to Biryah: More Than Just a Stroll
I suggest that those who would like to stroll and learn more about Zefat,
that you take a half day, or a full day, to take in
some inviting spots in our holy city. The holy Sages,
Beniahu ben Yehoyada,
Yehudah Ha Nasia, Abbaya and Rava, Rav Papa and his ten sons, and others, plus an historic site
in Biriya, await your visit.
From the Egged Station, walk along the exit road from Zefat, continuing
past the Sonol Gas Station to the big intersection. At the intersection,
take the middle road straight ahead; not left to Meron nor right to Rosh
Pina. The burial place of Beniahu benYehoiada, chief of staff under King
David and King Shlomo, as well as head of the Sanhedrin under the latter,
will appear on the left side of the road.
Continue to the top of the road. At the circle, veer left. A tree-lined
flat road (trees on the right side) takes you to a crossing where signs
pointing to the right lead to Fort Biriya. Walk along that right-hand
road (if you were to continue straight you would end up in Amuka!)
for a short distance until you come to the entrance to Fortspan Biriya
on your left. There you may find an exhibit of history portraying the
time of the settlement and defense of this area. Barbeque facilities and
picnic tables in the shade offer a pleasant place to stay a while and
enjoy the view of Mount Hermon.
to the road and continue until the end, which is an entrance to an army
base. Just before the base, on the left, is a gentle uphill slope that
leads to an exquisite expansive view north to Mount Hermon
and southward to
Continue on this path until the cave which is the burial site of Abaya
and Rava, leading sages of the Babylonian
Talmud. They were friends, colleagues and disputants on hundreds of points
their cave is the burial place of Yehudah Ha Nassia, who established the fixed Jewish
calendar around 1500 years ago, a grandson of
Rebbe Yehudah Ha Nassi.
further on the path and over a fallen tree (which hopefully will have
been removed by the time you read this) is a cave, set into the hill with
army radar plates above it. This is the burial site of Rav Papa, an important Talmudic sage, who ascribed his wealth as a brewer
to the fact that he married into a family of priests. He had ten sons,
all of whom were great scholars and mentioned in the Talmud. Tranquility
permeates the atmosphere.
As always when touring, take lots of liquid,
food, head coverings and comfortable walking shoes.
Buy guidebooks to Safed and the Galilee at the Kabbala Online Shop.
moved to Tzfat from Northern California fifteen years ago.
She spends much of her time driving visitors to the many holy sites in the