• Samantha Linnett


Updated: Mar 1

May 2014

On Thursday we spent the day touring Jerusalem. We had an amazing tour guide – she knew so much! As you can imagine, we packed a lot into our day, so this post might be a little longer. I will try to make it mostly pictures.

We started our day in Yad Vashem at the holocaust museum. The museum is designed in a triangular, tunnel like form. It has “fault lines” throughout that lead you to go through every exhibit as you make your way towards the light at the end of the tunnel, literally. Not surprisingly, it was very sad.

After the museum we went and had a picnic lunch in the rose garden by the Knesset, the Israeli legislature, and then headed off to the market in “modern” Jerusalem (the specification will make sense in a bit):

And lastly, we went to the old city, which was my favorite part of the day. We saw the Church of the Holy Sepulcher. According to Christian tradition, the Church of the Holy Sepulcher was built on the site of Jesus’ crucifixion. He was also buried there. The church is split by all different sects of Christianity, each one having its own piece of the church. The key to the church is held by, wait for it, a Muslim family, so that none of the different sects try to take a part from another. 

We spent a little time in the market in old Jerusalem, which I thought was a nicer experience than the main market we visited. It's partially and completely covered in certain parts, and it gives you a good feel for how people have lived and shopped in Jerusalem for centuries.

Then we went to the top of the old city, where we saw the Dome of the Rock. The Dome of the Rock is Islamic shrine located on the Temple Mount. You must be Muslim to go inside. The original dome collapsed in 1015 and was rebuilt in 1022–23. The Dome of the Rock is one of the oldest works of Islamic architecture. We also could see the Olive Mountain from here, where Jesus is said to have resurrected from.

Lastly, we went to the Western Wall, or the Wailing Wall – which is a holy place for Jewish people. People write wishes and prayers on pieces of paper and put them into the cracks in the wall. After you've stuck your pieces of paper in the cracks, you walk away backwards from the wall, so as not to turn your back on it. The emotion in the atmosphere was overwhelmingly powerful.

As you can see, there are important religious sites in old Jerusalem for all three major religions in Israel - Christianity, Judaism, and Islam. This is what makes it such an important piece - and unfortunately often a barrier - to a peaceful two-state solution in Israel.

#travel #Israel #Jerusalem #DomeoftheRock #WailingWall #ChurchoftheHolySepulcher #explore #exploretheworld #worldexplorer #livelikealocal #photography #travelphotography #photoamateur


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