In the Footsteps of the Advisor – A Tour outside the Walls
This walking tour features some landmarks from Jerusalem’s history and also draws on my own personal experience over many years in the city. The tour takes 3-3½ hours and is very easy and comfortable.
I served for ten consecutive years as the Advisor on Arab Affairs to the Mayors of Jerusalem: Teddy Kollek (9 years) and Ehud Olmert. This was an unforgettable period. Kollek was a remarkable man with a unique personality. We begin our visit next to Teddy Kollek’s old offices (IDF Square). I will offer you a brief portrait of the man, the way he took decisions, and the way he got things done (quickly and…..yesterday…..). During our tour we will understand the efforts made by the European powers, France and Russia, in the 19th century to establish a presence outside the city walls. We will walk down Paratroopers Boulevard (formerly Sultan Suleiman Street) along the Old City walls toward Damascus Gate as we discuss the Municipal Line that once divided the city in this section. We will learn who stopped the Jordanian Legion from advancing into West Jerusalem in 1948. At Schmidt School (Paulushaus Guesthouse) we will climb up to the roof to enjoy a splendid view of the whole area around Damascus Gate and the Old City. We will also visit the central bus station in East Jerusalem which is located right under The Garden Tomb where according to Protestants Jesus was crucified, buried and resurrected. We will also visit a local café whose ceiling collapsed, killing dozens of people inside. Over a cup of coffee I will provide some more details on this tragic episode. We will then continue to Zedekiah’s Cave, which tells an interesting story going back many years. We will learn about a connection (perhaps) between London’s Jack the Ripper and this cave, before passing by Herod's Gate and the Rockefeller Museum. Our tour ends at the memorial to the Jordanian Legion soldiers who fell in Jerusalem in 1967.