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Saturday, September 19, 2020

Israel goes virtual


Take a virtual pilgrimage to Jerusalem at this Holy Week
The pandemic has closed the holy sites, travel and travel planning has been disrupted worldwide. Around 3,300 Filipino pilgrims visited Israel in 2019 during the Holy week period, data according to Israel Ministry of Tourism. The country closed its borders starting last March to foreign visitors and all nonresidents are now banned from the Old City of Jerusalem.

Many may be grounded but thanks to the miracles of internet, this Holy week season you can now explore the beauty of Israel from the comfort of your home.

Palm Sunday in Jerusalem CONTRIBUTED PHOTO/Dafna Tal for the Israeli Ministry of Tourism


Roman Catholic Chapel on the Mount of Beatitudes CONTRIBUTED PHOTO/ Itamar Grinberg for the Israeli Ministry of Tourism

Basilica of the Annunciation CONTRIBUTED PHOTO/ Mordagan for the Israeli Ministry of Tourism

Church of the Holy Sepulchre CONTRIBUTED PHOTO/Dafna Tal for the Israeli Ministry of Tourism

Starting the day in the Old City of Jerusalem, visit some of Jerusalem’s famous historical sites like the Western Wall, Church of the Holy Sepulchre and enjoy breathtaking panoramic views of the city from the Mount of Olives. Pilgrims can also experience the Via Dolorosa or Way of the Cross in this Holy Week Season through virtual reality.

“Though we can’t be together right now, we want you to know that we miss you. While we all remain in our homes we want to stay connected with you. Through virtual reality we know you can still experience Israel with us. One thing we’re confident about is travel will make a comeback and we will be able to travel again. Therefore, I would like to first and foremost wish you and your loved ones my best wishes for health and prosperity, and share with you my hopes that these challenging times will soon be behind us. The most important thing now is for each and every one to be safe and healthy. May God bless Philippines,” said Sammy Yahia, Israel Ministry of Tourism director for India and the Philippines.

To have your own virtual experience, visit: For Old City of Jerusalem: https://samsungvr.com/view/Wv_0tcndBOG

For Via dolorosa or Way of the Cross: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=GTshKXeBdHs


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