Tzfat Tourist Information Center
Navigating the City
Where can I park my car? What is there to see? How can I get to the art galleries? Where is there a nice place to eat?"
These are questions heard in every tourist information center throughout the world.
However, the Tzfat Visitors Center has more than its share of queries that are not often heard in other tourist offices.
"Which synagogue has the chair where a woman who wants to get pregnant should sit" is one which is frequently asked. "Who can I go to for a blessing? Where is the tomb of the rabbi that you go to pray at if you want to get married? Where did Madonna go when she came here? Can I take pictures in Tzfat? My great-great-uncle is buried in the Old Cemetery.....how can I find his grave?" And the most frequent, "I have 5 minutes before my bus leaves....can you explain to me what exactly Kabbalah is?"
About the Center
Ten years ago, Tzfat's "twin" community, the Jewish Federation of Palm Beach, Florida, turned to Livnot U'Lehibanot to ask them to establish and maintain a tourist information center as a Palm Beach's contribution to encouraging tourism in the city. Livnot acquired a building next to the campus of the Livnot U'Lehibanot program and set up the center as part of its commitment to Community Service.
There are maps and guidebooks, wall panels about the history of the city as well as a 10-minute audio-visual presentation about the history of Tzfat. There's also information about the Livnot program, for people who are thinking about coming on an educational program, or for people who are looking for a quality program for their kids.
A Unique Tourist Center
The Tzfat Visitors Center also has something which would not be a common sight in other Tourist Information Centers -- an excavation under the ground of the Center which explains, much more clearly than words or diagrams, the concept of successive layers of the city being built one on top of the other, as earthquakes destroyed the city and survivors rebuilt. Visitors are invited to walk into the "tunne,l"
which was once a street-level corridor with rooms on either side, including a room with a Jewish ritual bath, a mikve.
Visitors will soon learn that here's a lot more here than art galleries and walking into a few synagogues. Recently, the Center has begun to offer Livnot-type workshops and seminars to visitors who want to experience Tzfat in a deeper way. There are many talented professionals who offer Storytelling, Jewish Art and Music, hiking in the North, Jewish meditation and movement workshops.
Not to mention finding the answers to such questions as: Where is the legendary "Elijah's Chair" is where a woman who wants to become pregnant should sit. (answer: The ARI Ashkanazi synagogue)
To contact the Center: 972-4-6924427.