Jericho to Ramallah


Jericho to Ramallah

Jericho is a city in Area A of Palestine (West Bank) which offers the following points of interest for tourists and photographers;

  • Jericho Tell (Tell es-Sultan)
  • Elisha Spring
  • Mount of temptation (and view of the city)
  • Sycamore tree
  • Qasr al Yahud (Jesus Christ baptism site)
  • Hisham’s palace
Welcome to Jericho

Welcome to Jericho

Jericho is part of Area A in Palestine, it is illegal for Israeli citizens to enter.  As you enter Jericho you will pass a sign explaining you are entering Area A.  Palestine is classified into 3 areas, A, B and C;

  • Area A – Full control of the Palestinian authority – Israelis forbidden
  • Area B – Palestinian civil control, joint Israeli-Palestinian security control – No Israeli settlements
  • Area C – Full Israeli civil and security control, except over Palestinian civilians
Elisha's Spring, Jericho

Elisha Spring, Jericho

A visit to Jericho will tick 2 items off your bucket list, Jericho is both the oldest city in the world and the lowest place on earth.

Elisha Spring is located in the town of Jericho.  God used prophet Elisha who crossed over the Jordan river and prophesied at the spring which lifted the curse Joshua had put on the land.  Ever since, the spring has been holy and rumor has it, if you drink the holy water from the spring you’ll be healed of your illness / problem.  The holy spring is the water supply of Jericho and because of this the fruits around the city are growing in doubles.

As well as drinking from Elisha Spring, I ate some locally grown bananas and mandarins to maximize the holy water benefits.

Mount of Temptation

Mount of Temptation

Jericho is famous for the Mount of Temptation and monastery which are visible from all of the city.  You can get to the monastery on foot which is a difficult 30 minute walk.  As we are now in 2017 you can take the cable car which is an easy and picturesque 5 minute ride.  The Mount of Temptation is also known as Mount Quarantania which translates to 40, the number of days of Christ’s fast.  Jesus was tempted 3 times by the devil during his fast on the Mount of Temptation.  Half way up the mountain you’ll find the a grotto where Jesus received the temptation to turn stone into bread.

With each temptation, Jesus refused with a quotation from the Book of Deuteronomy.  The devil then left and angels brought food to Jesus, who was ready to eat after his 40 day fast.  For more information about this I recommend you read the bible.

Tell es-Sultan (Jericho Tell)

Tell es-Sultan (Jericho Tell)

Tell es Sultan archaeological site is a UNESCO world heritage site which dates back over 10,000 years.  If you thought your country had history, this takes history to a whole new level.  British archaeologist Kathleen Kenyon surveyed the site of Tell es Sultan from 1952 – 1958.  She confirmed that the site dates back to the Natufian hunter-gatherers age, over 10,000 years ago, whilst visiting Tell es Sultan you’ll see her excavation site.

Another site at Tell es Sultan are the walls of Jericho, most people will have heard of these.  The walls of Jericho were built around 8000 BC making Jericho the oldest walled city in the world, another one for the bucket list!  The Tower of Jericho is located here too which is one of the earliest stone monuments of mankind, perhaps the oldest.

Qasr al Yahud, Jesus Christ Baptism Site

Qasr al Yahud, Jesus Christ Baptism Site

On the Palestine / Jordan border just outside of Jericho you’ll find Qasr al Yahud, the baptism site of Jesus.  Whilst driving out to Qasr al Yahud you’ll pass the sycamore fig tree in Jericho.  This sycamore fig tree is actually called Zacchaeus, it is the famous tree which Zacchaeus climbed to see Jesus when he came to Jericho, the tree is over 2000 years old.

At Qasr al Yahud you’ll see Palestinian soldiers on one side and Jordanian soldiers on the other side so it’s not recommended to swim over.  You are free to get baptized if desired.  I have to admit I put my hand in the water out of curiosity.

The road from Jericho to Ramallah

The road from Jericho to Ramallah

The views you’ll see from the road on the way to the capital city of Ramallah are amazing.  As you wind around the mountain the views of the valley below become more impressive.  The journey to Ramallah takes less than an hour, Ramallah is also in Area A of Palestine.

Ramallah to Bethlehem

2017-02-09T12:28:15+00:00 January 28th, 2017|Israel, Middle East|55 Comments


  1. Bhushavali February 9, 2017 at 2:03 pm - Reply

    Lowest place in the earth! Wow, that’s news to me. I didn’t know about it!!! It would have been such an amazing experience, to stand between the 2 countries!!! That warning board is really scary!!!

  2. Natalie February 9, 2017 at 2:32 pm - Reply

    How interesting! The lowest place on Earth…We talk so much about the highest…I have never given any thought to the lowest. Fascinating. How it is not under water? I’m going to look up the geology on that! We always travel with the kids and I write about how we make it educational. This is just the sort of information I like to give to the kids to make the experience more interesting! Will tweet to share!

  3. Caitlin Stewart February 9, 2017 at 3:20 pm - Reply

    What an incredible place to explore! So much history for one, and also being able to visit the lowest place on Earth! I think it’s also just incredible that they say that Jesus was in this area, he fought temptation here. Like I said, just so much history!

  4. Kelly February 9, 2017 at 4:21 pm - Reply

    This looks incredible. I had no idea there were area A, B, and c in Jericho. Also love that it is the oldest and lowest city in the world. So cool and so much history. Thanks for the share.

  5. Kayla February 9, 2017 at 4:39 pm - Reply

    This looks absolutely incredible, so full of history! It’s absolutely fascinating when you can actually experience all of these places you read about! Thanks so much for sharing!

  6. RaW | Ramble and Wander February 9, 2017 at 5:14 pm - Reply

    Oh man! I’d love to be in your place and travel to Jericho & Ramallah as well! I’ve been to Dead Sea (the lowest point on earth too, I think?), but that was on Jordan’s side. It’d be great to travel up Mount of Temptation to the monastery by the cable car and then do the trek on the way down. *sigh* You’re totally right, the region really takes history to a whole new level.

  7. Gordon Hitchin February 9, 2017 at 6:00 pm - Reply

    Wow, thanks for sharing all this with us James. It is so interesting to see photos and hear the facts about things I learned at school. What a fascinating place to visit. Great pics too.

  8. Ash February 9, 2017 at 6:04 pm - Reply

    Very informative post – I don’t know much about the place. It would be amazing to experience it up close and personal. Definitely a trip worth doing in the future!

  9. Ania February 9, 2017 at 6:55 pm - Reply

    Thanks for sharing your knowledge about and experiences in Jericho! The area is so rich with history, and I never knew it had the lowest point on earth!

  10. LJ Legend February 10, 2017 at 1:52 am - Reply

    I really enjoyed this post I was unaware of the A, B, C sections. I also found I learnt quite a bit from this as I never never that it was the lowest point on earth. Love your photos of Mountain Temptations I am lazy so I would probably do the cable carts haha. Thanks for sharing.

  11. Diana February 10, 2017 at 2:26 am - Reply

    So many fun facts here I didn’t know about. I’ve obviously read about the Israel-Palestine conflict in the news, but I can’t imagine actually seeing this first hand. Having grown up reading the Bible, I would love to see a lot of these sites that were key in Biblical times. Thanks for sharing this really interesting post.

  12. Natalie Anastasia February 10, 2017 at 2:58 am - Reply

    That view of the road from Jericho to Ramallah is absolutely jaw dropping! I can only imagine how beautiful it was in person. I am also fascinated by the fact that it is the lowest place on Earth. Looks like an amazing trip – thanks for sharing.

  13. neha February 10, 2017 at 3:13 am - Reply

    Oldest city and lowest place…interesting. I would love to visit. But we hear news about disturbances in the area all the time, so never made a plan to visit with our family

  14. Midori February 10, 2017 at 8:21 am - Reply

    Very interesting post, I didn’t know may of these places!

  15. Sara Essop February 10, 2017 at 8:32 am - Reply

    Jericho has many claims to fame although I didn’t know that it was the oldest and lowest city in the world. I went to Palestine many years ago and the history there is absolutely fascinating. It’s always fulfilling to visit the places you’ve read about.

  16. Michelle February 10, 2017 at 11:41 am - Reply

    I had no idea that Jericho is the oldest walled city in the world! On my bucket list too now!

  17. Jackie Taylor February 10, 2017 at 1:16 pm - Reply

    This was an interesting read, as I’ve never heard of Jericho before! The history sounds fascinating! Also, the view of the road from Jericho to Ramallah is very stunning.

  18. Elena (@TravelingBytes) February 10, 2017 at 2:00 pm - Reply

    Naturally, I heard about Jericho. I tried to remember why and the best I could come up with was “it’s something from school history lessons.” Then, I read your article. Wow! Fascinating place. The lowest place on Earth – never heard about it. How come those highest ones are so well-known, but the lowest does not? A UNESCO heritage site that is 10,000 years old. To date, the oldest UNESCO site I visited was the 7 000 years old Valley of the Temples in Sicily. I would love to visit Jericho, but, honestly, I have to work up my courage first.

    BTW, have all your problems disappeared after drinking water from Elisha Spring? Cheers!

  19. Bizarre Globe Hopper February 10, 2017 at 6:06 pm - Reply

    Jericho has been on my bucket list since I visited Israel the first time as a 10-year old, filled with wanderlust. I’m missing those desert sceneries so badly! Israel is unbelievably versatile: it’s amazing how much is packed into such a small area. I was told also that the Dead Sea is the lowest point on land – maybe that makes Jericho “the lowest city” on earth 😉 I enjoyed reading your recap, thanks for sharing!

  20. Scarlett Begonias February 10, 2017 at 10:13 pm - Reply

    The drive from Jericho to Ramallah looks breathtaking. I dream of going there one day. Thank you! #feetdotravel

  21. Eryn February 10, 2017 at 10:20 pm - Reply

    Looks amazing! I had no idea it was the lowest place on earth! Also, love your photos 🙂

  22. Angie (FeetDoTravel) February 11, 2017 at 2:53 am - Reply

    Jericho is a place I would love to visit but I did not know it was the oldest City in the world, or the lowest – what interesting facts! You have packed this post with so much information, it’s great! I really enjoyed reading this so thank you for sharing. #feetdotravel

  23. Joy Generoso February 11, 2017 at 7:03 am - Reply

    I only saw Jericho from afar, when we visited Mount Nebo in Jordan. I know the story about Zacchaeus. I couldn’t believe that fig tree is still alive after 2000 years. I want to see it in person. 🙂

    Joy of

  24. Stephanie (1AdventureTraveler) February 11, 2017 at 1:02 pm - Reply

    Lots of great information and would be a place to I would like to visit! I didn’t know Jericho is the oldest City in the world or the lowest. Thanks for sharing! #feetdotravel

  25. Swati & Sam February 11, 2017 at 1:36 pm - Reply

    That warning board is indeed scary. Didn’t know that the oldest walled city in the world was built in 8000 BC. The picture of the road to Ramallah looks so stunning. This is a very informative post, would love to visit Jericho someday.

  26. Oana February 12, 2017 at 5:37 pm - Reply

    Such an interesting place to visit. The pictures are breathtaking, especially the one with the view of the road. Thank you for sharing this place with us.

  27. Garth February 12, 2017 at 8:40 pm - Reply

    Fascinating stuff, 10,000 years! wow, hard to comprehend. Thanks for sharing this lesser known part of the world.

  28. Charlotte February 13, 2017 at 8:21 am - Reply

    I had never heard of Jericho! Such an interesting destination! Thank you for sharing such an informative post about an unusual destination

  29. Gabriela February 13, 2017 at 10:20 am - Reply

    Great post! I also visited Israel and Palestine just a couple of months ago 🙂

  30. Sourav Aggarwal February 13, 2017 at 12:30 pm - Reply


  31. Travel Lexx February 13, 2017 at 8:37 pm - Reply

    Wow, that just looks incredible. I would love to visit the region and spend some time in the area. Jericho sounds like it has plenty of things to keep most people occupied! Would be interesting to know how easy it is to visit from Amman!

  32. Rob+Ann @TravelLatte(.net) February 13, 2017 at 11:22 pm - Reply

    It’s just mind boggling that Jericho has been in existence for so very long! And also that it’s off limits to some. Would love to make our way to the region as we continue exploring. Thanks for the great detail and pictures!

  33. ThriftyTrails February 13, 2017 at 11:41 pm - Reply

    Great history lesson and review of the area! I remember hearing that Jericho is the lowest point on earth that is not covered by water but if you include places with water then the Dead Sea is the lowest place on earth. I had no idea Palestine is classified into 3 areas.

  34. Shona February 14, 2017 at 10:29 am - Reply

    The history and scenery are incredible. Thanks for the tour and info James.

  35. Lisa February 15, 2017 at 12:37 pm - Reply

    Thanks for sharing some great facts about a beautiful and historic place. The road to Ramallah looks awesome. Hope to visit one day.

  36. SamH Travels February 15, 2017 at 6:34 pm - Reply

    I feel very educated by reading your post. The Jericho sign is very unnerving and I had no idea it was the lowest city in the world. The photos are breathtaking, especially the one showing the road from Jericho to Ramallah.

  37. Raymond Carroll February 15, 2017 at 7:09 pm - Reply

    Nice history lesson, James. My pal lives in Israel and I remember him telling me something about the Dead Sea being below sea level – didn’t know that Jericho is both the oldest city in the world and the lowest place on earth. Interesting post. Good job!

  38. Anthony Jury February 15, 2017 at 9:46 pm - Reply

    Now that is a place with some history. How great is it to read about an area you have no knowledge about and it is always great to learn new things. I have never though much about the Palestine for a travel destination but maybe in time that could change. That is some tense signage too.

  39. Paul and Carole February 16, 2017 at 9:40 am - Reply

    This is a really informative post for visiting this region. Looks an interesting place to visit! #feetdotravel

  40. Cliodhna Ryan February 16, 2017 at 8:35 pm - Reply

    I would love to visit Palestine for historical and political reasons. There is so much history in the region. I’ve heard that even the olive trees are hundreds and hundreds of years old. Really interesting and informative post.

  41. Barry February 16, 2017 at 10:05 pm - Reply

    Great stuff. Very interesting post about an area I don’t know too much about. Didn’t know that Jericho is both the oldest city in the world and the lowest place on earth.

  42. Punita Malhotra February 17, 2017 at 2:19 pm - Reply

    10,000 years! That is way back in time. I loved reading about all the history and now I am really tempted to go walk on this land and feel the past.

  43. Agnes February 18, 2017 at 10:34 am - Reply

    I guess it’s not visited by too many tourists? Very interesting place and a lot of history to tell and the road from Jerico looks beautiful. Did you feel any different after drinking the holy water?

    • James Smith February 19, 2017 at 4:13 pm - Reply

      I think I look 5 years younger after drinking the holy water.

  44. Sarah I February 19, 2017 at 1:32 pm - Reply

    This was so interesting! I didn’t know about the different areas and what they mean and also how cool to visit the lowest place on earth!

  45. Sindi February 19, 2017 at 6:06 pm - Reply

    Wow fascinating post! Really unusual and a total new experience it would be for me to visit a place like this. Thanks for the info!

  46. Joanna February 23, 2017 at 2:04 pm - Reply

    It’s so sad that there are places in the world where people are banned to go to just because of their nationality. The mount of temptations with it’s Monastery in the rocks looks really impressive. I would probably choose to hike up there rather than taking the cable car. I like a good challenge.

  47. Doro February 23, 2017 at 2:12 pm - Reply

    Interesting to read! I obviously know about the Palestine – Israel conflict from the news, but it always seems like such a distant matter that I can’t really imagine what it must be like to experience this day by day. Thanks for sharing your experiences!

  48. Hendrik February 23, 2017 at 3:09 pm - Reply

    Wow, again such an impressive episode, James. Jericho seems to be very interesting, I havent heard that much yet I must say, but of course I knew it is a very religious place. The Mount of Temptation looks really interesting. The restrictions to not allow some people to visit places makes me actually sad, but this is of course nothing really new in the whole area there. Drinking holy water actually sounds very interesting… just curious what the result of this might be 🙂

  49. Suma Jain February 23, 2017 at 3:36 pm - Reply

    Wow, what an interesting post!! Honestly I have never heard of Jericho, but after reading your post I so want to visit this historic place. The Elisha Spring, Mount of Temptation, Tell es Sultan everything seems so fascinating and so many historic events linked to these places. Visiting a place like Jericho will give so much insight into the history and evolution of mankind, I can only imagine how incredible the whole trip was. Thanks for sharing.

  50. Paulina on the road February 23, 2017 at 5:54 pm - Reply

    Wow this looks like a very interesting trip! I never considered it before traveling there. Thanks a lot for sharing

  51. Halef February 24, 2017 at 12:21 am - Reply

    Thank you for sharing. I was in Jordan a while back, and unfortunately didn’t have the opportunity to visit Israel. I will definitely be back to the region sometime soon! Travel safe,

  52. shayne February 25, 2017 at 12:07 am - Reply

    oh nice, this is a dream! I am a bit jelly at you right now. Hopefully I could come and visit Jericho one day. Being the oldest city in the world and the lowest place on earth sure deserves a spot on my bucketlist!

  53. Jitaditya Narzary February 25, 2017 at 10:34 am - Reply

    Great to see this region. I have a great fascination for the ancient history of the Levant region. The amount of conflict this land has seen makes it an tragic yet epic land.

  54. Harsh Gupta March 1, 2017 at 10:05 am - Reply

    Amazing – lowest place on earth! This definitely calls for a trip to this historical site.

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