Here are the most recent ones (I’m up to date!). Excuse the errors. I’ll correct this later.
July 10th, 2012
The day started with a trip to a lookout area in Golan Heights. From there we could see a large part of the land, including barren areas. It was a great place for a photograph. Oftentimes, we go to places and reach the tops of mountains and are able to see the land beneath us. The feeling is incredible and it never gets old because it’s an opportunity to see the world from another perspective. In daily life, I’m usually looking up at mountains but so far on this trip, I’ve been looking down from them.
From the Golan Heights we went to the ancient city of Gamla where we learned more about the Jewish revolt and saw a place where Romans fought. From our location, we were once again looking down at Gamla but this time the walk to the bottom was steep and treacherous. Instead of taking that path, I decided to walk toward the waterfall which was in the other direction. This waterfall is the largest one in Israel. The walk over to view the waterfall was admittedly longer than I would have expected but it was worthwhile since waterfall are always nice to look at.
After the strenuous walk at Gamla, we went to Katsrin to see an old Jewish house. Looking at archaeological ruins is always interesting though it is not the field that I’m most interested in. The house was pretty small and it had a courtyard inside of it. It also had a tiny loft area that most of us climbed up and exited out of.
The time at the house was short and next we traveled to the Volcanic Bunker (Mt. Bentel). This part was cool because there were actually Israeli soldiers all throughout the area, making sure we didn’t photograph anything we weren’t supposed to. From there we could see Syria and we learned a little about the Six Day War. I confess that I didn’t know much about Israel’s history before coming on the trip so taking this time to learn about it has been very enriching. This mountain also lent itself to beautiful views so overall the trip to this volcanic site proved fruitful.
On the way to Caesarea Philippi we passed the some Druze villages and got to see a bit of their culture. We finally reached our destination and were pleased to see beautiful streams outside of the pagan temple to the god Pan. There was an option to take a walk around the water but instead I decided to stay behind and a few of us found a nice pool of water that we could stick our feet in. It was surprisingly cold so we only stayed there for a little while but it was amazingly refreshing considering the typical Israeli heat.
Our final stop was certainly the coolest one since it wasn’t even an official tour site yet. It was also interesting because when I took a class on the Hebrew Bible and Ancient Israel in the fall of my sophomore year, I always noted that my professor would say the name Omrit though I couldn’t remember why. Either way, our final stop was to this town where there had been much recent excavation. It was nice to see something that was still underway and it also felt a little dangerous (in a good way).