The Holy Land a thing of beauty

Tel Aviv, the nerve centre of Israel.
Tel Aviv, the nerve centre of Israel.

I recently visited Israel, and I must say the country is beautiful.

The only thing that put me off during my five-day stay in the Holy Land was the air-conditioners.

There is no place that I visited that did not have the air-con on full blast.

You get into a bus and before you even exchange pleasantries, the air-con hits you smack in the face. You go into a hotel room and the air-con is on, and cold.

I get it, the country is a desert, but can we give the air-con a break?

Now that I have got the air-con issue out of the way, I must say I enjoyed my stay.

For the first three days I stayed at Herods Hotel in Tel Aviv, which is considered the centre of the country.

The hotel itself, even though it's five star, was not really that glamorous. My room was basic, but the one thing that stood out for me was the gigantic bed.

However, the five-star treatment I really enjoyed was that my room had a sea view.

While on the subject of beaches, I must say that people from the Holy Land are so free-spirited, and I noticed this when I watched the revellers on the beach.

When you go to beaches in South Africa, with the exception of nudist beaches, you get judg mental stares if you are rocking a bikini, especially if you are overweight or covered with cellulite .

But at the beach in Tel Aviv I saw old women who are not so thin rocking their bikinis with confidence, and others with bulging stomachs enjoying their time with no care in the world - and they did not get disapproving looks.

That must be so liberating.

Oh, but can we also talk about the food! I do not think I have ever eaten so much in my life.

The food was just overwhelming.

I would be full just from the starter, which alone you would believe was the main course, and you still had a table filled with different dishes to choose from as the main course and still have to leave room for dessert.

One of my colleagues in the group I was travelling with quipped that he had never eaten so many three-course meals for lunch and supper in his life.

But the food was really delicious and I enjoyed trying out different dishes.

The highlight of the trip, especially as a Christian, was visiting Jerusalem. The city is beautiful.

We visited the Old City in Jerusalem and walked on the Via Dolorosa, which is the street where Jesus walked on the way to his crucifixion.

My colleagues and I also had a day buying some goodies for loved ones back home at the market in Old Jerusalem.

I must also add that Jerusalem is quite safe because we walked back from the market to our hotel at around 10pm and the streets were still bustling with people on one business or the other.

We also got to visit Palestine and I was blown away by the beauty of the place.

From the school, mall, the 20000-seat amphitheatre to the luxury apartments.

Everything about the place looked liked something from a fairy tale.

I would not mind moving to Rawabi just to live that beautiful fairy tale.

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