More From Me

Israel Tour Guide Joel Haber with a group

Follow me and I’ll take you there!

A brief post to let you know about a few new things I am doing that you might be interested in. Of course I have my blog here, but I am also starting to write in a few more places. The content will be different in each place, so if you like what I have to say, you might be interested in hearing more. I promise to try to keep things interesting!

[Read more…]

Jerusalem: A Walk Through Christian History

St. Mark's Church

The apse of St. Mark’s Syriac Church, a small and very old church in Jerusalem’s Old City

Recently, I have been preparing my next Jerusalem: Meet Jerusalem walking tour, which will focus on Christian Jerusalem for Non-Christians. In the process I have come to explore and discover many of Jerusalem’s churches. Obviously, Jerusalem is a very holy city to Christianity, and there are innumerable churches here, many of them within the approximately one square kilometer surrounded by the Old City walls.

But as I began to explore more, and uncovered some of the lesser known churches here, I became endlessly fascinated by the variety of Christian sects. There are tens of different denominations, split into a number of larger branches of Christianity, many of which are fairly unknown to most people — Christians and non-Christians alike! And of those many sects, tons of them have churches in Jerusalem, including a number of those less known denominations.

I began to organize them all for myself, grouping them into related branches and placing them in the sequence of their various splits from each other. By looking at them this way, I could see the very development of Christianity itself, reflected in the distinctive churches in my city. I soon realized that walking through Jerusalem’s Old City is like a walk through a living museum of Christian history.

[Read more…]

Welcome to My Updated Website

Fun Joel's Israel Tours logo

Meeting all of your Israel tourism needs!

I have been working for a long time now to upgrade this website. Before I received my Israel tour guide license, I mainly maintained this site as a blog, focused both on Israeli tourism and on the tour guide course I was taking. The plan all along was that once I began officially working, I would upgrade the site to my full home on the web, detailing my services, specialties and tour guiding philosophy.

For the first few months, I was just focused on building up my guiding business, so I wasn’t very focused on the website. Then I began to slowly build up the new website, step by step. Finally, I am now ready to proudly announce the launch of my new website!

[Read more…]

A Light at the End of the Tunnel

Israel Tourism. Tour Guide. Fun Joel Haber. Beit Shean Amphitheater - Vomitorium.

The Light at the End of the Tunnel (taken at Beit Shean amphitheater)

I wanted to update you all about the exam process. For starters, I am proud and excited to announce that I passed the written exam! I got the news on the morning of January 1st, so what a great way to start the New Year! In fact, the test was very straightforward, with no real curve balls (as I wrote previously), and there was a fairly high passing rate.

Additionally, earlier this week I received the appointment for my meeting at the Ministry of Tourism for my oral exam. I will actually be the first in my class (I believe) to present — 9 AM on Thursday January 26, in just over 2 weeks. I feel relatively well-prepared, but I definitely have more work to do in preparation. Both in terms of preparing my guiding, and my itinerary for the day, as well as general prep for the open question section of the oral.

[Read more…]

Just a Brief Check-In

Jerusalem rainbow, as seen from my apartment this past week.

This will just be a very brief post to check in on a few things. I owe you a few posts right now: two tiyul (trip) reports to write up (Ein Gedi and Modiin vicinity), and a few class updates as well. I also have a bit of catch-up to do on the tourism business in general, and a post or two about things I’ve seen/done in Jerusalem lately. I’ve just been very busy, trying to get everything done and also stay up to date with my reports for each tiyul.

[Read more…]

The First Step

Me stepping into the chilly water running through Hezekiah's Tunnel.

Me stepping into the chilly water running through Hezekiah's Tunnel.

So, tomorrow’s the big day: my tourguide course begins! We’ll be having an orientation, and perhaps a first “class” as well (I’m not really sure).

[Read more…]