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Jerusalem’s Best-Kept Secret*

View of lake and cafe, Jerusalem Botanical Gardens Photo: Adiel lo

The Jerusalem Botanical Gardens is Jerusalem’s best-kept secret. The Jerusalem Botanical Gardens (JBG), originally planned as successor to the National Botanic Garden of Israel on the Givat Ram campus of the Hebrew University Mount Scopus which, nevertheless, still exists as a separate entity, is located in the neighborhood of Nayot in Jerusalem, on the southeastern edge of the Givat Ram campus of the Hebrew University of Jerusalem. In 1948, in the Israeli War of Independence, access to Mount Scopus and the university campus was cut off from the rest of Israel, and it was decided to create a new Botanical Garden near the Jewish National and University Library, on the new campus of the Hebrew University in Givat Ram in western Jerusalem. At around 30 acres, the Jerusalem Botanical Gardens is the largest in Israel.

The botanical garden in the snow. Photo by Gila Brand, View of Botanical Gardens in Winter Image come from Israel Wikipedia page

The Jerusalem Botanical Gardens is a peaceful green oasis in a busy city. Boasting the largest plant collection in Israel, the Jerusalem Botanical Gardens opened to the public in 1985. Director of development Sue Surkes called it “the best kept secret in Jerusalem.” More than 6,000 species of plants from around the world are here, divided into six phytogeographic (botanical-geographical) sections (Southern Africa, Europe, North America, Australia, South-West and Central Asia and the Mediterranean). The tropical conservatory contains rainforest plants, including edibles such as pineapple and rice, and even carnivorous ones.

Among the new features on the Givat Ram campus of the Hebrew University are the African Savannah grass maze, the 500-meter Bible Path, and the “flower train”.

Jerusalem’s Rainforest – The Conservatory, in Jerusalem Botanical Gardens

The Bible Path

The 500-meter long “Bible Path” is planted with most of the 70 species that scientists have identified as some of the 400 types of plants mentioned in the Bible.

Opening Hours

Sun-Thurs: 9.00-19.00
Friday: 9.00-17.00
Sat & Holiday 9.00-18.00

Sun-Thurs: 9.00-17.00
Friday: 9.00-15.00
Sat & Holiday 9.00-17.00

Train operates by advance booking only

Tropical Conservatory hours

Sunday: 10:00-13:00
Mon-Thurs: 10:00-15:30
Fri & Sat: 10:00-14:00

Accessibility: The garden is wheel-chairs accessible.

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