Chat with us, powered by LiveChat 3 historic attractions you must see in Jerusalem's Old City | Gold Carpet Tours - Israel

3 historic attractions you must see in Jerusalem’s Old City

January 15, 2020

The Old City sits like a jewel in the crown that is the capital city, Jerusalem. Wars and victories, events that have changed the course of history, political controversies, and celebrations of different cultures and different faiths โ€“ all have happened within this 0.9 square kilometers (0.35 square miles) guarded by a high stone wall and 12 massive gates (some working, some not).

What is the Old City? Up until 1860, when the famous neighborhood of Mishkenot Sha’ananim was established, the Old City housed the entire population of Jerusalem. Today, it is divided into four uneven quarters: Muslim, Jewish, Christian, and Armenian.

Its narrow stone alleyways, blend of cultures, and tourist attractions make it one of the most intriguing and welcoming places for visitors and locals alike.

 

The Western Wall

The Western Wall (also known as the Wailing Wall) is a small remaining segment of an ancient and much longer retaining wall. The wall was erected as part of the expansion of the Second Temple. This site is considered the holiest place for Jews to pray at, as they believe the Temple, built by King Solomon, was the dwelling place of the presence of God.

Traditionally, people of all beliefs, nationalities, and ages come here to seek God in prayer, write their requests on notes, place them between the crevasses of the ancient stones, and experience spiritual connection. Coming-of-age celebrations (bar/bat mitzvahs) are celebrated there with the reading of Holy Scripture, and cultural events are held in the large plaza in front of the wall.

 

The Western Wall

The Western Wall

 

The Church of the Holy Sepulchre

Between the winding walls of the Christian Quarter stands, tall and proud, the Church of the Holy Sepulchre. Dating back to the 4th century, it contains the two holiest sites in Christianity. It is believed to be the site called Golgotha (which means ‘skull’ in Hebrew), where Jesus was crucified, and the place of his burial and resurrection. The tomb is enclosed by a shrine called Aedicula.

You will be overwhelmed by a feeling of reverence as you smell the sweet aromas of anointing oil and incense, listen to the sound of prayers echoing off the magnificent structure, and walk the 9-14 stations of the cross in quiet contemplation.

 

The Temple Mount/Dome of the Rock

The Dome of the Rock is an Islamic shrine, located on the Temple Mount. Beneath the golden dome is the Foundation Stone, which is protected and surrounded by exquisite arches and pillars and ancient Arabic inscriptions.

In Islamic tradition, it is known to be the starting point from which the Prophet Muhammad started his Night Journey into the heavens on his legendary horse, El-Burak. In Abrahamic religions, it is believed to be where God began the creation of the world, where Abraham attempted to sacrifice his son, and the dwelling place of God’s divine presence.

 

The Dome of the Rock

The Dome of the Rock

 

The Old City and its exceptional religious landmarks present a rare opportunity to experience a beautiful melting pot of cultures that is hard to find in other places.

We would love to take you there on one of our daily tours. You can walk through the open market, stop at the different quarters, and visit the sites that have had people from all over the world flocking to Jerusalem’s Old City every year.

Join our tours for a once in a lifetime experience!

Share: