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.

Saturday, July 17, 2010

The Breaching Point, Masada. The portion of Masada's perimeter wall missing at this spot indicates that it was destroyed during Roman attack (73 AD). Look for the ballista balls used by Romans (2P).

The park's official brochure adds: "In the Hebrew month of Nissan, in the spring of 73 or 74 CE, the Romans raised a tower high enough to overlook the wall and bombarded the area, as attested to by the ballista balls and arrowheads discovered in the excavation. The rebels defended themselves by rolling down large stones on the Romans. After the Romans destroyed the perimeter wall, they burned the wood-and-earth wall the rebels had built to shore it up. Thus, the siege came to an end. From the restored tower you can see the siege wall and the Roman camps at the base of Masada, among them camp F, the camp of the siege's commander'.
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