Cardo Street in old Jerusalem is the main street of the Old City dating back to the ancient Roman period, with aligned, old Roman columns. It begins on Damascus Gate and ends up on Zion Gate of the old city.
Cardo Street in old Jerusalem has been a shopping centre. Its foundation dates back at the times of the Roman emperor Hadrian in 135 AD. Seventy-five years after the Roman siege of Jerusalem, in the year 70 AD, the emperor Hadrian built the Aelia Capitolina. Hence, Aelia Capitolina was replacing the destroyed Temple in Jerusalem and it was a Roman colony. Back to that period, Cardo street was starting at the Damascus Gate. In 135 AD, the Roman emperor Hadrian built Damascus Gate as the entrance to the Old City. The gate was including three arcs, and nowadays only the eastern arch remained. After Damascus Gate along Cardo street, there is a high column, which emperor Hadrian erected. At present, this column doesn’t exist anymore. Nevertheless, we have proof of its existence from The Madaba Map, part of a floor mosaic in Jordan.
It might be that the Muslims called it Damascus Gate with the name Bab Bab Amud (Gate of the Column) in the VII century when they conquered the old Jerusalem. Today on Cardo street it’s possible to see old Roman columns. Indeed, it is a specific archaeological site in ancient Jerusalem. In 1967 archaeologists discovered part of the wall belonging to the old Jerusalem dating back to Hezekiah, who was the 13th king of Judah (727-698 BC). This part of the wall is located at the end of Cardo street.
From Jaffa Gate To Cardo Street In Old Jerusalem
Let’s assume that you are in old Jerusalem close to Jaffa Gate, hence, you need to walk along the Armenian Patriarchate, turning left on Saint James Street and then continue on Or HaHayim. You can cross Habad street, which is located parallel to the Cardo street, and you only need to go down through some steps; hence you reached Cardo street. You are welcome to watch the video about this beautiful ancient street in the old Jerusalem.