With dozens of churches scattered throughout the Christian Quarter of the Old City, near the Old City, and in the neighborhood of Ein Karem, and being only six kilometers from Bethlehem, Jerusalem is an unforgettable place to celebrate the Christmas holiday. Enjoy the wonderful sight of decorated Christmas trees, the bright stars and Santa Claus puppets all around, see the customs of different denominations in the churches and monasteries and take part in the tours of the city alleys to the sounds of bells and carols.
Christmas Events in Jerusalem in 2022:
Here is a taste of events taking place around the city for Christmas this year.
Join us for an authentic and warm Christmas celebration in – the most glittering and bright holiday there is! The celebrations will take place in the Christian Quarter of the Old City, on the picturesque New Gate Street, and along the walls leading to it. The holiday will be celebrated with lots of fun and an amazing atmosphere, just like all around the world during this special the season. The streets of the quarter will be filled with festive lighting, holiday decorations will cover the buildings, a special winter fair will offer food and drinks in the spirit of the holiday. A variety of souvenir stands and handmade gifts, exhibits, live performances, tours and other surprises will also be available to ensure you’re in the perfect mood for Christmas.
When? December 15-25
Where? Christian Quarter, New Gate Complex
Christmas Concert - Jerusalem Baroque Orchestra
Credits: Joel Levy, Hadar Elfassi, Andre Grilk, Martin Ching, Michael Cohen
The Hallelujah Festival by the Jerusalem Symphony Orchestra will be dedicated this year to the theme of 'Passion', and you’re welcome to enjoy various envigorating arrangements of classic works. In honor of the holiday, a concert will be held with the Jerusalem Baroque Orchestra ( Musically Directed by David Shemer,), featuring special pieces of music dedicated to the celebrations of Christmas composed by Bach, Vivaldi and Corelli, along with the world premiere of the Concerto de Camera, by Avner Hanan, commissioned by the Jerusalem Baroque Orchestra Music Director: David Shemer
When? December 27 | 20:00
Cost? 120 NIS
Tower of David Christmas Tour
Join the Tower of David on an overseas tour of the Christian Quarter, during which you will experience Christmas in Jerusalem. During the tour, you’ll visit the most ornate and festive alleys in the Christian quarter, hear stories about the holiday and its origins and understand the meaning behind light festivals in other cultures. Also, you’ll walk by shops and stalls selling holiday decorations, get familiar with the various customs of Christmas, from Santa Claus to the decorated trees, and taste the divine, rich-in-calorie sweets that will give you energy in the cold winter.
When? December 19-30
Cost? Special price for iTravel visitors - 77 NIS instead of 80.
Christmas Tour in Jerusalem with Yad Yitzhak Ben-Zvi
Photo: Yad Ben-Zvi PR
A special tour devoted to the atmosphere of Christmas in Jerusalem: visit familiar and hidden churches, hear of bells toll, watch celebrators in the city and wander through the decorated alleys of the Christian quarter. Among the sites to visit: Christ Church, Christian Quarter, Notre Dame.
When? December 23 | 9:00-12:00
Сost? 95 NIS More details on the tour page (Hebrew) >>
Crazy Mary: The Maze of Horror of Jerusalem
If you're brave or just curious, you can take a Crazy Mary self–guided tour, the haunted maze that will lunch you upward. All you have to do is gather up with your friends or family and reserve your spot through phone/WhatsApp. Purchase tickets on the spot, prior arrangement by phone is mandatory. A special discount for iTravel visitors.
Where? Ha’rekhavim Str. 13, Talpiot, Jerusalem
When? December 19-27
Cost? Starting from 60 NIS Full details on the page of the attraction >>
Boogie Party at the First Station Complex
Courtesy of the First Station Complex PR
Join the celebration at the Music Station Complex at the World Music party. The DJ’s of the evening:
- DJ Avi Boogie, founder of Boogie, a music and dance line that has been active in Jerusalem for over 20 years.
- DJ Tzvi Kantor – started off in the New York music scene. After several years of djing on Tel Aviv rooftops and at nature parties, Zvi brings to the boogie party his electro-swing, glitch-pop and other music genres
The Boogie Night will also showcase dancers, classes, workshops, dance troupes and performances.
When? December 24 | 21:00
Where? David Remez Station 4 Jerusalem
Cost? Free entry
Special events to mark the end of the year and Christmas at the YMCA
Photo: Yoav Dudkewitc
YMCA Jerusalem invites you to celebrate Christmas and the end of 2022 with a series of unique events for the whole family that will warm you up these winter nights. Most of the events will take place at the YMCA, while some at other sites. Among the events and activities you can participate in:
- Christmas Market at the YMCA: Arts and Culture market, food market, dozens of stalls, workshops, YMCA Tower Bells Show
- Children's Shows
- Festive concerts and more!
Masses and religious ceremonies in Jerusalem on Christmas Day
In Jerusalem, you will find several churches that invite the public to attend Christmas Midnight Mass and other ceremonies. Regardless of religion or faith, these ceremonies are a powerful tourist experience. Church of the Holy Sepulchre The Church of the Holy Sepulchre is located in the Christian Quarter of the Old City and is considered one of the holiest sites for many followers of Christian traditions. Here, according to the Christian Orthodox denomination, Jesus was crucified, buried, and ascended to heaven. The church has been an important pilgrimage destination since the fourth century and is home to all the Orthodox denominations of Christianity. More about the Church of the Holy Sepulchre >>
Church of Christ The Church of Christ is located inside the Jaffa Gate and hosts tourists and visitors on Christmas Eve and on the holiday itself.
Other Churches Would you like to join the incredible holiday rituals, yet avoid the crowds and enjoy a more intimate experience? It is recommended to check out the Dormition Abbey on Mount Zion and the Tomb of the Virgin Mary located in Gethsemane.
Christmas Events at The Church of the Messiah (Immanuel Church)
] Photo: Immanuel
The Immanuel Compound, also known as Christ Church, will host experiential events for the whole family this Christmas: An open house in the Immanuel Complex, located near the Jaffa Gate in the Old City. In the best tradition, the event will amaze you with a European-style Christmas atmosphere, with the famous gingerbread cookies, hot wine, and cider. Admission is free!
When? December 24 | 17:30-22:30
Where? Armenian Orthodox Patriarchate Road 55, Jerusalem
Experience the magic of Christmas around Jerusalem's traditional Christmas tree
] Photo: Kapaim Productions
Like in previous years, you may visit Jerusalem's traditional Christmas tree on Mount Scopus. The spectacular tree is one of the tallest in Israel – 23 meters and is decorated with more than 10,000 bulbs. You can take photos from a distance, or close-up selfies on the spectacular backdrop of Jerusalem and the Old City at night.
When? The tree will be lit from December 15th to January 5th from sunset to sunrise.
Where? Mount Scopus, on Benjamin Mazar Street, above City View Restaurant.