More than 5,000 years old, Jerusalem is an epicenter of Judaism, Christianity, and Islam. The city is rich with holy sites, including the biblical locations of Bethlehem, Nazareth, and the Sea of Galilee. To make the most of your visit, see below for some of Jerusalem’s most sacred destinations.
Mount of Olives
Mount of Olives Road, Jerusalem, Israel
It can be hard work to reach the top of the Mount of Olives on foot, but your reward is a panoramic view of Jerusalem that includes the Temple Mount and, in the distance, the Judean Desert. The Jewish cemetery is located on the western slope, along with the Tomb of the Prophets, the Catholic Church of Dominus Flevit, and the Russian Orthodox Church of Mary Magdalene. At the base of the mount, you’ll find the garden of Gethsemane with the Church of All Nations.
If you’d rather not make the arduous walk up, a number of tours can take you to the top by bus and down on foot. Guided excursions often stop by the Mount of Olives as well as other Jerusalem attractions.
Things to Know Before You Go
- Visitors of all faiths are welcome at the Mount of Olives.
- The Mount of Olives promenade and observation point are paved and accessible to wheelchairs.
- Restrooms are available at the top.
How to Get There
The easiest way to get to the Mount of Olives is on a guided tour. Otherwise, take bus 275 from the bus station opposite Herod’s Gate on Sultan Suleiman Street, and get off at the Church of the Ascension. The journey lasts roughly 40 minutes.
When to Get There
The Mount of Olives is typically open Sunday through Thursday during daytime hours. Most of the churches and gardens open in the morning, close around noon, and reopen mid-afternoon.
Gethsemane At the western foot of the Mount of Olives, the garden of Gethsemane is the ancient olive grove identified as the place where Jesus went to pray and where he was arrested the night before he was crucified. Some of the olive trees in the garden are believed to be 900 years old.
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- Mea Shearim (Me’a She’arim)
- Damascus Gate (Bab al-Amud)
- Pool of Bethesda
- Church of St. Anne
- Way of the Cross (Via Dolorosa)
- Kidron Valley
- Tomb of the Virgin Mary (Mary's Tomb)
- Church of All Nations (Basilica of the Agony)
- Christian Quarter
- Dome of the Rock
- Temple Mount (al-Haram al-Sharif)
- Old City of Jerusalem
- Al-Aqsa Mosque
- Western Wall Tunnels
- Dominus Flevit Church