Three Days In Jerusalem.

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Jerusalem is one of those cities that refuses to be defined, and there is so much to see and do in this ancient and enigmatic city that it is almost impossible to narrow it down, but this three day itinerary will help you make the most of your time in the heart of the Holy Land.

Being the focal point for three of the worlds major and most predominant religions and the focal point of over three thousand years of recorded history, it is easy to get swept away with the sheer weight of past glories and historical and religious sites, but Jerusalem is far more than that too, and it is worth spending a little bit of time getting under the skin to discover what modern Jerusalem has to offer.

Even some of the hotels in Jerusalem offer a blend of modern luxury, religious pilgrimages and historical significance, so get yourself settled in when you arrive and then use this three day itinerary to start exploring one of the most fascinating cities in the region.

Day One

Explore the old city.

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You can’t come to Jerusalem without delving into it’s past, and the best way to start doing that is to take a walk around the ancient walls of the old city. Surrounded by some of the greatest religious sites in the world including the Dome Of The Rock, the Temple Mount and the Mount of Olives, a walk around the 16th Century ramparts built by Suleiman the magnificent is a great way to get a good overview of everything as you imagine this small patch of land being fought over by Crusader Knights, Romans and many more and Jesus Christ and his disciples walking the narrow streets.

 

See the City of David.

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The City of David is one of the most significant historical sites in all of Jerusalem and is one of the city’s biggest historical tourist draws. This working archaeological site and vast tourist attraction is where David himself  (yes, the one of Goliath fame) first founded the capital of ancient Israel in 1850 BCE and started the Davidic dynasty. There are daily tours that can take you through the tunnels beneath the city too.

Put a prayer in the Western Wall.

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A short distance from the City of David, the Western Wall is another iconic must see on any trip to Jerusalem. This wall is all that is left of the Temple Mount built by King Herod, and is considered one of the holiest sites in the Jewish faith. It doesn’t really mater if you are or aren’t religious, but the chance to do what is for millions of faithful all around the world a deep religious experience is an amazing thing and well worth doing.

Day Two

Check out Mahane Yahuda market.

You may be all templed out and swamped with the sheer historical and religious significance from everything you saw and did on your first day, so the second day should be a time to step back from that, relax and see what modern Jerusalem has to offer.

Take an hour or two in the morning to explore Mahane Yahuda market right in the centre of the city. This working market is the lifeblood of Jerusalem during the day, selling everything from spices and fresh fruit to everyday groceries and bread, and is a great way to grab a taster of some truly local produce.

Do a bit of shopping. 

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Jerusalem’s city centre will surprise you for the sheer number of contemporary and avent garde spaces that are filled with top end and boutique shops to splash your cash in. These places aren’t cheap however, but even if you decide not to buy anything exploring the modern side of the city for an hour or two is a great way to spend the afternoon.

Grab an early dinner and be entertained at the first station.

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The First Station is a refurbished train station – hence the name – that has become a focus of entertainment and culture as well as a foodie heaven. The newly gentrified area is right in the heart of Jerusalem itself and has a good selection of shops, lively entertainment and amazing restaurants and is a great relaxed way to spend an evening and grab some dinner.

Return to Mehane Yahuda market.

During the day this market may be the lifeblood of Jerusalem, but during the night it becomes its soul. Once the sun goes down and the produce markets are packed away, this place becomes a hipster dream with pop up bars selling craft beers and chic boutique restaurants and eateries that give Tel Aviv’s foodie reputation a run for its money.

Day Three

Yad Vashem.

A sombre reminder of the atrocities mankind can inflict on each other, this memorial to the lives lost in the holocaust is an important place to spend the morning just to give yourself a little perspective on history, and life, if nothing else.

Visit the Israel Museum.

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The Israel Museum is an absolute must see site in Jerusalem, not just for its wealth of historical exhibits from the holy land and its connections to ancient Egypt and other great civilisations, but for its prized possession. The infamous Dead Sea Scrolls.

Unknown to a large majority of people, these vastly underrated historical treasures are on par with the Rosetta Stone in the British Museum or the treasures of Tutankhamun in Cairo, but without the fanfare or wide public knowledge.

The scrolls are housed in the dedicated Shrine of the Book, a unique and awe inspiring building, and chances are that whenever you go, you can actually see the exhibit without many crowds.

 

Church of the holy Sepulcher.

The evening is your opportunity to visit the Church of the Holy Sepulcher, one of the worlds holiest sites to the Christian religion. This church is said to be built on the tomb of Jesus Christ himself and contain the slab of rock where his body was laid to rest. Whether you are religious or not that’s a pretty hard to top claim to fame and makes this an unmissable grand finale to your three day itinerary.

This itinerary only scratches the surface of Jerusalem, but gives you a good taste of the vast wealth of historical, religious and cultural treasures that await you in this amazing and eclectic city.

Did you enjoy this article? I would love to hear your thoughts in the comments section below or on my Facebook or Twitter pages and please feel free to share it with any or all of the social media buttons. If you want to get more great backpacking tips, advice and inspiration, please subscribe to updates via email in the box to your right.

Disclaimer

This article was written in partnership with Trip.com. The views and opinions expressed are entirely the authors own based on personal experiences when travelling and are honest and factual without any bias.

Related Articldes

10 Essential Things To See And Do In Jerusalem.

Sunrises And Suicides At Masada National Park.

Walking Through Jerusalem’s Living History.

What To Expect At Israel’s Airport Security.

Michael Huxley is a published author, freelance travel writer and founder of Bemused Backpacker. He is also a charge nurse by vocation with an interest in emergency nursing and travel medicine, but his real passion is travel. Since finding his wanderlust a decade ago in South East Asia, he has bounced from one end of the planet to another and has no intention of slowing down.

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12 comments on “Three Days In Jerusalem.
  1. Lisa says:

    I would love to visit Jerusalem, but I just cant imagine it ever being safe.

  2. Chloe says:

    I think I need to add Israel to my bucket list!

  3. Lucy Timmins says:

    I know this sounds horribly ignorant of me but I had no idea there was a modern, hipster vibe to Jerusalem too? That first station and the city centre sound amazing. Would you say it is worth going for a city break from the UK?

    • It’s not ignorant at all Lucy, everyone has ideas about a place before they go. I’d say it is absolutely worth it, there are tons of cheap budget flights from the UK now and you can easily come and spend a long weekend here and have an awesome time.

  4. Andrew says:

    The dead sea scrolls! That must have been an amazing experience to see them

  5. John Vella says:

    Sounds like an amazing place to visit for a few days, I may add it to my list of places to see on my next big trip!

  6. Lisa says:

    I had no idea Jerusalem could be so modern too. Would love to see it for myself!

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Hi, I'm Michael! I'm a published author, qualified nurse and world travelling professional adventurer! I have spent 15 years travelling over 100 countries and I want to inspire you to do the same! Want to know more about me? Just click here!

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