The Sights and Sounds of Jerusalem


Jerusalem is the holiest city in Israel and is one of the most visited cities in terms of attracting tourists. It’s a very easy drive from Tel Aviv by taking the 1 highway and is literally next door to Bethlehem. Parking can be a craze, so I parked in the Karta lot right next to Jaffa gate which is the main entrance to Old City Jerusalem. Driving in Jerusalem can be a traffic nightmare since the streets are very narrow and the Old City is practically lined up with tour buses, locals, and tourists.

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After I parked in the Karta lot, it was a short 10 minute walk to the Old City since you can not take a rental car through Jaffa Gate (there are warning signs everywhere). The view of Old City was just magnificent with its amazing architecture and it simply gave me goosebumps. Once in the Old City, you can walk through the Kaloti Oriental Bazaar to get to the different quarters. It seemed like a maze with the multiple passageways that are tunnel-like which are lined up with shops.

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The Old City’s main attraction is the Western (Wailing) Wall which is the most sacred landmark recognized by the Jewish faith. It’s a landmark for Jewish prayer and pilgrimage which is similar to Mecca for Muslims. The Western Wall has a men’s only (left side) and women’s only (right side) section.

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After the Western Wall, I headed to Mount Zion where King David’s tomb is located. Here are some views looking toward the Mount of Olives from the outskirts of the Western Wall Plaza.

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I walked up the hill to Mount Zion which is really close to the Western Wall Plaza and it basically looks like a fortress. King David conquered Mount Zion becoming his residential palace and the City of David.

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King David’s tomb is the burial place of David, King of Israel. The tomb is located in a corner room on the ground floor of Mount Zion. For men, you must wear a yamaka which is provided if you don’t have one. There is a separate men (left side) and women’s (right side) for the casket viewing.

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After Mount Zion, I walked through the Armenian Quarter of the Old City to get back to Jaffa Gate.

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