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“Don't miss this one”

St. George's Monastery
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Private Day Tour: St. George's Monastery, Wadi Qelt, Mar Saba, and Bethlehem
Ranked #59 of 311 things to do in Jerusalem
Certificate of Excellence
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Attraction details
Fee: No
Recommended length of visit: More than 3 hours
Owner description: Wadi Qelt is a scenic gorge running between Jerusalem and Jericho; as such, it is popular among hikers. The isolated Greek Orthodox monastery is carved into a cliff in the northeastern corner of the narrow canyon. The exterior is impressive; inside, the non-squeamish will marvel at the human reliquary.
Lisbon, Portugal
Level Contributor
84 reviews
42 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 38 helpful votes
“Don't miss this one”
Reviewed 15 July 2014

Easy access by car via Jerusalem, the final path was to be made by foot. Bring water and sun screen. When you arrive at the monastery you will be received with free drinks. Beware that it just opens in the morning.

Visited July 2014
1 Thank bmccruz
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
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88 reviews from our community

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Tampa, Florida
Level Contributor
80 reviews
29 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 45 helpful votes
“Not bad, but beware of the pushy locals”
Reviewed 14 July 2014

We arrived at St. George's Monastery on a Saturday around 12:30 but did not make it down the cliff in time before it closed at 1:00. Part of this was because we were harassed by some local trinket sellers upon parking the car. This was a little disappointing - not sure why it closed to early. The walk down was incredibly beautiful and even walking around the monastery grounds was nice. However, some locals offered donkeys for us to ride back up the cliff. They quoted a price of $10 U.S. which seemed reasonable. When we got to the top, they demanded 100 shekels! I would have paid him about that much in a tip, but still - not cool. I paid, my buddy didn't so his donkey handler came after the rest of us. All the while, the trinket sellers became hostile and began swearing at us when it became clear we were not going to buy from them. Between the monastery being closed (at 1:00!) and the treatment from the locals, I still recommend visiting just be extremely weary.

Visited June 2014
2 Thank Michael S
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Level Contributor
58 reviews
33 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 13 helpful votes
“In the middle of the Judean Desert”
Reviewed 24 May 2014

A 1600 years old monastery with a few Greek-Orthodox monks and nice views of the desert and a grotto where, the tradition says, the Prophet Elia lived for a while.

Visited May 2014
Thank Eddy43
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Bucharest, Romania
Level Contributor
34 reviews
14 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 18 helpful votes
“St. George - a special monastery.”
Reviewed 19 May 2014

Not spectacular, not charming...
But full of positive energy.
Difficult to arrive, but unforgettable,

Visited May 2014
1 Thank Dorin_B55
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Level Contributor
13 reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 12 helpful votes
“An Adventure near Jericho”
Reviewed 17 March 2014

Okay you can easily find this fascinating desert monastery off of Route 1 from Jerusalem, but DO NOT attempt the approach via the road just outside Jericho along the Wadi Gelt unless you have a sturdy car, 4-wheel drive and nerves of steel to transit the single lane, broken pavement, no guardrail path that somewhat resembles a road. NOTE, leaving Route 90 or 1 you are entering the West Bank with very intimidating RED signage...suggesting if you are Israeli (we're Americans) your life may be a risk and it is against the law. We had absolutely no problems, but did pass Palestinian soldiers who asked us where we from and wished us "welcome".

The hike down to the monastery is actually along a road-wide paved path, lovely viewpoints. The Bedouins at the top range from persistent to annoying. One guy follow us with his donkey all the way down and yes, I did give up and pay for a ride backup for the experience (15 shekels). The monastery interior closes at 1 pm and we arrived at 1:05 oh well, I suspect the exterior is the best. Hardly anyone around, mostly Palestinian women and children sightseeing. Do walk up the 10 minute trail from the starting place to view the Monastery from farther above.

Visited March 2014
1 Thank Carolyn L
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC

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