Jerusalem, Israel’s ancient and modern capital, whose history dates back 3000 years, is the jewel in the crown. From the moment you arrive in Jerusalem, you are surrounded by the special atmosphere and ambience of this city of many faces. Jerusalem, King David’s mountain-top capital, is holy to the world’s three great monotheistic religions – Judaism, Christianity and Islam.
Nowhere are the contrasts in Israel more apparent than in Jerusalem. It is a dynamic city where luxury hotels, innovative modern buildings and well-developed industrial parks are located alongside ancient monuments and fascinating archeological sites. The walls of the Old City and the malls of the New City, Roman Arches, Byzantine moats, Crusader walls and Ottoman ramparts make Jerusalem one big colorful mosaic. Holy shrines, the Western Wall, the Via Dolorosa, the Church of the Holy Sepulchre, the Shrine of the Book that houses the 2000-year old Dead-Sea Scrolls, Mount Zion – the site of King David’s grave and the Last Supper, and the colorful marketplace are only a few of the numerous unique sites in the city.
Jerusalem’s distinctive vistas reveal a variety of styles, which bear witness to the contribution of different eras in the history of this amazing city, yet the Jerusalem stone covering the buildings unite the city’s historic and modern façades. Jerusalem is a living archeological site, a vibrant blend of ancient and contemporary life.
Israel offers an almost limitless range of attractions for visitors from every country in the world and for people of every faith. It offers much variety in scenery, history, cultural attractions and a fascinating contrast between the ancient and the modern. So many names that appear on road signs – Jerusalem, Sea of Galilee, Nazareth – will have been familiar since childhood. You will experience the special thrill of walking in the footsteps of Abraham (4000 years ago), King David (3000 years ago), Jesus (2000 years ago), and the Crusaders (1000 years ago).
Modern Israel is a melting pot of different ethnic groups reflecting various cultures. It is a modern country that combines a rich, illustrious history with a tourist infrastructure that caters to every vacation taste: glorious sandy beaches, bustling cities, nature reserves, museums, shopping malls, exotic markets, artists’ colonies, the therapeutic wonders of the Dead-Sea, industrial parks, Hi-tech centers and much more.
Small in size, within a few hours you can go from the snowy heights of Mount Hermon to the Judean Desert and the saltiest sea on earth, the Dead Sea, while visiting ancient biblical cities, covered markets and a high-rise metropolis on the way.This is what makes Israel truly a destination with something for everyone.
In Israel you have to use the word “old” sparingly – the age of many of its cities is counted not in decades or in centuries, but in millennia. The ingenuity and complexity of some of these historical gems have won them a place on the prestigious UNESCO World Heritage List.
You may enjoy a taste of Israel in some of the optional sightseeing tours which are offered to symposium participants and accompanying persons.