About Time: You Explored the Best of Jerusalem, IsraelBy Suzi Malin
Thinking about taking a trip to Jerusalem? Jerusalem is a rich, culturally diverse city with so much to offer the modern traveller. From great restaurants to historical sites, it’s a city that’s buzzing with life, energy and great food. Here’s our picks of the best places to stay, eat and visit in Jerusalem in 2018:
Where to Stay in Jerusalem
There’s a quite range of accommodation available in Jerusalem, from 5* stays to boutique hotels. Here’s our pick of the best hotels in Jerusalem:
Hotel Yehuda is a 5-star accommodation within 7 km of Western Wall. The property is set within 5 km distance from Jerusalem city center, making it the perfect base for exploring the city. The accommodation is basic, but good – with rooms facing over the patio and an outdoor pool. There’s also a great restaurant on-site which serves up traditional Israeli food, buffet-style. It’s 45-minutes to Ben Gurion Airport from the hotel, making it a great hotel for first-time visitors to Jerusalem.
Double room prices start from £112pp with breakfast included. To book please visit here.
Mamilla Hotel – part of The Leading Hotels of the World – is one of the best places to stay in Jerusalem. This luxury hotel in Jerusalem features a panoramic rooftop terrace overlooking Jerusalem’s Old City walls, right next to the finest shopping and entertainment experience, the Mamilla Avenue. Designed by the Italian elite architect and designer, Piero Lissoni, Mamilla Hotel is bringing world-class superior lifestyle, service and hospitality experience to Jerusalem and Israel.
Double room prices start from £255pp. Breakfast can be added with a daily cost of £26pp. To book please visit here.
Looking for a luxury stay? The Orient Jerusalem hotel is nestled at the heart of the German Colony, walking distance from countless cultural, tourist, and historic attractions: the First Station, Liberty Bell Park, and Mishkenot Sha’ananim. A real luxury experience, The Orient Jerusalem’s 243 luxurious rooms and suites showcase an eclectic design, mixing classic with modern innovations. Thirty-nine rooms are housed in a lovingly-restored 19th century Templer heritage building, where guests receive exclusive VIP services, including a personal concierge, private check-in, free bicycle rental and more. There’s also an amazing rooftop pool overlooking iconic landmarks, or the indoor pool on the spa level, near the gym, saunas, and Turkish hamam. Heaven.
Double room prices start from £220pp. Breakfast can be added with a daily cost of £70 pp. To book please visit here.
Where to Eat in Jerusalem
Jerusalem is a melting pot of cuisines, cultures and history – and the food is a real reflection of this. Here’s our picks for the best places to eat in Jerusalem:
Looking for a great restaurant? Hachatzer is a restaurant located at a perfect location on Derech Beit Lethem Street, close to the main attractions in the city. Come here for the best grilled meat, casserole dishes and fish, in a kitchen run by chef Moti Ochana. The restaurant has two floors, a small bar and an open kitchen, so you can eat watching the magic happen. It’s all about the ingredients here – they only use the finest locally sourced produce for their world-class food.
Main courses starting from £12. To find out more please visit: http://www.thecourtyard.rest-e.co.il/
Love cheese and wine? Us too. This restaurant in Jerusalem is one of the best places in the city for a cheese and wine feast. The Notre Dame Rooftop Cheese and Wine Restaurant offers guests one of the most spectacular views across the Jerusalem skyline, plus arguably the best selection of imported cheese and wine in the city. It is the ideal place to relax after a long day of exploring the city, watching the setting sun cast its golden hue over the Old City with a glass of wine. The rooftop spot features over 40 different imported gourmet cheeses and an extensive wine list with over 60 different vintages from around the world, as well as the Notre Dame’s private label wine. In addition to the cheese platters and fondues, guests can choose from a varied menu that includes appetizers, main dishes and homemade pastries. Dreamy.
Main courses starting from £16. To find out more please visit here.
If you want to taste the best of the city, then head to Jerusalem’s Mahane Yehuda Market for a taste of Israel’s finest produce, dishes and creativity. Newly-opened Jacko’s Street, the market’s first chef restaurant, is one place you can’t miss. The market-style restaurant, complete with warehouse-chic style brick walls and old street signs, has a real feel of Israeli street culture. Come here for food by world-renowned chef Zakai Hooja, using fresh market produce and new techniques. Don’t miss the fresh ravioli with meat, Turkish kebabs, fish carpaccio and ceviche. Explore the market nearby afterwards, you’ll love it.
Main courses from £12.80. To find out more please visit here.
What to Do in Jerusalem
There’s so much to see and do in Jerusalem. Of course, you can’t miss the Old City, which is rich in history, religion and culture, but there’s lots to do beyond the classic tourist sites. Here’s our favourite things to do in Jerusalem, hand-picked for you:
A segway is a great, fun way to see the city. ZUZU Tours offers a number of tours on segway around Jerusalem; our personal favourite is the tour in the Mishkenot Shaananim neighbourhood, which is a unique opportunity to explore the Old City, learn its history and enjoy the atmosphere of its ancient walls and buildings. ZUZU is also the only certified segway company licensed to operate a guided tour in the Biblical Zoo. Price includes the entry fee and zoo’s expert guidance, win win.
Tours start from £37pp. To book please visit here.
The Israel Museum is the largest cultural institution in the State of Israel and is ranked among the world’s leading art and archaeology museums. It’s a must-visit if you want to get a deeper understanding of the history of Israel, its struggles, battles and population today. Don’t miss a visit when in Jerusalem!
Entrance fees are £10 pp. To find out more please visit here.
Looking to do something unusual in Jerusalem? Come along to this special event, where the walls of the Citadel serve as a stage for a night time show. Amidst the archaeological remains in the Citadel’s courtyard and to the sound of original music, the story of Jerusalem unfolds through giant breathtaking, virtual reality images. The Night Spectacular uses trompe l’oeil technology – the stones of the walls and structures fade into the scenes and the screened images envelop the viewers and whisk them off to a one-of-a-kind multi-sensory experience. The Night Spectacular, the first of its kind in the world, is for everyone – tourists from Israel and abroad, families, speakers of all languages and all Jerusalem lovers.
Entrance fees are £5.50pp. To book please visit here.
Yad Vashem is Israel’s official memorial to the victims of the Holocaust. It is dedicated to preserving the memory of the dead; honouring Jews who fought against their Nazi oppressors. This deeply moving museum is a must-visit on your trip to Jerusalem – it sheds a light on the suffering of the Jews during this time and is incredibly moving for Jews and non-Jews alike.
Entry to the museum is free. To find out more please visit here.
The City of David is one of Jerusalem’s most active archaeological sites; David is said to have captured the city and to have brought the Ark of the Covenant here 3000 years ago. Today you can explore the City of David by the tunnels underneath it – not for the faint hearted, these tunnels are quite narrow but it’s an amazing experience.
Entrance fees are £10pp. To find out more please visit here.
WIZZ Air flies to Tel Aviv from London Luton on Tuesdays, Thursdays, Saturdays and Sundays, with fares starting from £102.99pp one way. For further information on flights and fares visit here. For more information on the Jerusalem Development Authority please see here.