I is also for Israel, and we had a couple of days there during our Mediterranean cruise in 2016. We took the ship’s day excursion to Jerusalem, somewhere I had always wanted to go. Incredibly busy, incredibly beautiful, incredibly tense. The day included probably the unhappiest tourist-rip-off moment I’ve ever experienced, but it also included moments of sheer joy.
So what do you think of, when you think of Jerusalem? Maybe this man:
This picture is just one of many beautiful and emotion-filled works of art in the Church of All Nations that stands on the Mount of Olives beside the Garden of Gethsemane. Here’s more of the Church:
But my favourite place in the whole of Jerusalem is the neighbouring Garden of Gethsemane. Extraordinary to think that it still exists so beautifully to this day.
Did Jesus sit beneath this olive tree?
Standing out in the whole of the Jerusalem cityscape is the incredible Dome of the Rock
But Jerusalem has its fair share of other stunning buildings. This is the Russian Orthodox Church of Mary Magdalene.
Perhaps the most famous sight in Jerusalem is the Wailing Wall. It’s split into two portions; one large area for the men to pray and one tiny one for the women.
The old walls are remarkable
But the most important place is the Church of the Holy Sepulchre
Which was one of the least friendly churches I’ve ever been in!
But the light shining in is amazing
It’s fascinating – although crowded – to walk down the via Dolorosa, which is believed to be the path Jesus took to his crucifixion.
Here are some of the stations of the Cross
The layout of the Jewish Cemetery at the Mount of Olives is fascinating
There are, of course, modern sights, but you don’t really get to see them in a day trip. This is when our coach drove past the Knesset.
As in all cities, life is lived on the streets
And there are always quirky views to enjoy
Although the security fence is somewhat distressing
And even the souvenir t-shirts proclaim something of a gallows humour
So, in short, Jerusalem is beautiful but stressful. We also went to Tel Aviv which is the complete opposite – ugly and relaxed. I guess you can’t have both!
Thanks for joining me on this little jaunt around Jerusalem. Next blog will be back to the old theatre trips, and some shows I saw between August and October 1980. Stay safe!