Tuesday, June 17

Jerusalem - The Promise Land

One place that I never thought I would go to but here I am! One of the cities with most history in the whole world AND also the MOST holiest city for 3 major religions. This is where everything came together, I really wonder how this small space could be the game-changer for so many huge events that formed the modern world we are living in today. I was a huge fans of books about Templars and Dan Brown, this is the perfect place any person should visit who has some interest in history. Or religion for that matter...Jerusalem old town is surrounded by a huge wall, inside the city there are 4 quarters: Jewish, Christian, Muslim and Armenian...? All of them make sense except the last one, why on earth would there be an Armenian quarter? Well explanation is that when the templars came from Europe and saw all the amazingly beautiful women here that were Christian they were able to marry them and also gave them the best location in the city. And it's still there, would love to see this place 1000 year ago! But it kinda feels like it has not changed much.

The Jaffa gate when entering from the south side
The had lit it up in the night
The Holy Sepulchre, destroyed and rebuild countless of times....As you can see there are 2 gates but one of them was blocked long ago during the occupation times. I was really surprised that there was NO security what so ever to get into it. Even Beijing subway is stricter....And no guards either. 

This simple place is one of the holiest places on the planet...can you guess? No? It's the spot where Jesus was crucified over 2000 years ago, a church was then build around the area 325 which makes this the oldest church in the world by far. 
Where the Jesus last rites happened, loads of people were putting down religions objects to make them "holy"

The tomb of Jesus Christ, the first time I came here there was about a 100 meter line to get in, but second time almost no queue. I got to touch the stones where he is "buried" under. Bucket-list check for visiting the most holy place in the world for Christians...

Inside the tomb, a footprint of Jesus on display, but is it really? 
Really high ceiling 
After praying at the most holy spot, there cannot be bad luck, right? 
Mass is still kept here, what a place to come to. Even though I'm not really religious I would really want to join!! 
Always watching
Down into the dungeons, somewhere here the "true cross" is preserved but it is only open once a year to see. I guess that Is Easter...
It was so amazing that most of the church was empty. Was unreal to walk alone in such a historically powerful place
The wailing wall by day
And in widescreen...
The wailing wall by night
I did it! Sat by Jesus tomb and crucifixion point followed by touching the wailing wall. I am blessed now for sure and nothing, nothing can stop me :)
Worlds third most holy mosque behind the wailing wall
Once a month the newly recruits gather on the square, there were a LOT of guns
Walking in the streets feels a lot like Assassins Creed, Hede you should so see it!! If I would have been wearing a white cape I would have so felt like blending into crowds and doing missions :D 

 Assassins lurking around the corners? 
And by night, you almost feel alone here
 LOT of lights
 Feeling welcome ? 
 The roofs of Old Town Jerusalem, they used to be connected throughout the whole city but now more restricted, still, can move loads on the roof if you don't wanna walk in the streets. Makes the whole place even more Assassins Creed-ish
 Like you can see there are so many religious groups in 1 little area. 
 Even the pope was here
 Found a small area with a lot of grapes hanging from the roof
 Bread, and so yummy! 
 Beautiful by night
 Not really sure what a cards and "gambling" has to do in the Holy City but there is was...
 Amazing dinner in Old Town, for just 20 euro 
 Full moon adding some extra wowness to this already amazing place
 Wall by night

The reason why I spent the whole week in Jerusalem was the European Gastrointestinal Expo that was organised here called ESPGHAN.

Thanks to Nestles great expresso machine 
The Jerusalem animal kinda looks like the Finnish lion
Already the 47th meeting
Doctors symposium 
 Massive feast after the first day! Was so tired here because only slept 9h in 2 days, but damn it was good! 
 rows and rows of food
 Views from the hotel 

After the second world war there was chaos all around Europe. Broken houses, cities and everything in ruins. Dead animals and people in the street and life was though. For most of the jewish that were left in Europe it was worse and they were given a place, Israel by the British. One of the most impressive Holocaust museums I've seen just 10km outside old town. They said no pictures but I had some problems in hearing them or listening...I'm often bad at this
 Shaped like a triangle, light in the end, walk through countless of rooms and halls

 Thousands of pictures of the people that are no more....
The museum is formed like a triangle that you walk through, it's a really long way to walk but there is always "light in the end of the tunnel". It's so well made, and in the end there really was light. Just look at the view when coming out of the museum after spending 3 hours looking, listening and reading about horrors of the past.
 The triangle, the architecture of this place is a genius!! Moshe Safdie! 

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