Cultural Walking Tour of Jerusalem, Jerusalem (Self Guided)

Jerusalem is considered holy by the all the three major monotheistic religions in the world - Judaism, Christianity and Islam. The city is full of history and culture. The following self-guided tour will take you through some of the most visited landmarks in the city.
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Cultural Walking Tour of Jerusalem Map

Guide Name: Cultural Walking Tour of Jerusalem
Guide Location: Israel » Jerusalem (See other walking tours in Jerusalem)
Guide Type: Self-guided Walking Tour (Sightseeing)
# of Attractions: 7
Tour Duration: 2 hour(s)
Travel Distance: 3.7 km
Author: vickyc
Western Wall Tunnel (Kotel)

1) Western Wall Tunnel (Kotel) (must see)

The Western Wall Tunnel is an underground tunnel exposing the Western Wall in its full length. The tunnel is adjacent to the Western Wall and is located under buildings of the Old City of Jerusalem. While the open-air portion of the Western Wall is approximately 60 m long, the majority of its original length is hidden underground. The tunnel exposes a total length of 485 m of the wall, revealing the methods of construction and the various activities in the vicinity of the Temple Mount. The excavations included many archaeological finds along the way, including discoveries from the Herodian period (streets, monumental masonry), sections of a reconstruction of the Western Wall dating to the Umayyad period, and various structures dating to the Ayyubid, Mamluke and Hasmonean periods constructed to support buildings in the vicinity of the Temple Mount.

If you are claustrophobic, stay calm – some areas are narrow but there are alcoves throughout to get some breathing room.
Also, even in winter, it’s hot down there! No need to dress up. But remember to book a tour in advance!
Sight description based on wikipedia
Tower of David

2) Tower of David (must see)

Located in the Old City part of Jerusalem, the Tower of David is an old stronghold that can be found near the Jaffa Gate. It was built to bring a more solid sense of security to what had traditionally been a very unfortified part of the town. It was named as such due to the Byzantine Christians who used to live here. They believed the site was the original location of the palace of King David.

The tower was built during the 2nd Century B.C. Like many structures in the area, it was destroyed and rebuilt several times by the Christians, Muslims, Mamluks, and Ottomans. The archaeological evidence found here dates back almost 3,000 years. This place has also become a very popular location for concerts, music performances, craft shows, and benefits.

A museum was opened here in 1989 by the Jerusalem Foundation. The exhibits depicted a stretch of around 4,000 years of history, which goes all the way back to Canaanite times. You can also go all the way to the top and see a beautiful full-circle view of the city. The location gets about 3.5 millions visits a year.

There is a spectacular/interesting sound-and-light show (45 minutes) at the Citadel later in the evening which is worth viewing – but book early, as it sells out quickly.

Opening Hours:
Sun-Thu, Sat: 9am-4pm; Friday, holiday eves and holidays: 9am-2pm
Russian Orthodox Holy Trinity Cathedral

3) Russian Orthodox Holy Trinity Cathedral

Trinity church is a Russian Orthodox is a house of worship located in the Russian compound in Jerusalem's center. The sanctuary and chapel was constructed in 1860. It was designed Martin Epinger. He was a very famous Russian born architect. He designed the structure in a way that might remind of Red Square in Moscow. It is still owned and operated by people from Russia. You might also be interested to know that this place is used by immigrants from that country as a king of connecting place.

During World War I, the Turks (Ottoman Empire) made all Christians leave Jerusalem. The church fell into disrepair as a result. In 1948, after the War for Independence was over, this house of prayer resumed its primary function, and is now in Russian control once again.

This house of worship got its start during a time when the Russian Orthodox Church was undergoing growth in the area of Jerusalem. They encouraged waves of pilgrims to make the journey.

Holy Trinity Cathedral is located in the Russian Compound. Other structures in the same general location have long been used as a pilgrim's hotel. In fact the local building that now houses the police was also used for this purpose. The recently restored religious site has beautiful art work, and classic icons to behold all over the building. You need to see the golden doors of the iconostasis. A small gift stand is also on site. Admission to the location is free of charge.
Vision Fine Art Photography Gallery

4) Vision Fine Art Photography Gallery

Vision Fine Art Photography Gallery displays the photos of Neil Folberg and other fine modern photographers. You can contemplate photos of landscapes and bold modern photos. There are also some vintage photos that date back to 19th century.
Opening Hours: Monday - Thursday 1-7 PM
Time Elevator

5) Time Elevator

The time elevator is a tourist attraction in Jerusalem not to be missed. It takes the visitor on a tour of Jerusalem that covers around 3,000 years. This piece of land has been through so many changes in that span of time. The film and narration help to bring all that into clear focus. It starts with a visit from King David and progress through time until the 6-day war. The destruction of the First and Second Temples, the rise of Christianity and Islam, Roman occupation and the establishment of the State of Israel are all covered.

The seats in the theater are on an axis that allows them to move in synchronization with the film. There is a control for each seat that will eliminate some of the bumps but this is definitely the kind of film that keeps patrons engaged thought earthquakes and invaders. There are stationary seats for the faint of heart and those with motion sickness issues, heart patients and those who are pregnant. Chaim Topol of Fiddler on the Roof fame stars in the 30 minute production and really brings history alive.

The film is presented in Hebrew, but there are headphones available that provide translation in English, German, French, Mandarin, Russian, Spanish and Italian. Admission to the film is $15.00 for adults.
Great Synagogue

6) Great Synagogue

The Great Synagogue of Jerusalem is the hallmark location of the Jewish faith in the city. It was founded in 1982 (15th of Av 5742) as a place of worship, spirituality and religious study. It also serves as an important cultural and social center for the people.

The center was built in memory of the six million Jews who died during the Holocaust of World War II. It also commemorates the lives of the people who fought and died for the defense of Israel.

This house of worship also is a kind of icon that helps the people to remember all that they have been through. It also symbolizes the perseverance and continuity of the country during times of irksome trials and horrid tragedies.

Religious devotees and visitors alike come here to be part of the prayer services, to study Torah, to attend lectures, and participate in other cultural events that are designed to inspire the hope of the country, as well as preserve the traditions of the past.

The Main Synagogue can hold 1300 men and women. It is an almost perfect acoustic building, allowing for beautiful musical sound and pitch. The ornate decoration is also quite something.
Jerusalem Theater

7) Jerusalem Theater

The Jerusalem Theater is a center for the performing arts. It opened to the public for the first time in 1971. The complex consists of “the Sherover Music Hall,” which can hold 950 people. There is also the “Henry Crown,” which also has a Symphony Hall that is used by the Jerusalem Symphony Orchestra. You can also visit the “Rebecca Crown Auditorium.” It has 450 seats. Finally, the “Little Theater” which can hold 110 persons. Various art exhibits are on display everywhere. You can also visit their restaurant for a bite before or after a show. A bookshop is also located on the main level of the complex.

In 1958, the Jerusalem Municipality organized a design competition to decide who would start the project. The Architectural firm of Nadler, Nadler and Bixson won this competition. The project got a real boost, monetarily, from a benefactor from Venezuela. His name was Miles Sherover.

Construction began in 1964, but would not get finished until October 1971. The theater is built of concrete and local stone from the area. The designers used both of these elements in a very artistic way, to really make the place striking. It is located in a square that is often used for concerts and plays. If you are a lover of the arts, then you will want to plan on attending one of the events that are held here, while you are visiting.

Walking Tours in Jerusalem, Israel

Create Your Own Walk in Jerusalem

Create Your Own Walk in Jerusalem

Creating your own self-guided walk in Jerusalem is easy and fun. Choose the city attractions that you want to see and a walk route map will be created just for you. You can even set your hotel as the start point of the walk.
Jerusalem Synagogues Walking Tour

Jerusalem Synagogues Walking Tour

Jerusalem is a city that represents the three main religions of the world, that is Christianity, Judaism and Islam. The city contains some of the oldest and most beautiful historical monuments related to these religions. This self-guided tour will lead you mainly through the Jewish Quarter of the Old City of Jerusalem and its synagogues:

Tour Duration: 1 hour(s)
Travel Distance: 0.5 km
Latrun at the Outskirt of Jerusalem Self-Guided Tour

Latrun at the Outskirt of Jerusalem Self-Guided Tour

Latrun is a hilltop on the road to Jerusalem. It has must see attractions such as "mini Israel", monasteries and the historical Emmaus. This self-guided tour will lead you to these historical, archaeological and cultural monuments:

Tour Duration: 2 hour(s)
Travel Distance: 4.2 km
Mount Zion and Surroundings Walking Tour

Mount Zion and Surroundings Walking Tour

Mount Zion, as many other places in Jerusalem, is a biblical site. This name was mentioned in manuscripts dating back to the first millennium BC. It was called the Town of David and David s tomb is here. This self-guided tour will lead you to the biblical sites of Mount Zion and other modern attractions in its surroundings.

Tour Duration: 1 hour(s)
Travel Distance: 1.4 km
Mount of Olives Walking Tour of Jerusalem

Mount of Olives Walking Tour of Jerusalem

The Mount of Olives is on the east side of the Old City of Jerusalem. Here you will see the magnificent churches that are also biblical sites, a very old cemetery with tombs of the Prophets. For many people this is a holy place as God is always present here. The following self-guided tour will lead you through the Mount of Olives landmarks:

Tour Duration: 1 hour(s)
Travel Distance: 1.8 km
Landmarks of Jerusalem Walking Tour

Landmarks of Jerusalem Walking Tour

Jerusalem, capital of Israel, is a stage of history for the entire universe, so to speak. Its religious and historical landmarks attract more tourists than any other city in the world. This self-guided tour will lead you through its most visited landmarks:

Tour Duration: 3 hour(s)
Travel Distance: 5.7 km
Following Steps of Jesus Walking Tour in Jerusalem

Following Steps of Jesus Walking Tour in Jerusalem

Jerusalem was considered for centuries to be the center of the universe. The most famous figure in the history of mankind, Jesus Christ, fulfilled his divine mission in this city. This self-guided tour will retrace the steps of Jesus to show you some of the holiest places in the world.

Tour Duration: 3 hour(s)
Travel Distance: 5.7 km

Useful Travel Guides for Planning Your Trip

16 Uniquely Israel Things to Buy in Jerusalem

16 Uniquely Israel Things to Buy in Jerusalem

Modern day Jerusalem is a mosaic of neighborhoods, reflecting different historical periods, cultures, and religions. The influx of repatriates in recent years has made the cultural and artisanal scene of the city even more colourful and diverse. To find your way through Jerusalem's intricate...

Tips for Exploring City on Foot at Your Own Pace

Whether you are in Jerusalem for a quick stopover or have a few days to see the city in more detail, exploring it on foot, at your own pace, is definitely the way to go. Here are some tips for you to save money, see the best Jerusalem has to offer, take good care of your feet while walking, and keep your mobile device – your ultimate "work horse" on this trip - well fed and safe.

Saving Money with City Passes

To save yourself time and money visiting Jerusalem's multiple sights, you may want to resort to the so-called city passes, such as the Jerusalem City Pass by Ticketbar, Jerusalem City Pass by Musement, or Jerusalem City Pass by Viator.

A city pass combines all Jerusalem's top highlights, tours and experiences in one prepaid attractions pass, using which you can save incredible amounts on general admission fees as compared to purchasing tickets separately. Often, a city pass also allows user to skip lines at major attractions, thus saving precious time.

Staying at Walk-Friendly Hotels

Since you're keen on exploring cities on foot (we assume that you are, and this is why you're here), it is important that you stay at a hotel close to the city's major attractions. It saves you time and energy. Here are a few of Jerusalem hotels conveniently located for a comfortable stroll: Leonardo Plaza Hotel Jerusalem, The David Citadel Hotel, Prima Kings Hotel.

Taking Care of Your Feet

To ensure ultimate satisfaction from a day of walking around the city as big as Jerusalem, it is imperative to take good care of your feet so as to avoid unpleasant things like blisters, cold or overheated soles, itchy, irritated or otherwise damaged (cracked) skin, etc. Luckily, these days there is no shortage of remedies to address (and, ideally, to prevent) these and other potential problems with feet. Among them: Compression Socks, Rechargeable Battery-Powered Thermo Socks for Cold Weather, Foot Repair Cream, Deodorant Powder, Shoes UV Sterilizer, and many more that you may wish to find a place in your travel kit for.

Travel Gadgets for Your Mobile Device

Your mobile phone or tablet will be your work horse on a self-guided walk. They offer tour map, guide you from one attraction to another, and provide informative background for the sights you wish to visit. Therefore it is absolutely essential to plan against unexpected power outages in the wrong place at the wrong time, much as to ensure the safety of your device.

For these and other contingencies, here's the list of useful appliances: Portable Charger/External Battery Pack, Worldwide Travel Charger Adapter, Power Converter for International Travel Adapter, and Mobile Device Leash.

Exploring City on Guided Tours

We have a strong bias towards exploring a city on foot, at your own pace, because this is how you get to see things up close with a maximum freedom. You decide how much time you wish to spend at each attraction and don't have to worry about following a crowd. That said, however, we also understand that some of you may want to go with a guided tour. If that is your case, here are some guided tours to consider. Be ready to fork out a bit of money, though, as a guided tour of Jerusalem typically costs somewhere between US$10+ and US$90 per person:

- Embark on a self-balancing Segway tour of Jerusalem – this usually lasts around 2 hours and allows visitors to get a real sense of the city. Most people (even those aged 70+) find it quite fun and convenient, enabling to cover much more ground than you otherwise could have done by walking.

- Provoke your contemplating eternal matters on a mixed (coach and walking) tour of Jerusalem, the city where the ancient and religious are intertwined more than anywhere else in the world. With the help of an expert guide try and perceive the profound meaning and context behind the holy Christian and Jewish sites of Old and New Jerusalem.

- Visit the places that once saw Jesus Christ in flesh, feel the tales of the Bible become real on a walking tour of Jerusalem led by a knowledgeable local guide. Walk the stones of Via Dolorosa in the footsteps of the Messiah to his crucifixion and learn more about that pivotal day in human history.

- Explore the city of three religions through the eyes of Jewish, Christian and Muslim worshipers on a 4-hour guided walk of Old Jerusalem to the holy places and landmarks revered in Islam, Judaism and Christianity, and learn about the religious beliefs associated with them.

- Tantalize your taste buds with the scents and sights of exotic delicacies fit to arouse anyone's appetite on a 3-hour guided tour of Mahane Yehuda, Jerusalem’s biggest outdoor market! Explore the city's favorite marketplace in its variety.

- Descend into the unknown, at least until recently, deep beneath the ground to explore the ancient roots of Jerusalem on a 1.5-hour guided tour through the centuries-old tunnel dating back to the times of the Second Temple. Get a chance to touch and hear about some truly incredible artifacts found here, and more.

Day Trips

If you have a full or half day to spare whilst in Jerusalem, why not use it to explore some of the out-of-town destinations like Bethlehem and Jericho, Masada and the Dead Sea, Nazareth and the Sea of Galilee, or the West Bank. For as little as as circa US$100 to US$125 per person you will get a chance to experience first-hand the ancient and Biblical treasures, discover fascinating religious history, see the fabled Biblical and Nativity sites, scenes of the New Testament stories including places where Jesus performed miracles, plus explore legendary ruins, and so much more. For any of these tours you will be picked up either straight from your hotel or a designated place in Jerusalem, and transported either by a comfortable air-conditioned coach, minibus or a private vehicle to the destination of your choice and back again.