It’s a destination that has been on my bucket list for as long as I can remember. Ever since I saw photos from my grandparents trip there when I was a child. I carefully clutched the mother of pearl Bible they gave my mother to carry down the aisle, a gift from the Holy Land. Knowing that places I’ve read about have existed in much the same way for hundreds of years is a great part of the appeal. As you read this post, I’ve landed in my 29th country (yes, I’m a slow traveler): Israel.
I decided that this year would be one where I would cross off one of those big countries I’d long wanted to see. So when a blogging conference was announced to take place in Jerusalem, I was sold. I didn’t really need to attend the conference but it was a good excuse. I booked my ticket a few months ago and haven’t made many plans but rather want to see where the trip takes me.
Where I’ll Be Going
What is booked, however, is my first few days and the period during the conference. So far I have 4-5 days booked in the capital, where I’ll do some sightseeing, shopping, and tours. I want to check out the beaches of Jaffa and make a day trip to see the B’hai Gardens in Haifa. Time allowing, I’d love to see Nazareth, but I’ll figure out logistics of traveling around Sabbath when I get there. Once in Jerusalem, I’ll mostly be following the conference schedule, but will set aside time to see important places like the Western Wall, Mount of Olives, and Church of the Nativity. Afterward, I’ll be spending a few days in Southern Israel, including a visit to the Dead Sea.
There’s no way of knowing what will happen tomorrow. Places like Afghanistan and Syria were once well traveled, but are now mostly untouched by tourism. I’d hate to not be able to visit because of tragic political circumstances. I also think it’s important to see a place and meet the people before you form opinions on their politics. I also think I’ll love it there as I tend to obsess over cities on the water like Tel Aviv.