In my recent pilgrimage to Israel, I have visited The Sea of Galilee or Lake Kinneret (Hebrew ים כנרת). The Sea of Galilee is Israel’s largest freshwater lake and it is 13 miles long, 7 miles wide, 32 miles in circumference and 686 feet below sea level.
This is a view of the Sea of Galilee from Mount of Beatitudes.
The Galilee was the centre of roads crossing in all directions at the time of Jesus. The good communications, the extreme fertility of the valley, the beauty of the landscape and the hot springs here, drew a considerable population with a scene of continuous activity.
The water is pure and generally calm. To the Israelites, the Sea of Galilee is one of the major source of water.
During the Byzantine Empire, the lake’s significance in Jesus’ life made it a major destination for Christian pilgrims. This led to the growth of a full-fledged tourist industry, complete with package tours and plenty of comfortable inns just like today.
Allowing the tourists to embark onto a replica of an ancient boat and sail around the lake was definitely an eye-opening experience.
It truly reminds me of Jesus preaching and teaching most of the time in Galilee, how Christ walked on water to save Peter and how He asked the fishermen to cast the net down for fish.
The boatman even taught us a Jewish dance which we enjoyed ourselves very much.
This is undeniably a very enriching experience for me.