Vered HaGalil, “Rose of the Galilee,” fulfillment of an itinerant dreamer’s vision.
Farming. Horses. People. Personal attachments usually grow slowly but Marcia and I connected with Vered HaGalil, a beyond-unique guest farm in northern Israel, in love-at-first-sight fashion. Situated upon a high terrace of the Dead Sea Transform overlooking the Sea of Galilee, Vered HaGalil was the brainchild of a self-described “itinerant dreamer.” The popular restaurant-farm-vacation spot lies near Korazim (also, Chorazin), an ancient village which, along with Bethsaida and Capernaum, was cited in the gospels of Matthew and Luke as places at which Yeshua (Jesus) performed “mighty works” but, because the people there rejected them, they were cursed. (Matthew 11:20-24; Luke 10:13-15)
That dreamer was Yehuda Avni, who immigrated as a youth to Israel from Chicago, Illinois in 1949. Once in the Land, Avni married a young lady named Yona with whom he settled in Moshav Orot in southern Israel, about six miles east of Ashdod. There, they began farming and raising a family.
However, Yehuda … had aspirations for creating something that at that time, would be a new concept for Israel, something not just for farming and not just for tourism, but rather a bringing together of the things that he loved most: farming, horses and people. Thus began his search for the perfect spot for creating a guest farm. After many long months of searching, Yehuda stood on a hill overlooking the Sea of Galilee, a barren landscape strewn with boulders and thistles, but with a beautiful view of the lake, and declared to his children that this was where they would lay down the foundations for their new venture.
…slowly, steadily, year by year, as boulders were moved, trees planted, roses cultivated, cottages constructed, horses sought out, a restaurant established; as people were gathered from around Israel and around the world to help in the creation of the vision, Yehuda saw his dream fulfilled, as the transformation of barren boulder strewn hillside to idyllic resort was accomplished. (Vered Hagalil Guest Farm)