Since the 4th century CE this cave is sanctified by Christian faith as the place where the disciples waited for Jesus, and later and witnessed his arrest. A cistern, a fragment of a Greek inscription, and ceiling decorations attest to the use of the site in both Byzantine and Crusader times. Pilgrims visit the site In the Byzantine period recorded seeing some of the “Round Stone Beds” on which the disciples fell asleep while waiting for Jesus. Un aware of it, they probably recorded parts of an ancient olive press, which proves the site is indeed Gethsemane (Gat Shmanim in Hebrew means a place to produce oils).
Visiting the Grotto of Gethsemane
The site is maintained by the Franciscans order. It is open every day from 8:00 to noon, and 14:30 to 16:45.
For a full appreciation of the site it is recommended to combine it with a guided day tour of Jerusalem.
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Points of Interest in the Area
|Garden of Gethsemane|
|Kidron Valley Tombs|