Jerusalem is one of the most famous cities in the world. From ancient history to modern headlines, it matters. Here are seven facts you may not know!
1. Jerusalem is safe.
However, the crime rate, including numbers of assaults and arrests, is much lower than that of most European capitals and state capitals in the USA.
2. Jerusalem is just as old as it is new.
With its millennia-long history, there’s always more to discover underground from centuries past. At the same time, the city continues to grow and expand, making it more modern and advanced than you’d expect!
3. The Mount of Olives is world’s oldest cemetery.
One of the most recognizable landmarks of the city, valued by Jews and Christians alike, Mount of Olives has been a burial site for centuries.
It houses more than 150,000 Jewish graves and the number keeps growing.
4. It snows in Jerusalem.
Most of southern Israel is considered a desert and the central part of the country, which includes Jerusalem area, is characterized by warm semi-arid climate (arid, meaning dry). However, at the elevation of over 700 meters above sea level (almost 2,500 feet) Jerusalem tends to stay much cooler than her coastal sister, Tel Aviv.
5. You can find historical sites literally anywhere.
Walking around residential Jerusalem, you can walk across a historical site at any step.
Even though in Biblical times Jerusalem was significantly smaller and for the most part restricted by city walls, random historical sites are scattered throughout the modern city.
A great example of that is a 2,000+ years old burial chamber of Jason, an ancient naval commander, tucked away in the middle of a modern residential area of Rechavia.
6. You can see Bethlehem from Jerusalem.
Jerusalem and Bethlehem are two distinct cities, so one would expect them to be separated by quite some distance. But in reality, you could even walk over from one to the other! It is less than the 10k you just ran the other month! You don’t get a medal for this one though.
If you do decide to take this treck, make sure you don’t do it in the heat of the summer and keep it mind you will have to cross a security crossing.
7. Jerusalem Day is a celebration of 50+ years of opening the city to the public!
Today, regardless of your cultural, national, religious or ethnic background, you can enter through the gates of the Old City in Jerusalem!