Israel or the Promised Land is the birthplace of three cultures and religions. The streets are colorful and, multilingual. Religious shrines, historical and architectural sights can be found there at almost every step, attracting millions of tourists to the capital Jerusalem every year. Tourists are attracted not only by sights but also by natural monuments – the Judean Mountains, the Dead Sea, the Negev desert. This article will feature the top 15 tourist attractions of Jerusalem.
Sights of Jerusalem – guide, description, photos
First of all, it should be noted that there are so many memorable and tourist places in the capital of Israel that you can not do without sights of the Jerusalem map. Start preparing for the trip in advance, make a list of places you would like to visit.
Important! You can always take the help of a guide who will tell you what to see in Jerusalem and also make up a personal itinerary for you.
The top 15 attractions of Jerusalem
1. Yad Vashem Holocaust Memorial in Israel
This attraction was built in Jerusalem with one purpose – to perpetuate the memory of the victims of the Holocaust and to forever preserve the heroism of the soldiers who died in World War II.
The memorial first appeared in 1942. For its construction, an area of 18 hectares was chosen on the slope of Mount Herzl. The complex is made up of several objects. Some of these objects are located on the premises while some are in the open.
Interesting fact! In Yad Vashem, you can see the largest collection of documents related to the Holocaust and World War II. Here, work is still ongoing to perpetuate the memory of people who became victims of the Holocaust in Israel.
- You can see the attraction every day except Saturday from 8:30 to 17:00
- On Thursday’s museums, a synagogue, and exhibitions on the territory of the memorial complex are open until 20:00
- The entrance is free
2. Museum of Israel
The museum was founded in 1965 and is located near Givat Ram. The museum exposition has 500 thousand different exhibits, including archaeological finds, art objects. The total area of the museum is 50 thousand square meters.
The wing of archeology is dedicated to the history of Israel, the exposition is divided into 7 historical periods. The most valuable exhibits are the baths of King Herod and the stela of Heliodorus.
In the temple, one can see the oldest manuscript. There is another object through which one can see the architecture of the city before the invasion of the Romans (66 A.D.). The temple of Herod is recreated there. It occupies 20 acres of land. In the wing of fine arts, the collected art objects span over a period of tens of centuries. The themes include painting, architecture, photography. You can also visit the wing of the youth and the Garden of Arts.
- Address: 11, Ruppin Boulevard, Hakyria
- Opening hours: Monday, Wednesday, Thursday, Saturday and Sunday – from 10:00 to 17:00, Tuesday from 16:00 to 21:00, Friday from 10:00 to 14:00
- Visiting charges – full ticket 54 ILS, student – 39 ILS, for children under 17 years old – 27 ILS, children under 5 years old admission is free
3. Wall of Tears
The Wailing Wall is also known as the Wall of Tears is the main shrine of Judaism. Millions of pilgrims go there every year. The wall was built more than 2 thousand years ago and is located next to the Temple Mount. It is one of the few surviving parts of the Second Jerusalem Temple, which was destroyed in 70 A.D. (era of King Herod).
Interesting fact! The blocks in the wall are not fastened with anything, they are simply tightly composed and superimposed on each other.
4. Mount of Olives
Mount of Olives is located west of the Old Town of Jerusalem. The mountain has three peaks:
- Hebrew University
- Ascension Church
- Lutheran Center
At the foot of the ancient cemetery, one can find the Church of All Nations. It was built in the place where Jesus came to pray. The Church of the Assumption of the Virgin, the Virgin Mary, the Orthodox Church of Mary, and Magdalena are laid to rest here.
5. Church of the Holy Sepulcher
Church of the Holy Sepulcher is marked as an exceptionally important shrine is as it is the place where Jesus Christ carried his cross. In addition to Calvary, there is a tomb, where the Son of God was buried and then resurrected.
- No visiting charges
- One must be dressed appropriately
- Opening hours(open 7 days a week): April to September from 05:00 to 20:00, from October to March from 04:30 to 19:00
- The best time for a visit is from 16-00 to 17-00
- Address: Old Town, St. Helena, 1
6. Ezekiah Tunnel and Siloam Font
The length of the tunnel is 533 meters, its origin (beginning of the 7th century BC) is associated with the reign of Hezekiah of Judea. According to scientists, two groups dug the tunnel from opposite ends and the workers met in the center. At the entrance to the tunnel, there is a plate with a commemorative inscription telling about the history of the tunnel.
Tourists generally pass through the tunnel, accompanied by a guide. One needs to go knee-deep in the water to explore the tunnel and light the road with a flashlight.
Some say that the Hezekiah tunnel is an additional aqueduct, the main purpose of which is to preserve the entire volume of water inside the city and prevent enemy troops from accessing it. Water from the tunnel fell into the Siloam basin or the Siloam font, where Christ advised the blind to bathe in order to cure their ailment. According to one legend, every pilgrim who went to Jerusalem had to take a bath.
Fun Fact! The Shiloam font in Israel is the only building that has survived to our days from the time of Jesus Christ.
- Address: Shiloach village
- Opening hours: in the summer from Sunday to Thursday from 08:00 to 19:00, on Friday from 09:00 to 16:00, in the winter from Sunday to Thursday from 08:00 to 17:00, on Friday from 09:00 to 14:00.
7. Gethsemane Gardens
The gardens are located near the Old Town, not far from the western slope of the Mount of Olives. In the distant past, it occupied a much larger territory but is now restricted to 2300 square meters.
Among pilgrims and Christians, it is a very revered place as Jesus Christ came here to pray on the last night before his arrest and crucifixion. One can always see olive trees in these gardens. Some historians claim that they could very well be witnesses of how Jesus prayed.
Churches were built on the territory of the garden, which was later destroyed. At the end of the 17th century, the garden passed under the control of Franciscan monks, they erected a stone wall around the attraction. In Gethsemane you can also see:
- Temple of All Nations;
- the temple of Mary Magdalena;
- Gethsemane Grotto.
The Kedron Valley is also located there. It is shrouded in gloomy glory because according to legend, it is here that a trumpet will sound that will raise the dead. For this reason, the territory here is completely covered with graves.
- Opening hours: daily from 08:00 to 12:00 and from 14:00 to 18:00;
- Free admission;
- In order to get there, you need to take a bus to the Lion Gate, then go towards the temple of All Nations for about 500 m.
8. Garden grave
Garden grave is located north of Old Jerusalem, next to the Damascus Gate. In the 19th century, representatives of the Protestant church revered this cave burial as the true tomb of Jesus. General Charles Gordon was the first person to derive this understanding of the Garden grave. However, some historians refute the General’s understanding, since the shape of the cave indicates that it appeared in the 9th century BC. Therefore, at the time of the crucifixion of Christ, this tomb was not new, and the Gospel states that Christ was buried in a “new sepulcher.”
The area is well maintained, people go there to see an amazing park with flower beds, alleys, relax on benches. In addition, there are antique artifacts – an oil press, a catchment, a mountain, the shape of which resembles a skull. In the garden with special attention are equipped places where a person can retire and pray to God.
Important! It is better to visit the attraction on a weekday when there are few tourists. On weekends there can be a huge number of pilgrims.
9. Tower of David Museum
The tower is a fortress located between Old Jerusalem and the modern city. It was built to protect the settlement, today there is a museum inside, which also hosts cultural events.
The fortress was built in the 2nd century BC. It was subsequently destroyed many times, but each ruler restored and used it for the defense of the city. When the Romans settled in Jerusalem, there were barracks in the citadel. Later, a moat was dug around the fortress, which was supposed to protect pilgrims bound for Jerusalem. The fortress received the status of a peaceful attraction in 1967.
Today in the museum one can see the archaeological park, exhibition area, light, and music shows. The reign of the Omansa Empire is symbolized by: a minaret, a mosque, guns protecting the main entrance.
- Address: Jaffa Gate, Jerusalem;
- Opening hours: from Sunday to Thursday from 0900 to 1600, on Fridays to 0900 to 1400
- The audio guide can be downloaded from: https://www.tod.org.il/en/
- The cost of tickets depends on the number of places that the tourist plans to visit.
10. City of David
This was the place where Jerusalem was founded by King David. It is located on a hill east of Old Jerusalem.
The ancient settlement was studied by archaeologists very carefully. The territory is divided into sections, each has unique buildings, utilities. The most interesting and famous site G, where residential buildings have been preserved.
For tourists the City of David is represented in two parts:
- The archaeologically oldest part of Jerusalem;
- Warren’s well, which was part of the urban water supply system. It was organized so that the inhabitants of the city could have access to water during periods of siege.
One can see the watchtower, the archaeological part, the Palace of David, and explore the city’s water supply system. It is a part of a standard excursion that normally lasts 2.5-3hrs
- You can get into the City of David through the Garbage Gate;
- Opening hours: Sunday to Thursday from 0800 to 1900 in the summer months, and in winter 0800 to 1700, on Fridays the entrance is open until 1600 in the summer and until 1400 in the winter;
- Ticket price: adult – 62 ILS, preferential – 42 ILS.
11. Temple Mount
The Temple Mount is located in the Old part of Jerusalem, namely in the south-eastern part. It is also called Mount Moriah. According to legend, it was there that Abraham sacrificed his son Isaac. It is noteworthy that you need to climb on the right side of the mountain, and down – on the left.
On the territory of the Temple Mount, one see buildings made for various purposes – temples, arches, mosques, fountains, arbors. You can see the whole of Old Jerusalem from above.
- Open Monday-Thursday Winter: 7:30 am – 10:30 am and 12:30 pm – 1:30 pm. Remains closed Friday-Sunday
- Non-Muslims are allowed to enter through a special checkpoint organized at the foot of the mountain (Garbage Gate).
- It is forbidden to smoke, walk shod, take pictures, and shoot videos.
- Cost: 30 ILS, a single ticket to visit the Dome of the Rock Mosque, the Museum of Islamic Art and Al-Aqsa Mosque.
12. Jewish quarter
This area of Old Jerusalem is located between the Temple Mount and the Zion Gate. It is a museum that tells the story of local residents. During the Arab-Israeli war, many people died there. It was believed that Jews in this part of Jerusalem would never live again. In the future, the authorities decided to restore the quarter and perpetuate the memory of the dead Jews. According to tourists, the vibrant atmosphere of Old Jerusalem reigns there. Ancient synagogues are located there, narrow and winding streets, houses seem to hang over them. The museum serves as a great attraction for tourists. There is also a park in the south of the quarter.
13. Mahane Yehuda Market
Mahane Yehuda market is a colorful, grocery market where one can buy and try many different goodies. The assortment includes dishes of national cuisine, as well as a large selection of treats for every taste. The scope of bargaining here is exceptionally low, but you will not be able to leave the market without shopping.
Locals say that if you do not visit Mahane Yehuda, you will not see the real Jerusalem. The market comes to life during the night as most of the pubs and eateries open in the late evening. Sellers prefer cash and cards are not accepted. Do not rush to buy the first product you come across, explore the market thoroughly. Be sure to try seasonal fruits as they are a specialty of the market.
14. Temple of All Nations
the Temple of All Nations was built by Franciscan monks. Funds for construction were received from Catholic communities around the world. The architect of the project was Antonio Barluzzi. It is noteworthy that the temple at this place appeared much earlier – in the 4th century. The second name of the church is the temple of Agony, the interior decoration contradicts its gloomy name. For the construction, stone, purple glass was used. The ceiling was painted in saturated blue, which imitates the night sky.
The temple is active, Catholic, Christian services are held here. Above the altar from the mosaic is a picture of the prayer of Jesus Christ in Gethsemane. The vaulted dome draws attention as it shows the coats of arms of the states from which the Catholic communities transferred money.
The temple is open every day from 0830 to 1130 and then from 1430 to 1600. Entry is free.
15. Jerusalem First Station
Jerusalem First Station is located near Old Jerusalem and the Amin Moshe quarter. The station was built in 1892. Today, cultural events are held here – sports, culinary, musical. The gallery presents exhibitions, and one can buy clothes, products, small souvenirs there. Tourists can also take part in Zumba, yoga, or Pilates. After a walk and outdoor activities, you can have a tasty meal in one of the restaurants or bars. The guest center offers a large selection of hiking trails.
The sights of Jerusalem have a historic background stretching over several millennia. They represent a mixture of cultures and religions. Many people call this city a spiritual center because everyone there feels a connection with God.