Thursday, April 12, 2012
A Mountain Out of a Mole Hill, Herodian
This Passover, we went south. We joined my cousin and her husband for a road trip to Herodian and Gush Etzion. Three years ago I toured Herodian with my Matan touring course and remember learning that the reason Herodian stands out so clearly in view is that Herod's massive palace was built on a man-made mountain.
From Herodian you can see Jerusalem and lots of nearby yishuvim in the distance. It's hard to imagine how many thousands of workers and how long it must have taken to build it all. And think of the complex technical, engineering planning. It was all done in the head, no computers and no easy way to carry around and distribute the instructions and plans.
Like at Tel Shiloh, Shiloh HaKeduma-Ancient Shiloh, there was a Biblically inspired play, with clever references to ancient history, trivia and current affairs.
They were also set-up for crafts, though nobody was participating when we were there.
We were in Herodian in the morning, and I'm sure it was more crowded in the afternoon. Actually, if we had arrived any later, we would have had to have parked far from the entrance, and there's no shuttle. You have to walk a lot at Herodian, which is neither shady nor green. I'm used to the park-like Tel Shiloh.
We found it interesting, but there isn't much to do at Herodian. It's easier to make a day of it at Shiloh HaKeduma, Tel Shiloh. At Tel Shiloh there's a coffee shop-craft store, and during the holidays many more activities are available. Also the WC's and picnic facilities are within the tourist area.