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Safed >> Travel Guide
Captivating, hilly Safed (or Tzfat by Israelis), the birth town of Kabbalah (Jewish mysticism), is without a doubt the spot for a break from the rat-race and for an experience of authentic Jewish spirituality.
In older days, this quaint city housed some of Judaism’s greatest mystics, serving as the holly conduits for the prodigious writings of the mysterious Talmudic Kabbalah.
Today, in Safed’s artists' quarter, you can stroll through eerie cobblestone alleys, walled by marvelous historic houses where artists display their work in their studio windows. Hear the chanted prayers from the synagogues in the Jewish quarter, or take a guided tour at dusk and learn about the city’s captivating history, both old and new.
The air is crisp and the encompassing scenic views are simply breathtaking, with the Sea of Galilee to the south east, Golan Heights to the east, Mount Meron to the west and Mount Hermon to the north.
The contradiction of spirituality, materialism and art cohabitating together in Safed, doesn’t jolt the town’s quiet air. At night, if you listen carefully, you can actually hear nothing, but be sure, spirituality is flowing through the night’s air.
The first Hebrew Press room in Israel was established in Safed in 1857, which makes the city the most fitting location for the Printing Press Museum. Try not to miss the Meiri Museum for Safed History, the Great Breslov Synagogue or the Model Exhibit of the Third Temple, featured at the Tzaddik Educational Visitor’s Center. Visit the Ancient Cemetery, where you can prostrate on graves of famous Rabbis, like Luria, Karo, Ramak, while you seek answers to your prayers.
In Safed you can stay in a small guest house and feel the mystic vibes of the town from within, or stay in one of the hotels and enjoy fresh mountain air and a remarkable panorama from your balcony.
The choice of day trips to take from Safed is vast, and transportation for such day excursions meets the par. You can descend to Tiberias (which together with Safed, Jerusalem and Hebron makes the four holly cities of Israel) and visit nearby Capernaum. The ancient city of Acre (Akko) is also around an hour away, so is Rosh HaNikra with it’s incredible geologically formed grottos. In winter you can ski (if snowfall permits) at Israel’s single ski resort at Mount Hermon, or travel to the Golan Heights to view scenic water falls followed by a splendid Druze meal.

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