Breakfast at the Mahane Yehuda Market or other unique places
A visit to Machane Yehuda market, the largest and most vibrant market in Jerusalem, and one of the most popular places in the city, on a Friday morning, is the perfect starter for a successful weekend in Jerusalem. The market is packed with colors, smells, and flavors, consisting of a fascinating human mixture. The air is full of cooking and baking smells, and an abundance of people walk through the different stands.
Try arriving at the market by 8:30-9:00 to avoid the rush hours and go in to have breakfast at one of the local delicatessens or cafes. Eat at Cafe Roasters and enjoy some fine coffee at "Ha'agas 1," the organic vegetarian restaurant, at the Ha'Achim Haba bakery with a vast selection of baked bread, and at the "Natural Choice" café, which leads the vegetarian and vegan food scene in the market.
If you arrive outside of Jerusalem, we recommend you to book a place in the picturesque "Alloro" coffee place inside Beit Yelin. The coffee place is located in a courtyard surrounded by vineyards and the peaceful atmosphere, together with the fresh and tasty pastries, is a winning combo. Other great alternatives where you can enjoy a Friday brunch are at the Kafit restaurant in the Botanical Garden, or during the Spring-Summer in St. Andrew's Guest House with its outstanding view, or at the historic American Colony Hotel.
After breakfast, it's the perfect time to visit two museums two minutes from each other - the Friends of Zion Museum and the Hebrew Music Museum. The Friends of Zion Museum is a fascinating museum that gives visitors an interactive experience, following the story of the non-Jews who championed Zionism and the establishment of the State of Israel and did everything to help Jews. We highly recommend booking tickets in advance.
The Hebrew Music Museum is located in the Music Square complex and will expose you to a fascinating global tour following the history of Hebrew music. The museum displays ancient musical instruments from around the world and from different cultures. The museum has multimedia games and advanced technologies, enhancing the musical experience. Here too, we recommend booking tickets in advance.
After soaking up some culture, it's time to check in at your hotel and settle down. Suppose you are looking for a chic, designed hotel with an intimate, peaceful atmosphere check out the list of the hotels at Jerusalem's City Center which is within a walking distance to the Old City and other main places of interest.
Urban Nature in Jerusalem
In the early afternoon, nature and animal amateurs are welcome to visit the Gazelle Valley Park – the urban nature park is open until 17:00 (17:30 in daylight saving time). In the park, you can observe gazelles and migratory birds in their natural habitat, the turtles' shelter, and the flora that characterizes the Jerusalem mountains. Alternatively, you can stroll along the Armon HaNatziv promenade in southeast Jerusalem and watch spectacular panoramic views that merge nature and architecture. The Armon HaNatziv promenade is composed of three boardwalks built one after the other in different architectural styles, and walking along it is easy and convenient.
Even before Shabbat enters and before Friday dinner at the hotel, those who wish to soak up some holiness that characterizes Shabbat can visit the Western Wall and watch the praying people welcoming Shabbat. If you are looking for a restaurant that will serve you with some typical Jerusalem atmosphere outside the hotel, make a reservation at the Mediterranean restaurant, City View, at Mount Scopus, the Rooftop restaurant at the Notredam, or the Chakra.
To all restaurants open on Saturday>>
Rise and shine! After an indulgent night's sleep and a satisfying breakfast at the hotel, we recommend visiting The Israel Museum (Kids admission is free on Saturday) or The Science Museum. The Museum of Israel has temporary exhibitions, international displays, and various activities for the whole family. The Science Museum is a great place for kids. The museum has plenty of exhibitions, activities, and workshops that stimulate the curiosity of its visitors and allow them to experiment and explore science.
Hangout with the whole family
If the weather is fine, we recommend visiting the Biblical Zoo, situated in a pastoral valley in the south of Jerusalem. The animals in the zoo benefit from world-class standards of living. The zoo hosts diverse activities for adults and children, guided tours, animal exhibitions, a playground for toddlers, a petting area, and an ecological playground. Before your arrival, check the feeding times to get acquainted with the zoo's routine.
Take a trip to the magical village of Ein Karem
A short drive from the Biblical Zoo is the picturesque neighborhood of Ein Karem. The neighborhood hosts churches and monasteries, magical spots, scenic views, quaint alleys, Arabic stonewall houses, and multiple coffee places and restaurants. Click here for the complete guide for a visit to Ein Karem.
If you desire to explore more of the outdoors and nature, here is a link with recommendations of six trails for you to choose from, from multiple potential tracks in the area of Jerusalem and the Dead Sea. To all attractions open on Saturday