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 22, 2011

'Horns of Hittim or Hattin' ("Karnei Khittin", or the "Horns of the Wheat")-the hill has two peaks that looks like bull's horns. It is here the crucial 'Battle at the Horns of Hattin' happened on the 4th of July 1187, between the Muslim forces of Saladin and the Christian army of the Crusaders. The Muslim victory ended the reign of Crusaders in the Holy Land.

For some it is the venue where Jesus had his famous 'Sermon on the Mountain'  (Mount of Beatitudes'-Mathew 5:1-2, Luke 6:17-21; 7:1). The site has also been identified with various biblical cities like Madon (Joshua 11:1), Adamah (Joshua 19:32-36) and the 'Waters of Merom' (Joshua 11:5-9). For the Druze community, at the base of the hill is the traditional tomb of their revered prophet Jethro (Nebi Shuaib), and the father-in-law of Moses (Exodus 3:1).


  1. I didn't know that the sermon of the mountain and this battle happened almost on in the same place!
    so is the sermon of the mountain happened on the other side of the photo?
    Great job

  2. Traditional ‘Mount of the Sermon’- i.e. the ‘Mount of beatitudes’ is near the northern shore of the ‘Sea of Galilee’. ‘Horns of Hattin’ are an alternate view for the historic venue, though not popularly accepted. You can click the following link from my blog archive to have an idea. The green pastures at the foreground are the traditional ‘Mount of Beatitudes’. Arbel Cliffs are at the background near center and the ‘Horns of Hattin’ are at the extreme right corner of the background.