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“This can be both inspirational and very frustrating”

Via Dolorosa (Way of the Cross)
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Ranked #21 of 310 things to do in Jerusalem
Certificate of Excellence
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Fee: No
Recommended length of visit: 1-2 hours
Owner description: Starting at St. Stephen's (Lions') Gate in the Muslim Quarter of the Old City to the Church of the Holy Sepulchre, this is the route Jesus is said to have followed as he carried the Cross to his crucifixion.
Level 6 Contributor
133 reviews
56 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 57 helpful votes
“This can be both inspirational and very frustrating”
Reviewed 22 October 2013

The idea of walking in the footsteps of Jesus as he went to his death can be an incredibly deep and meaningful journey.
The simple truth is that there is some doubt about whether this is or was not the journey route, it has changed once and some arguments seem to be that he was tried at the citadel by Jaffa Gate.
walking along the route can be very inspiring as you get an idea of what walking through a busy city with a cross, trying to manoeuvring this heavy object, through narrow passageways.The first part of the journey is relatively okay with the first stations, but as soon as you get to Stations four onwards it become as battle with groups blocking the narrow passageway.
One suggestion is to do this early or later on when there are less people around and you will miss out on the frustrating aspects of what should be an inspiring journey.

Visited October 2013
1 Thank Steve J
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
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Lafayette, Indiana
Level 4 Contributor
26 reviews
23 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 13 helpful votes
“Wonderful history, hard to find.”
Reviewed 22 September 2013

We walked the Stations on Via Dolorosa which took 2 trips to find all of them. With the amount of 'shops' and people trying to get you to buy souvenirs or us them as a guide, it was difficult to find each station. They are marked discretely on the walls and easy to miss. Take your time and you will enjoy the walk. The Old City is a maze of roads. But I'm pleased to have walked the Stations. I wouldn't miss this.

Visited September 2013
Thank JFG29to4
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Whitby, Canada
Level 6 Contributor
752 reviews
256 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 317 helpful votes
“Take your time to follow the Stations of the Cross”
Reviewed 28 August 2013

It took us several visits to The Old City to thoroughly see all 14 Stations of the Cross. The first 3 Stations are within the Muslim Quarter, the remaineder in the Christian Quarter. We began to visit the Stations on a Friday, led by a number of Franciscan monks. It was around 16:30, so the Muslim Asr prayers prayers were starting. As a result it was difficult to hear the prayers at the first 3 Stations. Because of the number of other tourists and people shopping, we followed the group only to the 7th Station, and visited the remainder on subsequent days.

Visiting the remaining Stations on our own time was much better for us, as we were able to spend as much time as we wanted.

Visited August 2013
Thank FlyAtNIght
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Inverkip, United Kingdom
Level 6 Contributor
372 reviews
286 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 290 helpful votes
“A chance to discover the old city of Jerusalem”
Reviewed 21 August 2013

Via Dolorosa has now 14 stations, 9 outside and 5 inside the Church of the Holy Sepulchre.
It's a great walk for Christians from the sentimental point of view. But it offers the chance to non-believers to cross the old part of Jerusalem which has so many interesting things to offer: Old buildings in very narrow lanes with arches, old fountains, chapels and innumerable little shops with souvenirs, clothing, sweets, etc. The way is always overcrowded and noisy but that's exactly the atmosphere in all the Middle East souqs.
We had the luck(?) to find ourselves there on Orthodox Easter Day. It was very, very difficult because there were so many tourists around that it was a miracle, noone from our group was missing at the end of the tour. You must be especially careful with bags because big crowds mean inevitably pickpockets.
Via Dolorosa isn't definitely proper for people with walking difficulties.For all the others it's an interesting way to discover the old part of Jerusalem, with so much history behind it.

Visited May 2013
2 Thank Mina P
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Eagan, Minnesota
Level 5 Contributor
63 reviews
47 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 35 helpful votes
“Time it right or else...”
Reviewed 7 July 2013

This is a walk that has to be timed right. We did it twice, once with a tour group early evening and the next day early in the morning. During the day, we were plagued by shopkeepers and other pedestrians along the way. The noise did not allow for somber reflection. But the next morning, we did the whole walk and completed it at the Church of the holy sepulchre by 7AM. This time, there were no distractions and we were able to really concentrate on the significance of the route and imagine how Jesus must have felt. It is an uphill walk in through Lion's gate. The stations are marked in roman numerals on a circular decal on the buildings at each location. There are no explanations posted, so you need to have your guidebook on hand. Station number one is right there to the left as you enter through Lion's gate. At station V the route takes a sharp right turn. Stations X - XIV are located inside the church of the holy sepulcher. It might not appeal to all but if you are inclined, then walk it when all is quiet. Then you can actually imagine all that Christ must have felt and encountered as he walked this path laboring under the weight of the cross.

Visited July 2013
Thank aqwn2be
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC

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