Come and visit Nazareth, Israel’s largest Arab city! It is a lively place, busy during the days with large groups of visitors walking around the city center attractions.
Religiously speaking, here is the Annunciation place, where Angel Gabriel appeared to Virgin Mary telling her she was chosen to give birth to the Son of God.
Spend at least 2 days to visit Nazareth and its surroundings, including the town of Kafr Kana and the Mount Tabor.
Basilica of the Annunciation
This Roman Catholic basilica looks like nothing else you’ve ever seen before. The architecture is really unique and fascinating.
Build on two layers, you’ll start the visit with the ground floor basilica, going to discover the Grotto of the Annunciation which stands in the middle and continue the journey with the upper floor.
The journey ends outside with the courtyard, which hosts donated paintings with the Virgin and baby Jesus from churches all around the world.
St Joseph Church
Exiting the Basilica of the Annunciation you can continue your journey with St Joseph Church, located exactly near.
The church is simple and charming, sending you a peaceful vibe while walking around. Go down to see the crypt brought to life thanks to the archaeological excavations. Here is the place supposed to be Joseph’s workshop, the father of Jesus.
Christ Anglican Church
Under renovation when we went, we could still have a quick look inside. A bit tricky to find it, you need to follow some steps to find the entrance, from the street below. Built in Gothic style, the interior is dominated by Gothic arches and beautiful stained glasses.
Well hided through the Souq narrow streets, this small church is built in stone and it used to be a synagogue. At the time of our visit we could see the Sunday mass. It is very simple, with the altar and some improvised chairs for people to sit – no other distractions to contemplate of, just enjoy the silence.
Nazareth is mainly an Arab city, so apart from Churches we also visited a Mosque. Cover yourself with one of the scarves from the entrance, then walk around and pray – is peaceful and quite.
Cave of the 40 Holy Monks
This place was difficult to find, as the caves are near the Greek Orthodox Church, in the same court, and not a standalone point as we imagined.
40 monks were martyred here by Romans and you can visit the empty caves.
Greek Orthodox Church of the Annunciation
The Greek Orthodox have a different opinion regarding the true place of the Annunciation. This comes from the different theories about when actually Marry received the annunciation, while being at home or while she was taking water from the spring – spring which is located below this Church.
This is one of the best experiences you can have in Nazareth, so book your place in advance!
Nazareth Village is taking you back in time, showing you the real life of Nazareth 2000 years ago. The experience is a guided one and along the way you will be welcomed by actors and volunteers, traditionally dressed to take you back in time. It is a very good way to learn about the people of Nazareth, traditions and their daily life.
Kafr Kana (or Cana)
This is the place Jesus done his first miracle, changing the water into wine during the wedding. This town is only a few kilometres far away from Nazareth, so you can take a bus to come here (allocate half a day for a return trip, especially because of the traffic).
Cana Greek Orthodox Wedding Church & Monastery
In this church you can find two of the jars Jesus used to transform the water into wine. We heard from a priest that single women, without children, should pray here for their faith and prosperity.
Cana Catholic Wedding Church
It looks like the Orthodox and the Catholics are again disagreeing regarding the true place of the miracle. In this church is where the Catholics think the miracle happen and one jar is on display in the basement.
With only 588m height Mount Tabor offers a great view all around. It is here where the Transfiguration of Jesus happen.
Basilica of the Transfiguration
The church is beautiful and it was really quite on Monday morning.
There is a platform around the church offering breath-taking views. The church’s garden is charming and hosts a small shop for souvenirs, with an Italian cafeteria – there are no seats, so take your order away to drink it in the garden.
Well, I hope you enjoyed the article and you’ll visit Nazareth by yourself, creating your own memories. Meanwhile, you can read more about Israel and Palestine here.