We noticed that you're using an unsupported browser. The TripAdvisor website may not display properly.
We support the following browsers:
Windows: Internet Explorer, Mozilla Firefox, Google Chrome. Mac: Safari.

Access to Jerusalem sites for the disabled

Which Jerusalem hotels are on sale?
mm/dd/yyyy mm/dd/yyyy
See hotels
Wigan, United...
1 post
Save Topic
Access to Jerusalem sites for the disabled

Hi,

I hope some of you can help me. I am going to take my Dad to Jerusalem later this year, he is 87 and not particularly good at walking any more. My idea would be to stay outside the old city and to get a taxi or a tour so that he can see the major Christian sights. How easy is it to get to within wheelchair distance (he can walk inside the churches) of The Church of the Holy Sepulchre, Wailing wall, Temple mount, etc? Does anybody know if there are tours of the city for the disabled? Any help would be greatly appreciated.

Israel
Destination Expert
for Israel
Level Contributor
16,060 posts
77 reviews
Save Reply
1. Re: Access to Jerusalem sites for the disabled

to the best of my knowledge there are no tours that are specially designed for the disabled. The only way to arrange for something like that would be privately.

Since Jerusalem - at least the Old City - cannot easily be modified in all places to be easily accessible, some sites will be more difficult than others.

Access to the Western Wall is easy - your taxi can pull into the plaza - just ask the guards to open the gate, they will allow the taxi in - the rest of the way has no steps at all.

Access to the Temple Mount (remember the hours are very limited) is via a long ramp - there may be one or two steps at the top - once on the Temple Mount there are about 8 steps to the plaza surrounding the Dome of the Rock. When you complete your tour there you will exit via a different route than the one you entered and there will be a number of steps going down.

In terms of accessibility the Church of the Holy Sepulchre is more complicated. Any route you take to get to the church involves a stepped street or alley - some routes have a full flight of stairs, other routes have sporadic, shallow stairs. Once you have arrived at the church there is a ramp down to the entrance plaza, one step going up to the church. This will enter to the level that includes the Stone of Unction and the Sepulchre and numerous chapels. The Golgotha (or Calvary) is definitely not handicapped accessible - the only way is up a very steep set of stairs that are about one and a half stories up.

If there are any other specific sites you are interested in please ask.

Israel
Destination Expert
for Israel
Level Contributor
14,444 posts
272 reviews
Save Reply
2. Re: Access to Jerusalem sites for the disabled

Agreeing totally with Oreets I do want to point out that I have seen people in wheelchairs being pushed along in the Old City. It is not impossible but it is very difficult due to the many steps (sometimes deep ones). In addition the roads are cobblestone making pushing such a chair very difficult. If you will be several people and are determined to see the sites, you may consider picking your father, in the chair, up when the going gets tough (but it won't be easy). The Old City unfortunatley was not built for the disabled, but you should not have many problems with sites in the New City.

Chana

Israel

Ottawa, Canada
Destination Expert
for Jerusalem, Galilee, Tel Aviv
Level Contributor
5,912 posts
140 reviews
Save Reply
3. Re: Access to Jerusalem sites for the disabled

Last November I took a group of seniors to Israel, one in a wheelchair and several who had limited walking ability. It made me look at the city a whole new way. The new city is fine for the most part, and the Mamilla Mall is excellent for wheelchairs (right outside the Jaffa Gate).

The old city is doable. You can get a taxi that will take you right into the middle of the old city. You can get from the Jaffa Gate to the Jewish quarter by walking without any steps but you do have crowds, narrow spaces, uneven ground. Some areas are cobble stone where it is easier to pull the chair backwards rather than try to push over the stones. It is doable if you are patient. The arab market area and most of the Moslem quarter is not doable as they are on a slope with stairs all the way down, and harder yet, all the way back up. Some of the Christian churches, such as St, Annes near the Lions gate do seem quite accessible (for the church, not the archeological site). The church of the Holy Sepulchre is not easy as there are some steps and getting there is through the shuk but with some patience and help, you could do it. There are some guides that specialize in working with the disabled.

Israel
Level Contributor
2,650 posts
42 reviews
Save Reply
4. Re: Access to Jerusalem sites for the disabled

There is a book called "Jerusalem Easy Walks" which details which sites are wheelchair accessible. Maybe you can find it in your local library:

amazon.com/Jerusalem-EasyWalks-Aviva-Bar-Am/…

Israel
Level Contributor
2,650 posts
42 reviews
Save Reply
5. Re: Access to Jerusalem sites for the disabled

I have seen wheelchair day tours of the Jewish Quarter of Jerusalem advertised by the OU center, although these are geared toward religious Jewish tourists.

NYC/Israel
Destination Expert
for Israel
Level Contributor
35,392 posts
35 reviews
Save Reply
6. Re: Access to Jerusalem sites for the disabled

The wheelchair tour mentioned above will NOT go to any Christian sites!

Israel
Level Contributor
2,650 posts
42 reviews
Save Reply
7. Re: Access to Jerusalem sites for the disabled

Yes, rdglady, I know -- I just posted it so that others searching for the same topic can see the information. Sorry, OP, if that was not clear.

Tel Aviv, Israel
Level Contributor
5 posts
1 review
Save Reply
8. Re: Access to Jerusalem sites for the disabled

There are day tours in Jerusalem for people with disabilities both in the Old City and in the New City. The tours are for Christian and for Jewish people. You can find information www.israel4all.com

Cleveland
2 posts
Save Reply
9. Re: Access to Jerusalem sites for the disabled

What is the ou center?

Ottawa, Canada
Destination Expert
for Jerusalem, Galilee, Tel Aviv
Level Contributor
5,912 posts
140 reviews
Save Reply
10. Re: Access to Jerusalem sites for the disabled

The ou center is a division of the Orthodox Union of Judaism in Israel. They run all kinds of programs for Jews to connect to Israel and Judaism.

They also have a wheelchair tour of the Jewish Quarter of the Old City. This would really be of interest to Jewish (especially religious, but not necessarily) visitors.

For info on these tours there is a description and phone number for contact at the following link

ouisrael.org/calendar/…