The Jerusalem Ice Festival

Ever since he was elected in 2008, Jerusalem’s mayor, Nir Barkat, has put an emphasis on cultural events in the city, with the understanding that for the city to flourish, he must attract more young people and tourists. The result is that there is always something happening in Jerusalem. Whether it is the lights festival in the Old City in the summer; “Hutzot HaYotzer” festival, also in the summer, during which artists from Israel and around the world come to display and sell their work, accompanied by performances of well-known Israeli singers- every night for two weeks; the “Hamshushalayim” festival, every winter, during which all the museums are open every Thursday night for a month, with special programs for free, as well as special discounts in restaurants and bars; the formula car-racing scheduled to take place for the first time this June; and many other events occurring almost every week.

One of the most breathtaking events to take place is the “Ir HaKerah” (“Ice City”) ice festival, next to the old train station on Derekh Hevron Street. The ice festival was introduced last year (2012) and included sculptures of well-known places in Jerusalem. This year, the festival was dedicated to the Far-East and included sculptures of the Taj-Mahal, Tienanmen Square and other places, as well as a section of sea-life sculptures and a section of dinosaurs. The exhibition room is cooled to -10 Celsius (= 14 Fahrenheit). Extra coats are supplied at the entrance. The festival also included a breathtaking performance of acrobatics on ice and an ice-skating rink. Some of the ice-statues included slides and even a maze, made entirely of ice. The exhibition was open from February until the end of April.

As always, I took it upon myself to bring you some photos. Enjoy!

The acrobatics performance

The acrobatics performance






Slides. Not just for children…


Tienanmen Square

Tienanmen Square

The ice maze

The ice maze

The sea life section

The sea life section







And here’s a taste of last year’s exhibition: The Tower of David in the Old City.


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