JERUSALEM-the 50 sites you may overlook

In a historic and religious city like Jerusalem there is so much to see no matter how much you tour. When time is a limiting factor, even the most efficient tour guides have to compromise while deciding what to incorporate in the itinerary. Although it depends on the interest of the individual visitor as well, there is still a huge must-see-list in Jerusalem that cannot be avoided. At every stop so much information is thrown on a visitor that sometimes s/he tends to forget the details after leaving the place.

I remember when I first visited the Church of Holy Sepulcher, it appeared to me more like a small museum than a church. I was virtually clueless inside a dark and dull overcrowded massive complex of more than 25 chapels with several curious artifacts and antiques scattered under some dusky arches and dingy columns. It took me at least three visits with a proper map in hand to understand the Church complex. A normal visitor for instance would be satisfied with Golgotha, the ‘Stone of Unction’ and the ‘Holy Sepulcher’, but the oldest part of the complex, viz. the first century tombs inside the Syrian Orthodox Chapel could be easily missed.

In the upcoming posts I plan to upload 50 such sites from Jerusalem that I believe can be easily overlooked or go unnoticed by an average visitor. I am incorporating the following sites from my previous visits, again with no specific order of importance. I am sure that a serious traveler who loves history, traditions and the Bible has noticed or been to most of them.

Tuesday, September 1, 2009

"The West Hills/Hill of the Airplane/The Field of Habakkuk"- near Mar Elias Monastery.

Located West to Mar Elias Monastery, the hill is also known as Khirbet Tabaliya. In 1967 an Israeli jet crashed into the hill and it is therefore named the "hill of the airplane". On the hill was a chapel named after Prophet Habakkuk, and the site is called "the field of Habakkuk". According to Christian tradition, Habakkuk brought food to the farmers working in the field on this hillside. An angel came down, picked up the prophet by his hair to Daniel who was in the lion-pit. After feeding Daniel the angel brought him back. This saved Daniel, and the King pulled him out of the pit. As the prophet wrote ( Habakkuk 3, 19): "The lord God is my strength, and he will make my feet like hinds' feet, and he will make me to walk upon mine high places".

No comments:

Post a Comment