Mount of Beatitudes on the northwestern shore of the Sea of Galilee

12 April 2021 | Author/Destination: | Rubric: General, Union for the Mediterranean

Church of the Beatitudes © Berthold Werner

Church of the Beatitudes © Berthold Werner

The Mount of Beatitudes is a hill in the Northern District of Israel, in the Korazim Plateau. It is where Jesus is believed to have delivered the Sermon on the Mount which started with the Beatitudes. Pope John Paul II celebrated a Mass at this site in March 2000. The Jesus Trail pilgrimage route connects the Mount to other sites from the life of Jesus.   read more…

Church of the Holy Sepulchre in East Jerusalem

2 April 2021 | Author/Destination: | Rubric: General, Union for the Mediterranean

Calvary/Golgotha © Gerd Eichmann/cc-by-sa-4.0

Calvary/Golgotha © Gerd Eichmann/cc-by-sa-4.0

The Church of the Holy Sepulchre is a church in the Christian Quarter of the Old City of East Jerusalem. It contains, according to traditions dating back to the fourth century, the two holiest sites in Christianity: the site where Jesus was crucified, at a place known as Calvary or Golgotha, and Jesus’s empty tomb, where he was buried and resurrected. The tomb is enclosed by a 19th-century shrine called the Aedicula. The Status Quo, an understanding between religious communities dating to 1757, applies to the site. Within the church proper are the last four (or, by some definitions, five) stations of the Via Dolorosa, representing the final episodes of the Passion of Jesus. The church has been a major Christian pilgrimage destination since its creation in the fourth century, as the traditional site of the resurrection of Christ, thus its original Greek name, Church of the Anastasis (‘Resurrection’). Today, the wider complex around the Church of the Holy Sepulchre also serves as the headquarters of the Greek Orthodox patriarch of Jerusalem, while control of the church itself is shared among several Christian denominations and secular entities in complicated arrangements essentially unchanged for over 160 years, and some for much longer. The main denominations sharing property over parts of the church are the Greek Orthodox, Roman Catholic and Armenian Apostolic, and to a lesser degree the Coptic Orthodox, Syriac Orthodox and Ethiopian Orthodox.   read more…

Dimona in the Negev

10 March 2021 | Author/Destination: | Rubric: General, Union for the Mediterranean

© מצילומי-יהודית-גרעין-כל/cc-by-2.5

© מצילומי-יהודית-גרעין-כל/cc-by-2.5

Dimona is an Israeli city in the Negev desert, 30 kilometres (19 mi) to the south-east of Beersheba and 35 kilometres (22 mi) west of the Dead Sea above the Arava valley in the Southern District of Israel. In 2019 its population was 34,500. The Shimon Peres Negev Nuclear Research Center, colloquially known as the Dimona Reactor, is located 13 kilometres (8.1 mi) southeast of the city.   read more…

City Gate Ramat Gan in Israel

1 March 2021 | Author/Destination: | Rubric: General, House of the Month, Union for the Mediterranean

© Oren Peles/cc-by-2.5

© Oren Peles/cc-by-2.5

Moshe Aviv Tower is a 235-metre-tall (771 ft) skyscraper located in the demarcated area of the Diamond Exchange District (Israel Diamond Exchange) on Jabotinsky Road (No. 7) in the Tel Aviv District city of Ramat Gan, Israel. The 68-story building is commonly known as City Gate, its original name. It is the second tallest building in Israel, following Tel Aviv‘s 238-meter-high (781 ft) Azrieli Sarona Tower.   read more…

German Jordanian University in Madaba

13 January 2021 | Author/Destination: | Rubric: General, Union for the Mediterranean, Universities, Colleges, Academies

© GJU - GJU

© GJU – GJU

German-Jordanian University (GJU) is a public university located near Madaba, Jordan. It offers more than 28 programs to over 6,000 students, primarily from Jordan and the Middle East. The curriculum differs from other Jordanian universities, with German language courses offered as preparation for the fourth academic year at a university of applied sciences in Germany and an introduction to German industry through an obligatory internship within the framework of the study program. Manar Fayyad was appointed president of the university in 2017, after being its vice-president from 2013 to 2017.   read more…

Mea Shearim in West Jerusalem

11 January 2021 | Author/Destination: | Rubric: General, Union for the Mediterranean

Shabbat Square © Djampa/cc-by-sa-4.0

Shabbat Square © Djampa/cc-by-sa-4.0

Mea Shearim (“hundred gates”; contextually, “a hundred fold”) is one of the oldest Jewish neighborhoods in Jerusalem. It is populated by Haredi Jews, and was built by members of the Old Yishuv. The oldest Sephardic Haredi dynasty, Levi Kahana of Spain, has a religious cultural center in the neighborhood. The name Mea Shearim is derived from a verse from Genesis, which happened to be part of the weekly Torah portion that was read the week the settlement was founded: “Isaac sowed in that land, and in that year, he reaped a hundredfold; God had blessed him” (Genesis 26:12). According to a tradition, the community originally had 100 gates, another meaning of Mea Shearim.   read more…

Battir in the West Bank

2 December 2020 | Author/Destination: | Rubric: General, UNESCO World Heritage, Union for the Mediterranean

© flickr.com - Labour Palestine/cc-by-2.0

© flickr.com – Labour Palestine/cc-by-2.0

Battir is a Palestinian village in the West Bank, 6.4 km west of Bethlehem, and southwest of Jerusalem. It was inhabited during the Byzantine and Islamic periods, and in the Ottoman and British Mandate censuses its population was recorded as primarily Muslim. In former times, the city lay along the route from Jerusalem to Bayt Jibrin. Battir is situated just above the modern route of the Jaffa–Jerusalem railway, which served as the armistice line between Israel and Jordan from 1949 until the Six-Day War, when it was occupied by Israel. In 2007, Battir had a population of about 4,000. In 2014, Battir was inscribed in the UNESCO World Heritage Site, as Land of Olives and Vines — Cultural Landscape of Southern Jerusalem, Battir.   read more…

The origins of Jerusalem stone architecture in East Jerusalem

23 November 2020 | Author/Destination: | Rubric: General, Union for the Mediterranean

Old town Suq Aftimos © Rastaman3000/cc-by-sa-3.0

Old town Suq Aftimos © Rastaman3000/cc-by-sa-3.0

Jerusalem stone (Meleke) is a lithologic type of white, coarsely-crystalline, thickly bedded-limestone found in the Judean Hills in Israel and the West Bank. It has been used in the traditional architecture of Jerusalem since ancient times, especially in Herodian architecture. Though it is often popularly referred to as Jerusalem stone, that phrase can refer to a number of different types of stone found and used in or associated with Jerusalem. Jerusalem stone is a name applied to various types of pale limestone, dolomite and dolomitic limestone, common in and around Jerusalem that have been used in building since ancient times. One of these limestones has been used in many of the region’s most celebrated structures, including the Western Wall. Jerusalem stone continues to be used in construction and incorporated in Jewish ceremonial art such as menorahs and seder plates. Limestone is used all over the world. The unique selling point is the mining area, the origins of which lie in the Palestinian old town of East Jerusalem. This unique selling point naturally also applies to other mining areas, e.g. for the Austin Stone from Austin, Texas or the Cotswold Stone from the British Cotswolds.   read more…

Golf and resort town Hammamet in Tunisia

25 September 2020 | Author/Destination: | Rubric: General, Union for the Mediterranean

Old city of Hammamet © Mahdi Chaker/cc-by-sa-3.0

Old city of Hammamet © Mahdi Chaker/cc-by-sa-3.0

Hammamet is a town in Tunisia. Thanks to its beaches, it is a popular destination for swimming and water sports and is one of the primary tourist destinations in Tunisia. It is located in the south-eastern section of Cap Bon and is part of the Nabeul Governorate. The reported number of inhabitants varies from 100,000 to 400,000 and the population quadruples due to tourists’ arrival in the summer.   read more…

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