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Tsfat, Tsfat

Israel's insider take:

About 500 years before Madonna started wearing a red string on her wrist and answering to the name Esther, Kabbalah was widely practiced in the Holy Land. The ancient form of Jewish mysticism can be traced back to the 16th century in the historic northern city of Tsfat. Here you can visit numerous synagogues (Sephardic Ari Synagogue is the city's oldest, built in 1522), the Jewish Quarter, where you'll find micro-calligraphy scrolls filled with colorful bible scenes at Michael Gallery (972-4-639-7544), and artistic centers dedicated to the Kabbalistic movement.

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