We spent the entire day walking around the Old City of Jerusalem. It was a good day to be out, it was not raining and it was not too hot. We started the day early and we were already in one of the gates by 8 AM. After going through security check, our first stop was the Western Wall.
Our guide took us underground to the Western Wall Tunnels. It was once used as a reservoir and the smell of mildew and damp lingered in the air. People left prayer notes in the slits and cracks of the tunnel walls.
It took us a little over an hour to reach the other end of the tunnel. Our group then proceeded to a church (I can’t recall the name) for more sightseeing. My back hurt and my legs were sore so I decided to just sit in one the church pews and rest for a bit. There were two men who sat in a quiet corner by the church entrance. They were so focused on their readings and discussion that they did not seem to notice the people going in and out of the church.
Next up is Bethesda (house of mercy/grace). We spent most of our time walking around the pool ruins. St Anne’s Church is also located within the Bethesda compound. It is a well-preserved Crusader church and had good acoustics. The church was crowded and different groups took turn to sing as they made their way to the altar.
We headed down to the Lion’s Gate and got ready to walk the Via Dolorosa. There are 14 stations starting at the Umariya Elementary School and ending at the Church of the Holy Sepulchre
It was midday when we reached the Chruch of the Holy Sepulchre. We spent most of our time walking around and visiting the different chapels within the church. We had lunch in one of the cafes near the Holy Sepulchre.
After lunch, we headed out to the Upper Room and King David’s Tomb. We bought some dried fruits and nuts along the way.
The last stop of the day is the Palace of Caiaphas. A church now stands in the area believed to where Palace of Caiaphas was located.