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Eurovision Song Contest 2019

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Last Updated on September 21, 2018

The Eurovision Song Contest 2019.

Tel Aviv to host the 2019 Eurovision Song Contest from May 14th – 18th.

It’s final! After months of speculation the 2019 Eurovision Song Contest will take place in Tel Aviv, Israel in May 14-18, 2019. This will be the first time in 20 years that Eurovision has been hosted in Israel.  The last time was when Dana International won the contest in 1998.  The following year, 1999, the Eurovision Song Contest was held in Jerusalem.

The contest first Semi Final will take place on May 14, while the second Semi Final on May 16. The Grand Final is scheduled for May 18, 2019.

eurovision 2019 tel aviv
Image credit: Eurovisionworld.com

If you are planning to visit Israel for the Eurovision Song Contest, you can base yourself in any of Israel’s 3 major cities.  Tel Aviv is less than 1 hour’s drive from the country’s capital – Jerusalem and it is also a very pleasant and comfortable, one hour train ride from Haifa.

While exploring Jerusalem make sure you take in the holy sites; The Western Wall, the Church of the Holy Sepulchre, The Dome of the Rock as well as the Israel Museum where you can see the Dead Sea Scrolls.

Take some time out in trendy Tel Aviv.  LGBT friendly, Tel Aviv is known as the city that never sleeps – fabulous cafes and restaurants, the Jaffa Port, the Carmel Market, Sarona and a White City Tour are a must.

No visit to Haifa is complete without a visit to the Bahai Temple and the terraces.  Haifa is the world center of the Bahai religion. Haifa also offer miles of golden beaches, mountains and forests and the Sea of Galilee is just an hour’s drive away.

If you have the time, hop on a bus and 4 hours from Tel Aviv you’ll be in snorkelers paradise – Eilat.  The aquarium, scuba diving, a ride on a glass-bottomed boat and Coral Beach should be on your bucket list.

How many times has Israel won the Eurovision Song Contest?

To date there have been four Israeli victories in the contest. Izhar Cohen and Alphabeta won in Paris in 1978 with the uptempo A-Ba-Ni-Bi. On home ground in Jerusalem the following year, Israel won again, this time with the song Hallelujah performed by Gali Atari & Milk and Honey. Unusually, Israel did not defend the title in 1980. The third victory came almost 20 years later in Birmingham in 1998. Singer Dana International took top honours with the song Diva, setting off widespread celebrations in Israel. Twenty years later, Israel earned their fourth victory at the 2018 contest in Lisbon, Portugal. The song was “Toy” sung by Netta Barzilai, which earned Israel their highest-ever score of 529 points.

The date chosen to host the Eurovision Song Contest in 1980 coincided with Memorial Day in Israel, and the country was forced to withdraw. This made Israel the only country to date unable to defend its title.

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