This article covers places near the Old City of Jerusalem, like Mount Zion, Mishkenot Sha’ananim, and Mount Of Olives.
We have already visited the Old City. In that article, we saw “The Big Three,” which are the Western Wall, Church Of The Holy Sepulchre, Dome Of The Rock, and al-Aqsa Mosque. We also toured other places inside the Old City. Today we will be visiting different sites around the Old City.
Table of Contents
To the South of The Old City – Mount Zion
Mount Zion guide starts with basics, like maps and directions, Mount Zion in the Bible, and then goes through the landmarks. And afterward, tours the most iconic landmarks, including King David’s Tomb, The Cenacle – Room of the Last Supper, and Dormition Abbey.
To the East of The Old City – Mount Of Olives
Map of the area:
Church of All Nations
Let’s burn some extra calories and head to The Church of All Nations.
The Church of All Nations, also known as the Church or Basilica of the Agony, is a Roman Catholic church located on the Mount of Olives in Jerusalem, next to the Garden of Gethsemane. It enshrines a section of bedrock where Jesus is said to have prayed before his arrest.
You can find a complete guide to the Garden of Gethsemane and the Church of All Nations in the linked article.
Tomb of the Virgin
The tomb of the Virgin is located not far from the Garden of Gethsemane.
Church of the Sepulchre of Saint Mary, also Tomb of the Virgin Mary, is a Christian tomb in the Kidron Valley – at the foot of Mount of Olives, in Jerusalem – believed by Eastern Christians to be the burial place of Mary, the mother of Jesus. The Status Quo, a 250-year old understanding between religious communities, applies to the site.
Dominus Flevit Church
A little higher on Mount of Olives, you can find the Dominus Flevit Church.
View from inside of Dominus Flevit Church:
Dominus Flevit is a Roman Catholic church on the Mount of Olives, opposite the walls of the Old City of Jerusalem. The church was designed and constructed between 1953 and 1955 by the Italian architect Antonio Barluzzi and is held in trust by the Franciscan Custody of the Holy Land. During construction of the sanctuary, archaeologists uncovered artifacts dating back to the Canaanite period, as well as tombs from the Second Temple and Byzantine eras.
Dominus Flevit, which translates from Latin as “The Lord Wept,” was fashioned in the shape of a teardrop to symbolize the tears of Christ. Here, according to the 19th chapter of the Gospel of Luke, Jesus, while riding toward the city of Jerusalem, becomes overwhelmed by the beauty of the Second Temple and predicting its future destruction, and the diaspora of the Jewish people weeps openly.
Mount of Olives Jewish Cemetery
The ancient and most important cemetery in Jerusalem is on the Mount of Olives. The Mount was used as the burial ground of the Jews of Jerusalem from as far back as the days of the First Temple and continues to fulfill this function to the present day. During the First and Second Temple Periods the Jews of Jerusalem were buried in burial caves scattered on the slopes of the Mount, and from the 16th century, the cemetery began to take its present shape.
Source: Official Site
A photo of the Silwan neighborhood on the way back to the car.
To the West of The Old City – Mishkenot Sha’ananim
Map of the area:
Another interesting place close to the Old City is the Mishkenot Sha’ananim neighborhood.
Mishkenot Sha’ananim is the first Jewish neighborhood built outside the walls of the Old City of Jerusalem, on a hill directly across from Mount Zion. Built in 1860, it was the first area of Jewish settlement in Jerusalem outside the Old City walls and was one of the first structures to be built outside the Old City of Jerusalem…
View of Mount Zion from Mishkenot Sha’ananim:
The Montefiore Windmill is a landmark windmill in Jerusalem, Israel. Designed as a flour mill, it was built in 1857 on a slope opposite the western city walls of Jerusalem, where three years later the new Jewish neighborhood of Mishkenot Sha’ananim was erected, both by the efforts of a British Jewish banker and philanthropist Moses Montefiore. Jerusalem at the time was part of Ottoman-ruled Palestine. Today the windmill serves as a small museum dedicated to the achievements of Montefiore. It was restored in 2012 with a new cap and sails in the style of the originals. The mill can turn in the wind.
There are many exciting places around the Old City. We have visited some of them, but there are more. If you have the time, then I would recommend it. Visiting places like the Cenacle makes you feel like walking in history.
What are your favorite places around The Old City? Let us know in the comments below.
That’s all for today, and I’ll see you in future travels!
For additional points of interest nearby, check out Jerusalem.
Additional ResourcesHere are several resources that I created to help travelers:
- Israel Trip Planner is the page that will help you to create your perfect travel route.
- National Parks And Nature Reserves page lists and put all national parks on the map. There is also a top list, information about ticket types and campsites.
- If you are looking for things to do, here are the pages for Jerusalem, Tel Aviv, Haifa, Sea Of Galilee, and Makhtesh Ramon.
- Wondering what events are there in Israel? Here is the Events And Festivals By Season guide.