Monday, June 22, 2015

Day around the Jerusalem Hills

Today we started off our adventure with a short hike in the Masrek Nature Reserve!   We had a beautiful view of the valley and perfect weather!

From there we went to Neot Kedumim which is another nature reserve where we learned about the land and had the chance to plant acorns in pots.  This year, we weren't able to plant trees since this year is a shmita year.  During shmita, the land is left to lie fallow and all agricultural activity, including plowing, planting, pruning and harvesting, is forbidden by halakha (Jewish law). Other cultivation techniques (such as watering, fertilizing, weeding, spraying, trimming and mowing) may be performed as a preventative measure only, not to improve the growth of trees or other plants. Additionally, any fruits which grow of their own accord are deemed hefker (ownerless) and may be picked by anyone.

We then ventured over to the Latrun Tank Museum.  The Battles of Latrun were a series of military engagements between the Israel Defense Forces and the Jordanian Arab Legion on the outskirts of Latrun between 25 May and 18 July 1948, during the 1948 Arab–Israeli War.  Today, the battleground site has an Israeli military museum dedicated to the Israeli Armored Corps and a memorial to the Israeli War of Independence.

Lastly, we finished in Lod where we visited the Denver Community Center where many of our Colorado families have donated to help fund this center for youth.

Tomorrow we have a fantastic day planned with cave crawling, an archaeological dig and then we will be hiking & camping in the Negev desert so our next post won't be until Thursday!

Masrek Hike

Neot Kedumim

Neot Kedumim is a Biblical garden and nature preserve located near Modi'in, mid-way between Jerusalem and Tel Aviv, Israel.  

Latrun Tank Museum

Denver Lod Community Center

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