Around the Holy Land

The natural wonders of the Dead Sea

The Dead Sea is not only a must-see for its significance in the Old Testament, but also for the natural wonders and historical significance


The Dead Sea, the lowest point on Earth, is not only a must-see for its significance in the Old Testament, but also for the natural wonders and historical significance of its landscapes.


The Bible tells of Bethlehem, which was also called "Efrat" in Genesis and in various other chapters. Rachel was buried on the road leading to Bethlehem ( "way to Efrat") north of the city , and Ruth the Moabite town lived on her return to Israel. According to the Book of Samuel, King David was born in the city which was anointed king by Samuel. After King David was exiled from the city, it was told that he missed the water well in the city, and three of his heroes brought him water from that well.

The city of Bethlehem is mentioned in the New Testament as the birthplace of Jesus Christ.


Ekron was an ancient city in Israel first settled by the Canaanites in the Bronze Age. During the Iron Age, with the invasion of the Sea People, the city became an important Philistine city. At the end of the 8th century BC the Assyrians conquered the city and took over. At that time the city was known as a manufacturer of olive oil on a large scale.


Christmas is the common festival almost every Christian communities marks the birth of Jesus. According to the New Testament, Jesus was born in Bethlehem to his mother, the Virgin Mary. Christians believe that the birth of Christ is the fulfillment of Old Testament prophecies about the Messiah's arrival who will redeem the world from its sin, and would bridge the gap between God and human beings. There is no consensus among the different communities and among historians about the precise chronology of Jesus' birth.


Hanukkah is a Jewish holiday celebrated for eight days. These days are days of admission, which fixed the sages of Israel during the Second Temple, in memory of the victory of the Maccabean revolt against the Greeks, the re-dedication of the Temple and the miracle of the oil. The holiday is celebrated by saying praise and thanksgiving, and the lighting of Hanukkah candles for eight days.

Church of St Peter in Gallicantu

one of the most striking churches in Jerusalem commemorates the apostle Peter’s triple denial of his Master, his immediate repentance and his reconciliation with Christ after the Resurrection.
Built on an almost sheer hillside, the Church of St Peter in Gallicantu stands on the eastern slope of Mount Zion.
On its roof rises a golden rooster atop a black cross — recalling Christ’s prophecy that Peter would deny him three times “before the cock crows”. Galli-cantu means cockcrow in Latin.

Church of Dominus Flevit

The little teardrop Church of Dominus Flevit, halfway down the western slope of the Mount of Olives, recalls the Gospel incident in which Jesus wept over the future fate of Jerusalem.
This poignant incident occurred during Jesus’ triumphal entry into Jerusalem on the first Palm Sunday, when crowds threw their cloaks on the road in front of him and shouted, “Blessed is the king who comes in the name of the Lord!”

National Plan Launched to Excavate the Judean Desert Caves and Rescue the Dead Sea Scrolls

The Israel Antiquities Authority, in cooperation with the Heritage Project in the Ministry of Jerusalem Affairs, and together with the Minister of Culture and Sport, MK Miri Regev, is promoting a national plan for comprehensive archaeological excavations in the Judean Desert caves to rescue the Dead Sea Scrolls, which are among the earliest texts written in the Hebrew language.

Shivta- The desert city in the incense route

The four Nabatean towns of Haluza, Mamshit, Avdat and Shivta, along with associated fortresses and agricultural landscapes in the Negev Desert, are spread along routes linking them to the Mediterranean end of the incense and spice route. Together they reflect the hugely profitable trade in frankincense and myrrh from south Arabia to the Mediterranean, which flourished from the 3rd century BC until the 2nd century AD.

Paternoster Church in Jerusalem

This church is built over a cave in which Jesus was said to have taught the disciples the prayer that begins "Our Father who art in heaven".

The 4th-century Byzantine church has been partially reconstructed and provides a good sense of what the original was like. The half-restored church has the same dimensions as the original; the garden outside the three doors outlines the atrium area.