The city of Tiberias, on the shore of the Sea of Galilee, is a mixture of charming and mysterious. It is a rather small town, but full of history.
Believed to be one of the earliest settlements dating back to the early Bronze Age in the land known today as Israel, Tiberias was named in honor of the Roman emperor in 18 A.D. Just north of the city on the shores of the Galilee, Jesus taught, lived and performed many miracles, including multiplying the bread and fish and teaching the Sermon on the Mount.
After the destruction of the Second Temple in Jerusalem, Tiberias was where a number of Jews fled. The city eventually became an important center of religious Jewish learning and is where the Mishna, a commentary on the Torah, is believed to have been put together by powerful rabbis of the day. In days past, the Jewish Great Rabbinical Court was also located in Tiberias.
One of the city’s key treasures is the nearby natural hot springs, renowned for their curative and therapeutic properties. The springs have long been a magnet seeking improved health and beauty.
Due to its history and development over time, Tiberias today is known as one of Judaism’s four holy cities. It is about 2 hours by car from both Tel Aviv and Jerusalem, and is situated in the heart of the Galilee.