Israel Pilgrimage DAY 5: Things To Do in Israel


It's finally Day 5 of our Israel trip. Jerusalem is a very beautiful place. I can't help but admire the city since our entrance yesterday. The first site we've visited on that day was the Mount of Olives. This place is located to the east of Jerusalem and is named after the olive trees which are grown on its slopes.

Do check out my post: Israel Travel Itinerary for more travel tips and inspirations.

Things To Do in Israel

The site commands a mesmerizing view of the city of Jerusalem. Up until now I still couldn't believe that I've visited Israel and walked the footsteps of my Saviour.

The Mount of Olives

The Kidron Valley, found on the photo below, separates the mount from the Eastern Gate and the Temple Mount. At the foot of the mount is the Garden of Gethsemane. The Mount of Olives is where Jesus wept over Jerusalem (Luke 19:37-41) and where He ascended to heaven after His resurrection (Acts 1:9-12).

Israel Pilgrimage: Things To Do in Israel

Many Christians believe that when the Messiah returns, He will descend on the Mount of Olives and enter Jerusalem through the Eastern Gate (Zechariah 14:1-4; Ezekiel 44:1-3; 46:1-2, 8).

Dominus Flevit

It means "The Lord Wept". This is a small church located on the Mount of Olives and is believed to be where Jesus wept when he arrived in Jerusalem as He foresaw the tragic events that would occur after His death (Luke 19:37-42).

The church, built by the Franciscan order in 1954, is in the unique shape of a teardrop, representing Christ's tears. It commands an inspiring view.

Israel Pilgrimage: Things To Do in Israel

What you see above is a tomb full of adult coffins.

The Garden of Gethsemane

This garden contains ancient olive trees and is situated at the bottom of the Mount of Olives and is opposite the Temple Mount. "Gethsemane" also means "olive press", an appropriate name for the spot where Jesus was so hard-pressed as He prayed that He sweated great drops of blood (Mark 14:32-42; Luke 22:44). This is also where Jesus was betrayed and arrested (Mark 14:43-50).

Israel Pilgrimage: Things To Do in Israel

The tree in which a big trunk near the church building is a 2000-year-old olive tree that has probably witnessed Jesus' agony in the garden.

Church of All Nations

This is also known as the Church of Agony and is located on the Mount of Olives within the vicinity of Gethsemane. The church property includes a section of bedrock where Jesus is said to have prayed.

The stone is said to form a direct line with the Eastern Gate, which is pictured below right after the photo of the church, and where the entrance to the Holy of Holies in the Second Temple is believed to have stood before.

Things To Do in Israel
Things To Do in Israel
Israel Pilgrimage: Things To Do in Israel

The Pool of Bethesda

Bethesda means the house of mercy. This was where a large number of infirmed people waited to be cured by the waters which were believed to have miraculous healing properties. It was here that Jesus healed a paralytic of 38 years (John 5:1-15). The pool is located within the grounds of the Crusader Church of St. Anne.

Israel Pilgrimage: Things To Do in Israel

The Church of St. Anne, seen below, was built on the site where the home of Anne, the mother of Mary, is believed to have stood. Designed for Gregorian chant, the acoustics of the church's interior is phenomenal.

Israel Pilgrimage: Things To Do in Israel

The Via Dolorosa

The way of the Suffering is the name of a street in the Old City of Jerusalem believed to be the path that Jesus walked on the way to His crucifixion. There are 14 stations, each signifying a certain point in Christ's journey with the last five stations situated inside the Church of the Holy Sepulchre.

Israel Pilgrimage: Things To Do in Israel

The Lithostratos or "The Pavement" is located at the third station of the Via Dolorosa and is where Pilate sought to release Jesus (John 19:13).  In the picture below you can see an original 2000-year-old pavement from the old city of Jerusalem.

This pavement is now located underground in the modern city. In there we save the 2000-year-old drainage, troughs, and even a Roman soldier's game.

Israel Pilgrimage: Things To Do in Israel

Ecco Homo Arch. The reconstructed ruins of this arch, with its three openings, can be seen as you move from the second to the third station of the Via Dolorosa. This spot is named for Pilate's presentation of Jesus to the Jews after He was scourged, where he said, "Ecce Homo!" or "Behold the Man!" (John 19:1-5)

Israel Pilgrimage: Things To Do in Israel

During lunch, we went to a Chinese restaurant for our sakes so that we won't miss home that much. The road we walked through to reach the restaurant leads to Jaffa.

Israel Pilgrimage: Things To Do in Israel

The next site we've visited after lunch is the traditional burial place of King David known as King David's Tomb.

Israel Pilgrimage: Things To Do in Israel

The Upper Room

The Upper Room is also known as the Room of the Last Supper. This is believed to be where Jesus shared His last Passover meal and the first Holy Communion with His disciples before His death (Matthew 26:26-35; Luke 22:7-38).

This was also where the disciples were gathered together praying when the Holy Spirit descended upon them on Pentecost after the resurrection and ascension of Jesus (Acts 1:13-16).

Located on Mount Zion just outside the walls of the Old City of Jerusalem, the Upper Room was rebuilt by the Crusaders after it was razed to the ground by the Muslims.

Israel Pilgrimage: Things To Do in Israel

The photo below shows the border separating Israel from the West Bank.

Israel Pilgrimage: Things To Do in Israel

The Church of St. Peter in Gallicantu

This is one traditional location for the house of Caiaphas where Jesus appeared before Caiaphas and the religious leaders, and where Peter denied the Lord 3 times (Mark 14:53-65). The name Gallicantu means "cock crowing" and the site is built atop the ruins of a Byzantine church and monastery.

Underneath the church there you can still see the dungeon made for prisoners in the name of religion. In the photo below, the ropes used to tie the prisoners are still visible on the wall.

I could not imagine how dark and lonely it would be being locked up here with no signs of life not even seeing your own body.

Israel Pilgrimage: Things To Do in Israel

After our fifth day tour around the city, we did a little shopping for souvenir items. I'm excited about tomorrow's itinerary because we will finally be experiencing the Dead Sea. Woohoo! Another bucket list down!