Old and New in Jerusalem for Summer

Old and New in Jerusalem for Summer

Half of all Israelis are reported to be going overseas this summer.

At the same time, however, a record number of tourists are arriving.

Being out on the Jerusalem, Israel streets early in the morning is not my regular thing.

Jerusalem, Israel, Jaffa Street in morning

Obviously, I am not alone, as Jaffa Road before 8:00 am was a very quiet place.

Jerusalem view of Jaffa Street in morning

One lone runner came along as I stood near Kikar Zion, Zion Square.

Construction sign in Zion Square in Jerusalem Israel

Or rather what was Kikar Zion; there was a large sign and it was fenced off from view.

Jerusalem, Israel Zion Square being renovated

Inside the fence was a construction site, as the old Kikar Zion is getting a whole new look.

Jerusalem Israel Jaffa Street at night

Back on Jaffa Road after dark, a man wearing a in red shirt was running and had a hard time negotiating his way through the crowds.

Light rail on Yaffo Road at night Jerusalem Israel

The Light Rail trains blasted their horns to warn people out of the way as they slowly made their way along the tracks.

Lights on building at Zion Square at night Jerusalem Israel

The Herbert Samuel Hotel was lit with a colorful video for the Jerusalem Light Festival

Jerusalem light festival on Herbert Samuel Hotel at Kikar Zion

“I love Jerusalem” was repeated in lights, but it was hard to capture in one photograph.

Old downtown Jerusalem is getting a whole new look.

Jerusalem Israel umbrellas over street

If you can find your way past the construction site to find Yoel Salomon Street, it is once again covered with colorful umbrellas.

Umbrellas at night over Yoel Salomon Street Jerusalem Israel

Old or new, the umbrellas make interesting photos against the night sky.

Once again, the very old Tower of David Museum is offering a new exhibition for the summer.

View of Tower of David citadel and court yard for Rock Paper Scissors by Karen Sargsyan

From the museum entrance, throughout the archaeological gardens and up to the citadel ramparts, there are nine new pieces of art. These aluminum sculptures were crafted by artist Karen Sargsyan, who brought 100 kilo of aluminum and 3,000 knives from Holland to create these Jerusalem historical figures.

Jerusalem art exhibit Tower of David Rock Paper Scissors

There was a colorful King Cyrus the Great with the citadel in the background.

Queen of Sheba by Karen Sargsyan

This man was not bowing down to the Queen of Sheba, but putting finishing details to the sign before the exhibit opened to the public.

Tower of David summer art exhibit

Of course in the Tower of David Museum, you will find King David.

King David by Karen Sargsyan

King Herod, the Builder of old Jerusalem, has a whole new look.

Children’s activities in an air conditioned tent, is a new idea that sounds good, plus from middle of July to end of August children are admitted to the Tower of David without an entrance fee.

I love Jerusalem sign in Jerusalem Israel

The old “I love Jerusalem” sculpture has been moved from Kikar Zion to new location in Kikar Tzahal, Zahal Square.

Tourist information trucks #itraveljerusalem

If you want to find something old or new in Jerusalem, Israel, the new colorful #itravelJerusalem tourist information trucks are out on the streets full of information.

Fun in Jerusalem and Jerusalem City Pass Card

The trucks are distributing the new summer edition of Fun In Jerusalem. Also, selling new Jerusalem City Pass Cards, which enable tourists to ride on the Light Rail and city buses and to enter museums for the day both for free and at discount rates.

Mekudeshet festival signs in Jerusalem, Israel

Mekudeshet cultural festival starts August 8. You can count on them for creative and new.

Old and new are coming together this summer off and on the Jerusalem streets.

 

See New Old Streets – London in Jerusalem:

See New Old Streets – London in Jerusalem:

Time.

Time sometimes seems to pass so quickly and other times so slowly. This week in a heat wave every minute outside seemed longer.

The history of Jerusalem goes back millennia, and 30 years is a mere blink of an eye.

The British began their governance of Jerusalem after centuries of Ottoman rule in December of 1917, and left in 1948. However, in those 30 years, Jerusalem changed drastically.

Social and cultural exhibit at Tower of David Museum London in Jerusalem

The British brought with them a new life of culture to the Middle East, and a new exhibit at the Tower of David Museum shares it with us.

Have you ever thought about how much changed over the 30 years of the British Mandate?

Replica of Fink's Bar in Tower of David Museum exhibit on British rule

British soldiers needed their entertainment and liquor. Cafes such as Fink’s Bar and Restaurant offered oysters and other delicacies  previously unknown.

Tower of David London in Jerusalem menu from British days

The London in Jerusalem exhibit offers insights into life on the real Jerusalem streets.

Cigarettes and liquor brought to Levant by British in first part of 20th century

Infrastructure was important, but so were cigarettes and alcoholic beverages.

Old sign in Tower of David Fink's Bar Jerusalem

Some items in this exhibit would not be considered politically correct these days.

Jerusalem map for British Mandate soldiers

This is a map of Jerusalem given to British soldiers. The photo is one of dozens of old photos in a slide presentation.

Palestine Radio at Tower of David Museum for London in Jerusalem exhibit

One of the five sections of the exhibit highlights the British Palestine Broadcasting Service (PBS) which opened in March 1936. “This is Jerusalem Calling!” was followed by broadcasts in Hebrew and Arabic.

Old posters from British era in Jerusalem

Posters announced the various shows, plays and events new to Jerusalem, including flower shows with trophies presented to the winners.

Tower of David set for performance

The Tower of David today hosts numerous events on this stage and can seat over 300 people.

Tower of David London in Jerusalem, photos from early British years

In this old photo we can see how the space looked before it was excavated in the 1980’s.

Over the centuries the Tower of David was used for military purposes. It was the first British Governor Sir Ronald Storrs who envisioned it as a cultural venue.

Sports day in Jerusalem with men on camels old photo

The British also brought sports.  A military sports day was held on Mount Scopus in 1934.  I am not sure what the sport was on these camels. Perhaps polo?

Jerusalem YMCA photo in Tower of David Museum

There is a  photo of the sports field behind the YMCA.

Notice those barren hills in the distance.

Tower of David photo men dancing in kilts London in Jerusalem

With the culture and music, the British brought new dances too.

Early scene of Jerusalem 1918 at Tower of David London in Jerusalem

On each side of the exhibition room, there are three panels over the thick stone walls, which change to show the passage of time.

If you could look out, in 1918, you would have seen the scene above

Tower of David Museum photo of blimp in Jerusalem

and in 1933, in the distance was the Hebrew University on Mount Scopus.

London in Jerusalem at Tower of David Museum

Ah, 1934 was a good year, Happy Birthday King George.

Tower of David 1946 Jerusalem streets blocked in Tower of David show

But by 1946, streets were blocked, and barbed wire was up, Jerusalem streets were dangerous.

Parlour from British influence in London in Jerusalem exhibit at Tower of David Museum

This salon is reconstructed as it would have been in Rechavia, and has original artifacts on display.

Ad for Lipton Tea in Tower of David London in Jerusalem exhibit

Oh, and the British brought tea and grand tea parties, too.

Tower of David London in Jerusalem bat

And Pimm’s for summer afternoon cocktails at parties on the lawn.

London in Jerusalem bar sign Tower of David

Besides bars and cafes, ten cinemas were opened in Jerusalem.

London in Jerusalem offers visitors also, a small theater recreated with wooden benches, to watch vintage footage from the 1930’s and 1940’s.

While Allenby at the Gates of Jeruslaem featured the military history of the time, London in Jerusalem is a walk down memory lane of the real streets.

Both exhibits are to run until December 2018.

I think older visitors will appreciate this exhibit more than younger ones, even with the modern technology included. Therefore, I was especially pleased to see that this exhibit is disabled and wheel chair accessible.

At night, you can come back to Tower of David for the new King David Night Spectacular 

So much happens on the Jerusalem streets these days, however, it was interesting to see what was happening at the beginning of the century also.

 

Best of Passover in Jerusalem

Best of Passover in Jerusalem

The Passover holiday in Jerusalem, Israel, is always a busy time with so much to do.

After days of cleaning and shopping, and a late night seder, what next?

This year I decided not to spend hours in the car along with millions of other Israelis going to lush camping sights and sandy beaches, but rather to stay home and explore what Jerusalem has to offer.

Now to share with you some of the best of Jerusalem for Passover this year 5778.

Where else to start, but with food.

Jerusalem Israel humus shop closed for Pesach

Some restaurants like this new humus place were closed tight for Passover.

Kosher for Pesach Holy Bagel and Shwarma in Old City for Pesach

But not to worry, in Jerusalem, there was an abundance of kosher for Passover places to eat. This Holy Bagel in the Old City is not only mehadrin kosher, but “KOSHER without fear of legumes!”

Pesach pizza and matza in Mamilla Mall for Pesach

With baskets of matza on the table, this potato crust pizza looked good enough to eat. People were standing in lines for seats to taste for themselves.

Pesach in Jerusalem food displayed in window for Pesach

Pizza, rolls, sandwiches, pies, cakes and more…one of the best places for Passover food is in Jerusalem, Israel.

Pesach crowd in Mamilla Mall in Jerusalem, Israel, with two Muslim women walking through the mall

Mamilla Mall was busy and crowded with local shoppers and international tourists, plus entertainment and performances for children.

Pesach in Jerusalem, people dressed in varied clothing

Another favorite was seeing the clothing in the Old City, with many dressed in their holiday finest, wearing every type of outfit imaginable.

View of Tower of David inside Citadel on spring day of Passover

With so many activities for families, it was hard to decide what to do first, as dozens of museums and sites were free for children. The Tower of David had families walking, touring, and climbing.

Ramparts walk in Jerusalem on Pesach

From the Tower of David you could see the Old City ramparts walk with tourists going along the top of the walls of the Old City.

Volunteers pouring water to give away to visitors to Old City on Pesach

Days were warm and the sun beat down midday. But volunteers were in several locations in Old City offering cups of water, free to all who walked by.

Menorah in Rova in front of Hurva Shul for construction of new elevator to Western Wall Kotel

The Golden Menorah was moved near the Hurva Synagogue, where tourists were busy taking photos.

Construction fence at site of new elevator for access to Kotel near steps where menorah had been before in Jewish Quarter

This menorah is a photo posted near where the gold one was located. The Western Wall elevator is to be constructed here.

Remember I said every type of clothing imaginable? How about a Betar uniform from the 1920’s?

Pesach crowd in Kotel plaza after Birkat Kohanim on Pesach

It was reported 100,000 people were at Birkat Kohanim, the Priestly Blessing, Monday morning.

Afternoon of Chol HaMoed Pesach at Kotel

In the afternoon and for most of the week, the Western Wall Plaza was still filled with families.

Visitors to Western Wall Plaza from Rova on afternoon of Chol HaMoed Pesach

All day long tens of thousands of people came and went from the Old City.

Visitors line up to go to Temple Mount on Passover afternoon

This line was not at the security entrance leading to the women’s section, but just a long line of tourists waiting to access the Temple Mount.

Pesach afternoon and egalitarian space at Western Wall was empty

The egalitarian section, however, was almost empty. On the right of this photo, if you look very closely, you can see children playing near the stones from the Second Temple.

While so many were in the Old City, other Jerusalem locations were also holiday destinations.

Gan Sacher on Pesach with people grilling and lounging

In Gan Sacher, Sacher Park, smoke filled the air with dozens of extended families grilling meat for large meals, with boxes of matza on the tables.

Passover in Jerusalem, Israel, in Gan Sacher

Children were playing as family members and friends were sitting and talking or playing sports.

Another extremely popular destination was the Jerusalem Botanical Gardens.

Botanical Gardens pond on Passover

Thousands of people wandered the grounds over Passover.

Pond lily in Jerusalem Botanical Gardens

I was fascinated by these flowers in the pond. There is so much beauty in what was formerly a garbage dump.

Jerusalem Botanical Gardens children's activity on Passover

There were planned and supervised activities for children,

Boy and girl looking at flowers in Jerusalem Botanical Gardens

as well as colorful flowers to capture their attention.

Jerusalem park on Pesach with people eating and grilling

Nayot Park was one of dozens of Jerusalem parks where grills were going, smoke was rising, and matza was on the table.

One parking spot is worth standing until your car arrives in Jerusalem on Passover

Driving in many locations took much longer than usual. Finding parking was not always easy. A free parking spot in a good location was worth saving.

There were varied musical events at night, too numerous to list.

Old places like Hansen House were full of activity.

So much was happening in Jerusalem this Passover week.

More photos: Old City HERE    Gan Sacher HERE   Botanical Gardens  HERE

I will end with a video of the Birkat Kohanim,

Pesach in Gan Sacher two little boys palying

and one of my favorite photos, of these young cousins getting to know each other at a Gan Sacher picnic.

Wishing all a good holiday and Shabbat Shalom