Sunset over Jerusalem.

Things to Do, Travel Tips — By Judy Lash Balint on June 25, 2010 at 2:06 pm

Where to go to see the best sunset over Jerusalem?  Unlike the spectacular sunsets over the Mediterranean that Israelis who live along the coast enjoy every evening, the Jerusalem version is a little more subtle and easy to miss. Click on the link for some video I shot at twilight from the rooftop of the Austrian Hospice in the Old City:

Twilight Over Jerusalem

There’s little twilight in Israel, darkness descends very quickly–must have something to with our longitude or latitude–although more than a few people have remarked that it reflects life here: much more black and white than in many places. So don’t expect to come to Jerusalem and linger somewhere over a long, lovely sunset…

Some of the best places to catch the sunset are, naturally, on the western edge of town, where there’s a beautiful view from the outskirts of Jerusalem down through the Jerusalem Forest over the Judean hills that slope toward Tel Aviv.  That’s where I took this picture.

Sunset in the Jerusalem forest

The other sunset-watching spot where you’ll catch more of a city landscape is from Mt Scopus in eastern Jerusalem. Head to the Maeirsdorf faculty club at Hebrew University and step out into the balcony, or drive a little further to the grounds of the Brigham Young University Campus and walk into the gardens.  From either of these places you’ll see the sun go down over most of the city stretched out below.

One other thing worth knowing about sunsets in Jerusalem–when the sun goes down on Friday evening until sunset on Saturday night, public transportation comes to a halt in honor of the Jewish sabbath and in most neighborhoods there’s less regular traffic on the streets.  Enjoy the tranquility. Many restaurants and places of entertainment in western Jerusalem are closed, so be sure to call ahead.

Dusk in the garden of the Austrian Hospice

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