Israel in December: Warm Weather & Watersports

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If you are planning to go on a vacation in December, look no further than Israel. While many countries are in the grips of a cold winter, Israel is fairly warm during this time. From the beaches of Tel Aviv to the holy land of Jerusalem to the beautiful Golan Heights, the country has many historical and natural sights to explore. And with Hanukkah and Christmas taking place during this month, traveling to Israel in December can also be a great time to see the religious and cultural diversity of the country.

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Israel Weather in December

Cloudy skies in the coastal area of Israel during December.
Expect a few showers of rain in the inland and coastal area of Israel in December.

The average December temperature in Israel varies between 11 °C and 23 °C. It is a bit more temperate along the coastal areas, like Tel Aviv. If you are traveling to Israel in December, expect a few rain showers both inland and along the coastal areas. The country receives an average rainfall of 19 mm during this month.

Not sure when to visit Israel? For a seasonal overview, check out our guide on the best time to visit Israel.

Weather in Israel in December - Rainfall and Temperatures

Nov Dec Jan
Avg Daily (°C) 24 18 17
Avg Nightly (°C) 12 9 8
Avg Daily (°F) 76 65 63
Avg Nightly (°F) 54 49 47
Avg Rainfall (mm) 70 80 110

Why visit Israel in December

A man surfing through the waves of the sea in Israel during December.
You will enjoy surfing in the warm weather of Israel during December.
Crane birds migrating in the Hula Valley of Northern Israel.
Witness thousands of cranes migrating to the Hula Valley in Northern Israel during December.

In addition to the weather conditions, there are several other factors that make Israel an ideal holiday destination in December. Below are some of them:

  • Watersports: Although December is part of the winter season in Israel, the weather in coastal areas is still warm enough for watersports. Most coastal towns offer activities like diving and surfing, Tel Aviv is the favorite pick among tourists. The city of El Ajami has its own sailor yacht club and sailing school.
  • Festivals and events: December is packed with various festivals and events in Israel. Enjoy the festivals of Hanukkah or Hamshushalayim that take place during the middle of the month. The Christmas and New Year celebrations in Israel are a sight to behold, with the streets filled with the aroma of shawarmas and the sky lit up with fireworks.
  • Diverse wildlife: Head to the Hula Valley in northern Israel, which is known for its nature reserve, wetlands, and lake park, to spot various bird species. The start of December sees thousands of migratory cranes arrive at Hula Lake Park. You can also visit Hamat Gader Park to see the crocodile farm. The place also draws a large number of tourists for its thermal baths.
  • Affordable rates: Since it is not a part of the peak season, the beachside hotels and apartments are available at special discounts. So if you plan your cab rides or rentals appropriately, you can make the most of your budget to splurge elsewhere.

Where to Go and What to Do

The panoramic view of Jerusalem, Israel
 Explore the city of Jerusalem and immerse yourself in its ancient heritage

The pleasant tropical weather of Israel in December allows you enough time to explore the cultural and historic sites during the day and enjoy the nightlife after dark. If you wish to explore the more natural side of Israel, head outside the major cities like Jerusalem and Tel Aviv. Trek across the cliffs of Masada to explore the less traveled fortresses of ancient civilizations.

The northern mountains of Israel are also a great place for hiking and exploring. With many festivals and events taking place in December, the nightlife in Israel really kicks into high gear. There are parties close to every major city block, and cafes often get new additions to their menus around this time.

Even without the unique festival dishes, Israel has plenty to offer in terms of food and drinks, from the traditional Middle Eastern cuisine of hummus, falafels, and bourkas to the dishes from other parts of the world found. If you like to enjoy a drink or two, we advise sampling the limonene cocktail if you are visiting Israel for the first time.

No trip to Israel is complete without visiting the holy city of Jerusalem. The Dome of the Rock, the Church of the Holy Sepulchre, and the Western Wall are the top-visited sites in the city. While in Jerusalem, do make it a point of visiting the Old City bazaar, which has a great selection of mementos for you to take home.

Israel is a year-round destination, but if you are looking for an affordable travel destination during the holiday season, then December is the best time to visit the country. Though December is a winter month in Israel, the country’s weather is fairly warm, especially if you come from the cold parts of the world. There are many historical and natural sights to explore in Israel in December.

Check out our travel guide on how many days to spend in Israel for more ideas and insights. Our travel experts in Israel can help you choose the right customizable trips to Israel.

Other Related Articles:
Israel in November
Israel in January
Winter in Israel

Published by Astha Joshi, updated on May 9, 2023

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