There are countless historical landmarks in the holy city, and joining a walking tour can help you enjoy the beautiful sites without getting lost in Jerusalem’s maze of alleyways.
Walking through Jerusalem’s streets is like taking a trip back in time – behind every wall is a monument, through every archway a holy site, and lining every street an ancient building with a fascinating story to tell. The Old City alone, defined by its ornate structures and narrow pathways, showcases a past of conquests, empires and royalty. Without the help of a guide, however, visitors risk missing out on crucial historical aspects, many of which continue to inform the present and shape the complex socio-political realities of modern-day Israel. For those interested in learning about religious sites and archaeological remnants, or those who are looking to explore the city independently, free and budget walking tours can get you started on one unforgettable journey.
Destinations Unlocked:Let our travel expert Stefano help you find your perfect Culture trip
Looking for an expert's perspective?Uncover my top 3 recommended places from each continent on the map.
1. GuatemalaAn express adventure for those with limited time off. Prepare yourself incredible experiences. You will hike a volcano, visit mayan temples and witness a ceremony and take in beautiful colonial Antigua.
2. BelizeA quick trip not too far away for those seeking a relaxing mini break. You will have plenty of free time to relax but also some awesome activities to experience the rainforest and the caribbean sea.
3. MexicoAn exciting mini trip exploring the lesser known colonial towns of central Mexico. This is hte perfect trip for someone with limited time off and still wants to turn on explorer mode and do something different.
1. EcuadorA remarkable 8 days adventure through the Andes and the Amazon rainforest. The best choice for adventure seekers wishing to visit the 2 most iconic areas of South America, in only 1 week and no flights.
2. PeruAn alternative itinerary to classic Peru, from Cusco to Arequipa. This itinerary is great combination of highlights Cusco and Machu Picchu with the lesser known Arequipa and Colca Canyon.
1. ItalyThe ultimate Italian experience from the vibrant streets of Naples to the breathtaking sceneries of the Amalfi Coast followed by Matera and down to Puglia with its golden beaches, intense flavours and fascinating destinations.
2. ScotlandEmbark on this great adventure starting from London all the way to Scotland with a true Scottish experience made of breathtaking sceneries, whisky tasting and ..lots of fun! Ideal for train lovers and explorers.
3. PortugalA wonderful train journey around Portugal, from the romantic city of Porto to the Douro Valley, to the beautiful Aveiro all the way to Lisbon and Sintra. The perfect trip to train, culinary and culture lovers.
1. South KoreaDiscover incredible temples, mountains and modern cities on this 10 day adventure. This trip is perfect for those seeking immersion in the cuisine, culture and natural wonders of South Korea.
2. ThailandFrom Bankgok to Angkor Wat to Ho Chi Minh City and everything in between - adventure through the heart of South-East Asia. Taste the delights, see history brought to life and unwind on a Mekong River cruise.
3. Sri LankaA fantastic adventure that showcases Sri Lanka's fantastic landscapes, wildlife and flavours. With 3 epic rail journeys, 3 UNESCO heritage sites and time to relax, this trip has loads to offer at a great price
1. MoroccoAn epic journey across Morocco: from Casablanca to Marrakech, through the blue city of Chefchaouen to the wonders of the desert and deep to the High Atlas Mountains - this trip has it all! Ideal for true explorers!
2. EgyptFrom Cairo to Aswan, this trip brings the land of the pharaohs to life. You'll visit the Pyramids, Valley of the Kings and Luxor Temple and cruise down the Nile in style. This is the perfect way to explore Egypt.
Visit Jerusalem’s main Jewish, Christian and Muslim sites
Take in the views of the most popular Old City landmarks, including Judaism’s holiest site, the Western Wall, the Church of the Holy Sepulchre and the Dome of the Rock, one of Islam’s most important places and an architectural wonder. Sandemans New Europe’s free walking tours begin outside the Jaffa Gate daily at 11am, 2pm and 5pm and are available in English and Spanish. Also included in the tour is a stop at the restored Hurva Synagogue in the Jewish Quarter, as well as views of the scenic Mount of Olives and the world-famous David’s Citadel. Sandemans’ free tours typically take two hours to complete and feature stops on many Old City rooftops. Remember to dress modestly and avoid wearing sleeveless shirts, shorts or miniskirts when visiting religious sites. Tipping the guide is optional, though recommended.
For more on the tour: https://www.neweuropetours.eu/jerusalem-walking-tours/
Discover the four quarters of the Old City
Departing each day at 10.20am from Abraham Hostel, this free walking tour covers all four quarters of the Old City: Jewish, Armenian, Christian and Muslim. Among the many sites that the Abraham Hostel tour covers are major landmarks such as the Western Wall, the Church of the Holy Sepulchre and the Jerusalem Citadel. The excursion lasts roughly three hours and is available to the general public, although it is popular among young travellers staying at the hostel, which lies in the Downtown Triangle. The hostel – Jerusalem’s largest – is the starting point of other moderately priced tours to the West Bank and throughout greater Israel. Tipping the volunteer guide at the end of the tour is customary.
Visit the Abraham Hostel site for more information about the tours on offer.
Audio tours of Jerusalem
For travellers looking to venture through the city on their own time, the Jerusalem municipality has launched a popular mobile application in English. Audio Tours of Jerusalem presents more than 20 engaging walking tours through the Old City as well as the modern city centre, highlighting places of worship, landmarks and more, with additional assistance for the visually impaired. Try the five-hour Via Dolorosa Tour to follow in the footsteps of Jesus, or check out the Ramparts Walk to experience the Old City from a higher vantage point. The free app features images, text summaries and maps, as well as handy information on transportation, parking, public toilets and wheelchair-accessible sites.
To download the app: https://play.google.com/store/apps/details?id=com.mytoursapp.android.app312&hl=en_US
Wheelchair-friendly tours of the Old City
With its bumpy stone roads and narrow alleyways, navigating the Old City in a wheelchair has long been a challenge. Thanks to a recently launched municipality project that has overseen the addition of ramps and the levelling of stone streets, over four kilometres (2.4 miles) of roads in the walled city are now completely accessible to wheelchairs and pushchairs. Using the free mobile Accessible JLM application, which is available in nine languages, visitors can tour all four quarters of the Old City and find the best path to get to the Western Wall, the Dome of the Rock and the Church of the Holy Sepulchre, in addition to restaurants, hotels and museums. Users can also customise tours by selecting from several points of interest, after which the app creates an optimised route to follow.
A tour of biblical Jerusalem
Discover Jerusalem’s rich biblical past with one of the municipality’s budget-friendly Saturday tours. Starting with scenic views of the Temple Mount (known to Muslims as the Haram esh-Sharif), participants will walk to the Western Wall and explore the City of David, a fascinating archaeological site with artefacts dating back three millennia. The three-hour-long excursion generally begins at 10am from Safra Square in the city centre once a month, though a specific meeting point is delivered to participants by email after booking. The tour only costs 15 Israeli shekels (roughly £3.41), and children under the age of six go free.
To book the tour: https://www.itraveljerusalem.com/evt/a-tour-of-biblical-jerusalem/
The Kidron Valley tour
Explore the historic wonders of the Kidron Valley, a site of several important biblical exploits, large-scale monuments and ancient tombs. Running between the Old City and the Mount of Olives, it was through this valley that King David fled from his wicked son Absalom, according to the Old Testament. In the New Testament, Jesus was said to have journeyed from Jerusalem to Bethany to visit Lazarus via the Kidron Valley. The Jerusalem municipality’s tour of this area explores these stories and provides an in-depth look at the unique tombs that dot the valley. Tours cost 15 shekels (£3.41), are offered in English and depart on Saturdays at 10am once a month. The Kidron Valley tour is not accessible for buggies or wheelchairs.
To book the tour: https://www.itraveljerusalem.com/evt/a-tour-kidron-valley/
Journey from Mount Zion to the Wailing Wall
Mount Zion was once the highest point in ancient Jerusalem before it expanded, and today is home to a number of significant Christian, Jewish and Muslim sites. Located just outside the Old City walls, this inexpensive (15 shekels or £3.41) guided tour will take you through Dormition Abbey, a historic Benedictine church where historians believe Jesus held the Last Supper, and King David – revered by Jews, Christians and Muslims alike – was buried. Please note that this tour is only available once every two months, so you should check the municipality’s calendar. The Mount Zion tour is three hours long and ideal for families.
To book the tour: https://www.itraveljerusalem.com/evt/tour-mount-zion/
Volcanic Iceland Epic Trip
meet our Local Insider
HOW LONG HAVE YOU BEEN A GUIDE?
WHAT DO YOU LOVE ABOUT YOUR JOB?
It's the personal contact, the personal experiences. I love meeting people from all over the world... I really like getting to know everyone and feeling like I'm traveling with a group of friends.
WHAT DESTINATION IS ON YOUR TRAVEL BUCKET-LIST?
I have so many places on my list, but I would really lobe to go to Africa. I consider myself an “adventure girl” and Africa feels like the ULTIMATE adventure!
Every CULTURE TRIP Small-group adventure is led by a Local Insider just like Hanna.
KEEN TO EXPLORE THE WORLD?
Connect with like-minded people on our premium trips curated by local insiders and with care for the world
Since you are here, we would like to share our vision for the future of travel - and the direction Culture Trip is moving in.
Culture Trip launched in 2011 with a simple yet passionate mission: to inspire people to go beyond their boundaries and experience what makes a place, its people and its culture special and meaningful — and this is still in our DNA today. We are proud that, for more than a decade, millions like you have trusted our award-winning recommendations by people who deeply understand what makes certain places and communities so special.
Increasingly we believe the world needs more meaningful, real-life connections between curious travellers keen to explore the world in a more responsible way. That is why we have intensively curated a collection of premium small-group trips as an invitation to meet and connect with new, like-minded people for once-in-a-lifetime experiences in three categories: Culture Trips, Rail Trips and Private Trips. Our Trips are suitable for both solo travelers, couples and friends who want to explore the world together.
Culture Trips are deeply immersive 5 to 16 days itineraries, that combine authentic local experiences, exciting activities and 4-5* accommodation to look forward to at the end of each day. Our Rail Trips are our most planet-friendly itineraries that invite you to take the scenic route, relax whilst getting under the skin of a destination. Our Private Trips are fully tailored itineraries, curated by our Travel Experts specifically for you, your friends or your family.
We know that many of you worry about the environmental impact of travel and are looking for ways of expanding horizons in ways that do minimal harm - and may even bring benefits. We are committed to go as far as possible in curating our trips with care for the planet. That is why all of our trips are flightless in destination, fully carbon offset - and we have ambitious plans to be net zero in the very near future.