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Wandering the streets of "Old Jerusalem"

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Europe
posts: 5
Wandering the streets of "Old Jerusalem"

Hi everybody,

Sorry to ask the usual newbie question, but I am planning on going to Israel/Jerusalem mid Feb or beginning March 2008 and would like to know how safe it right now.

My main interests are the Crusader areas, Masada and the Christian church. I would also like to see the other parts of "old Jerusalem" as well.

I plan on staying (in Jerusalem) for about 6 days or so and would like to just wander the old streets, take pictures, talk with the locals, enjoy the local cuisine and just relax.

Any information would be most appreciated!

israel
Destination Expert
for Tel Aviv, Galilee, Israel
posts: 13,409
reviews: 41
1. Re: Wandering the streets of "Old Jerusalem"

You are one of many that ask the question and rightly so. Please see this recent thread on the subject.

tripadvisor.com/ShowTopic-g293983-i2582-k952…

Washington State
posts: 2,051
reviews: 11
2. Re: Wandering the streets of "Old Jerusalem"

You'll find the most dangerous part is simply fighting off the vendors who want to sell you something. Wandering the old city is one of the true and unique delights in our world.

If you are interested in Crusader areas, I'd suggest you get "Oxford Archaeological Guide to The Holy Land". It's one of the few guides that covers Crusader and Islamic era buildings in any significant way.

Others will probably disagree with me, but if the Old City is your main interest, I would suggest staying in one of the very basic accomodations/hostels that are within her walls.

Europe
posts: 5
3. Re: Wandering the streets of "Old Jerusalem"

Thank you Shoshi on the link, very useful information there. I am not too worried, but it is good to be careful and ask the people on the ground where you are going how things are.

And thanks dogmeattwo, great advice. I was checking out the Jerusalem hotel, and they seem like a good deal (the reviews are pretty good as well). Also the price seems right as well as location. I was trying to book a package deal here in Germany,but deals are hard to find. I am thinking of just booking the flight and aranging with the Hotel for pickup (Jerusalem hotel offer's that).

Any other advice such as what to say or don't say, area's that I should avoid etc. would be a great help!

Thank you!!

Washington State
posts: 2,051
reviews: 11
4. Re: Wandering the streets of "Old Jerusalem"

I would also look at:

Christ Church Guesthouse

Austrian Hospice

Lutheren Guesthouse

From the airport you can take a sherut that will drop you off at your hotel (or by the closest gate) for about $50 sheckels - much cheaper than a direct transfer.

Cincinnati, Ohio
Destination Expert
for Israel
posts: 12,492
reviews: 141
5. Re: Wandering the streets of "Old Jerusalem"

And DogmeatToo is right -- I will disagree with him, but with great affection and respect.

In my view, staying in the Old City limits you at night. Most people feel its a little spooky walking around at night, and some feel it's not so safe. In contrast, if you stay at someplace like the Three Arches/YMCA, Eldan Hotel, Prima Royale, or the Scottish Guesthouse, you are only a 10-minute walk from the Jaffa Gate, but also an easy, comfortable, and safe walk to restaurants and night life in the New City. I'd recommend that approach.

But however you do it, enjoy!

Douglas Duckett

posts: 21,544
reviews: 29
6. Re: Wandering the streets of "Old Jerusalem"

I would also urge to to explore the old part of the New city - the german Colony and the mahane yehuda market, and appreciate the continuity of history in Jerusalem.

Jerusalem, Israel
Destination Expert
for Jerusalem
posts: 3,096
reviews: 39
7. Re: Wandering the streets of "Old Jerusalem"

The Tower of David museum (just inside the Jaffa Gate) goes through the history of Jerusalem in detail, including the Crusader period. Very much worth going, especially if you are particularly interested in the history of the Old City. Go on your first day - it will help to orient you. Don't miss the view from the roof, which is spectacular.

You might also be interested in the village of Ein Karem which is just outside Jerusalem (you can get there on the no.17 bus). There are a number of Christian sites there and beautiful churches. You can also walk in a monastery (or maybe it's a convent...) that has views over the Judean Hills.

Avigail

Texas
posts: 397
reviews: 5
8. Re: Wandering the streets of "Old Jerusalem"

I stayed at the Jerusalem Hotel www.jrs.hotel for 11 days. I would definitely stay there again should I go back to Jerusalem. It is very convenient to the old city, shops and groceries.

The hotel is close to the old city being about the length of a football field from Damacus gate and just around the corner from the Jaffa Gate. It is outside of the old city.

They have 14 rooms and are usually sold old.

I rode a sherut taxi (Nesher Co.) from the airport for 45 shekels. It was a very good connection and you definitely know the cost before you get in the van because everyone pays 45 shekels from the airport to any Jerusalem hotel.

The Jersusalem Hotel has a good inexpensive restaurant with hamburgers, grilled chicken and of course Middle Eastern dishes. The restaurant is very crowded with locals and tourists.

Europe
posts: 5
9. Re: Wandering the streets of "Old Jerusalem"

Thanks everyone for the loads of information, all very useful. I have inquired to several of the hotels sugested but they are all currently booked for the dates I wanted. I may have to change my trip to fall or winter of next year :(

I guess planning ahead is the best way to visit Israel.

Jerusalem, Israel
Destination Expert
for Jerusalem
posts: 3,096
reviews: 39
10. Re: Wandering the streets of "Old Jerusalem"

Did you also try bed and breakfast places? Perhaps they will be less busy during this period?

http://www.bnb.co.il/

Avigail