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.

Wednesday, June 9, 2010

From Givat Ram Campus of Hebrew University-Jerusalem.

1P: Known by various names such as Cercis, Redbuds, Love Tree, Judas Tree etc. these plants (Cercis siliquastrum ) are  characterised by heart-shaped leaves and pinkish-red flowers. In Hebrew the tree is known as 'Clil Hahoresh'. Christian taditions associate the plant with Judas Iscariot, that after betraying Christ, he hung himself on one of these trees, and the flowers turned from white to red because of his blood and the tree's shame (Mathew 27:5)! 
2P: Beit HaKerem Neighbourhood (est. 1922) of Jerusalem from Givat Ram Campus. Beit HaKerem or 'House of the Vineyard' is named after a biblical place by the same name (Nehemiah 3:14).

3P-4P: Purim celebrations @ Hebrew University, Givat Ram Campus. Remind you Purim is a festival that commemorates the deliverance of the Jewish people as recorded in the Biblical Book of Esther. 
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