In 2011, Jerusalem will join cities like Paris, Berlin and New York when it becomes the host of an international marathon.

Jerusalem Mayor Nir Barkat made the announcement that the city will hold an internationl marathon following his participation in the New York City Marathon on November 1. Barkat, who was accompanied by 15 colleagues and friends, finished the race in 04:42:46. A serious fitness fan, this was the mayor’s fifth marathon. He has previously participated in the Paris, Berlin and Israel marathons.

The Jerusalem Municipality is already making arrangements to host a marathon in the city in 2011. Until now, Jerusalem and Tel Aviv hosted only half-marathons, while the city of Tiberias already has a full marathon and Tel Aviv may be planning to host a full marathon as well in the near future.

The mayor believes that an international marathon that will attract participants from all over the world and highlight Jerusalem’s historic and unique sites will be a big push for tourism to the city.