Ein Kerem, Israel: The Picture Perfect Town of Judea

Nestled in the highlands of Jerusalem, between Mount Ors and Mount Herzl, is the small but iconic and ancient town of Ein Kerem. It holds a substantial place in Jewish history and is known today as a place of artistic prominence and practice. Beauty seems to be the ideal keyword for describing Ein Kerem and even the drive to the town is breathtaking, and built to accommodate the land. The roads move and curve with the mountainside, giving the entire area a very old world feel and appearance. 

ein kerem town in the judean moutains

The History of Ein Kerem

The historic town of Ein Kerem has roots in the Old Testament mentioned in the books of Jeremiah and Nehemiah. As far as the land designation of the twelve tribes of Israel, Ein Kerem is located in what was the territory of the tribe of Judah. The historic mountain village also plays a large role in the story of Christianity. This was the place where the mother of Saint John the Baptist miraculously conceived her son. The town was also visited by the mother of Jesus during her pregnancy. The story goes that the two women met at the local town to share in their joy of being pregnant. Today the site is visited by Christians from around the world who come to sip the divine waters of the well. Wells have often been associated with women throughout several religions and Christianity is no exception. Some pilgrims even bring their own plastic water bottles to take the water back home.

public ancient stone water well in Ein Kerem
Public ancient water well in Ein Kerem, Jerusalem

The Town of Ein Kerem Today

Today Ein Kerem is home to a thriving artist community. The beauty of the landscape combined with the distinct history of the town has drawn in artists from around the world. The biblical rolling hills, iconic heritage sites, and regional legends and stories are commemorated in hundreds if not thousands of artistic renderings and representations. A few of these representations are the work of some of the most respected artists in history, including the legendary Marc Chagall, born Moishe Shagal. In 1962 he donated a series of stained glass windows to the Abbell Synagogue of the Hadassah Medical Centre. The windows are masterpieces of color, light, and composition, paying homage to the twelve sons of Jacob, their professions, accomplishments, and life histories. The concept of life history commemoration is a hallmark of many sites and sanctuaries in Ein Kerem.

chagall windows in hadassah hospital ein kerem

The Church of Saint John the Baptist, belonging to the Franciscan order of Catholicism, is one such site. Constructed on the spot where the Saint was said to have been born, the entire structure dates back to potentially the Byzantine period. The most current additions to the Church go all the way back to the 11th century, and in the mid 20th century excavations revealed a slew of undiscovered artifacts. Some of these include a wine press, graves, and even rock cut chambers where several ceramic pieces dating to 70 AD were discovered. 

Church of Saint John the Baptist in Ein Kerem
Church of Saint John the Baptist in Ein Kerem

The other Church that commemorates the life of Saint John the Baptist is the Church of the Visitation. The Church is located on the site where Mary was said to have sung her song of praise. The entire structure is decorated with scenes from the event including several frescos. The original mosaic floor of the Church is still visible as well. The Church also contains the legendary “Rock of Concealment” where Elizabeth and the infant John hid from Herod’s soldiers. The rock miraculously opened up and the new mother and child were able to find sanctuary. After a full day of visiting the historic sites around time, you will want to replenish yourself with a delicious meal at Atalya. Named after the head chef and owner of the restaurant, Atalya is open for private events with a menu crafted entirely by Atalya. Her dishes are inspired by the surrounding land and include corn cakes topped with sardines, focaccia, Israeli salad, and more.

The gate and exterior of the Church of the Visitation in Ein Kerem
Church of the Visitation in Ein Kerem

Although the hustle and bustle of big city Jerusalem provides ample history, food, and events for several visits, Ein Kerem offers a more personal experience. The quiet persona of Ein Kerem and its place within the geography of the region exemplifies the charm of small town life. This is where, throughout history artists, historical figures and pilgrims have gathered to share in the majesty, history, and unique beauty of the Judean hills.  

 

As a result of the current travel risks, now more than ever, it's important to educate ourselves, advocate, and stand with Israel. Ask Herzl is the perfect place to take your knowledge and understanding to new heights as you embark on a fun and interactive learning journey. Whether you're a student hungry for knowledge, a teacher looking to inspire, or simply a curious soul eager to explore, Ask Herzl has got you covered! 🙌🌟 From engaging events to downloadable resources, they've cracked the code for educational excellence. 📝 So why wait? Join the tribe of Israel enthusiasts and let your passion for education pave the way towards advocacy for Israel! 🇮🇱💪
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As a result of the current travel risks, now more than ever, it`s important to educate ourselves, advocate, and stand with Israel. Ask Herzl is the perfect place to take your knowledge and understanding to new heights as you embark on a fun and interactive learning journey. Whether you`re a student hungry for knowledge, a teacher looking to inspire, or simply a curious soul eager to explore, Ask Herzl has got you covered! 🙌🌟 From engaging events to downloadable resources, they`ve cracked the code for educational excellence. 📝 So why wait? Join the tribe of Israel enthusiasts and let your passion for education pave the way towards advocacy for Israel! 🇮🇱💪
To learn more and to stay updated on what`s happening in Israel click the link in our bio!

#AskHerzl #EducatingTheWorld #worldjewishtravel #JewishVirtualEducation
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In light of the travel warnings, travel has come to a halt. This is where the beauty of virtual learning becomes invaluable, and Qesher is the perfect platform to unleash your potential on your own terms! 🌟 With Qesher's self-paced online courses, tailoring your learning journey has never been easier. But Qesher offers more than just courses... it's a community! 🤝💫 Engage in lively discussions in the Discussion Forums, connect with like-minded peers during Networking Sessions, and supercharge your growth with the incredible Mentorship Program 🤝. No matter where you are in your educational journey, Qesher is here to empower you every step of the way. 💪 Embrace the power of connections, amplify your knowledge, and unlock new horizons today!
🔓💫
Click the link in our bio to learn more about Qesher and stay updated on what's happening in Israel

#worldjewishtravel #JewishVirtualEducation #QesherCommunity #Empowerment #OnlineLearning #ConnectAndGrow

In light of the travel warnings, travel has come to a halt. This is where the beauty of virtual learning becomes invaluable, and Qesher is the perfect platform to unleash your potential on your own terms! 🌟 With Qesher`s self-paced online courses, tailoring your learning journey has never been easier. But Qesher offers more than just courses... it`s a community! 🤝💫 Engage in lively discussions in the Discussion Forums, connect with like-minded peers during Networking Sessions, and supercharge your growth with the incredible Mentorship Program 🤝. No matter where you are in your educational journey, Qesher is here to empower you every step of the way. 💪 Embrace the power of connections, amplify your knowledge, and unlock new horizons today!
🔓💫
Click the link in our bio to learn more about Qesher and stay updated on what`s happening in Israel

#worldjewishtravel #JewishVirtualEducation #QesherCommunity #Empowerment #OnlineLearning #ConnectAndGrow
...

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