MARCH 2013 Vol. 6 - Issue 3    
GREETINGS FROM THE COMMISSIONER 

 
Dear Friends,  

With Israel's 65th anniversary drawing nearer, we are more excited than ever to welcome first-time and returning travelers to experience Israel's gorgeous landscapes, modern attractions and ancient sites.

 

From the Galilee in the north, to Jerusalem, Tel Aviv, the Dead Sea and the Negev Desert, Israel will satisfy and inspire travelers of all tastes and interests.

 


haimsignature


Shalom,

Haim Gutin
Israel Tourism Commissioner, North and South America

GRAMMY AWARD-WINNING POP STAR ALICIA KEYS TO PRESENT FIRST-EVER CONCERT IN ISRAEL THIS SUMMER

Grammy Award-winning American pop star Alicia Keys will present her first-ever concert in Israel at Tel Aviv's Nokia Theater, July 4, 2013.  The concert will follow a concert by iconic British singer Cliff Richard, also at Nokia Theater, July 11. 

TENS OF THOUSANDS OF RUNNERS FROM AROUND THE WORLD COMPETED IN THE 3RD ANNUAL JERUSALEM INTERNATIONAL MARATHON

Tens of thousands of runners from more than 50 countries around the world arrived in Israel this week to participate in the third annual Jerusalem International Marathon. First to finish the marathon from the men's division was Ethiopian runner Abraham Kabeto Ketla at a time of 2 hours, 16 minutes and 29 seconds; and from the Women's Division, Ethiopian runner Mihret Anamo Antonios completed the marathon at a time of 2 hours, 47 minutes and 26 seconds. www.jerusalem-marathon.com

ISRAEL HOSTEL RANKS AMONG TOP TEN IN THE WORLD

The Abraham Hostel in Jerusalem was recently ranked among the "Top Ten Hostels in the World" in a survey published by Hostelworld.com. The hostel is described as having a "great value and great atmosphere," and is located in Davidka Square just outside the Old City of Jerusalem. 

JERUSALEM HOSTS SECOND ANNUAL ICE FESTIVAL THROUGH APRIL 2013

Jerusalem will host the second annual International Ice Festival in the Old Jerusalem Train Station compound, February 20 - April 30, 2013. The festival will take place in a 5,000-square-foot space imported from Belgium and decorated in a special Far East décor by more than 60 artists from China. The festival's "Ice City" will boast three central areas featuring colorful ice sculptures, huge slides, mazes, rain forests, snowstorms and bridges made of ice. The festival will also include a spectacular ice skating performance with more than 30 artists, acrobats and Chinese dancers.

EILAT BIRDS FESTIVAL IN SOUTHERN ISRAEL, MARCH 13-20, 2013

Bird enthusiasts from around the world will arrive in southern Israel for the Eilat Birds Festival, March 13-20, 2013. Organized by the Israel Ornithological Center, the seventh annual Eilat Birds Festival will offer birding lectures, workshops and guided tours to bird-watching sites in Eilat. The festival will allow travelers to witness the migration of more than 500 million birds, including rare raptors, pelicans and cranes and feature an opening banquet and evening activities at the Isrotel Agamim Hotel. www.eilatbirdsfestival.com

JERUSALEM TO HOST SOUNDS OF THE OLD CITY MUSIC FESTIVAL, MARCH 18-22, 2013

The second annual Sounds of the Old City Music Festival will feature live musical performances throughout the cobblestoned streets and squares in the Old City of Jerusalem, March 20-22, 2013. This year's festival will include live music and art videos in various areas of the Old City of Jerusalem, including Muristan Square, the Cardo and courtyards in the Jewish quarter, Jaffa Gate and Mamilla Boulevard, as well as musicians offering street-side performances. www.jerusalem-oldcity.org.il

 

NEW EXHIBITION DETAILING THE LIFE OF ISRAELI FASHION DESIGNER LEA GOTTLIEB TO OPEN AT THE DESIGN MUSEUM HOLON THIS MARCH

A new exhibition highlighting the life of esteemed fashion designer Lea Gottlieb will open at the Design Museum Holon outside of Tel Aviv, March 19. Kicking off Holon Fashion Week 2013, the exhibition will showcase key fashion designs created by Gottlieb, the founder of Gottex who was known for her swim and beachwear designs.  The exhibition will also trace the history of Israeli fashion designers from the past to present times. www.dmh.org.il

FIRST-EVER PLUGFEST MUSIC FESTIVAL TO FEATURE WORLD RENOWNED ARTISTS IN SOUTHERN ISRAEL, MAY 9-11, 2013

The first-ever Plugfest music festival will feature performances by international and local musicians in Kfar Hanokdim near the Dead Sea, May 9-11, 2013. Among the artists scheduled to perform are Azealia Banks (USA), 2ManyDJs (Belgium), Lee Scratch Perry (USA) and Tinariwen (Libya).
 

ISRAEL TO HOST ANNUAL FRESH PAINT ART FAIR IN TEL AVIV, MAY 21 - 25

The annual Fresh Paint art fair will showcase artworks and specially commissioned art exhibitions by local artists in Tel Aviv, May 21-25, 2013. Known as Israel's premier annual art event, the fair will present exhibitions featuring emerging local artists and a unique art "Greenhouse," showcasing the works of 50 independent Israeli artists. www.freshpaint.co.il/en

TEL AVIV'S HAARETZ MUSEUM UNVEILS NEW EXHIBITION DETAILING HISTORY OF ETHIOPIAN JEWS

A new exhibition detailing the history of Ethiopia's Jewish population is now on display at the Haaretz Museum in Tel Aviv through June 10, 2013. The exhibition presents visual images from the history of Ethiopia during the days of the Kingdom of Aksum through the modern era, as well as ritual items, manuscripts, artifacts and musical instruments, with a special focus on the Ethiopian Jewish immigration to Israel. www.eretzmuseum.org.il

SOUTHERN ISRAEL'S AVDAT NATIONAL PARK REOPENS AFTER THREE-YEAR REHABILITATION PROJECT

Southern Israel's Avdat National Park, a UNESCO World Heritage site, reopened this month after an extensive three-year rehabilitation project. The site is located on the ancient Nabatean Spice Route and boasts a restored Byzantine church, one of Israel's oldest wine presses, and offers a multimedia film detailing the history of the site.

NEW TOURIST-FRIENDLY STREET MAP SIGNS ROLLED OUT IN TEL AVIV 

New tourist-friendly street map signs have recently been installed throughout Tel Aviv, featuring directions to nearby attractions, maps of the neighborhood and site-specific history. An initiative of the Tel Aviv-Jaffa Municipality, the signs can be found in various locations around Tel Aviv, including Magen David Square, Rothschild Boulevard and the Mediterranean promenade, and include useful information in Hebrew, English and Arabic.  

 

KFAR HANOKDIM OFFERS UNIQUE INSIGHT INTO LOCAL BEDOUIN CULTURE

Culture-seekers arriving in Israel this year can visit the Bedouin-style hospitality camp at Kfar Hanokdim, a green oasis complete with Bedouin tents and biblically inspired gardens, near Masada. Visitors to Kfar Hanokdim will receive a unique insight into Bedouin culture with desert hikes, special meals and overnight accommodations in authentic Bedouin tents, cabins or lodges under the star-filled desert sky. www.hanokdim.com

NEW WEBSITE SIMPLIFIES TRAVEL TO ISRAEL WITH BABIES

Families traveling to Israel with small children can now rent strollers and other baby equipment through the new Israel with Baby website. The service offers travelers with rental options in various cities across Israel, including Tel Aviv, Jerusalem, Netanya and Herzliya. www.israelwithbaby.com 

ACCESSIBLE ISRAEL BROCHURES NOW AVAILABLE ONLINE 

Disabled travelers to Israel can now learn about accessible sites with a new Accessible Israel online brochures. The online brochure features accessible tour routes in Israel, including the Sea of Galilee, Tel Aviv, the Old City of Jerusalem, the Dead Sea and Negev Desert.  http://goisrael.com/accessibleisraelenglish 

MEDIA CONTACTS:

WEILL 
866-PR-WEILL

Israel Ministry of
Tourism
Northeast Region
212-499-5647

Israel Government 
Tourist Office
Southeastern USA
404-541-2770

Israel Government Tourist Office Midwestern USA
312-803-7077

 

Israel Government Tourist Office 
Western USA
323-658-7463 

 

                                       

ISRAEL GOVERNMENT
TOURIST OFFICES in
NORTH AMERICA

NORTHEAST USA
New York
Shahar Alon, Director

212-499-5650

SOUTHERN USA
Atlanta 
Joe Diaz, Director
404-541-2770

MIDWESTERN USA
Chicago
Omer Eshel, Director
312-803-7080

WESTERN USA
Los Angeles
Eliezer Hod, Director
323-658-7463

CANADA
Toronto  
Ami Allon, Director
416-964-3784


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Geoffrey Weill Associates
Informational material is disseminated on behalf of the Israel Ministry of Tourism.
Additional information available at the Department of Justice.