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(photo credit: Courtesy)
If you think visiting archeological sites means standing around, looking at dusty ruins, Jerusalem is offering a whole new way of experiencing its ancient past.
Sunday through Tuesday of Hol Hamoed Succot, the archeological sites of Jerusalem will be filled with fun activities right in the midst of excavations in three capital locales: Armon Hanatziv, Ir David (The City of David), and the Mount of Olives.
A 4x4 tour will start out from the Armon Hanatziv neighborhood towards the City of David and Absalom's Tomb on the outskirts of the Old City walls. As the jeep takes you from one archeological site to another, don't forget to look out to the fantastic views of some rarely seen areas of Jerusalem.
For the more athletically-oriented, there is a bike tour of Armon Hanatziv, an hour's ride along some of the most fantastic look-out points in the area.
Yet another Armon Hanatziv tour will bring visitors to the ancient aqueduct built by King Herod. Don't forget to bring flashlights for passing through the underground waterway making up part of the 2,000-year-old system that brought water to ancient Jerusalem.
Moving north to the ancient City of David, which was the original location of ancient Jerusalem and is today south of the Old City walls, take a three-hour-long time-trek back to the Jerusalem of biblical times. Follow the footsteps of kings and prophets, tour the underground tunnels through which King David and Yoav conquered the city, and view a brand-new 3-D display.
Another tour takes you to the architectural relics of the City of David, including two sites just recently uncovered, the Shiloah Pool and the Herodian Plaza. The two-hour tour includes explanations regarding architectural aspects of the relics.
Dance in the footsteps of our forefathers in the City of David, at a live Simhat Beit Hashoeva, a festival of music and dance recalling an ancient Succot ceremony which involved drawing water from the Shiloah Pool and bringing it as a libation in the Temple. The celebration takes place Monday evening at 5, with music by leading klezmerist Mousa Berlin, and will feature prominent rabbis and local leaders.
And lastly, on the Mount of Olives, the whole family can experience the thrill of a real archeological dig, sifting through the dirt and under the guidance of experienced archeologists and tour guides. Also offered is a tour down the Valley of Kidron, between the Temple Mount and the Mount of Olives.
For more information contact *6033 or www.cityofdavid.org.il
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