Finding Peace and Quiet in Jerusalem

July 14th 2013

Jerusalem's New City - Israel Museum & Dead Sea ScrollsJerusalem is the Holy City, teeming with energy, action and spirits on fire. But sometimes, a visitor enjoying a jam-packed tour just needs a little time out. When you’re craving peace and quiet in Jerusalem, here are a few spots to head for.

Just outside the walls of the Knesset, 400 kinds of roses, many of them gifts from other nations, thrive in the 19 acres of the Wohl Rose Park. Stroll among 15,000 rose bushes, or sit beside the pond, built for quiet contemplation.

Meandering through the graveled paths of the Billy Rose Art Garden at the Israel Museum is an ideal way to appreciate some of the greatest sculptors and artists of the late 19th and 20th centuries, displayed among a great assortment of stones, gently lapping water fountains, plant life and amazing views. If the sun gets too strong in the Art Garden, step inside and enjoy a bit of quiet time in the Museum’s extensive library of illustrated children’s books, located in the Ruth Youth Wing.

The western Jerusalem neighborhood of Ein Kerem provides an ideal escape from the bustle of the center of Jerusalem. Saunter through the narrow cobblestone alleys to more fully appreciate the stone houses, the dense, soothing landscapes and fragrant olive groves springing up in the Judean hills. Pastoral living on Jerusalem’s outskirts is at its best here. Home to the largest hospital in Jerusalem, the bucolic neighborhood also attracts more than its share of artists, architects, musicians and intellectuals to its terraced hillsides and relaxed coffee shops. Don’t miss Mary’s Well, a Christian pilgrimage site and the start of any organized walking tour of Ein Kerem.
Featuring thousands of artifacts spanning thousands of years, a visit to the hushed exhibition halls of the Bible Lands Museum will take you away from the bustle of Ben Yehuda to the very origins of civilization in the ancient Near East – back to a time before writing, before religion, before technology.

Finally, for most visitors to Jerusalem, the Sherover Promenade (“HaTayelet”) is a quick stop on the itinerary – a great place to get an overview of the city and to take a few fabulous pictures with scenic backdrops. But if you’re looking for a quiet place in Jerusalem, walk down from the street level and just stroll around until you find the ideal spot to toss out your blanket and set up your picnic or just sit and relax.
Don’t get burned out by Jerusalem’s awe-inspiring intensity. With a well-crafted itinerary that intersperses tranquil moments between bursts of action in the Holy City, you’ll be in great shape to get the most out of your tour.