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Welcome to Tiberias

Welcome to Tiberias

Tiberias travel guide

Located on the western shore of the Sea of Galilee, Tiberias is a favorite health and holiday resort as well as a pilgrimage destination.

The city lies on a mountain slope, beautifully looking over the Golan Heights at the other side of the lake.

Christians refer many episodes to the Sea of Galilee (Lake Kinerret in Hebrew), such as the Multiplication of the Loaves and the Walking on the Waters.

Near Tiberias, where the Jordan River leaves the Sea of Galilee, Sea of Galilee is the Yardenit, the site where Christians belive that Jesus was baptized.

The shores of the Sea of Galilee are dotted with trees and green lawns, and the waters of the lake are pleasantly clear and cool.

At an altitude of some 600 meters above sea level, overlooking the Sea of Galilee (the Kinneret), lays the city of Tiberias – one of the largest cities in the north of Israel and one of its most popular resort places. Tiberias has been the cultural and religious center of the Jewish community in the Roman empire days, and is considered one of the holiest cities in Israel. Alongside its historical monuments Tiberias is great place to pass the summer holidays and it offers many attractions for tourists as well as families with kids.

Among Tiberias ‘s many attractions the Hammat Tverya National Park is a recommended way to pass a relaxing afternoon while visiting the city. Situated next to the “Hamei Tverya” spa (another great option for spa lovers), the Hammat Tverya National Park includes few old synagogues and a public bath house, along with a few ancient natural warm water spas. Many of Tiberias’ landmarks of ancient history are located there.

The Tiberias beaches are mostly clean and well kept, though admission fee is required. In order to enjoy the scenic view of the Sea of Galilee from above mixed with a nice walk, visit the Emek Hayarden boardwalk between Zemach beach and the Dganya Aleph Kibbutz. The Jordan river (Yarden river), stretching to the North and South of the Sea of Galilee, has a wide selection of rafting and kayaking spots for water sports lovers. Along the Alon boardwalk, next to the beach, you can fine three centers offering equipment and water activities such as boats rental, water skiing and more.

Tiberias also offers many fine seafood and fresh fish restaurants. On top of the promenade’s many sea food restaurants, you can try Shimshon steak house (behind the Tiberias market) or Dex steak house, both offer great meat at sea level with cool atmosphere. Another off-the-beaten-track restaurant, serving kosher Jewish food from around the globe is The Guy restaurant (located next to the Panorama hotel) .

There are many hotels in Tiberias, some of which are luxurious and some are less pricey. The best hotels in Tiberias include Caesar Resort Hotel, the Scots Hotel, the Sheraton and Rimonim Galei Kinnereth, all located next to the shore and offer 5 star facilities. Other good options while searching for hotels in Tiberias are the Holiday Inn, the Golden Tulip and Golan hotel, all of which offer a a simpler yet budget-friendly option as well as great views of the Sea of Galilee.

Tiberias – A tour in  a holy cities

Tiberias – A tour in a holy cities

Tiberias is a large city in the north of Israel, situated on the western coast of the Sea of Galilee (the Kinneret). The rich history of Tiberias, alongside its excellent weather and great views, make it one of the most popular resorts in Israel and one of the main tourist attractions. Tiberias has been one of the most significant places in Israel for the Jewish community for centuries: Together with Jerusalem, Hebron and Safed, it is one of the holiest cities in the country. It was the home of the great Jewish council (the Sanhedrin) and many claim it is where the Jerusalem Talmud (“Talmud Yerushalmi") was written. Today it is still mostly populated with different religious Jewish communities. Tiberias has been the heart of the Galilee for many years. In the days of Tiberius Caesar - whom the city is named after - the Jewish community was banned from living in Safed and moved to Tiberias. In the roman days, many Jewish scholars and rabbis lived and studied there, and were later buried in and around the city. Since those days, many visitors come to pay their respect and pray in some of these Tzadikim Graves (graves of the pious). Most famous of which are the tomb of Rambam (in the city center) which was one of the greatest minds in Jewish history; the tomb of Rabbi Meir Baal Haness, where a special festival is held every second Passover (next to the southern part of Tiberias' sea of Galilee coast); and the tomb of Rabbi Akiva (at the western entrance to Tiberias) which is visited traditionally by believers at the evening of Yom Kippur. The Tiberias ancient synagogue is another site to visit if you wish to explore the Jewish community's daily routine in the old days. The ancient synagogue (on the southern exit of the city) served the Jewish population during the third and fourth centuries, and has a beautiful mosaic floor with the images of the 12 signs. Another nice stop is the Tiberias Archeological site (at the heart of the city), which shows the remnants of an ancient synagogue that used to be active during the sixth century, as well as a Jewish living quarter.

Tzemach beach Sea of Galilee

Tzemach beach Sea of Galilee

The renewed Tzemach beach Sea of Galilee At the Tzemach junction in front of a mall in front of the Sea of Galilee You will find the Tzemach beach Sea of Galilee - a quiet beach with wide lawns, shades and toilets. Admission to the beach is free and is open for your enjoyment all days of the week. Fun bathing and a pleasant pastime. Tzemach beach is a quiet beaches, where music alcohol are forbidden. Inspectors will work with the assistance of the Kinneret Environmental Guard Unit and the teams on the beaches, to enforce and maintain public order. This is in addition to the security guards.

The Scots Hotel Tiberias story

The Scots Hotel Tiberias story

The story about the Scots Hotel St. Andrew's -a famous hotel in Tiberias The Scots Hotel St. Andrew's is a hotel in Tiberias, Israel that is owned and managed by the Church of Scotland. The hotel was founded in 1885 by David Watt Torrance, a 23 year old surgeon from Airdrie, Scotland, in order to set up the Scottish "Mission of the Jews" in the Holy Land. The hotel is open to all regardless of race, creed, class or color. The David Building was a hospital that was opened on 1st January 1894. Present at the opening ceremony were the local Chief Rabbi, the Governor, the Muslim Mufti, the Roman Catholic and Greek Orthodox priests, the local Chief Judge and many others from the local communities. The song a hymn in Arabic and a prayer was said. The governor and Mrs. Torrance performed the opening ceremony. initially, the hospital offered general care, and later became a maternity Hospital. in 1959, with the opening of a new state-run hospital it was no longer needed. it was closed down and re-opened two years later as a hospice for pilgrims, which later developed into a guest house. The policy of welcoming everybody regardless of race, creed or color initiated by Torrance is still in force. Local people have stayed and eaten breakfast in the room in which they first sow the light of day when it was the delivery room. in the summer, Torrance would travel amongst the nomadic peoples and in the cooler months they would travel to Tiberias. On one occasion, a huge Bedouin warrior was seen crawling on his hands and knees up the stairs to the wards because he had never seen a two-story buildings before The port of the upstairs lounge area was once an operating theatre with huge windows providing good light. The Ceilidh Bar and other rooms either side of it at the head of the stairs were the wards, female on the left, male on the right, Muslim in the middle. There were eight beds in each ward and six cots distributed as required. Torrance held weekly services in Arabic and English. They were received sometimes with silence, sometimes with abuse and sometimes with response and debate. Torrance believed however, that real communication of the Gospel came in the unconditional acceptance of the sick. From the roof terrace, one can see the mixed nature of old Tiberias with the Great Mosque, St.Peter's Roman Catholic Church and several Synagogues. The modern high-rise hotels show that Tiberias has become a town built on tourism. Rev. Andrew Bonar who was in the original exploratory team of 1839 predicted, "Tiberias will one day become one of the most important winter resorts in the world". Tiberias now has over 6000 hotel beds with more being added. The Scots Hotel contributes 140 beds to the total, and through the ethos of the place provides Christian hospitality to all people regardless of race. The old church building is a place of worship that has been the central focus of the spiritual life of the mission since about 1930. The building was originally a school, but was turned into a church sanctuary in the 1890s. The church is named after St. Andrew, the patron saint of Scotland. David Torrance was a doctor who moved to Tiberias to help the people there. He was very successful and helped a lot of people, even though it was difficult. He had a lot of children, some of whom became doctors too. David Torrance was a missionary who served in the Tiberias Mission. He was ordained a missionary minister by Glasgow Presbytery in 1895. His main tasks were in educational work, both formal and religious. John Soutar was also a missionary who served in the Tiberias Mission. He is buried in the same graveyard as David Torrance. The Beach Tower is part of the old city wall that was first laid on this site by the Crusaders. Donna Gracia, a Portuguese Jew, rebuilt the walls with the help of her nephew. In the 18th century, the Bedouin leader Daher Al Omar rebuilt the walls again. Part of the original Roman city wall can still be seen over by the hot springs. By the time Dr. Torrance arrived, the city was squashed into the 34 acres that the Crusaders had walled in after the earthquake of 1034. The city was under Turkish control and administered by a local Arab Governor. Because of this structure, the locals thought that Torrance would never be allowed to own land or build a hospital. The Turkish authorities were suspicious of anything that missionaries did. Torrance obtained all the land he wanted by means of regular conversations with the owner who was a Mufti, a local Muslim leader. Torrance never expressed an interest in the land but was finally offered it for 60 British Pounds. He immediately built two residences, one for the minister in 1891 and one for himself a year later. For a hospital building, a special deed of permission (a firman) was needed. The book is about a doctor named Torrance who goes to Constantinople to help people. He is able to do this because he is a very determined person and because he has the support of the local officials. He is seen as a very compassionate person and is one of the first healers to work in that area in a long time. He attributes his skills to his faith in Christ. The Manse is a house that was built in 1890. It is a big house with many rooms. It became a hospital for women and children in 1921. A Turkish man bought the land for the hospital, but he decided it was too hot in Tiberias so he sold it cheaply to Torrance. The Present It is unthinkable that any church would voluntarily abandon work on the shore of the Lake that saw so much of Jesus' ministry. The potential for the site to be used for the furtherance of the Kingdom is so huge that the response needed to be one of great vision. in 1999 the General Assembly of the church of Scotland overwhelmingly caught the vision. We are now at the beginning of fulfilling that vision. By erecting a new building and refurbishing and upgrading the existing ones, we are now in a position to offer Christian hospitality to all - pilgrims from overseas and groups and individuals from Israel who seek rest and opportunity for reflection in conditions of unsurpassed comfort and service. The gardens have been landscaped and replanted with a variety of flowers and trees. The views from almost everywhere on the premises are wonderful, whether they be of the Lake and the Golan Heights beyond (on clear winter days even snow covered Mount Hermon looking like a long low cloud is visible) or of Bereniki and the Swiss Forest above the town. Situated as it is, on the shores of the Sea of Galilee, the Scots Hotel is ideally positioned for exploration of the north of Israel whether it be holy sites associated with the birth of Christianity, ancient sites that speak of the history of this land and region or the wonders of creation in the spring flowers and migrating birds. The Church of Scotland is a branch of Christianity that started in Scotland. It is also known as "The Kirk" and people in it are called Presbyterians. The Church of Scotland believe in democracy and that everyone is equal in the eyes of God.

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