Welcome to Jerusalem
With a rich history stretching back thousands of years, Jerusalem is a one-of-a-kind destination, of deep religious and historic significance to the three monotheistic religions, while remaining a vibrant, modern city.
On these pages, you can find some practical tips and recommendations of where to stay and visit in Jerusalem and the surrounding area.
Hotels in Jerusalem
The "Bridging Gaps" conference is in contact with the following hotels, which will offer special rates for conference guests. Please provide the hotel with a copy of the receipt for your conference registration or a letter of invitation when making your reservation.
Prima Park Hotel
Prima Park Hotel Jerusalem is located in close to the Israel Museum. Free parking and free internet are available on site. There is a bus stop outside of the hotel, and the journey to the Old City takes approximately 15 minutes. The Park Hotel offers spacious rooms with a multi-channel television, and rooms on the top floors enjoy panoramic views of the city. Guests staying at the Prima Park Hotel Jerusalem can use the pool, tennis, and squash courts at the Cosell Center with a voucher obtained at the reception.
Address: 2 Vilnay Street, 95435 Jerusalem
Little House in Rechavia
Located in one of Jerusalem's premier neighborhoods, Little House in Rechavia is a well-positioned hotel within easy walking distance of the city center, the Old City, and the Israel Museum.
Tel: +972 (0)2 5633344
20 Eben Ezra St., Rehavia
Prima Kings Hotel
Conveniently located near both the modern and ancient sites in Jerusalem, the newly renovated Prima Kings Hotel makes it easy for guests to take advantage of everything that the city has to offer.
Address: 60 King George St.
Three Arches Hotel YMCA
Located on the very central and beautiful King David Street close to downtown Jerusalem and the Old City, the Three Arches Hotel offers a blend of old world charm, friendly hospitality, art, and architectural wonders, together with modern, comfortable accommodations to ensure a pleasant and memorable stay in this remarkable city.
26 King David St.
Mishkenot Sha'ananim Guesthouse
The historic Mishkenot Sha'ananim complex in the picturesque Yemin Moshe neighborhood of Jerusalem features a unique guest house for artists, intellectuals, and academics. The guesthouse is located within walking or brief traveling distance from Jerusalem's cultural and entertainment center, as well as its holy and historic sites.
The Dan Boutique Hotel
The Dan Boutique Hotel Jerusalem exudes a lively and trendy ambiance, lending innovative elements to hospitality. The Dan Boutique Hotel is situated in a prime Jerusalem location within walking distance of the Old City on a small hill facing Mount Zion and the Old City Walls, and in close proximity to the Old Turkish Railway Station (the First Station), one of the capital's newest entertainment hubs.
*Please contact Beverley at firstname.lastname@example.org if you would like to make a reservation at the Dan Boutique hotel
Other Recommended Hotels and Guesthouses
Jerusalem Yitzhak Rabin Hostel
Located very close to the Israel Museum
Nahman Avigad 1, Giv'at Ram
6 Yoel Moshe Salomon St.
St Andrew's Scottish Guest House
1 David Remez Street
The Little House in Bakah
Jerusalem +972 -2 -6737944
1 Yehuda St., Corner of Derech Hevron 80
The Little House in the Colony
Tel: 972-2-566 2424
4a Lloyd George Street
The German Colony
Your arrival in Israel
A note about security and passport control on entry and departure from Israel: you may be politely, but thoroughly questioned by security personnel regarding the purpose of your trip, destination, etc. It is best to be patient and to answer the questions openly and honestly. Please take your conference invitation or registration with you to show the reason for your visit.
Changing Money at the airport
There are several exchange bureaus operated by banks at Ben Gurion Airport. One is located within the baggage pickup hall and others are at the arrival hall. They are easy to spot and the exchange rates and fees are generally reasonable and better than hotel exchange rates. There should be no problem exchanging Dollars and Euros to Israeli Shekels.
Getting from the Airport to Jerusalem
We recommend taking a shared shuttle taxi (called "sherut") from the airport to Jerusalem, which will bring you directly to your required destination. The price of the ride is fixed and is usually around 65 NIS. This special service to Jerusalem is operated by a company called Nesher and their stand is just outside the arrival hall, where you will also find private taxis that charge between 230 - 250 NIS (approx.$60) for a ride to Jerusalem depending on the time of day and the day of the week. Please note that evenings and Saturdays (the Sabbath) are more expensive. Nesher also offers their shuttle service on Saturdays, but you must reserve in advance. Please call: 02-625-7227
Public transportation Map of Jerusalem Transport system (buses and light rail)
See map »
Egged Bus Information: tel. 02-530-4704 for local buses, *288 for inter-city buses
Beit HaKerem: 02-500-0101
Hapisga: 02-642-1111 (closed on Shabbat)
When taking a taxi in Israel, it is recommended to tell the driver at the beginning of the journey that you will require a receipt with the name of the company, date, time, and the final cost of the ride. Drivers will often offer a set rate instead of the meter, so is advisable to ask for the meter and the receipt. Please note: in Israel, it is not customary to tip your taxi driver.
Highlights of Jerusalem:
The Old City of Jerusalem
There is a magical quality about the Old City of Jerusalem that does not exist anywhere else in the world. Perhaps it is due to the remarkable history of its towering stone walls and ancient buildings, or the sacred atmosphere that surrounds the Jewish, Christian, and Muslim holy sites.
The Western (Wailing) Wall
Join the thousands of people who come each year to visit the Western Wall – a relic from the ancient Temple and a source of longing and inspiration for the Jewish people. The Western Wall Plaza is open all year round, 24 hours a day, and is the site for many national and private ceremonies, including ones for Memorial Day, military initiation, national prayer gatherings, and religious celebrations.
The Western Wall Tunnels
Take a fascinating tour of the Western Wall Tunnels and see hidden layers of the Wall that are revealed underground, telling the story of ancient Jerusalem and the many generations who longed for it. The tour takes approximately an hour and 15 minutes. To learn more, click here to explore the Western Wall, browse the stalls in the narrow streets of the Old City bazaar, and visit the site of Jesus' crucifixion.
The Arab Market The colorful market called 'shuk' in Hebrew, offers a fascinating variety of lively shops and stalls, from mixed nuts and spices, to different kinds of sweets and pastries, vegetables and falafel, along with souvenirs, ceramics and oriental jewels and cloths.
Walking around the market you are likely to see the Arab vendors carrying green carts full of their famous delicious bagels, while others are busy selling their goods to the passing tourists. Do not hesitate to bargain for lower prices, it is commonly acceptable.
Mount of Olives
The Mount of Olives offers spectacular views of Jerusalem, especially of the Old City. Historically, the Mount of Olives was a site of great importance and considered the center of Jerusalem. Today, the site remains a location of holy pilgrimage for both Jews and Christians, with over 150,000 graves (the mount was a traditional burial site in Jerusalem for 3000 years) and a number of important Christian churches located on this amazing mountain ridge.
Jerusalem is blessed with some of the finest museums in the country and its museums are a great way to gain a greater understanding of this great city, its history, culture, and people. The city contains so much diversity in terms of culture, religion, art, history, and combines traditional museum exhibits and innovative interactive displays.
The Israel Museum
The Museum on the Seam
The Museum of Islamic Art in Jerusalem
The Bloomfield Science Museum
Tower of David – Museum of the History of Jerusalem
Jerusalem Artists' House
An important, yet somber, place to visit in order to get a deeper understanding of Israel, Yad Vashem is Israel's memorial to the six million Jewish victims of the Holocaust. When Yad Vashem came into being, a core goal of its founding visionaries was to recognize gentiles who, at personal risk, and without a financial or evangelistic motive, chose to save their Jewish brethren from the ongoing genocide during the Holocaust. Those recognized by the State of Israel as Righteous Among the Nations are honored in a section of Yad Vashem known as the Nations. Located on the outskirts of Jerusalem, the large complex of museums, monuments, and exhibition halls with major archives, library, and other resource centers extends over 45 acres. Take your time, and be prepared to be moved deeply.
The Knesset – Israel's Parliament
You've read about Israeli lawmakers and their policies in the media. Now take a free guided tour of Israel's Parliament at work. You'll get to see the inner workings of the building, hear about the role and responsibilities of the Knesset, see the art on its walls, including famous tapestries by Marc Chagall, and view the Israeli Declaration of Independence.
The Supreme Court
The Supreme Court is the highest judicial authority in Israel; its precedents are binding not only on all lower courts, but on all persons and State institutions. The judiciary, the executive, and the legislature (the Knesset) constitute the three branches of government. The building of the Supreme Court juxtaposes several contradictions: inside and outside, old and new, lines and circles. For example, natural light and walled spaces suggest inside and outside areas, and old and new are explored in many of the building's architectural elements that incorporate Israel's history, with an emphasis on Jerusalem. Concepts of law and justice are expressed visually, with lines representing law and circles representing justice.
The Biblical Zoo
The Jerusalem Biblical Zoo typically makes it to the top of the most-visited sites in Israel list every year, and it's not hard to see why. Great fun for the entire family, you can take a respite from all that sightseeing with a walk through this delightful zoo, which is spread over 62 acres, and includes many animals from the bible, together with a unique program of breeding endangered species.
Just a few minutes' walk from the city center up Agrippas Street to Mahane Yehuda, this amazing outdoor market, referred to as the Shuk, stretches between Jaffa Road and Agrippas Street. Mahane Yehuda market is one of the most beautiful markets and best-known icons in Israel. In Mahane Yehuda, you can find everything, ranging from clothes to household goods; flowers, art, accessories; and every variety of fresh and specialty food: sweets, baked goods, meat, fish, eggs, produce, spices, dairy products and so much more. The shuk is also a great venue to experience Jerusalem's nightlife, with restaurants, bars and intimate music clubs.
The First Station
Originally built as a train station during the Ottoman Empire, the First Station in Jerusalem is one of the city's historic landmarks and retakes its place as one of the city's most popular and lively cultural and recreational areas. The First Station offers visitors an unparalleled experience, thanks to its exceptional location at the crossroad between Jerusalem's Old City and its modern neighborhoods.
Also known as Alrov Mamilla Avenue, Mamilla Mall is an upscale shopping street and the only open-air mall in Jerusalem, Israel. Located northwest of Jaffa Gate, the mall consists of a 2,000 foot pedestrian promenade called Alrov Mamilla Avenue, lined by 140 stores, restaurants, and cafes.
Tower of David & the Night Spectacular
The Tower of David Citadel is located right within the walls of the Old City, next to Jaffa Gate, but is often overlooked. Don't make that mistake! The Citadel is full of amazing history, and the many rooms of ancient artifacts and stunning rampart views over the Old City make it a must-see. Don't forget to wrap up your day's sightseeing with the Night Spectacular!
Close to Jerusalem and well worth visiting
Float in the Dead Sea
Located approximately 40 minutes from Jerusalem, the Dead Sea is the lowest point on earth and a very special place to visit. If you need to relax, especially if you're feeling rundown, the Dead Sea is the ideal place to visit. Bring your newspaper along for that picture opportunity, smother some of that mineral rich Dead Sea mud on, and then float on your back in the warm, salty sea. Just avoid diving in!
Visit the mountain fortress of Masada
The fortress of Masada stands on an isolated rock plateau in the south east of Israel, overlooking the Dead Sea. The tale of Masada is one of Jewish heroism and bravery, with 1000 inhabitants committing mass suicide rather than surrendering to their Roman enemies. Take a walk up the Snake Path to the top of Masada if you're feeling adventurous, or if you prefer, you can take the cable car.
Top 10 things to see and do in Israel
This is a toughie, narrowing down Israel's top attractions to a top ten "must do" list. But, here it is our attempt at bringing you the best of the Holy Land in one ultimate checklist. These are things that you really should see and do in Israel, no matter if you're here for a long weekend or a month.