Jerusalem

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Jerusalem GALLERY
2019 2019 Fodor’s Go List Destination
Jerusalem GALLERY
2019 2019 Fodor’s Go List Destination

Fodor's Essential Israel
Written by locals, Fodor's travel guides have been offering trusted advice for all tastes...

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Jerusalem is a city suspended between heaven and earth, East and West, past and present—parallel universes of flowing caftans and trendy coffee shops. For some people, Jerusalem is a condition, like being in love; for others, it is a state of mind, a constant tension between rival flags and faiths, or members of the same faith. You may feel moved, energized, or swept into the maelstrom of contemporary issues—but the city will not leave you unaffected.

The word unique is easy to throw around, but Jerusalem has a real claim on it. The city is sacred to half the human race, and its iconic Old City walls embrace primary sites of the three great monotheistic religions. For Jews, Jerusalem has always been their spiritual focus and historical national center; the imposing Western Wall is the last remnant of the ancient Second Temple complex. For almost 2,000 years, Christians have venerated Jerusalem as the place where their faith was shaped—through the death, burial, and resurrection of Jesus of Nazareth—and the candlelit Church of the Holy Sepulcher is where the greater part of Christendom recognizes those events. Islamic tradition identifies Jerusalem as the masjid al-aqsa, the "farthermost place," from which Muhammad ascended to Heaven for his portentous meeting with God: the dazzling, gold-top Dome of the Rock marks the spot.

The Old City is far more than shrines, however. Its arches, hidden courtyards, and narrow cobblestone alleyways beckon you back in time. The streets are crowded with travelers, pilgrims, and vendors of everything from tourist trinkets and leather sandals to fresh produce and embroidered fabrics. Your senses are assaulted by intense colors and by the aromas of turmeric, fresh mint, wild sage, and cardamom-spiced coffee. The blare of Arabic music and the burble of languages fill the air.

Step outside the Old City and you'll be transported into the 21st century—well, at least the 20th: quaint neighborhoods, some restored, embody an earlier simplicity. West Jerusalem forms the bulk of a modern metropolis of 850,000, Israel's largest city. It’s not as cosmopolitan as Tel Aviv, but it does have good restaurants, fine hotels, vibrant markets, and upscale neighborhoods. The Downtown triangle of Jaffa Street, King George Street, and Ben-Yehuda Street, the elegant Mamilla Mall outside Jaffa Gate, and the restored First Station are natural gathering places.

The city prides itself on its historical continuity. A municipal bylaw dating back to 1918 makes it mandatory to face even high-rise commercial buildings with the honey-colored "Jerusalem stone," the local limestone that has served Jerusalem's builders since, well, forever. Watch the stone walls glow at sunset—the source of the by-now clichéd but still compelling phrase "Jerusalem of Gold"—and understand the mystical hold Jerusalem has had on so many minds and hearts for so many thousands of years.

Fodor's Essential Israel
Written by locals, Fodor's travel guides have been offering trusted advice for all tastes...

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Church of the Holy Sepulcher
Religious Building/Site/Shrine Historic District/Site
Christian Quarter
Dome of the Rock and Haram esh-Sharif (Temple Mount)
Religious Building/Site/Shrine Building/Architectural Site Historic District/Site
Muslim Quarter
Western Wall
Religious Building/Site/Shrine Archaeological Site/Ruins
Jewish Quarter
View Tours and Activities
Herodian Quarter/Wohl Archaeological Museum
Museum/Gallery Archaeological Site/Ruins
Jewish Quarter
Tower of David Museum
Museum/Gallery Archaeological Site/Ruins Building/Architectural Site
Jaffa Gate
Mount of Olives Observation Point
Viewpoint/Scenic Overlook
Mount of Olives
Yad Vashem
Museum/Gallery Memorial/Monument/Tomb
Mount Herzl
View Tours and Activities
Israel Museum
Museum/Gallery
Givat Ram
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Language

Hebrew

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Electrical Outlets

220v/50 cycles; plugs either have three round prongs or three flat prongs set up in a Y shape

Currency

Israeli new shekel

Local Weather

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Historic Weather: Powered by Dark Sky
Weather info provided is using averaged daily data within the given month of the previous year.

Language

Hebrew

Electrical Outlets

220v/50 cycles; plugs either have three round prongs or three flat prongs set up in a Y shape

Currency

Israeli new shekel

Nearby Airports

TLV

Local Weather

{{monthAverage.f_high}}° {{monthAverage.c_high}}° {{monthAverage.f_low}}° {{monthAverage.c_low}}°
{{monthAverage.month}}
Historic Weather: Powered by Dark Sky
Weather info provided is using averaged daily data within the given month of the previous year.

Jerusalem, like Israel in general, is a year-round destination, but the very best months are late March through April, and October through November...Read More

Discover the best neighborhoods in Jerusalem with curated recommendations from our editors.

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Local Weather

{{monthAverage.f_high}}° {{monthAverage.c_high}}° {{monthAverage.f_low}}° {{monthAverage.c_low}}°
{{monthAverage.month}}
Historic Weather: Powered by Dark Sky
Weather info provided is using averaged daily data within the given month of the previous year.

Jerusalem, like Israel in general, is a year-round destination, but the very best months are late March through April, and October through November...Read More

Discover the best neighborhoods in Jerusalem with curated recommendations from our editors.

Explore All

Local Weather

{{monthAverage.f_high}}° {{monthAverage.c_high}}° {{monthAverage.f_low}}° {{monthAverage.c_low}}°
{{monthAverage.month}}
Historic Weather: Powered by Dark Sky
Weather info provided is using averaged daily data within the given month of the previous year.

Jerusalem, like Israel in general, is a year-round destination, but the very best months are late March through April, and October through November...Read More

Discover the best neighborhoods in Jerusalem with curated recommendations from our editors.

Explore All

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Fodor's Essential Israel
Written by locals, Fodor's travel guides have been offering trusted advice for all tastes...

View Details

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