The Jewish Quarter is one of the four quarters in the Old City of Jerusalem. Measuring 116,000 square meters, it lies in the southeastern part of the walled city. It is home to several important archaeological sites, synagogues, as well yeshivas (places of the study of Jewish texts). It has been nearly continually home to Jews since the eighth century B.C.
Today, the Jewish Quarter is fascinating destination to explore with synagogues, archaeological sites, synagogues, and of course, the Western Wall, which are among its chief attractions.
Check out the recommendations for some of the essential things to see and do in the Jewish Quarter in Jerusalem’s Old City.
It is great to wander and absorb the unique atmosphere. Friday evening is a very special time in the Jewish Quarter as everybody gets ready for the Sabbath and many people come to pray in the synagogues and at the Kotel. For further views, see The Jewish Quarter Album
Tower of David – An amazing museum set in the restored citadel near the Jaffa Gate, the main the the historic entrance to the walled city. If you are interested to study the history of Jerusalem (starting from second millennium B.C. to the present day), you will definitely have a field day at this museum. Highly recommended sound and light experience. See – Tower of David Museum
Old City Ramparts Walk – It is considered one of the Old City’s hidden gems in part because of its relative inaccessibility. By far, the Ramparts Walk is one of the highlights of the Old City – it offers lots of fun, full of history and great views. You should combine this with the other sites and activities in and around the Old City. See Old City Wall Tour
Old City Souk – Occupying about 100 acres in the Old City, this is a classic market. It has the sounds, colors, movements and smells of an old Arab market. You should take in the atmosphere and don’t forget to bargain hard. It is not strictly speaking in the Jewish Quarter, but it is adjacent to the Jewish Quarter.
Kotel View point – From the Kotel, take the steps on the right (directly behind the men’s section.) Work your way to the left and just relish the unique view. Very compelling towards evening especially on a Friday night. See The Kotel – Wailing/Western Wall
Kotel Tunnels – The Western Wall Tunnels or the Kotel Tunnels offer incredible excavations that run by the Western Wall. You must book in advance (like before you book your airline tickets!!) See Kotel Tunnels
Davidson Centre – Located by Dung Gate (to the left of the Kotel), Davidson Center offers an incredible archaeological site spread out between the Old City walls and the southern wall of the Temple Mount. You can climb the same steps that the pilgrims used thousands of years ago. An extremely absorbing and impressive experience, see Davidson Center
City of David – The City of David is another term of Jerusalem during the ancient times. Strictly speaking, it is located outside the current Ottoman walls, but logically it is at the central feature. Visit David’s capital city and explore the water system (Hezekiah’s Tunnel). See City of David & Hezekiah’s Tunnel
Old City Roof Top Walk – A slightly less well known, but very highly recommended view of Jerusalem. See Roof Top Walk
Cardo – This is the main east-west road from Roman times. It has been excavated and restored – partially open-air and partially covered. Sometimes, it is converted into a hands-on living museum. Check out the model of the Temple Candelabra.
Wander around the Jewish Quarter – The Old City is one of those places where you never tire of just wandering (but, you will get extremely tired!!) – explore the winding alleys and paths, and look for all the special places and sites.
Jewish Quarter Main Square – The beating heart of the Jewish Quarter, the Hurva Square is abuzz with life and activity. It seems to be where all the alleys lead towards. It is full of atmosphere, always bustling and a good place to sit down, get food and refreshments, and catch your breath and cool your heels between museums. It is also the location of the Hurva Synagogue.
Hurva Synagogue – The old synagogue (founded in the 18th century) for so long has been a symbol of a previously divided Jerusalem that is restored. This is a definite must do – simply because it is so difficult to gain admittance. See The Hurva
Four Synagogues – A small complex with four unique synagogues and four unique stories to match. They are four Sephardic synagogues, each built at different periods, the accommodate the religious and spiritual needs of the Sephardic Jews. They are Yochanan ben Zakai Synagogue, Istanbuli Synagogue, Eliahu Ha’navi Synagogue, and Emstai Synagogue.
For further views – see The Jewish Quarter Album
See our Guide to the Jewish Quarter