3 June 2014

48 hours in Jerusalem

48 hours in Jerusalem - Israel

Within the walls of the Old Jerusalem there are sites of the world's most significant religious sites, all split into quarters: Muslim, Armenian, Jewish and Christian. All with layers upon layer of history just waiting to be uncovered, touched and experienced in full and total immersion. They say that a trip to Jerusalem changes you. Well, that was according to my boyfriend. Benjamin Disraeli said "The view of Jerusalem is the history of the world; it is more, it is the history of the earth and of heaven". So you can just imagine my excitement when we finally made the 3-hour drive  from Shlomi to Jerusalem. I was delighted to finally be visiting the city after dreaming about it for so long. To be taking the route that Christ took carrying the cross on his shoulders before crucifixion. Now, I don't think you have to be religious to understand just what an important city Jerusalem is. Its a place of intense sanctity for Jews, Muslims and Christians. Considering how significant this place for many religions it is a real shame that we can't all peacefully enjoy or benefit equally from it without many of the conflicts that have spewed here. 

On our visit we spent much of our time by the Wailing Wall (Western Wall) as I hadn't arranged a visit to Temple Mount in advance. Temple Mount stretches across most of the old town and contains the golden Dome of the Rock. Exploring the the interiors of the Temple Mount requires advance arrangement(for non-Muslims) which we hadn't done in time for the trip, although the courtyard around it is accessible. The Western Wall is separated in two parts; men and women each have their own sections. This place holds an important position in Jewish prophecies, one being that the Holy Temple will eventually be reconstructed. This is in reference the Holy Temple which was destroyed in 70CE by Titus and the Roman legions. The wall was filled with people pushing little slips of paper with prayers into the cracks of the wall. It is amazing just the number of people that pass through here and just how visiting this place fills you with such a sense of emotion. I don't know whether it's the wall that has that effect on people or whether that was due to the visit being even more special for me as I was visiting during my mother's memorial. So part-taking in prayers at this Holy site, also on behalf of my sisters for my mum's memorial was a little more personal than just a visit at a 'tourist site'. I think, regardless whether you are Jewish or not, the power this place holds is truly undeniable. One of those things I guess you certainly have to experience yourself.

Walking around the city, its new buildings attempt to keep in line with architecture of old structures by keeping a facade on the outer buildings similar to that of old Jerusalem. Old and new seem to merge almost effortlessly even though there are more modern building around.  Getting around the city was also been made easier as we parked the car at Mount Herzl(Free! Take that London!) and took the light-rail train which runs through Mount Herzl, Damascus gate, which is one of the closest stops to walk to through the market leading to the Western Wall. Transportation within Jerusalem is fairly inexpensive with about 4 Shackles for a light rail single pass.  

The 48 hours in Jerusalem is no where near enough as there was so much more still left to see in and around the city. Probably why I might be heading back for another visit next year. Mount of Olives is not too far from the Western Wall, the neighbouring town of Bethlehem is also only 20 minutes drive from Jerusalem but note that there is security check points to get there.

Like all journeys in a new city there is always time to check out the markets and feast on local delicacies. A trip to Mahane Yehuda Market is another must if you are in Jerusalem. Its a Bazaar-like market with stalls  filled with colourful fruits and veg and sweet breads that were just perfect with fresh humus and falafal. The perfect way to enjoy a break from exploring while people watching with some good food.

Have you been to Jerusalem? What were your thoughts on the city?

48 hours in Jerusalem - Israel
48 hours in Jerusalem - Israel
48 hours in Jerusalem - Israel
48 hours in Jerusalem - Israel
48 hours in Jerusalem - Israel
48 hours in Jerusalem - Israel


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A weekend in Jerusalem. 48 hours in Jerusalem.

43 comments:

  1. Wow your pictures are absolutely gorgeous! I've never been to Jerusalem but it's so much more modern than I would have imagined! Thanks for sharing what seems like very colourful and exciting 48h with us :)

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    1. Thanks! You must visit Jerusalem soon, its beautiful and nothing like the crazy pictures they show on the news.

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  2. I've never been there but I would love to visit some day. It is such a historical city! And your pictures are gorgeous!

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    1. Thanks Van. You should definitely visit.

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  3. looks like an amazing little trip!

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  4. I have never been, but after reading your post I would love to. Such an important historic city. Thanks for sharing

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    1. Thanks. You should definitely visit.

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  5. It just looks so fun, beautiful and colorful! I would love to visit. Thanks for sharing!

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    1. Thank you. You should visit. I am sure you will like it.

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  6. My mom went years ago and loved it! I'd like to visit one day too..especially for that market!

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    1. You should definitely visit, its an amazing place to see and experience

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  7. Incredible photos and fascinating post!

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  8. Jerusalem looks so amazing… the people, the diversity and vibrant colours ... interesting too is the Armenian quarter ...
    The words and pictures in this post made me feel like I had been there too.

    Rachel@safari254

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    1. Thanks Rachel. Glad you enjoyed it.

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  9. thanks for sharing this useful information about jerusalem :) there's so much i didn't know about that city and its values and religion :) the first photo is brilliant

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  10. Gorgeous pictures, Bianca! Just wondering - did you go on your own or did you go with a tour operator? Being a Catholic (and so very much exposed to pilgrimages to the Holy City), I'm often told that Jerusalem is not safe to travel to on our own, that we need to have a guide with us all the time. I don't believe this and I would LOVE to visit Jerusalem (I just need to convince my family to let me go alone).

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    1. Thanks! I went there with my boyfriend but you can easily visit on your own. You dont need guides to get around at all. Transportation is great in both Jeruselam and Tel Viv. You wont believe how modern it is. Get that ticket and go! Let me know if you have more questions.

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  11. Stunning pictures! I'd love to get there some day. There's just so much history and variety of cultures in the area.

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  12. Wow, so cool. Israel has been high on my bucket list for years, and I bet visiting Jerusalem was like a dream come true! I also really love what you said in the last sentence of your first paragraph. So true.

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    1. Thanks Courtney. Yes a dream come true as I have been wanting to go for such a long time.

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  13. Amazing photos! It makes me feel like I was experiencing it there with you. Love the mix of modern and old, it looks like an amazing historical place to visit (of course there is tons of history there)

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    1. Thanks and yes, almost every spot is historical.

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  14. I have never been to Jerusalem, but it is on my list. It looks so vibrant and beautiful! Glad you got to spend 48 hours there. :) -Alexandra

    Simply Alexandra: My Favorite Things

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  15. Wow, I've never been to Jerusalem but these photos make me want to go there soon! I love the mix of old and modern architecture. I saw a lot of that in Japan as well.

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    1. Get that ticket and go! You will enjoy it am sure!

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  16. Wow! Jerusalem looks like an amazing place to visit. I love the detail on the plates and platters - they are absolutely gorgeous. Also, I love the mixture of old and new!
    Constance
    http://foreignsanctuary.wordpress.com/

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    1. Yeah I think thats what makes the places to beautiful as old and new mix effortlessly.

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  17. Wow it's SO beautiful! Seriously, can't wait to go there!

    Sonya
    http://foreverornot.blogspot.com - blog about a Russian girl living in Oregon, USA, with a passion for photography, traveling and exploring

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    1. Yep its definitely a must see city.

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  18. Oh my goodness, these photos are beautiful!

    xx Kelly
    Sparkles and Shoes


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  19. Inspiring shots! x

    http://girlinthelens.com/

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  21. Love those blue bowl shots! Nice collection of photography!

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  22. Would love to go to Jerusalem one day, but prob not soon. Beautiful site. | www.thepassportlifestyle.com

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