Destinations

A Visit to the Holy Land Can Be Life Changing

January 19, 2013 by

Visiting the Holy Lands

People plan to visit the Holy Land for a variety of reasons. For many Jews, Christians, Muslims, and other eastern religions, it is a long respected tradition.

Visitors find the experience gives them a better understanding of the Scriptures, and for many a visit to the Holy Land becomes a life changing experience.

Today’s pilgrims have a variety of options when it comes to planning a trip to the Holy Land. 

Garden of Gethsamane

Garden of Gethsemane

When to Visit Israel the Holy Land

Those who wish to experience Israel the Holy Land can do so on their own, take part in Holy Land tours as part of a group, or they can enjoy one of many Holy Land cruises.

Religious holidays including Easter, Passover, Rosh Hashanah, Yom Kippur and other special religious dates tend to draw large numbers of pilgrims.

If you plan a trip to the Holy Lands for a religious holiday expect the cost of accommodations to be double during these times. Along with that you can expect many restaurants and shops to be closed. 

Inside the Garden Tomb

Inside the Garden Tomb

Holy Land Sites

While many people think of Jerusalem or Bethlehem when they hear the words “Holy Land,” Israel offers historic must-see sites in and around these two cities as well as many others. Here are some of the favorites you’ll want to add to your itinerary: 

  • The Mount of Olives: This is Jerusalem’s highest peak and offers a spectacular view of the Old City.
  • Garden of Gethsemane: This garden is listed in the New Testament as the place Jesus regularly went with his disciples, including the night before he was crucified. It is located near the base of the Mount of Olives.
  • Bethphage: This village is located on the eastern slope of the Mount of Olives and is thought to be the starting point of Jesus’ entry into Jerusalem on what is not commemorated as Palm Sunday.
  • Garden Tomb: The garden tomb is found in a tranquil garden atmosphere, but while many claim this is where Christ was buried and rose from the dead, others say it lacks authenticity. It is located off Nablus Road, north of the Damascus Gate.
  • Mount Zion: While the Mount of Olives is the highest peak in Jerusalem, Mount Zion is the highest point in ancient Jerusalem. Several biblical events took place here, including the Last Supper.

Along with these ancient sites, the Holy Lands feature many churches and surrounding towns and villages with a rich history.

Be Prepared to Walk

No matter when you schedule your trip to the Holy Lands, if you plan to visit these historical sites and others, it entails a lot of walking. The landscape is rocky and irregular and the weather tends to be warm or even hot much of the year.

So before you visit the Holy Lands, take time to get as physically fit as possible and don’t forget to pack your walking shoes.

Photo Credits: exlivewire, jon.lai.yexian, Ian W Scott

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