Without exaggeration, Jerusalem can be called one of the most significant cities on our planet. It is located at the crossroads of civilizations, cultures and religions. Jerusalem keeps memories of the great kings of the ancient kingdom of Israel, the rulers of the Roman and Byzantine empires and the caliphs of powerful Arab states. The streets of the Old City were once roamed by Jesus Christ and the Prophet Mohammed, the founders of future world religions.
A huge number of pilgrims, as well as secular tourists, visit Jerusalem every year to touch the Western Wall, pray in the Church of the Holy Sepulcher and walk the path of Christ to Calvary. The historic heart of Jerusalem - the Old City is included in the UNESCO World Heritage List. Here, the traditions of Byzantine, Arab and Jewish architecture intertwined in a bizarre mosaic. No less interesting are the new districts of the city, which began to form much later. A special place among them is occupied by Mea Shearim, where Orthodox Jews still prefer to settle.
* The list does not include areas of the city that can be seen as separate attractions in different sources: the Old City of Jerusalem, the Temple Mount, the Mount of Olives, the Jewish Quarter and others.
What to see and where to go in Jerusalem?
The most interesting and beautiful places for walking. Photos and a short description.
Church of the Holy Sepulcher
According to the texts of the Holy Scriptures, the temple complex stands on the very spot where Jesus was martyred, buried and resurrected. The first basilica appeared here in the III-IV centuries. The magnificent Romanesque building was erected by Europeans in the middle of the 12th century. after the success of the first Crusades. Today the Church of the Holy Sepulcher is an architectural complex that includes Golgotha, several cathedrals, churches, monasteries, an underground cathedral and aisles belonging to various branches of the Christian church.
Wall of Tears
Part of an ancient wall of the 6th century BC. e. 485 meters long (only 60 meters are on the surface), which survived the destruction of the Second Jerusalem Temple in the 1st century. This place is one of the main Jewish shrines. Jews all over the world consider it their duty to make a pilgrimage to the Wailing Wall, touch it with their hand, write a wish on a piece of paper and leave it in one of the slots. Not only Jews are allowed to the Wall - any tourist can do the same.
Western Wall Tunnel
An underground passage through which you can walk along the entire surviving part of the Wailing Wall. The tunnels were discovered during excavations in the 19th century. Today, this attraction is located on the territory of the Muslim quarter. As a result of archaeological research, experts discovered many ancient artifacts belonging to different historical periods in the dungeons. The passage was opened to the public in the 1990s.
The memorial complex of 1953, dedicated to the events of the Holocaust. It perpetuates the memory of the numerous victims who fell as a result of the persecution of the Jewish people during the Second World War. The complex includes several objects - the Hall of Memory, the Museum of the History of the Holocaust, the Partisan Panorama, the column of Heroism, the Children's Memorial, individual monuments and squares. The International Institute for Holocaust Studies operates on the territory of Yad Vashem.
Via Dolorosa street
It is believed that along the "Via Dolorosa" lay the path of Jesus to the place of the crucifixion. On the street, 9 of the 14 alleged stops of Christ during his death procession to Calvary are marked. There are also several temples and a monastery here. The name of the street is translated as "mournful way". The total length of the route is 500 meters. The passage through it will take about an hour, subject to a delay at each stop.
Jewish cemetery on the Mount of Olives
The oldest Jewish necropolis in the world, where there are graves and burial niches with the remains of the Old Testament prophets Malachi, Zechariah and Haggai. The first burials date back to the 10th century BC. e. The cemetery is considered sacred. For many centuries, it was considered a great honor to be buried within its boundaries. According to Jewish belief, at the end of time, the Messiah will ascend the Mount of Olives and begin to raise the dead.
Jewish cave burial, which is revered by some followers of the Protestant church as the true grave and place of the resurrection of Christ (the so-called Protestant Golgotha). However, studies and a number of facts show that the ancient necropolis dates back to the 9th-7th centuries. BC e. The grave is located in the Sheikh Jarah quarter, not far from the Dominican monastery of Saint-Etienne.
Tomb of the Virgin
One of the Christian shrines in Jerusalem. According to Scripture, the mother of Jesus, Mary, is buried in the tomb. The tomb is located on the western slope of the Mount of Olives on the territory of the Kidron Valley, which is repeatedly mentioned in the Bible. All Christian churches have access to the shrine, but it itself belongs to the Jerusalem Orthodox Church. In the 4th century, with the assistance of Elena Equal-to-the-Apostles, the first temple was erected over the tomb.
Mosque Dome of the Rock
The temple was erected in 687-691. decades after the death of the Prophet Muhammad. It is considered one of the first monuments of Islamic architecture. In those days, the concept of "mosque" did not yet exist, the building was built as a house for pilgrims. During the reign of the crusaders over Jerusalem, the Masjid Kubbat as-Sahra (the Arabic name for the temple) was turned into a church, but in 1187 it was again in the hands of the Muslims.
The temple of the beginning of the VIII century, which is considered the third shrine of Islam after two mosques in Mecca and Medina. After the destruction of the building as a result of an earthquake in 1033, Caliph Ali az-Zihir built another temple, which still stands today. The facade, walls and minarets of the mosque are made of limestone, the interior is decorated with marble mosaics. The building simultaneously accommodates up to 5 thousand people.
Basilica of Saint Anne
The basilica was erected on the site of the dwelling where the mother of Jesus, Mary, was born. The temple is located on the territory of the old quarters, which are now occupied by the Muslim district. Church of St. Anne was built during the reign of the crusaders in the middle of the XII century. In 1192, after they left Jerusalem, the building was converted into a madrasah. In this capacity, the basilica existed until the middle of the 19th century. In 1856 it was given to the Christian community.
Church of all nations
The Franciscan temple within the Garden of Gethsemane, where Jesus prayed the night before his arrest. The church was built in 1924 by architect A. Barluzzi. The money for the construction was allocated by representatives of the Catholic Church from 12 countries, thanks to which the temple received the name "Church of all nations". The modern building was erected on the foundation of the XII century, left over from the era of the Crusader Knights.
Monastery of the Assumption of Our Lady
The Benedictine monastery on Mount Zion, created at the beginning of the 20th century on the site where the house of John the Evangelist was supposedly located. The monastery was built to replace the temple of the XII century, which was destroyed by Muslims after the victory over the Crusaders. Even earlier, in the period of the V-IX centuries. here was the early Christian basilica of St. Sion. The architecture of the main monastery church combines elements of Arabic and Byzantine styles.
Room of the Last Supper
The room on the top floor of one of the city houses on Mount Zion, where the meal of Christ and his disciples, known as the Last Supper, took place. This room is considered to be the first Christian temple. In the era of the Crusader Knights, the entire building was converted into a church, which was decorated with marble columns and domes. Some decorative elements belong to an even later era. On the ground floor of the Upper Room building is the tomb of King David.
St. Peter's Church in Gallicantu
Catholic church of the first half of the 20th century, erected on the supposed site of the abdication of the Apostle Peter. According to the beliefs that arose in the Middle Ages, here Peter mourned his unworthy act. The church was built in the neo-Byzantine style according to the design of the architect E. Bube. It was preceded by three temples, the last of which fell into disrepair and was destroyed at the end of the 13th century.
Our Father Church
The temple is located on the slope of the Mount of Olives in the place where Christ recited the prayer “Our Father” before the apostles. In fact, this is an unsubstantiated assumption. It is not known whether Jesus read this particular prayer to his disciples, as different sources contain conflicting information. The architectural complex, which includes the Carmelite monastery, was erected in the 19th-20th centuries. on the site of a 5th-century basilica and a later 12th-century church.
Church of St. Mary Magdalene
Russian Orthodox Church in the Gethsemane Valley. It was built in the 19th century with donations from the Russian imperial family in honor of the wife of Alexander II, Maria Alexandrovna. The church is a temple at the women's monastery. The relics of St. Barbara and Elizabeth and the miraculous Hodegetria icon are kept here. The building was built of Jerusalem stone in the architectural style typical of the Moscow school.
tower of david
An ancient fortress located at the entrance to the Old City. The construction of the fortification dates back to the 2nd century BC. e. It was built for defense purposes. Over the centuries, the building was rebuilt alternately by Muslims and Christians. It is believed that in earlier centuries on the site of the citadel was the palace of King David. Today, the tower houses a museum dedicated to the history of Jerusalem.
An ancient gate in the northwestern part of the city, behind which lies the Arab quarter of Sheikh Jarah. In past eras, the path to the city of Damascus began from here. The first time the gates were erected in the VI century BC. e. After the destruction of Jerusalem by the Romans in the 2nd century, they were rebuilt. In X, the third building appeared, which was expanded and rebuilt in the XII-XIII centuries.
The Knesset is the Israeli Parliament. The building for the meetings of this legislative body was erected in the 1960s. In those days, the state did not have money to implement such a grandiose project. However, the Israelis were rescued by the British politician and philanthropist E. Rothschild, who donated a large sum for the construction. As a result, a grandiose building designed by the architect I. Klarvein was created in the Givat Ram area.
Ben Yehuda Street
One of the walking alleys of Jerusalem, named after E. Ben Yehud, the creator of modern Hebrew. It is located in the modern part of the city. The street is lined with restaurants, cafes, souvenir shops and cosmetic shops selling products based on Black Sea minerals. Slowly strolling tourists are often entertained by street musicians.
Mahane Yehuda Market
Bazaar on the territory of the Mahane Yehuda quarter, which is often called the simple word "Shuk" (translated from Hebrew - "market"). This place is popular with tourists and residents of the city. Previously, goods were sold here at fairly low prices, but due to the large influx of foreigners, merchants switched to more expensive and exclusive products. Life is "in full swing" in the market even at night, when bars with live music open.
The main museum of the country, created with numerous private donations, as well as funds received from the US government in the 1950s. The museum complex was built by architects A. Mansfeld and D. Gad on Givat Ram hill. The museum collection consists of almost 500,000 items related to the historical and cultural heritage of the Jewish people. The earliest exhibits are over 9 thousand years old.
Bible Lands Museum
The museum collection is dedicated to the history of the countries and peoples mentioned in the Jewish sacred texts, united in the multi-volume Tanakh (analogous to the Christian Bible). The exposition consists of artifacts from Ancient Egypt, Sumer, Assyria, Rome, Persia, Mesopotamia and other Middle Eastern states. The museum was established in 1992. based on the private collection of E. Borovsky with the support of the Jerusalem City Hall.
Bloomfield Science Museum
A popular science center established in 1992. on the initiative of Professor P. Hillman. The collection consists of interactive exhibits and prototypes that visitors can experiment with. Each section of the museum is dedicated to one scientific branch. Films are shown in the local conference hall, from which you can learn a lot of useful information to broaden your horizons.
Mayer Museum of Islamic Art
Located in nine halls, the museum's exposition tells about the history of Islamic civilization, from the moment of its inception to the end of the 19th century. Separate sections are devoted to art, architecture, religion, worldview, writing and various crafts. It also houses a unique collection of antique chronometers collected from all over Europe. The exhibition opened in 1974.
Rockefeller Archaeological Museum
The collection was formerly known as the Palestine Archaeological Museum, but was renamed in honor of D. D. Rockefeller, Jr., who donated an impressive amount of money to the creation of the museum. Its collection covers a historical period of more than 2 million years. The museum building was designed by O. Harrison from white limestone in a mixed style of Western and Eastern architecture.
Cave of Zedekiah
In the X century BC. e. in the cave of Zedekiah, stone was mined for the construction of the First Temple, therefore, since ancient times, the place has been known as the quarries of King Solomon. The cave has a huge number of passages, halls and corridors. Its depth is only 100 meters with a fairly impressive area of 9,000 m². The cave was discovered in the middle of the 19th century and quickly acquired mysterious legends. Since then, it has been occupied by either Freemasons or sectarians.
Jerusalem Biblical Zoo
Thematic zoo in the southwest of Jerusalem, where the animals mentioned in the Bible are kept. It covers an area of 25 hectares and is located on two levels. The building of the zoo information center was built in the form of Noah's Ark. Thematic lectures are constantly held here and temporary exhibitions are organized. In addition to a large number of representatives of the fauna, the zoo boasts a considerable plant diversity.
Garden of Gethsemane
The garden is located at the foot of the Mount of Olives on an area of 1200 m². According to Scripture, this is where Jesus spent his last night before his execution. Ancient olive trees grow in the garden, which quite possibly remember Christ himself, since their age exceeds 2 thousand years. Today the Garden of Gethsemane is a well-groomed and picturesque landscape square with lawns and walking paths.