This is an organisation that I came to know about when back home in NZ early in 2013 when visiting an Aunt who lives out in the country in northern NZ. She is passionate about hosting Israelis who come to see NZ beautiful and are interested in experiencing a more real NZ visit.
She told me she has hosted 110+ so far.
The southern beginning of the Issakhar trail is just outside Beit Shean on the road toward Afula.
Look for the sign shown here which will be on your right side. Near the end of this trail you arrive at a lookout near the Belvoir Crusader Castle which has a wonderful view into the Beit Shean Valley below. The last photo shows the Kibbutz Neve-Ur where I lived in 1974.
We found a few wonderful shady spots to stop and slake our thirst and satisfy our hunger. Aside from what you may think we do NOT do jeep trips only to eat and drink (well maybe a little) ^O^
First of all this map will show you the general area in Israel we are talking about:
There exist several starting points or breakoff points for this jeep trip.
As you can see from the first photo this is NOT an easy passage.
The scenery around you ranges from ancient flour mills to free ranging cattle, from beautiful nettles to dragonflies flitting around or settling down for a few instants to pose for your camera.
All in all a nice trip, especially the cool shaded spot we found for our friend Arie to prepare us a cup of coffee as we shared out fruit and cookies.
Ein Nevoraya Spring, the Nevoraya Synagogue and the Ein Gozi Spring are all to be found on a 4x4 route through the Amuka Valley in Northern Israel.
An easy drive for the most part and to be enjoyed all seasons of the year although a visit in the summer might find the Ein Gozi spring dry.
All of the the above have signs directing you and the Nevoraya Synagogue even has numerous explanation signs about the structure itself and the history. There has been some vandalism, but not serious.
If you like off roading or mountain biking this could be an easy introduction to Israel. If you want more information about mountain biking or jeep trips contact me.
Israel is one of the largest centers of birds watching in the world. There are 500 mil birds flying over Israel twice a year and there are many good locations and possible activities for who ever interesting in this, it is just a great place for birds watching.
destination Kibbutz Neveh Ur,
to visit Cynthia a long lost frined from student days at Wits in Johannesburg.
my El Al flight was a side trip via Zurich, to telAviv, then two buses.
i remember the last leg was passing through Beth Shean into the Valley towards the river, across the River was Jordan, part of Arabia.
Cynthia and Hans has a comfrotable apartment, she was assigned to looking after the children ;
hans was a general handy eprson; so involved in the workshop;
Neveh Ur mainstay was cotton and Oranges, so harvest time was always the busiest and most trying perion.
The meals being fresh from the land with lots of yoghurt i loved,
the members and family from all over the world were interesting;
the lifestyle, a commitment and a challenge for volunteers;
most admirable !!
When I visted, the diggings had not started with earnest yet, so if i was to return,
years after the six day war et al, changes are plenty
Carmiel Folklore Dance Festival:
Each year around 10 of july there is a three days israeli folklore dance festival with many folklore dance groups from israel and abroad.
there are many shows and dancing for the 'regular' people on the street.
with a unique and fun athmosphere.
if you are in israel during that time you shoudn't miss it !
it is hold in the city of Carmiel which is east of Akko .
and ususaly its three days on 8-10 july (not precisely - each year its on a diffrerent date - but around those dates).
I can tell you that this year (2001) its on 10-12 of july.
come there at least for a whole day. and if you are short on time and have only one evening, usualy the best show is the closing show on the last night.
It is not exactly Off The Beaten Path as the desert is about half of Israel. But when most of your time will be spent in cities and history you should also reserve time for a desert trip. The Israeli Deserts are of a rock and canyons style full of interesting places to discover.
I didn’t you know that the Jewish National Fund has planted more than 223 million trees across Israel since its founding 103 years ago. The JNF can proudly say that the State of Israel is the only country in the world today with more forest cover than a century ago.
I could see it when we were passing by the Lahav Forest on our way from Tel-Aviv to the Dead Sea along the desert. It was so difficult to believe that we are in Israel when I watched those landscapes which were very similar to what I used to see in Russia covered by forests…
In the Bible the New Jerusalem (also called the tabernacle of God, holy city, city of God, celestial city, and heavenly Jerusalem, as well as Jerusalem above and Zion), is a literal (or figurative, depending upon the writer's viewpoint) city that is a completely new dwelling for the Saints.
Others may believe that it is a physical reconstruction, spiritual restoration, or divine recreation of the city of Jerusalem.
In Russia this idea was created as the Monastery nearby Moscow (Istra town now) which we call New Jerusalem.
For the aims of construction of a monastery the wood on a coast of Istra was cut down, a monastic hill was strengthened. A temporary wooden church in the name of Resurrection was put at a hill. It was consecrated in 1657 at presence of tsar Alexey Mihajlovich. The Church of the Holy Sepulcher in Jerusalem which wooden model was brought to Russia by Jerusalem patriarch Paisy was taken as the basis of a new monastery.
The Russian pilgrim Arseny Sukhanov brought the measurements of the Church of the Holy Sepulcher made by him. He visited Jerusalem in 1653-55 twice. But the main help for builders were the drawings executed by Italian architect Bernardino Amico, published in Florence in 1624.
My VT page about New Jerusalem in Russia near Moscow.
Mount Tabor is located in Lower Galilee, 7 kilometers south-east of Nazareth and 17 kilometres west of the Sea of Galilee. It is believed by many Christians to be the site of the Transfiguration of Jesus during which Jesus began to radiate light and was seen conversing with Moses and Elijah. It is also known as the Mount of Transfiguration.
The mountain is a horst and is not volcanic.
In 1799, during the time of Napoleon Bonaparte's expedition to the land of Israel, in the valley between mount Thabor and the Moreh hill was held a battle in which a French force of about 3,000 soldiers against a Mamluk force of about 20,000 soldiers.
In apocalyptic literature, Mount Megiddo, the hill overlooking the Kishon River valley is identified as the site of the final battle between the forces of good and evil at the end of time, known as Armageddon (mentioned in the New Testament in Revelation).
The word Armageddon comes from Hebrew har məgiddô, meaning "Mountain of Megiddo or "place surrounded by hills". Megiddo was the location of many decisive battles in ancient times. The town Megiddo is approximately 40 km west of the southern tip of the Sea of Galilee (or Lake Tiberias to the Romans).
It is located 15 km south-west of Nazareth.
Ramat Rachel is a kibbutz located south of Jerusalem, as an enclave within Jerusalem's municipal boundaries. Overlooking Bethlehem and Rachel's Tomb and situated within the Green Line.
East of the road which links Bethlehem to Jerusalem, a hill of obvious strategic importance commands a panoramic view southwards over the city and beyond. Kibbutz Ramat Rachel, located atop this hill, has a bird's eye view of the Bethlehem - Jerusalem road.
There are plenty of crusaders relics in Israel. This fortress is one of the better looking ones. The Hebrew name is Kokhav Ha'Yarden (the Star of Jordan). The Arabic name is "Kaukab al-Hawa" (the Star of Winds). When you visit here and stand at the top, overlooking the Jordan valley, you'll understand both names. You will also see why it was called "Belvoir" (Fair View) by the crusaders.
How long does it take take to cross Israel all the way from north to south?
Less than one day if you are driving (a distance of about 470 km). But there is another way, an 850 km-long hiking trail from the northern end of Israel (Tel Dan) to its southern end (Eilat).
There are many well-marked nature trails all over Israel. The "Israel Trail" project ("Shvil Yisrael") undertook to incorporate many of the existing trails, plus new ones, into a unique continuous trail, crossing the whole country and including some of the best views and some of the most interesting sites. Many different landscapes, mountains, fields and meadows, rocks and deserts, springs and flowing streams, archeological sites, all of these can be seen along the trail. And the great advantage is that you get to appreciate the true nature of the land. Hiking the Israel Trail is a hike through history. You can feel the spirit of the land of the Bible, something you often miss driving on the highways. On the other hand, on the Israel Trail you can also get a more intimate feel of everyday life in modern Israel.
So - look for the orange-blue-white mark of the Israel Trail, and start walking!
Don't let the 850km length intimidate you: If you have enough time and energy you can choose to do a long stretch of the trail, but you can also choose a short segment of a few kilometers only.
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