1. Holy Jerusalem Half-Day Tour From Jerusalem
Your tour begins on the Mount Scopus where you have a panoramic view across the holy city of Jerusalem. From this elevated point you will have the ancient Jewish cemetery beneath you and, beyond that, the Old City with the shining Dome of the Rock on Temple Mount. As you look down on the Old City, it is easy to imagine the Second Temple which once stood on Temple Mount and the bustling ancient city as it would have been almost 2000 years ago. Then you will take the winding road down to the Kidron Valley, with a view of the Garden of Gethsemane and the Church of All Nations. In the Valley you can see the ancient burial tombs of Absalom and Jehoshapat, BeneiHezir, and the tomb of Zechariah. You enter the Old City through the Zion Gate into the Armenian Quarter and continue on to the Byzantine Cardo. Today, after extensive excavations, specialty stores are open here where Crusader stores once stood. Going through the Jewish Quarter, you will reach the most holy site in the Jewish faith, the Western Wall. Here Jews from around the world come to pray and put prayer notes between the Wall's stones. This 2,000 year old wall was part of the outer supporting walls of the holy Second Temple which was destroyed in AD70. Continue on to the Via Dolorosa or the Way of Sorrows. Along the way you will pause at several Stations of the Cross and finally you will reach the Church of the Holy Sepulchre. The basilica is constructed on the site where Jesus is believed to have been crucified and within the church is his burial tomb. The Byzantine church has been renovated, rebuilt, and expanded over the years; today it is a vast and ornate place of worship. To end your tour, take a walk through the busy markets of the Old City where you can buy unique souvenirs from the City of Gold.