Jerusalem is a great place to visit. There is a lot to see and do and you can be awed by the historical sites and visit some old ruins. However, it is a relatively busy city and not everything is within walking distance. If you are in town for a short time, then it can be hard to fit in everything that you would want to do. In this blog I am going to suggest the 5 best day trips from Jerusalem.
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1. The Dead Sea
Most people visit Jerusalem and then head towards the coast, the coast being Tel Aviv or Haifa. However, there is a very popular day trip from Jerusalem that should not be missed. The Dead Sea is 330 meters below sea level, making it the lowest elevation on earth.
When the weather is nice, it is nice and warm by Mediterranean standards, it can get up to 32 degrees. When the sun is shining, it can be really hot. Being in such an inhospitable environment also makes it an awesome spa. There are numerous different spas near the dead sea and they all operate at a similar rate.
This is a few hours from Jerusalem and well worth the trip. Qumran is a famous archaeological site, the location of the cave where the Dead Sea Scrolls were found. The Qumran site includes a set of caves, a synagogue, burial grounds and burial caves and the remains of a water system. It is a fascinating place to explore and well worth a visit.
Masada is a UNESCO World Heritage Site and famous archaeological site. It is the site of a mass suicide. The site is located on the edge of the desert and can be accessed by cable car. At the foot of the mountain are the remains of a fortress and the walls which were built to keep out the Romans. Inside the walls of the fortress are remains of the bathhouses. The bathhouses were covered in tiles and contained many different rooms. They would have been used for swimming, washing and changing.
See Related: How to Travel to the Holy Land [Step-by-Step Guide]
Hebron is a holy city for both Jews and Muslims. It has a very long history and is an important city in both of these religions. It is the largest city in the West Bank and an important cultural and economic center. You can spend the whole day here if you are feeling energetic, otherwise half the day would be fine.
See Related: Best Day Trips from Duluth, Minnesota
5. The Jordan River
This is a fantastic day trip. It is only about 50 miles from Jerusalem and will take about 2 hours. The Jordan River is famous for its rapids and it is where some of the famous movie The River was filmed. After half an hour, you will come to the famous Jordan River rapids.
\You can then either go down the river by tube or canoe or up the river by boat. There is a multitude of things to see and do and after your 3 hours, you will have a lovely leisurely lunch. It is a fairly cheap trip, a day ticket (about 16NIS) will get you on the tube and boat all day.
There are some activities you can do at the bank of the river as well, for example, you can wade in the river, there are swings and slides for the kids, it is also possible to swim in the Jordan River and to buy food and drink. This is a great day trip and it is well worth a trip if you are in Jerusalem for a short time.