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Jewish Heritage

Miami Beach, Florida
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Jewish Heritage

Coming from a Mexican culture I would like to know the three most important sacred Jewish sites a foreigner must see. I want to build an itinerary in terms of religious importance. Thank you. This forum is helping me a lot to create a mental picture of what Israel stands for.

Tel Aviv, Israel
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1. Re: Jewish Heritage

Your question does not have an easy answer.

The single most important site for Jews is the Western Wall - the holiest accessible place on earth for the Jewish People. Also in Jerusalem of most importance to Jews would typically be the Western Wall Tunnels tour and the City of David. You'll, of course, not want to miss the Jewish Quarter in the Old City.

Of tremendous (almost 'holy') importance to Jews from a modern perspective is the Yad Vashem Holocaust Memorial. This is a 'must' for all of humanity to experience.

Outside of Jerusalem, the other three holy cities to Judaism are:

Hebron - Tombs of the Patriarchs

Tiberias - Here the foundation was laid for the rabbinic Judaism of today.

Tzfat - Center for Kabblah (Jewish mysticism)

In addition to religion, please understand that the State of Israel is the modern nation-state of the Jewish People. In order to understand what that's all about, you really should spend a day in Tel Aviv, the first 'Hebrew' city of modern times. In Tel Aviv you'll find Independence Hall. And two other important museums you would find insightful: Beit HaTfutsot - The Museum of the Jewish People and the Palmach Museum.

Miami Beach, Florida
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2. Re: Jewish Heritage

Hi Dave, Thank you for taking the time to answer my question. I will follow your instructions closely.

NYC/Israel
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3. Re: Jewish Heritage

IN terms of sacred sites I would say the Western Wall. I do not see the tunnels, City of David or the Jewish Quarter as a sacred site. Yad V'shem is very important and should be a "must' on every visitor's list. Orthodox Jews will come to Israel and visit the tombs of ancestors or famous Rabbis. I do not know if they can be called "sacred" sites. Hebron and the Cave of the Patriarchs, is a very important place to Jews. It is a place to consider visiting.

Tel Aviv is a modern Jewish city but in no manner or form does it answer your question re: "sacred" sites.

Tel Aviv, Israel
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4. Re: Jewish Heritage

The title of your post is "Jewish Heritage" and I related to the Jewish Heritage, both past and present, in my response. "Sacred" is probably not the best word to use in a Jewish context, except for the Western Wall and the Temple Mount.

I stand by all of my recommendations as places you should consider visiting if a 'Jewish Heritage' experience is what you're looking for.

Israel
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5. Re: Jewish Heritage

Rachels tomb should be added to the list. It is located just south of Jerusalem.

Chana

Israel

Israel
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6. Re: Jewish Heritage

If you are looking for sites with Jewish religious significance then the Temple Mount is definitely number one, followed by the Western Wall.

After that you can add the Cave of the Patriarchs in Hebron, Shilo - the site of the tabernacle (Mishkan).

Regardless of the historic significance of some of the other sites mentioned they have abolutely no religious significance considering your question.

israel
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7. Re: Jewish Heritage

There are no "sacred Jewish sites ", the Kotel (Western Wall) is the only place that can be refered by the term "sacred". Jewish belief is spiritual. Still the list Dave gave is what I would have written too. I might add Petach Tiquva to go with Tel Aviv, that was the first Jewish settlement in modern times. But that is not what the OP asked. So, in my opinion the only sacred place is the Kotel.

Haifa, Israel
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8. Re: Jewish Heritage

In order not to allow Pedro to focus on the most significant Jewish sites I would recommend to stick with Dave original suggestion. Once Pedro will "taste" them, he will be in a position to expand the sites list

Israel
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9. Re: Jewish Heritage

It seems to me, IMHO, that we should be answering Pedro's question - with all the additional information he has, he can decide if there is something else he wants to see, or to ask.

If he stated that he "wants to build an itinerary in terms of religious significance" - then we should respect that and not inject other sites (no matter how important or wonderful) that have no connection to his theme.

NYC/Israel
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10. Re: Jewish Heritage

I have to agree with Oreet on this one.

Pedro indicated that he is coming from a different culture and wants to learn about sacred Jewish sites. The definition of sacred is, "connected to G-d" While we can list other important things to see in Israel, if one doesn't have a background we shouldn't confuse him. In retrospect, even my listing Yad V'shem in post # 3 does NOT meet that criteria.

Probably the sacred sites mentioned in this thread are Temple Mount, Western Wall, Hebron ( Cave of Patriarchs )and Rachels Tomb! After that, everything else is important but not at all connected to G-d!