7 Secrets of Summertime Success for Parents in Israel

Do you have a little one or a bunch of little ones? Then you must be thinking about what to do in August and I’ve got some tips for you. Unless you’re perfect, in which case, this article is not for you…

"Don't leave home without a sunhat!"
“Don’t leave home without a sunhat!” – Our visit to Nachal Mearot was awesome!

The secret to surviving August & staying sane is easy: planning.

My first plan of action it to make a plan of action!

Curious about my plan? I bet you are . . . Or maybe you’re laughing at me, and that’s cool too.

1. Get a National Parks Pass

So you’re probably wondering, is getting the pass worth it?

We’re 110% satisfied. Just buy a park pass at any of Israel’s national parks on your next visit. Think of the listing of national parks as a bucket list and start making your adventures.

We’ve had some surprising finds, like Nahal Taninim, Nahal Mearot – and we’ve got a long list to go! We’ve also been sorely disappointed by some parks, but with the parks pass, who cares? Just jump in the car and head somewhere else.

Take the time to review their site and you’ll be pleasantly surprised with the offerings. Travel like an Israeli and pack a picnic lunch, as many sites are remote with not many (if any) options to eat nearby. Some parks have built-in grills, so check before you go.

2. Find Out on Facebook

Wondering what Facebook has to do with it? Just about everything if you let it.

I highly recommend that any Anglo parent in Israel join some Facebook groups and communities for parents in Israel. I got the most spot-on suggestions in a matter of minutes from Tried & Tested Things to Do with Kids in Israel. Tel Aviv Momma’s Support Group and its local equivalents can help you find activities, meet other mamas, and get awesome tips on just about any topic relating to parenting.

Camps, parks, you name it there’s an English-speaking mom or dad who wants to help.

3. Bring a Friend

Just about everything is better when you do it with someone else.

Do you dream of swimming in the sea or riding the “big kids” waterslide? Good luck with that on a solo mission.

A trip to the beach or pool with mama + kids means most likely mama’s not going to get much swimming done. The same goes for the pool and other (formerly) relaxing activities. But if you add another mom/dad friend or two to the mix, taking a dip doesn’t mean leaving your kids unsupervised.

When the jellyfish are out or just for fun, try a water park like Shefayim. It’s extremely relaxing to have little ones in a relatively contained area sans the sandy cleanups. In my experience, supervising young kids (all under 6 years old) while with friends is much easier at a water park than the beach.

4. Get Out Of Town

When the going gets rough, and it will, have a plan. Mine is to get a hotel in Eilat and enjoy.

Still not convinced you need a vacation? Check in again mid-August.

Eilat in the summer is roasting hot, and the sea is still perfect for snorkeling and swimming – plus no jellyfish brigade. Aside from sun and sea, we’re going to knock out our back to school shopping in this VAT-free city and eat grilled fish until our heart’s content.

Need to make a big purchase?

Keep your money in Israel and shop in Eilat, without paying taxes. We’ve had a few small appliances break and are holding off until we visit Eilat to get our new rice cooker and handheld immersion blender. And with one computer monitor on its way to breaking down, we might just pick one of those up too.

5. Take a Day Trip

Israel is small, but it’s not too small that you can’t discover something new. Paying a guide for day tours in Israel can be an excellent way to do so or make a plan and just go.

Day Trip! Rosh HaNikra is something you have to do at least once.
Day Trip! Rosh HaNikra is something you have to do at least once.

Do you like to relax? Then let go and take a tour…

If you like being 100% responsible for entertainment, directions, meal planning, and itinerary, then enjoy planning your own “day trip.” Tours are an excellent way to do something with visiting family & friends as well without exhausting yourself and your family.

6. Don’t Feel Guilty & Get Help

It takes a village to keep a child busy on “hofesh ha gadol” and in modern Israel, for most of us, that includes childcare providers as well as family members.

Do you feel overwhelmed sometimes? Congratulations, you’re human.

Being a good parent means getting help when you need it. Tap the resources you have to help, from grandparents to friends and neighbors. Ask for suggestions in the groups. Look for ideas online. And remember, you’re not the only parent in this situation. If all else fails, plenty of students are free for babysitting!

7. Treat Yourself

Do you remember when you loved summer vacations? Me too…

Don’t let this one pass without treating yourself to something good. Aside from a day at the beach or in a park, a delightful “me time” day is to visit the Ga’ash mineral spa or the spa at Ein Gedi. I’ve been to them both and highly recommend both. You can find a coupon for either one of them or buy a package deal including a treatment + meal.

And if you don’t have the time, bring the spa home with some AHAVA. I can’t praise the “liquid salt” enough – just slather it on moist skin, let it sit for two minutes, wash it off, and it’s almost as good as a dip in the Dead Sea itself.

And when time is really in short supply, I make 20 minutes for myself to be alone with my Kindle and a cup of coffee. Hey, I have to recharge for the next adventure somehow…

Enjoy your summer!

Did I miss something? Please leave it in the comments!

About the Author
Lindsey Moav is the CEO and Creative Solutions Architect at Kaye Perry Marketing.
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