The ancient city of Jerusalem has a long and varied history. It has been captured, destroyed and attacked many times since its beginnings in 4,000 BC. Many religions consider it to be the holy city and is the center of the Jewish religion. There are many incredible sights and attractions that will leave you in awe, regardless of your faith. Some that are and absolute must-see on a trip to the holy land are described below.
Yad Vashem Holocaust Memorial
Outdoor monuments, gardens and a museum are just part of the largest memorial to the holocaust in the world. It sits on 45 acres of land all dedicated to remembering the atrocities that happened during World War II. Whether you are Jewish or not, you will be touched and emotionally moved. In the end, you will leave with a feeling of hope.
This 533-mile-long tunnel was designed and dug under Jerusalem’s city of David in 701 BC to be an aqueduct for water during an attack. It is still intact and you can walk through it, along the Western Wall. The huge stones and workmanship is to be marveled at as you think of how long ago and what type of tools had to be used to do the excavation.
Tisch Family Zoological Gardens
Enjoy a day or two taking in the animal exhibits of this 62-acre zoo. It is a very well-kept park, with many activities for your family to take part in. The animal inhabitants are all either endangered animals or those mentioned in the Bible. The zoo is so well-planned that, even on the busiest days, you do not feel crowded or have to wait long to see the different exhibits.
Take time to sit and read in the garden, taking a break from the heat of the desert and marveling at the plant life. A natural spring runs underground, allowing the different flowers and trees to grow and bloom. You are allowed to enter the tomb and take pictures. A great place for a quiet picnic and reflection.
Mount of Olives
Climb up to the Mount of Olives to visit the place where Jesus taught the apostles the Lord’s Prayer. More than that, go to the top and you will find yourself with a pristine view of all of Jerusalem. Stroll the mountain to visit a number of small churches and cemeteries which have been placed to commemorate different events during Jesus’s life.
After all the wars and destruction, the Jewish Quarter has been rebuilt with beautiful architecture. The Roman market is a shopper’s delight with many treasures to be bought. Any trip to Jerusalem would not be complete without spending at least an afternoon browsing among the shops and seeing the locals and how they live.
A trip to Jerusalem is usually of some kind of religious nature. If you are searching for answers, you may find what you are looking for; if not, you will at least come away with a new sense of what it is all about.
Victoria Heckstall is a freelance writer who recommends researching Jerusalem hotels before making the decision as to where you will stay.