FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
Jesus Trail Launched:
New Pilgrimage Hiking Trail Connects Sites from the Life of Jesus
February 8, 2008— For two millennia Christians have strived to follow Jesus. This struggle just got a little easier with the launch of the Jesus Trail, a 65 kilometer hiking trail in the Galilee region of Israel that allows pilgrims to literally walk where Jesus walked by connecting important sites from his life and ministry. Developed by local hostel owner and tourism developer Maoz Inon and outdoor adventure specialist David Landis, the Jesus Trail offers tourists the unique opportunity to not only see the sites where Jesus lived and ministered, but to travel in the manner of Jesus—by foot.
“Jesus didn’t see this land from atop a tour bus,” said David Landis “he walked this land, got its dust on his feet, felt its breezes and sunshine, saw its views and met its people. By sharing in those experiences that shaped Jesus’ life, we can better understand and experience the message of Jesus.”
The Jesus Trail was designed in the tradition of pilgrimage hiking trails around the world, such as the Camino de Santiago in Northern Spain and the Saint Paul Trail in Turkey. The medieval practice of religious pilgrimage has seen a resurgence in recent years, with almost 200,000 hikers on the Camino de Santiago trail in 2004. Increasingly travelers are seeking not just a vacation, but a spiritually transformative journey. “If people are flocking to walk the paths of Jesus’ followers,” said Maoz Inon “imagine the appeal of walking in the footsteps of Jesus himself.”
The trail begins in Nazareth in the Galilee region of northern Israel, the biggest Arab city in Israel today as well as the childhood home of Jesus. From Nazareth the trail leads to the Sea of Galilee by way of Zippori, Cana, the Horns of Hattin, and Arbel Cliffs. Around the Sea of Galilee, the trail connects Tabgha, the church of the Primacy of St. Peter, Capernaum, the Mount of Beatitudes, and Tiberias, returning to Nazareth by way of the Jordan River, Mount Tabor, and Mount Precipice.
The trail can be hiked by way of an organized tour, or hiked independently by downloading GPS coordinates from the Jesus Trail Web site—www.jesustrail.com—which also provides links to tour operators and features information on the religious and geographic sites, accommodations and food, and a variety of other resources on hiking the region.
For further details contact:
Maoz Inon owns the Fauzi Azar Inn in Nazareth and co-founded ILH—Israel Hostels, the only network of independent hostels in Israel. He and his wife Shlomit are experienced hiker and travelers who have hiked extensively in South America, on the Pacific Crest Trail in California, and on the Israel National Trail. His travel experiences and sense of national pride have inspired him to work with tourism development in Israel so that fellow travelers can enjoy and appreciate his native land.www.fauziazarinn.com
www.hostel-israel.comDavid Landis is an experienced outdoor adventure specialist whose hiking repertoire includes trails as varied as Everest base camp and other trails in the Himalayas, Camino de Santiago in Spain, the Saint Paul Trail in Turkey, the Inca Trail in Peru, Torres del Paine in Patagonia, the Israel National Trail, and parts of the Appalachian Trail in the Eastern USA. In 2004 he embarked on a round-the-world trip that took him to over 40 countries on four continents. He has also led a group of young adults on a bicycle trip across the continental USA. When he is not traveling or bicycling he works as a web designer and communications expert.
Photo 1: Dusk at Arbel Cliffs – Photo by David Landis
Photo 2: Mount Tabor Entrance – Photo by David Landis
Photo 3: Trail to the Mount of Beatitudes – Photo by David Landis