Israel, in case you were wondering, is absolutely blistering right now. Heatwave after heatwave is taking our already hot summer to a whole new level, making the wonderfully air-conditioned indoors look like the perfect place to spend a couple of months.
The sea provides obvious relief at the height of summer, although this is far less obvious come noon when the sun is scorching, the water is jacuzzi temperature and the beach is buzzing with sweaty people. Which is why we’d like to recommend a pleasant dawn swim. Not only is the sea actually cool, but the crowds are not yet out for the day. Make sure there’s a lifeguard on the beach, of course, and immediately follow your refreshing sporty session with an equally refreshing cold drink.
Another option for getting out and about during the height of summer is a sunset walk. To be perfectly honest, it’s still pretty hot outside during the evening in most of Israel, although Jerusalem and parts of the Negev and Galilee cool down nicely
At the height of summer, hikes aren’t a great idea. Even shaded water hikes often get closed due to soaring temperatures, leaving avid adventurers with little to do. This is where Israel’s amazing caves come in. There are a couple of national parks that are all about caves – we’re thinking the amazing Beit Guvrin – and more experienced adults might also want to contemplate guided caving hikes. Both these options are great, literally cool and also very much outdoors, albeit underground.
Going for a dip in a spring is a very Israeli experience. So Israeli, in fact, that we recommend avoiding Friday afternoon, when any given spring is packed to the brim. On other days of the week, the concept is a very nice, nature-y one: You bring a blanket, water, some snacks and a hat, and spend an afternoon on the edge of a spring, popping in and out of the water to cool down.
Not for the faint of heart, but kayaking in Israel’s northern streams is a super fun experience. You hop on a little kayak with your group, put your helmet and lifejacket on, and then proceed to raft like mad all the way downstream. You will inevitably fall into the (deliciously always freezing) water, almost take an eye out with your oar and lose your voice from all the shouting, but you will have had a fabulous time.
Produced in association with ISRAEL21c