The stunning white and gray façade of St. Anne’s Church is one of the best-preserved Crusader churches in Jerusalem. It’s also recognized as the site of the birthplace of the Virgin Mary, and the original home of Jesus’s maternal grandparents.
This fortress-like structure was built around 450. Religious pilgrims journey to this destination, which provides quiet respite from the energy of the Muslim Quarter, for prayer and contemplation. The uniquely asymmetrical building offers up incredible acoustics, and visitors who are lucky enough to catch the small local choir performing will find their voices sound like a massive crowd inside the halls of the Church of St Anne.
The church is located north of the Temple Mount, just inside St Stephen’s Gate, near the Pools of Bethesda, where Jesus is said to have healed the sick.