“Jerusalem, my happy home, when shall I come to thee?”
Once pictured as the center of the world on maps, Jerusalem has been a cherished destination for thousands of years.
The city is Israel’s capital and home to Hebrew University and many government organizations and NGOs. It also has a growing high-tech sector.
Jerusalem lies at an elevation of 2,474 feet (754 meters). It has a Mediterranean climate with hot summers and mild winters and is considerably less humid than coastal cities like Tel Aviv. Evenings are usually cool, even on the hottest days. There are occasional snow flurries during some winters, but snow accumulation is rare.
The city’s population is approaching 800,000, with about ten percent native English speakers (and many non-native speakers). In some areas, like on Emek Refaim (the street that runs between the neighborhoods of Baka and German Colony) one is likely to hear more English spoken than Hebrew.
Housing prices in Jerusalem are high, especially in areas favored by English-speakers. Less expensive housing is available in neighborhoods like East Talpiot and Arnon ha’Natziv, which are farther from the center.
Moving to Jerusalem can present special challenges since many multi-story buildings lack elevators. Companies shipping to Jerusalem will need to know how many steps are between the street and the apartment in order to provide a quote.
Some neighborhoods of Jerusalem (like Mea Shearim) are fervently religious; others are secular or mixed. The Nefesh b’Nefesh Community Guide, at the link below, provides a searchable database with details on different areas.
Jerusalem offers hundreds of dining choices, from hole-in-the wall falafel stands to gourmet “chef restaurants.”
Entertainment options range from symphony and dance, to theater (some of it in English), movies, bowling, professional soccer, and amateur American-style football. Cultural events include the Israel Festival, the Jerusalem Film Festival in July, the Chamber Music Festival, and the English Theater Festival held during Pesach.
Nefesh b’Nefesh Community Guide
Official Jerusalem Website
Lagur Israel Real Estate
Yahoo Flat-hunting Group for Israel
Nefesh b’Nefesh School Database
Jerusalem American International School
The Anglican International School Jerusalem
Hebrew Ulpan for Olim Teenagers
(Hebrew and English program for high school boys)
Yerushalayim Torah Academies
(English and Hebrew programs for high school boys and girls)
Eluna.com (kosher dining)
Fun in Jerusalem (events and attractions for families and kids)
Jerusalem Film Festival
Jerusalem International Chamber Music Festival