I have been celebrating Chanukah all of my life, lighting candles since I was young. But with each place and home I visit, I learn more of not just other people’s cultures, but of my own religion and traditions. This year I was in Israel, for the third time for this festive holiday. In fact, it was not even my first time being in Tzfat (aka Safed) for Chanukah — but I still had new experiences and still learned more.
if you’re traveling light you can now take an inexpensive bus — 16NIS ($4) — from near the Central Bus Station in Jerusalem to Ben-Gurion Airport airport, the international airport of Israel. This makes travel a lot easier for those who wish to start or end their trip in Jerusalem rather than Tel Aviv. (Tel Aviv has a train that goes directly to the airport.)
I was lucky enough to meet Chana Mason and be invited on her unique “Machane Yehuda Shuk & Nachalot Experience” here in Jerusalem. The one and only Machane Yehuda Shuk (outdoor and covered) is THE market in the center of Jerusalem. Nachalot is one of the original areas built outside the city walls as Jerusalem expanded in the late 1800s.
If you’re craving pizza while in Israel, you will do very well to have that pizza at Pizza Simta in Tzfat! Crispy crust generously sprinkled with sesame seeds surrounding nice-tasting sauce and cheese, freshly made right in front of you, then served bubbling hot!
My pizza standard was formed by growing up with NY and then NYC pizza. It was furthered by pizza in Naples, Italy. If I had pizza in other states or countries, I was unimpressed to remember it either way. For me to say I love a pizza is a pretty big thing.