Where Worlds Collide – Living in Jerusalem (Part 2)

Title: Where worlds collide – What to eat, see and do in Jerusalem (Part 2)

  In the first half of “Where Worlds Collide”, we spoke to Sangeetha about her experience in Jerusalem while working as a legal fellow.

While many of us may be living and working in Jerusalem, making a trip down to one of the oldest cities in the world should be at the top of your bucket list.

For those who plan to drop by Jerusalem, here are things that you should eat, see and do, as recommended by our dear friend, Sangeetha.

Admire the City View

Jerusalem has several places where you can admire and appreciate the wonderful landscape of the city.

  1. Austrian Hospice


(Photo: Wikimedia)

The Austrian Hospice, opened in 1863, is the first guesthouse in Jerusalem that catered to national pilgrims. Today, it has many rooms for visitors looking to soak in the Old City’s atmosphere and a coffeeshop that serves drinks, desserts and lunch.

What’s even better is the rooftop where you are treated to a wonderful panoramic view of the city for just 5 shekel.

Take note: they do not accept credit cards so remember to bring some extra cash with you.

  1. Mount of Olives

TWO(Photo: Wikimedia)

Mount of Olives is a mountain ridge just east of the Old City. There are several viewpoints on the Mount of Olives that offers more stunning views of the Old City.

While on your way up or down the mountain ridge, you can also visit the numerous churches scattered around the mountain ridge such as the Pater Noster Church and Chapel of the Ascension.

  1. Notre Dame of Jerusalem Centre


(Photo: NotreDameCenter)

Just steps away from the Old City’s new gate, the Notre Dame Centre is a Vatican-owned guesthouse built in the 19th century.

Guests enjoy free breakfast while visitors and guests can have a meal at the rooftop restaurant that offers gourmet wine and cheese, while soaking in the fantastic city view.

At Notre Dame Centre, you can see the Old City and the Mount of Olives from majority of the rooms, which were recently renovated to give its guests a more comfortable and stylish retreat.

  1. Taste the Various Flavours of Jerusalem

 One of the many perks of travelling is being able to taste the traditional and modern flavours of a country’s cuisine. In Jerusalem, there are plenty of food options regardless of your budget.


  1. Tmol Shilshom Café

FIVE(Photo: Facebook)

A laidback bookstore cum café, Tmol Shilshom Café is located at the heart of the city. The café serves dishes from the Mediterranean, Israeli and Western cuisines.

FIVE.2(Photo: Facebook)

They are famous for their shakshuka, an Israeli breakfast food consisting of poached eggs in a sauce of tomatoes, chilli peppers and onions, as well as their salmon fillet.

The menu has plenty of non-red meat options that are perfect for vegetarians, pescetarians and vegans.

Address: Yo’el Moshe Salomon St 5, Jerusalem, 9463305, Israel

  1. Nafoura

SIX(Photo: Enjoy Jerusalem)

Nafoura can be found in the Old City’s Jaffa Gate, next to the old city wall. The restaurant has a beautiful setting and provides a wonderful atmosphere for their diners who wish to get away from the noise.

SIX.2(Photo: Enjoy Jerusalem)

Nafoura is definitely the place to go if you like Lebanese and Armenian food. They also serve traditional Israeli dishes.

Address: Ha-Patriarkhya ha-Latinit St 26, Jerusalem.

  1. Barood

SEVEN(Photo: Trip Advisor)

In a small courtyard just off Jaffa Street lies Barood, a restaurant and bar. Almost resembling a secret hideout, Barood is a warm and cozy place for late lunches and a cocktail when the sun sets.

SEVEN2(Photo: Trip Advisor)

One of the few remaining non-Kosher restaurants in Jerusalem, Barood serves a mix of Mediterranean and Israeli dishes and regular live music.

Address: Yafo St 31, Jerusalem

  1. Azzahra

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Back in the old days, brick ovens were commonplace and used to bake pizzas. Today, electrical ovens and microwaves have taken over. At Azzahra, the restaurant still uses traditional brick ovens to bake their signature pizzas. The franco-arabic restaurant is also known for serving amazing Palestinian dishes and great salads.

Address: Azzahra 13, Jerusalem, 91999

  1. Abu Shukri

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The locals have varying opinions on where to go for the best hummus and falafel but many will agree that Abu Shukri sits among the top of the list. According to Sangeetha, Abu Shukri was one of the best and cheapest meals she had in Jerusalem.

NINE2(Photo: Enjoy Jerusalem)

Address: Derech Beit Hanina, Between Al-Mu’tasem Street & Abed e-rahman Dajani Street

Explore the Holy City

  1. Old City

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Get lost in the maze of alleys in the Old City. For those with a bad sense of direction, do not fear as there are signposts everywhere. There are also soldiers guarding some of the areas in the Old City to ensure that you will not accidentally wander into any prohibited areas.

The Old City has 4 different quarters, Muslim, Christian, Jewish and Armenian, all of which have plenty of interesting sights and foods to try.

  1. Palestinian Literature

For those looking to immerse themselves into Palestinian literature, the Educational Bookshop on Salah Eddin Street is just for you! The cosy bookstore has a lovely café on the second floor where you can read while enjoying cup of coffee and a slice of cake.

ELEVEN(Photo: Brownbook)

The store offers a wide selection of books, Palestinian magazines, music CDs and even movies. The store is owned and run by a friendly and helpful Palestinian family. If you do not know where to start, approach them and they will be most happy to recommend books from your favourite genres.

  1. West Bank

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For those who wish to explore the West Bank, Jerusalem is a good place to start. There are many wonderful Palestinian cities to visit and as shared by Sangeetha, the Palestinians are also very friendly and have a good command of the English language.

TWELVE.2(Photo: The Velvet Rocket)

If you are not comfortable with exploring alone, there are a few tour operators like Abraham Tours that organises tours into the West Bank from Jerusalem.

So what are you waiting for?

Very often, when one thinks of Jerusalem, he or she may picture a city crossed by heaven and earth, past and present, blessed with the footsteps of multiple prophets – but marred with contemporary issues, social and political conflict.

Despite these perceptions that are often blown out of proportion by the media, Jerusalem is an in reality an amazing city to visit. Regardless of your religious beliefs, Jerusalem is definitely the place for soul searching, spiritual recovery and getting a unparalleled taste of an explosive pot of cultures and flavours.

  • Amit shir

    Wow, nice informative post u have shared here. Yes, I had heard that Shakshuka is one of the famous dishes on Jerusalem as my friend has also the same opinion on this. Last year he traveled Jerusalem by booking a trip from one of the travel agency named Mantis Tours & this year I have also planned to go there. I will definitely try this food.
    Thanks for sharing this post containing special things on Jerusalem.