Israel Weather in January: Cool, Places to See

Israel Weather in January: Cool, Places to See

By Ishaan | Updated Feb. 21, 2024

Temperatures and weather conditions vary throughout Israel during the month of January. It is the month with the lowest average temperature in the country. The ski haven of Mount Hermon in the northern part of the country sees snowfall and much colder temperatures, while major cities such as Tel Aviv have experience the wettest month of the year, although temperatures are nice and cool here during this time. Weather conditions are entirely dependent on which part of the country you find yourself in.

All in all, the cooler temperatures during January in Israel result in fewer crowds, meaning it's a very good time to visit the country and tour its historic landmarks and attractions in relative quiet and comfort.

Remember to bring warm clothing, gloves, an umbrella, and your rain jacket when traveling in Israel during January.

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Israel Weather in January Overview

  • Average temperature range: 2°C-20°C (36°F-68°F)
  • Wet Season: Tel Aviv, Nazareth, Haifa
  • Dry Season: Eilat
  • Rainfall: 112mm (4.4 inches) in Tel Aviv, 5mm (0.2 inches) in Eilat
  • Rainy days: 13 Tel Aviv, 2 in Eilat

January Weather by Region

Israel has four separate climate regions, and weather conditions can range from perfectly pleasant to cold and wet based on which of these regions you're traveling in.

Northern Hills and Tiberias: 4°C-14°C (39°F-57°F)

January is normally the coldest month of the year in North District Israel, the district which is home to the ancient city of Tiberias. The average maximum temperature during this month in Tiberias is 14°C (57°F) while the average minimum temperature is 4°C (39°F).

January is also the wettest month of the year in this northern region of Israel, with rainfall averaging at about 76mm (3 inches). It rains for about a third of the month, with clear skies and sunshine present for the remaining 20 or so days.

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Tel Aviv and Haifa: 6°C-15°C (43°F-59°F)

Average January temperatures in both the bustling metropolis of Tel Aviv and the beautiful coastal city of Haifa range from a maximum of 15°C (59°F) and a minimum of 6°C (43°F). January is usually the coldest month of the year in both these urban centers.

Rainfall is also generally high during January in both Tel Aviv and Haifa, averaging in at 112mm (4.4 inches) and 125mm (5 inches) respectively, thus making this month the wettest of the year in both areas. That being said, it only rains for about half the month, so you can expect the sun to shine for the remainder of this period.

Jerusalem and Central Israel: 6°C-15°C (43°F-59°F)

Weather in Jerusalem during January can best be described as comfortable, with average maximum temperatures of about 15°C (59°F) and average minimum temperatures of about 6°C (43°F). Just like it is in most other parts of Israel, January is the coldest month of the year in the capital city of Jerusalem.

It doesn't rain as much in Jerusalem during January as it does in the northern parts of Israel. Although it is the wettest month of the year in the capital city, rainfall is relatively moderate, averaging in at 77mm (3 inches) and raining for about a third of the month, meaning most of the month is dry and sunny.

The Southern Desert and the Dead Sea: 4°C-16°C (39°F-60°F)

January is one of the best times of the year to visit the southern regions of Israel, including the beautiful beach town of Eilat. There are practically no rainy days in Eilat during the month, with rainfall averaging in at a mere 5mm (0.2 inches). The resulting clear skies and endless hours of sunshine means this is a great time to visit Eilat.

Temperatures in the southern tip of Israel range from a minimum average of 4°C (39°F) to a maximum average of 16°C (60°F) during the month of January.

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Best Places to See in Israel in January

1. Eilat

Eilat is a bonafide beauty of a beach town that sits on the southern tip of Israel. In January, the city experiences almost no rain and is one of the warmest places in the country during the daytime, meaning a visit is an absolute must during this month. Fun activities during January in Eilat include snorkeling, diving, swimming and surfing. The water is not cold at all, meaning you can participate in all or some of these activities without worrying about being uncomfortable.

A visit to Timna Park, a world-renowned underwater marine observatory is yet another option to explore when in Eilat.

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2. Jerusalem

Cold January temperatures mean most people avoid visiting the capital city of Jerusalem during this month, so if you're okay with slightly colder winters and some snowfall, you could enjoy the best the city has to offer in relative peace and quiet. The Israel Museum, the Western Wall, the Tower of David, and Mount Zion are world-renowned attractions that you could visit in the absence of bustling crowds that usually visit during the warmer Spring and Autumn months.

3. Haifa

Although January is the coldest month of the year in the coastal city of Haifa, the Mediterranean Sea helps draw in warmer winds, meaning visits to the coastline are well worth it. In addition to its magnificent beaches, Haifa is also home to Mount Carmel, the most famous of the city's countless hills.

4. Akko

The city of Akko has seen its culture and way of life get influenced by everyone from the Romans and the British to the Ottomans and Byzantines. A UNESCO World Heritage Site, this ancient city is home to countless ancient baths, citadels, and mosques. If you love learning about history, Akko is a must-visit for you!

January Crowds and Costs

January is an off-season month in the tourism industry in Israel, and this means prices are lower and crowds are far fewer than they would otherwise be during the warmer months. The primary reason for this drop in prices is the colder winter temperatures.

If you like exploring historic attractions in relative peace and quiet, away from bustling crowds, January is a very good time to visit Jerusalem and Tel Aviv. If you like being out in nature, the warmer coastal city of Eilat is a fantastic option, as it's also free of large crowds during this time of the year.

Check out more price details about the cost of a trip to Israel>>>

What to Wear in Israel in January

The northern part of Israel experiences harsher winter temperatures in January than the southern part of the country. If you're traveling in Tel Aviv or Jerusalem or even further north, it's a good idea to carry plenty of warm clothing. Sweaters, jackets, and gloves are all recommended.

If you plan on visiting the ski resorts of Mount Hermon in the extreme northern part of the country, we recommend you carry some thermal inners and winter hats, in addition to your standard winter wear, as temperatures can drop dramatically and without warning in these parts.

Cities like Eilat that sit on the southern tip of Israel usually experience warmer temperatures in January. Days will be warm and sunny, so if you plan on hitting up the beach, do remember to bring your swimwear. Evenings are chilly and a light jacket should suffice.

January Events in Israel

International Holocaust Remembrance Day: January 27 marks International Holocaust Remembrance Day in Jerusalem. If you find yourself in the capital city, do make sure you visit Yad Vashem Holocaust Memorial and Museum to pay your respects by taking part in one of their excellently organized special tours and lectures.

Monthly Weather in Israel

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