The Holy Land – A Truly Awe-Inspiring Experience
Ancient, historical, religious, beautiful, peaceful … these are just a few adjectives that could be used to describe the Holy Land of Israel.
You generally don’t need a visa to visit this beautiful land, however you should keep a close eye on events in this region of the world, and pay attention to any warnings. Despite the unrest over recent years, if you stay safe, use your common sense, and be respectful at all times, a visit to Israel will be enriching beyond measure.
It isn’t impossible to list all the wonderful monuments and sights you could see here, as the Old City of Jerusalem would fill a page on its own, however it’s important to note that the country has much to offer outside of Jerusalem too, and it’s worth ensuring you visit as much as possible during your time here.
Let’s look at a few of the major attractions.
- Tel Aviv – When you picture Israel, you picture deserts, arid landscapes, and camels, yes? Well, some of it is, but Tel Aviv is a huge and very vibrant city, with fantastic shopping, entertainment and nightlife to be experienced.
- The Church of the Nativity – One of the most peaceful places on earth to visit, in the historic and religiously important city of Bethlehem. This is a World Heritage Site, for obvious reasons.
- The Dead Sea – You will have seen the famous picture of people floating around on their backs in the sea, without any effort at all. Go experience it!
- Sea of Galilee – It’s hard to imagine actually visiting sites that you learnt about either in your childhood through the Bible, or at school, and the chance to visit should be grabbed with both hands. The Sea of Galilee is actually a lake, not a sea, and is rich in fish, so there are many fish restaurants around to try.
- Al-Aqsa Mosque – The third holiest site in the Islam faith; this is a beautiful building to see.
- Masada – Probably one of Israel’s most visited tourist sites, Masada is a huge rock fortification deep in the desert, overlooking the beautiful Dead Sea. This is the site where Herod the Great built his empire of palaces. If you’re not feeling particularly energetic in the heat, jump on the cable car and enjoy the scenery.
- Ramon Crater – For a true natural wonder, head to the visitor centre at Ramon and stand in awe at the biggest desert crater in the world!
- Old Jerusalem – The Old City of Jerusalem should probably have an article full of must-visit sites all of its own, because it is that jam-packed with sites of cultural, religious and ancient importance, that you’ll have your eyes on stalks. There are too many to mention, but the old stone buildings, almost desert-like, narrow, winding streets, a special vibe in the air – it’s intoxicating and immediately special. The Western Wall, Church of Holy Sepulchre, Dome of the Rock, Temple Mount, Tower of David …. Where else in the world can you imagine so many vitally important historical sites all in one place?
Dripping in history, a truly sobering and amazing experience, a visit to Israel will leave you feeling not only enriched, but as though you truly have witnessed something that can only be described as special. There aren’t many places in the world that have the same feeling, and an opportunity to visit should be taken without hesitation.