There are many choices in Safed if you are on a time constraint. Visiting Sheva Chaya's glass blowing demonstration should be on the top of your list. First it's interesting for the whole family. Walking into her courtyard is an experience in and of itself. She painted the walls and even the sidewalk is a piece of art. There's room for both small and large groups. While she does a live glass blowing demonstration Sheva Chaya entertains you with stories of the art of glass blowing and Torah connections. As you can see from the photo she is also a painter. Her work is for sale in the gallery, ranging from mezuza covers to intricate menorahs, pomegranates and her water color paintings.
The gallery is located at the end of the artist row, near where the buses usually park. Rehov Tet Vav 7.
I recommend calling the gallery first to arrange a tour.
If you only have a few hours in Safed here are some recommendations.
1. Candle Factory. It is like a museum as well as a great place to shop for gifts. You can sometimes see the candle makers at work.
2. Take a walk to the top of the Citadel. You can drive or walk up the set of stairs located across from the City Hall. At the top you can hear the story of the battle of Safed. As well you can see in all four directions and get a feel for the city in case you got lost...
3. The artist row. You can wander around the artist quarter and find some beautiful galleries or if you are short on time then spend some time in the artist row. You can see some of the artisans at work and find Avi's gallery in the middle across from the falafel stand. He's an artist and he makes one of a kind mezuzot from wood and he carries my line of photography as well.
4. The Ari Synagogue is a shul from the 15th century. If you ask the guard at the entrance he can tell you a few stories. Be sure to look for the shrapnel hole near the entrance and ask him to tell you that miracle story.
5. The HaMeiri Cheese factory is a great place to pick up some fancy cheeses that they make on the premises and the grape leaves are my favorite.
Pnina Sugar has lived in Safed for 8 years. This blog was created from the outlook of a mother, explorer and a photographer to help you make the most of your vacation in Safed and Northern Israel. You can find her photos at www.israelphotoart.com or join her upcoming Kabbalistic photo journey of Safed tour on your next trip to find out where she took all those cool door photos