2012 marks the 19th annual Hag Shel HaHagim (Holiday of Holidays) Festival in Haifa, a city known for its diverse religions, cultures, cuisines and scenery. The festival will be held at three popular and beautiful Haifa locales: Beit HaGefen, Wadi Nisnas and the German Colony. Hag Shel HaHagim promotes, cultivates and celebrates tolerance, patience and respect through culture and art. Visitors enjoy a wide variety of colorful events, from Thursday to Saturday, during every weekend in December.  Shows and concerts, tours, workshops, plays, hikes, street fairs and more are part of this festive and family-friendly cultural experience.

More information can be found on the festival website (which is fully translated into Hebrew, Arabic and English) at

Here's a summary of what's happening in Haifa this weekend:

Thursday :: 20/12/2012

17:00 Art tours in Wadi Nisnas and the Holiday of Holidays galleries
Turkish street market – artists, stalls and music
17:30 The Scouts Parade lead by Santa Claus in the German Colony
18:00 Winter Holidays in the Colony event
19:00 Art tours in Wadi Nisnas and the Holiday of Holidays galleries
There's a Future, Stories in Material: an evening hosted by the artist Michael Touma dedicated to the Haifite dancer Yardena Cohen
The Old Al-Ittihad building, Wadi Nisnas market


Friday :: 21/12/2012


An active extreme sports experience in field conditions for women only. The activity will take place at Yearot Hacarmel on Fridays with the guidance of Ulfat Haider. Subject to weather conditions and advance registration.
10:00-16:00 Antiques fair
10:00-16:00 Turkish street market – artists, stalls and music
10:00-23:00 The Chicken - conceptual restaurant, food for the body and for the soul
Tour of the Baha'i Gardens
Christmas Market: Christmas stalls, ornaments and gifts, the children's play "Grandpa Cold and Santa Claus" in Hebrew and Arabic, HaMifras Theater, activities and crafts workshops for children operated by Haifa's youth organizations
12:00 Art tour of the Wadi and the Holiday of Holidays galleries
14:00 Gallery talk about the Holiday of Holidays
Friday performance: Belly Sensation - a feminine show about women    accompanied by dance

Saturday :: 22/12/2012

Wadi Nisnas

11:00-16:00  Stalls fair, street artists, performances
11:00 Avshalom Farjun - Canon and percussion blend Far East with Near East
12:00 ArtiJazz - Nizar Qabbani and his band play ethnic Arab jazz
13:00 When Hang Meets a Group of Flutes – Liron Man and @@
14:00 @@ - a folk-rock show
15:00 Victor


The Families Area – Beit HaGefen's courtyard

Is it magic? Is it a spell? No it is science! – the Madatech car with spectacular demonstrations, from 10:30 and every hour at 15 min. before the hour
11:00-16:00 A stalls fair, children's activities stands, antiques fair, the Chicken restaurant
Concert:  choir and chamber ensembles directed by Barak Tal - Reut School for the Arts, Beit HaGefen's Theater
Nothing New Under the Sun: an ancient healing musical experience – a show and workshop for the entire family
12:00 @@ – a musical journey with surprising instruments, show and tell
13:00 Harel Papo in a magic show for the entire family
13:00 A children's play for Hebrew and Arabic speakers – Al Saraya Theater, tentative
14:00 @@? - The Haifa Association for Immigrant Absorption
Classical music show and tell with the music department students, Reut School of the Arts
16:00/18:00 "Dreams":  a children's play in Arabic, al Karame Theater

Regular and Special Events

Going down to the Wadi. Morning walk with a view of the city of Haifa, ending at the center of the Festival in Wadi Nisnas – guided by Ulfat Haider. Subject to weather conditions. Leaves from Yefe Nof corner of HaLevanon.
11:00-19:00  Antiques fair
11:00-17:00 Holiday of Holidays galleries
11:30 The Scouts' Parade – leaves from Allenby
11:00-17:00 The Chicken – concept restaurant offering food for the body and for the soul
11:00/12:00 Concerts at the Churches
14:00 Parade – Seeds of Peace
14:30-16:00 Santa Claus House is open to visitors
20:30 Open Mic – Draft Playwrights School and The Chicken present local artists
20:30 Concert – Rappaport Hall (admission fee)

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