The city of Tiberias in northern Israel was founded by Herod Antipas and named in honor of the Roman emperor Tiberius. It nestles along the significant Sea of Galilee (lowest freshwater lake on earth, sourced from Jordan River).
Considered as one of Judaism’s 4 holiest cities, along with Jerusalem, Hebron and Safed, it became an important center of Jewish learning, law, and religion from the 2nd through 5th centuries. Over the course of history, Tiberias was controlled by Arabs, Crusaders, and Ottoman Turks.
Today, modern Tiberias is a major destination with rich historical tours, pilgrimages (think Capernaum, Mount of Beatitudes, Sermon on the Mount) and archaeological finds. This is the view of mountainous Tiberias on a clear but windy night, from my hotel room by the shore of Galilee.
Here in the balcony, howling winds whipped my hair as I breathe in the distinct, palpable smell of the ancient origins of my faith.
© Jojie Alcantara 2017