When on your Bar / Bat Mitzvah tour in Israel, one of the places you’re sure to visit is Tel Aviv, a city rich in modern Israeli history and culture. But how can you plan an itinerary in Tel Aviv that will entertain and delight the whole family? The following mini-guide will give you a good start:
Tel-O-Fun Bike Rentals
Perhaps not as well-suited for the little ones, families with older kids and teenagers will enjoy the green, three-speed Tel-O-Fun bike rentals available all around Tel Aviv, usable from place to place for a small charge. Tel Aviv is a great city to bike in, with lots of dedicated bike lanes, and with a sensible and well-designed grid, so you can even visit many of the following sites by bike, if you want.
Although traditionally speaking, the suggestion of going to a museum with the family might make kids groan, Tel Aviv has some amazing museums which have great exhibits for – or are entirely geared towards – kids.
The Eretz Israel Museum is a great collection of exhibits exploring Israel’s culture and history, and one of the best is the Planetarium, featuring spinning seats and an informative space-themed show that is sure to delight. Learn about Israel’s first astronauts and see real-time photography taken in space. Also while at the Eretz Israel Museum, check out the jaw-dropping sand sculptures at the temporary Tales in Sand exhibit, if it’s on offer at the time.
The Beit Hatfutsot Museum of the Jewish People, conveniently accessible by train at Tel Aviv University, has great exhibits for the whole family as well. These include Heroes – Trailblazers of the Jewish People, for kids aged 5-12. For this show, it is best to reserve tickets in advance. Older kids and teenagers might appreciate instead the Let There Be Laughter exhibit, featuring Jewish humor from around the world, or the current installation honoring Leonard Cohen.
If you’re in Tel Aviv’s Neveh Tzedek neighborhood, you might want to check out the Nahum Gutman Museum of Art, which is designed specially for kids, with computer stations and work tables for kids to create with. There is also a great story and art hour (in Hebrew) which takes place every Shabbat.
Yarkon Park is a major family destination for Tel Aviv locals and visitors alike. While there, you can climb the climbing wall, rent bikes, or even a giant bike that the whole family can ride. Visit the botanic gardens, the two small petting zoos, or rent boats (pedal, row, or speed boats) to travel the Yarkon River that runs through the park. In the Ganei Yehoshua area, visit the Meymadion Water Park, or take the small train, which is very popular with the small ones! You can even take a hot-air balloon ride from the park to get a 360 degree view of the Tel Aviv area.
Teenagers who want to take a class in traditional surfing, windsurfing, or even kitesurfing can do so at Tel Aviv’s Dolphinarium, Surf Point. Meanwhile the rest of the family can enjoy the beach or rent Kayaks to go out on adventures of their own.
For kids, teens, and nostalgic parents, visit Tel Aviv’s Luna Park, where there is an indoor ice skating rink you can enjoy. Although Americans have grown up with the sport, Ice skating is still relatively new to Israel, so if you skate a lot at home, you can show off your skills and tricks for the locals!
As you can see, whether you’re in Tel Aviv for a just one day or a few, there are lots of fun things you can do which are geared towards kids, teens, and the whole family. When planning your Bat or Bar Mitzvah Tour in Israel, be sure to consult the experts at Dekel Tours in order to include just the right collection of family friendly activities to suit your family’s interests.