Middle East Jerusalem
"JERUSALEM" by Mayumi Ishikawa is licensed under CC BY-SA 2.0

Middle East Jerusalem

Jerusalem Yad Vashem

Middle East · Jerusalem

Jerusalem is just unique – there is no other place like it. A city of tradition, religion, and history, and also, of modern culture and heritage, it is a city with so much to offer that you could spend years here and still not see everything. It is the capital of the State of Israel, its seat of government, and the holiest city in Judaism. It is also Israel’s largest, most populated and most religiously diverse city.

As one of the oldest cities in the world, and a holy city for 3 of the world’s major religions — Judaism, Christianity, and Islam, Jerusalem was named as “Urusalima” on ancient Mesopotamian cuneiform tablets, probably meaning “City of Shalem” after a Canaanite deity, during the early Canaanite period (approximately 2400 BCE).

Reunified since 1967, Jerusalem is really 3 cities in one: the historic walled Old City that is home to its holy places, the modern urban center to the west, and the Arab district to the east. In addition to being Israel’s spiritual, political, and administrative capital, Jerusalem is also a leader in education and health care, and its religious, historical, and cultural attractions make it the country’s premier tourist destination.