What to do and see in Jerusalem, Israel: The Best Places and Tips

November 13, 2017 Marlin Saiz

Religious pilgrims have been traveling to Jerusalem for centuries, yet you don’t have to share their zeal in order to appreciate this city’s profound cultural and historical significance. Plan on seeing the major sights, but also leave plenty of time to walk through the streets and simply immerse yourself in the daily life of such an ancient and revered place.
Restaurants in Jerusalem

1. Old City of Jerusalem

Jerusalem, Israel +972 3-516-6699
Excellent
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5 based on 10 reviews

Old City of Jerusalem

Characterized by narrow, winding streets and alleyways, this ancient part of the city is filled with shrines and attractions holy to Jews, Christians and Muslims including the Western Wall, Temple Mount and the Church of the Holy Sepulchre.

Reviewed By Denny S - Frankfort, Illinois

As cities go, Jerusalem is not that big (about 850,000). The old city, that surrounded by 16th century walls, has only about 40,000 residents, but because of the ancient narrow streets, it is always very crowded. This is a place you want to simply walk, observe, and look in the shops. The variety of people from around the world, and the inhabitants of the four city quarters (Jewish, Muslim, Christian, and Armenian), basically live shoulder-to-shoulder, and get along, the way humanity should be. The history and religiosity of the city can be daunting, but fascinating on so many levels. How much time should you devote to Jerusalem - as much as you possibly can, but certainly no less than 4 days. Although you will be tempted to return to places you discovered and really liked, try not to spend too much time repeating, as there is so much to see and do, it would be a shame not to maximize your visit.

2. Yad Vashem - The World Holocaust Remembrance Center

Mount of Remembrance in Jerusalem, Entrance to the site is via the Holland Junction, situated on Herzl Boulevard, Jerusalem 91034, Israel +972 2-644-3400
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5 based on 6 reviews

Yad Vashem - The World Holocaust Remembrance Center

The World Holocaust Remembrance Center is a 45-acre campus comprised of indoor museums, outdoor monuments, Gardens and sculptures. Entrance to Yad Vashem is free. Entrance to the Holocaust History Museum is for ages 10 and up.

Reviewed By DeanMurphy2020 - Orlando, Florida

In a word, WOW! Yad Vashem (Hebrew:יָד וַשֵׁם literally means “monument and a name”) is Israel’s national memorial to Holocaust victims. After the Western Wall, Yad Vashem is the second-most-visited Israeli tourist site and welcomes more than a million visitors a year—at no cost (but contributions are appreciated). It is dedicated to preserving the memory of the dead, honoring Jews who fought Nazi oppressors, and Gentiles who aided Jews during this horrific time (Oskar Schindler, amongst many). The goal, through education, is to avoid such future events.
This incredible architectural marvel has a pyramid-ish but elongated shape, more than 80 percent underground, with only a triangular skylight running the entire length. The 45-acre complex contains Holocaust History Museum, Children’s Memorial, Hall of Remembrance, Museum of Holocaust Art—and a sobering artifact: a red cattle train car used to transport Jews to Death Camps perched above the road on a manufactured rail facsimile.
Touring the exhibits brings to mind only a slight element of the horrors people experienced. Spanish poet, writer and philosopher Jorge Santayana (born 1863 and died nine days after my birth, in September 1952) opined: Those who cannot remember the past are condemned to repeat it. Always remember: Never Forget.
This can be difficult for some, especially trying to explain to the younger set how things like this could have happened during my parents' era.

3. Israel Museum

11 Derekh Ruppin, Jerusalem 9543500, Israel +972 2-670-8811
Excellent
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5 based on 3 reviews

Israel Museum

Comprising nearly 50,000 square meters and a six-acre sculpture garden, this complex features an impressive variety of collections from prehistoric archaeology to contemporary art.The children's wing is the most interactive section of this sprawling museum. There are special activities for kids during Jewish holidays and school vacations.

Reviewed By Combatfisher - Taipei, Taiwan

I went with a tour group to the Israel museum...and found it interesting that they had Isaiah scroll displayed in the museum...but then later heard that Rabbi's don't teach on Isaiah 53. They skip right over it and pretend like it's not there. It's right there on the scroll for everyone to see...
Over-all the museum is a good display for the whole city of Jerusalem. The model clearly shows how the city would have looked a long time ago. If you are a tour guide, I would recommend bringing a laser pointer to this place so you can talk about the different buildings in the model and point to it with the laser...because the model is HUGE and it's difficult to see what areas you are talking about.

4. Western Wall

Western Wall Plaza | Jewish Quarter, Jerusalem 97500, Israel +972 2-627-1333
Excellent
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4.5 based on 8 reviews

Western Wall

The remains of the Second Temple of Jerusalem and a place of prayer sacred to the Jewish people.

Reviewed By Misstexas1 - Columbia, Missouri

We have seen pictures of the Western Wall all our lives and it was so exciting to see it in person. Jerusalem is such a beautiful city and the wall is a major reason why it is so beautiful.

5. The Western Wall Tunnels

Old City, Jerusalem, Israel +972 2-627-1333
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4.5 based on 2 reviews

The Western Wall Tunnels

Reviewed By GeeJAre

Toured the Western Wall Tunnels with our adult daughter. Fascinating experience and somewhat adventuresome. Provides an incredible look at the complexity and construction of the Western Wall. It is hard to imagine how the Wall was built with no machinery or tools and this tour provides the best opportunity to see the intricacies and sophistication of the builders.

6. Mahane Yehuda Market

Rehov Mahane Yehuda, Jerusalem, Israel +972 76-539-8000
Excellent
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4.5 based on 977 reviews

Mahane Yehuda Market

Reviewed By DavyPaul - Cardiff, United Kingdom

well, something for everyone. sights, smells, tastes. beer, fresh veg, halva, humous, kosher food.
great fun bartering and bantering with the stall holders.
in the evening, the market becomes an ad-hoc bar circuit. I recommend Beer Bazaar. the stall holders put gingham over the boxes and bring out the folding chairs - buy your beer, chat and enjoy. a great holiday experience.
recommended

7. Hezekiah's Tunnel - Siloam Tunnel

Rehov Hashiloah | City of David, Jerusalem, Israel +972 77-996-6726
Excellent
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4.5 based on 1 reviews

Hezekiah's Tunnel - Siloam Tunnel

Come rediscover Biblical Jerusalem! Located just outside the Old City walls, the City of David is in fact the historical Old City of Jerusalem, containing archeological remnants going back 4,000 years. Come see for yourself where it all began...

Reviewed By Jill D

This was such an amazing experience! My kids loved it and couldn't stop talking about it - gave them a chance to experience the history and walk through it while having a little fun. Definitely dark and a bit claustrophobic but so worth it - keep your flashlight on and have fun! so impressive to see how it was built and why and then walk through it.

8. Garden Tomb

Conrad Schick St, Jerusalem 91193, Israel +972 2-539-8100
Excellent
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4.5 based on 1 reviews

Garden Tomb

Located north of the Old City’s Damascus Gate, this Christian holy site is a perfect place for prayer and contemplation.

Reviewed By Levi Z - Tel Aviv, Israel

Garden Tomb is considered as one of the most popular places in Jerusalem for the Protestant Christians. Once believed to be a right Jesus Burial place, it till today keeps a mystery and modest beauty of the Ancient times. Much more quiet and much less crowded that the Holy Sepulcher Church, Garden Tomb is an ideal place for the believers to contemplate and to pray quietly

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