The Annual Jerusalem March – Sukkot Tabernacles 2013

Filed in Culture, Nature by on 10/09/2013 0 Comments
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The Annual Jerusalem March

Ein Sataf

Ein Sataf (Photo: Deror Avi, CC BY-SA 3.0)

One of the happiest holidays in Israel is the eight day festival of Sukkot (Tabernacles). Following the Biblical commandment, many Israelis build sukkahs (temporary shelters or tabernacles) to remember the 40 years in the wilderness after the exodus from Egypt. They eat their meals there and some also sleep there. Wherever you go you will find sukkahs, especially adjacent to restaurants and coffee shops. The week-long holiday is marked by many events and festivals all over the country. Many thousands come up to Jerusalem, as Sukkot is, according to Divine commandment, one of the three required times for Jewish men to come called aliyat haregel. During the times of the First and Second Temples, men and their families came from all over to pray and offer sacrifices at the Temple in Jerusalem.

The Jerusalem March – September 24, 2013

In the spirit of aliyat haregel one of the most exciting annual Sukkot events is the Jerusalem March with participants from cities and towns all over Israel plus many that also come from abroad, including evangelical Christians. The march begins outside of Jerusalem in the Judean Hills and depending on your stamina, there are three routes of varying lengths:

  • Track A: (15 kilometers) 7:00 – 9:00 am. Upper Sataf – Mount Eitan – Nahal Sorek – Bait Zayit – Ein Kerem – Mount Herzl – Beit Hakerem – Nayot – Rehavia Valley – Sacher Park.
  • Track B: (9 kilometers) 7:30-9:30 am. Motza, Jerusalem Park route – Bait Zayit – Ein Kerem – Mount Herzl – Beit Hakerem – Nayot – Rehavia Valley – Sacher Park.
  • Track C: (a family route of 5 kilometers) 8:00-10:00 am. Start from the Governor’s Palace – The Governor’s Palace Promenade – Peace Forest – Abu Tor – Baka – The Railway Complex – Yemin Moshe – Mishkanot Sha’ananim – Rehavia Valley – Sacher Park.

There will be guides stationed at various stops along the march. All marches end up in Sacher Park. The cost of participating in the march is NIS 30 that can be paid at the beginning of the route. Groups, however, must arrange to pay in advance. For further information email: or phone: 02-5457631, fax: 02-6297452.

Mount Eitan to Jerusalem – the Longest and most Scenic Route

Mount Eitan

Mount Eitan (Photo: צילום:ד”ר אבישי טייכר, CC BY 2.5)

This year there is a possibility to experience the march to Jerusalem through the beautiful Jerusalem Hills just like people did thousands of years ago when the Temples stood. The march will leave the parking area at Kibbutz Shoresh at 7:00 am on September 23 and set out in the direction of Jerusalem, a 15 kilometer journey on foot that will take about two days. The route from Shoresh to Jerusalem is one of the most scenic in the country. There will be an overnight stop in beautiful Mount Eitan  in the Jerusalem Hills near the Sataf Spring. 

Camp at Mount Eitan September 23

You can camp out at Mount Eitan and enjoy musical performances by popular Israeli singers. Bring your own sleeping bag and tent. Here will be electricity, drinking water and bath rooms. This area is a favorite one with hikers and bicyclists. At Mount Eitan there will also be a large sukkah where you can eat. You must bring your own breakfast to eat before setting out from Shoresh on September 23. At Mount Eitan’s coffee shop you will be able to buy food. Even though it may be hot by day, nights are very cool in the Jerusalem Hills so make sure you have warm clothing for the evening.

Concerts at Mount Eitan

Mosh Ben Ari (Photo: Neukoln, CC BY-SA 3.0)

Mosh Ben Ari (Photo: Neukoln, CC BY-SA 3.0)

Beginning in the evening of September 23 at Mount Eitan will be musical concerts featuring Shlomi Shabat, Eden Amadi and Vamosh ben Ari.

The price for spending one night at Mt. Eitan including the concerts is NIS 20 a person. If you want to spend two nights there the price is NIS 30 a person. Tickets can be ordered in advance Sunday to Thursday 9:00 am to 7:00 pm and Friday from 9:00 am to 1:00 pm by phoning: *9066.

Free Jerusalem Parade

At 3:30 pm on September 24 will be an exciting parade that children will love with floats, bands, soldiers, artists and dancers. The parade will begin at Bezalel Street, proceed to Hillel and end up at King David.

During the March and Parade, much of downtown Jerusalem will be closed to traffic and parking so consider arriving by public transportation.

Free Family Happening

In Sacher Park on September 24 from 10:00 am to 4:00 pm, amid dancers and music, there will also be free entrance to a Children’s World with a jimboree with large inflatables, clowns, an electric train and more.

Did You Know?

All participants in the march will receive a certificate and a medal.

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