17 Ancient Cities From the Bible That Still Exist Today

Roofs of Old City with Holy Sepulcher Church Dome, Jerusalem, Israel

17 Ancient Cities From the Bible That Still Exist Today

As you read the Bible, you learn about an era that feels like it took place forever ago. Even though this is true, some of the places mentioned in the Bible still exist. One of the most important books in human history, the Bible is a look back at the beginning of Christianity and the cities that influenced it in the Middle East. With this in mind, let’s take a deeper look at some of these cities and see which ones you can visit and/or live in today.


Jerusalem old city panorama, Israel.
Jerusalem is one of the most important cities for three different religions.

Believed to be the location of the Last Supper, Jerusalem is also considered the burial site of King David of Israel. Jerusalem played a key role in the story of many important Biblical characters and is considered one of the holiest cities in the world.


View on the Nile, Cairo city and famous Pyramids in the beautiful panorama of Egypt
The capital of Egypt is important to the story of the Ten Commandments.

One of the most important cities in Egypt today, Cairo is believed to be the location where the Ten Commandments were given to Moses. Today, Cairo has a population of 9.54 million and is located near the Great Sphinx and pyramids.


The aerial view on the road, palm tree plantation, and residential houses at Palestinian town of Jericho, West Bank, Palestine, during the hot summer day.
The city of Jericho is believed to be one of the world’s oldest cities.

What is largely believed to be one of the oldest cities in the world, Jericho dates back to 11,000 BC. Located in the Jordan Valley, Jericho is also known as a city with the largest defensive wall in history. The Bible describes Jericho as the “city of palm trees”.


Rome, Italy view towards the Colosseum with archeological areas at sunset.
One of the most important cities in history, Rome is prominent in Biblical history.

While Rome is not mentioned in the Old Testament, it figures prominently in the New Testament. The Epistle to the Romans, known as the sixth book of the New Testament, was written by Paul the Apostle to spread the gospel of Jesus to Roman citizens.


View to the old city of Hebron from a rooftop beside Qazazen mosque in Hebron, West Bank, Palestine
The city of Hebron is historically important to King David.

Located in the West Bank, the city of Hebron is about 19 miles south of Jerusalem. According to the Bible, Abraham settled in Hebron, which is also the location where David was anointed the King of Israel. The estimated population of Hebron today is around 215,000.


The Acropolis of Athens, Greece, with the Parthenon Temple on top of the hill during a summer sunset
Athens played a historically important role for Paul the Apostle.

Mentioned in the Bible a few times, Athens, Greece is known as one of the places Paul the Apostle visited. During his time in Athens, it’s believed that Paul was distressed by the worship of different idols. Arriving in Athens alone, this visit is considered Paul’s most difficult as a missionary.


View on streets with night lights in old historical biblical city Bethlehem in palestine region in Israel on evening
The city of Bethlehem is mentioned many times in the Bible.

Mentioned in the Bible at least 50 separate times, Bethlehem is a prominent place for Muslims, Jews, and Christians. For Christians who focus on the Old Testament, Bethlehem is the birthplace of Jesus Christ and is home to the Church of the Nativity.


the city of damascus in Syria
The city of Damascus is another one of the oldest cities in the world.

The capital city of Syria, Damascus is mentioned 60 times across 55 verses in the Old Testament. One of the oldest cities in the world, Damascus is believed to be 5,000 years old. It prominently figures in Christianity as the location where Paul converted.


Boats in the Sea of Galilee in Israel
The city of Galilee in Israel is considered the hometown of Jesus.

Located in northern Israel and southern Lebanon, Galilee is an ancient city. According to the Bible, Galilee was named by the Israelites and is where Jesus performed many miracles. Today, it’s indicated that Galilee has an estimated population of around 1.2 million.


Corinth Canal, Greece. The Corinth Canal is a sluiceless shipping canal in Greece, connecting the Saronic Gulf of the Aegean and the Gulf of Corinth of the Ionian Sea, Aerial View
With at least two mentions in the New Testament, Corinth, Greece played a central role for Paul the Apostle.

Corinth, Greece is well known from the first two letters of Saint Paul from the New Testament. The location is mentioned as a location of Paul’s many missionary activities. It’s believed Paul wrote at least four letters to the Christians in Corinth.


Streets of Chora and iconic Monastery of Saint John the Theologian in chora of Patmos island, Dodecanese, Greece
The island city of Patmos is referenced as historically important to the Book of Revelation.

A Greek island in the Aegean Sea, Patmos is a place of significance to Christianity. Most prominently, one of the two apostles, John, wrote and received his vision for the Book of Revelation. John was exiled to the Island city of Patmos by the Romans because of his Christian faith.


Old town and port of Jaffa and modern skyline of Tel Aviv city, Israel
Mentioned in both Old and New Testaments, Jaffa is mentioned many times.

Located outside of Tel Aviv in Israel, the city of Jaffa is mentioned as Joppa in the Bible. This city is mentioned in both the Old and New Testament as a main seaport and where Jonah fled after disobeying the Lord’s will to go to Nineveh and preach.


the blue sea of sidon cety north of LEBANON
There are at least 30 mentions of Sidon, Lebanon in the Old Testament.

With around 30 mentions in the Bible, Sidon, Lebanon figures prominently. Sidon is mentioned in the Old Testament as the location where a widow was taken care of and the Lord provided oil and flour for her through a famine.


Aerial photo for Tyre city Beach - Lebanon
There are a lot of mentions about the Tyre, Lebanon in the Old and New Testaments.

Tyre, Lebanon is one of the oldest cities in the region and is located about 20 miles south of Sidon. The city of Tyre is mentioned in both the Old and New Testaments. It’s specifically mentioned in the Book of Isaiah as part of 10 nations that would conspire against God’s people.


Tigris river in Iraq.
The city of Nineveh was once the capital of the Assyrian Empire.

Mentioned around 19 times in the Bible, Nineveh was the capital of the Assyrian empire. Today, it’s better known as Mosul, Iraq. Jonah was sent to Nineveh to preach God’s message for 3 days, but he stuck around for 40 days.


View to Euphrates river from former Saddam Hussein palace, Hillah, Babyl, Iraq
The Babylonian Empire’s capital was once home to a powerful nation-state.

Throughout the Bible, Babylon is mentioned as part of modern-day Iraq. Located where the city of Al-Hillal is today, Babylon was a powerful city/state the Bible views as a symbol of evil.


Nazareth city panoramic view. Mary of Nazareth Center. Israel
The city of Nazareth receives several prominent Bible mentions.

As a large city in Northern Israel, Nazareth figures prominently in the Bible as it’s believed to be the birth location of Jesus’ mother, Mary. While it’s still prominently believed Jesus was born in Bethlehem, it’s in Nazareth where he lived.

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