Bethlehem, the birthplace of Jesus, has been a prime destination for Christian pilgrims for centuries: “And Joseph also went up from Galilee, from the city of Nazareth, to Judea, to the city of David, which is called Bethlehem, because he was of the house and lineage of David, to be enrolled with Mary, his betrothed, who was with child. And while they were there, the time came for her to be delivered.
Emmaus, located between Jerusalem and Tel-Aviv, is marked by the ruins of a 12th-Century church. After his resurrection, Jesus joined two of his disciples on the road to Emmaus: “That very day two of them were going to a village named Emmaus, about seven miles from Jerusalem, and talking with each other about all these things that had happened. While they were talking and discussing together, Jesus himself drew near and went with them” (Lk. 24:13-15).
The Mount of Olives is a sacred place for both Jews and Christians. “And when they had sung a hymn, they went out to the Mount of Olives” (Matt. 26:30).*
sunset view from Mount of Olives
Banias – Caesarea Philippi is the site where Jesus gave St. Peter the keys to the Kingdom of Heaven: “And I tell you, you are Peter, and on this rock I will build my church, and the powers of death shall not prevail against it. I will give you the keys of the kingdom of heaven…” (Matt. 16: 18-19).*