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<map lat='31.78' lng='35.22' zoom='11' view='0' country='Israel'/>
Flag of Israel
District (mahoz): Jerusalem District
Population: 747,600 (2007)
Major roads: 1, 60
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Jerusalem is a city in the Middle East, under dispute between Israel and the Palestinians, both claiming it to be their capital city.

Hitching out

Craig at Maale Adumim Junction en route to Dead Sea (5 mins).

East to the Dead Sea, Amman (Jordan)

The road splits towards Amman and towards the Dead Sea at Beit-HaArava junction. Depending on where you are in Jerusalem, there are two options for getting there:

From East Jerusalem

Take service taxi ("sheirut") 36 from Damascus Gate in the direction of Abu Dis, a ride of 7 NIS only. Get off in Maale Adumin North junction and continue hitchhiking east. If you take this ride you get directly to road #1, from which you need to continue hitchhiking east towards the Dead Sea and Jordan.

From West Jerusalem

Take bus 25, 4 or 4A to Har Ha'tsofim (French Hill). You can hitchhike from the bus stop across the street from the entrance to the Mt. Scopus Campus of Hebrew University. The place is usually crowded with hitchhikers, and drivers stop often. Most likely they will go only part of the way, in which case you should ask to get off in the entry junction to their settlement, and continue hitchhiking from the bus station.

Craig found it easy to get a lift even from inside Jerusalem. The bus stop mentioned above works perfect. Since recently you can get there taking the Tram or you hitchhike from in front the Damascus gate (sounds strange, but worked numerous times: 10 mins, 5 mins).

South towards Eilat, Aqaba (Jordan), Taba (Egypt)

Follow the direction to go to the Dead Sea, but continue south on Highway 90 until its end. From there you can continue east towards Jordan, or south towards Egypt.

Orthodox Jews hitching out of Jerusalem

West towards Tel Aviv

Take a bus to the main bus station in Jerusalem. Go on walking further on Jaffa road, till you get to the main junction where you can see the "Begin" highway. go on walking straight and pass this junction, and on your right (after the petrol station) you will see a bus station, the best spot to hitchhike. Most likely you will see other hitchhikers standing there too. If you get bored or want to burn some time, just behind you there is an ancient Palestinian village (Lifta), which was deserted in 1948. Go down the stairs and find your way to the local spring.

In case it's too crowded you might be better off going a bit back up the street to the petrol stations and hitch there. Also, Israeli hitchhikers seem to have an aversion against signs, so if you're not local using a sign could work out in your advantage.

There is also a petrol station on the Jerusalem-Tel Aviv highway at Shaar Hagai (שער הגיא‎) Google map link This might be useful if a ride is not going all the way to Tel Aviv as there are very few spots to stop on the highway between the two cities.

North towards Tiberias, Golan Heights

Follow the same directions as for Amman and the Dead Sea, but continue north on highway 90 from the Beit HaArava Junction until you reach the Tsemach Junciton at the bottom of the Kinneret. From there, you can either hitchhike to Tiberias by going westwards on Road 90, or use the trempiyada up to the Golan. People either drive up to Road 92 or Road 98 from there. Road 98 goes right up to the Golan, and Road 92 runs along the west coast of the Kinneret from where you can pick up Roads 789 or 87 to the Golan. Highway 789 connects to Road 98 from where you can chose to either continue north or head south. Road 87 also connects to 98, but a bit later, and it also turns west over the Kinneret or east through the centre of the Golan until it picks up 98 at its end.

File:Israel-erga hitching out of jerusalem.jpg
Erga modestly hitching out of Jerusalem

To Ramallah, Samaria (West Bank)

Take a city bus (25, 4, or 4a) to the Har Ha'tzofim Junction and stand there. Rides from here are available to the Ramallah area (Ramallah, Ofra, etc.) As well as further in, towards Nablus, via "Tapuach Junction" (Ariel, Salfit, Buddya etc.)

However, due to the lack of rides to this area, it is probably best to take a service taxi (very cheap) to this area from Damascus gate in Jerusalem.

To Bethlehem, Judea (West Bank)

Take the #31 bus to Giloh (you'll have to ask people how to get to the trempiyada. From there you can hitch rides to Bethlehem and Gush Etzion areas, (Efrat, Bethlehem, Alon Shvut), etc, as well as further south, to the Hebron area of Hebron, Kiryat Arba, Tarqumia, Yatta, etc. To get to the latter area, however, it is better to hitch a ridge to Gush Etzion Junction, and try from there. From the Palestinan bus terminal in front of Damascuus Gate you can get a bus straight to Bethlehem and Beit Jala. It runs every 30 mins and takes a little more to Bethlehem.

Craig got a lift from in front the Damascus gate around 8pm (20 mins). Go to the junction before the cars go down the tunnel. there is enough space to stop. Sometimes people cannot cross the checkpoint and will drop you off. Try to sneak by the tough pedestrian checkpoint and flag down cars in front of the car crossing. Saves time and nerves =)


Free hospitality

In projects such as BeWelcome and CouchSurfing you can find many Jerusalemic members who will host you for a night or two in their homes...

Hostels and cheap accommodation

As a rule of thumb, the Western part of the city is much (much!) more expensive than the Eastern part, especially when it comes to hostels. In the old city and around Damascus gate you can find a dorm bed for as little as 20 NIS (4 Euro) for a night. Check Wikitravel for more details.