Warren's Shaft

Welcome to Warren's Shaft

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Jerusalem Attractions  - 14
About

The British rode into the Old City of Jerusalem uncontested and east Jerusalem fell to Israeli forces during the Six Day War after only a token resistance, and within a few decades the well-traveled Old City had been largely conquered by the might of the tourist dollar, but there was a time when seizing the Holy City was a more arduous endeavor. According to the Bible, the armies of King David only conquered the well-fortified city, then under the control of the Canaanaite tribe of Jebusites, when the soldier Yoav discovered a secret tunnel leading from the Gihon spring, the city's water source, under the walls and into the city itself.

 

The rest is history, and tourists who wish to directly experience that history can head underground into Warren's Shaft, the original Canaanite-era rock-cut tunnel leading from the Gihon into the City of David, discovered by British officer Charles Warren in the 1860s. In case the one tunnel wasn't enough, you can also traverse Hezekiah's Tunnel, an alternate route from the city to the Gihon cut by order of Judean king Hezekiah, who feared the Assyrians ravaging the Kingdom of Israel to the north would invade Jerusalem.

 

The prophet Isaiah described the construction of the tunnel, and at the center of the tunnel was discovered an engraving in ancient Hebrew detailing the dig and the celebration that resulted when the two teams, one digging from each end, joined underground. The tunnels are still filled with water, so wear shorts and shoes you don't mind getting soaked.

Facilities
  • Kids friendly

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