Latrun Monastery is located next to Latrun Interchange on road #1 (Tel-Aviv – Jerusalem highway). And it’s the only Trappist monastery in Israel.
Some also call it the silent monastery since the monks keep a vow of silence.
When you enter, you will see on your right (inside the arc) door to the store. Latrun monks sell there a variety of handmade products. Latrun is most famous for its wine. There are vineyards around the monastery and monks prepare different kinds of wines. It’s not expensive, as you might expect for handmade wines and many Israelis come there to shop.
If you take a look at the photo above, you’ll see that the gate is closed. We’ve arrived a little early and the monastery was still closed.
Opening Hours of the Monastery: all week except Sunday and Christian holidays, 9-11 a.m. and 3.30-4-30 p.m.
Opening hours of the Shop: 7.30 a.m. to 6 p.m.
When I climbed to the top of on the stairs, I looked back and took this photo:
You can see that the monastery is located on a strategic hill. If you look straight ahead then you’ll see Lod and a little to the left you can see Tel-Aviv’s skyscrapers. Such strategic location, besides the views, has military importance. There were many battles over Latrun and during Six Day War IDF gained control.
Also, from time to time there are concerts in Latrun. Once we bought tickets and expected the concert to be held inside the monastery. Instead, it was in monk’s dining room. The acoustics was horrible. So if you want to go to a concert in a church, instead of Latrun I would recommend Augusta Victoria Hospital (the concerts are held in the church on premises) in Jerusalem. Also, after the concert, you can climb Augusta Victoria’s tower (sometimes it’s free and sometimes they charge 5 NIS) to get views of Jerusalem from the East.
Overall this can be a nice shortstop while driving from Tel-Aviv to Jerusalem or vice verse. You can also combine Latrun with Mini Israel, which is located within five minutes drive. But if you want a really nice place for a stop (on the way from Tel-Aviv to Jerusalem), then I would recommend a short detour to visit Avshalom Cave.
That’s all for today and I’ll see you in future travels!