays in style in Jerusalem!
Christmas in Bethlehem
If you are visiting Israel for Christmas, or just happen to be here and want to celebrate, the most special place to go is the town of Bethlehem. Bethlehem is south of Jerusalem, in the West Bank. Here, magnificent and famous services take place on Christmas Eve in Manger Square. In the north of Israel, Nazareth, Jesus’s hometown, is also an interesting place to be for Christmas with many festivities.
The best way to visit Bethlehem during Christmas is to join this special Christmas tour that is arranged each year. The tour departs on Christmas Eve from Tel Aviv, Jerusalem, and Herzliya. It takes you for a walk through the Old City of Jerusalem before continuing to Bethlehem for the main event: seeing the Midnight Mass celebrations in Manger Square.
Looking to see more Christian landmarks? Check out these fully private, multi-day Catholic tour packages in Israel.
Christmas in Jerusalem
Spending Christmas Day in Jerusalem is the dream for millions around the world. Would you like a Christmas Day experience unlike any other? We’ve put together this off-the-beaten-track Christmas Day tour of some of the most interesting hidden gems in and around Jerusalem. You’ll begin this tour delving into the history of John the Baptist: starting the tour in the picturesque Ein Karem neighborhood, John’s birthplace and modern day idyllic village. Then, you’ll go to Qasr el Yahud, where John baptized Jesus, before ending your Christmas day relaxing at the lowest point on earth, and watching a breathtaking sunset over the Dead Sea. This is a once a year tour, but more importantly, it will give you the Christmas of a lifetime. Reserve your spot now, or book the Christmas Eve in Bethlehem and Christmas Day around Jerusalem tours together as a package, including hotel.