August 10, 2010, Updated September 13, 2012

It’s summertime in Jerusalem, and whether it’s the wine or arts festival, or a drink downtown in Zion Square, people are out enjoying the city’s unique atmosphere.

“This city is non-stop party. Everyone thinks of Jerusalem as the holy city – it ain’t so!” an enthusiastic Jerusalem resident tells ISRAEL21c’s Harvey Stein, who ventured out last week to document Jerusalem’s summer, party-city side.

He started in the center of downtown on Ben Yehuda Street, where there are cafes, ice cream shops, people making music and dancing in the streets, smoking nargilas (the local name for hookahs) and visiting bars and cafes.

Jerusalem summer acivities

Picture by Miriam Alster/Flash90.
Young Israelis party on a roof in Jerusalem.

His nocturnal tour continued to the new Mamilla mall, adjacent to Jerusalem’s Old City, where all the shops are open and bustling until late in the evening. Then there’s a visit to the annual International Arts and Crafts Fair that also features top performers like Dag Nahash on its main stage every night.

Summer in Jerusalem also means the wine festival at the Israel Museum; the beer festival; the international puppet festival; and Tu B’av, the Jewish festival of love, celebrated on Emek Refaim, the main street in the capital’s popular German Colony neighborhood.

The tour winds down in the Ein Kerem village/neighborhood in southwest Jerusalem, said to be the birthplace of John the Baptist, with its share of craft shops, bars and cafes in a more tranquil setting.

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Jason Harris

Jason Harris

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