Nazareth is a city in Israel and the former home town of Jesus Christ. Nazareth offers the following points of interest for tourists and photographers;
- Basilica of the Annunciation
- Jesus trail (and view of the city)
- Nazareth old city
- Mount Tabor (and view of the Sea of Galilee)
- Salasien church (and view of the city)
- Greek orthodox church of the annunciation
- Greek orthodox bishopric (Alkalai caves)
- Cactus ancient bath house
- White Mosque
- Church of the Transfiguration
- Mary’s Well
I would recommend the Fauzi Azar Inn if you choose to stay in Nazareth as you can organize transport with them easily. They offer door to door shuttle services to Amman, Jerusalem and Tel Aviv at prices similar to the local bus. Even if you don’t choose to stay with them you can still take advantage of the shuttle service.
The Basilica of the annunciation is located on the spot where it is believed the annunciation took place. The annunciation is the announcement by Angel Gabriel to the Virgin Mary that she would conceive and become the mother of Jesus Christ. This church was built in 1969 on top of an older church. The grotto of annunciation is located in the basement which is believed to be the childhood home of the Virgin Mary.
There is a gallery of mosaics from several countries representing Marian devotions. Above are pictured the mosaics of Colombia, Wales, Scotland, El Salvador and Portugal. It is fun looking for your countries mosaic as they are spread out all around and inside of the church. Some countries have donated larger mosaics than others, the mosaic of Germany was the most impressive by far. Good luck hunting your countries mosaic!
There is another location in Nazareth, the Greek orthodox church where it is also believed the annunciation took place. This church is built over the Mary’s well where it is believed she was standing when Angel Gabriel made the announcement to her.
The Jesus Trail is quite a hike, it is over a 65 km walk from Nazareth to Galilee. I walked on the Jesus trail for around 1 km from Nazareth up to the Salasien church. There are quite a lot of stairs on this part of the walk so take water if you make the walk during hot seasons. If you have time to take the full trail, there is detailed information on the Jesus Trail website.
The view of Nazareth from the Salasien church makes the short walk on the Jesus Trail very worthwhile. The mountain visible in the distance is Mount Tabor, the full Jesus Trail will take you past this mountain. If you do walk up Mount Tabor you’ll be rewarded will brilliant views of the Sea of Galilee. Another mountain visible from the Salasien church viewpoint is Mount Precipice, the traditional site of the hill where the people of Nazareth tried to throw Jesus off a cliff. Mount Precipice is a 30 minute walk from the Basilica of the Annunciation.
After staying in the Fauzi Amar Inn, they organized a great value direct shuttle to Amman, Jordan. The guys make this trip 3 times a week so know exactly what is required in passing over the Israel / Jordan border. Most nationalities including UK, European, US and Australian can get a visa on arrival at the border.
Amman to Petra