CITYsights: An entrance fit for a sultan

The Damascus Gate, one of the most impressive entryways to the Old City, has been around at least since Roman times.

By ITRAVELJERUSALEM TEAM
May 24, 2011 17:33
1 minute read.
Damascus Gate

Damascus Gate 311. (photo credit: ITRAVELJERUSALEM)

The Damascus Gate, built in 1542 by Suleiman the Magnificent, is one of the grandest entrances  to Jerusalem’s Old City. Two imposing towers further accentuate the massive entrance, as does its position at the bottom of a broad staircase.

The location of Damascus Gate served as an entrance to the Old City at least as far back as the Second Temple period. Part of the Roman-era entrance can be seen under the present-day Damascus Gate at the Roman Square Museum.

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Another fascinating site underneath Damascus Gate is Zedekiah’s Cave -- also known as Solomon’s Quarries -- a 20,000-square-meter limestone quarry running under the Muslim Quarter for a full five blocks, making it the largest man-made cave in Israel.

Damascus Gate is also one of two starting points from the Ramparts Walk, which winds along the narrow path atop the ramparts, allowing one to peer out through the shooting niches at the burgeoning vistas of modern west Jerusalem and observe the winding alleyways of the Old City.

Also nearby are several sites of religious significance to Christians, including the Garden Tomb and St. George’s Cathedral.

Check out the video for the full story and stay tuned for more episodes of CITYsights.

iTravelJerusalem.com is a new online international travel portal offering all the latest information on things to do, places to eat and places to stay in Jerusalem.


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