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Tsfat (Safed) – The Mystical City

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In Tsfat, I recommend you stay at the remarkable Ruth Rimonim Inn, a lovely 300-year old renovated Turkish khan (inn) that is very romantic. It is located in the Artists’ Colony, P.O. Box 1011, Safed 13110 Israel, tel. (04) 699- 4666. If you do stay there, get a room in the older section, which is more romantic. My partner and I loved Room 9. (The newer rooms are fine; they just don’t have the same charm and character.) The region is beautiful, hilly and high, and as noted, is quite a bit cooler in both the summer and winter. While an advantage in the summer, it may be quite a bit less pleasant in the winter.

As I mentioned, Tsfat is significant as the center of Jewish mysticism, and I highly recommend a tour guide named Aryeh Buznakh, who offers walking tours of “mystical Tsfat.” While I’m not one to overly rely on tour guides, Tsfat is difficult to access on your own, with many of the synagogues and other sites hidden away in the warrens of this ancient city.

In the section on Caesarea, I mentioned the artwork of Asia Katz. Her gallery in Tsfat (she lives in the town) can be found at 7 Levanon Street in the Artists’ Colony. Taste is personal, but you can see her work; the piece to the left is very similar to the one we purchased in 1997. Her studio is also in the city.

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