Go Ahead traveler Jessica is no stranger to great photos. As the owner of creative agency Wilder Media, she is a traveling photographer who loves to document her journeys in beautiful images. On our Wonders of Ancient Israel tour, Jessica was able to experience the country’s deep religious history and modern cities. Here, she answers our questions about capturing her journey and shares some of her favorite photos from the trip.
What was your favorite thing to photograph?
Israel is such a dynamic country, both culturally and geographically. I loved capturing the richness and diversity of the country in my photos, from the people and the food to the landscapes and old ruins. Tel Aviv’s busy coastal streets lined with palm trees were reminiscent of Los Angeles. Meanwhile, Jerusalem is a hotbed of different religions living together within walls that tell ancient stories. I couldn’t put my camera down when we visited the Western Wall and Dome of the Rock, which sit very close to one another. My eye was drawn to the many colors and textures of this holy site, as well as the tension between the people of two vastly different religions gathering in the same area to pray and worship.
What surprised you most about this tour?
I was so impressed by how much ground we covered during this tour. Israel is a small country, but the landscape changes so dramatically within its 8,500 square miles. Looking back through all of my photos, I still can’t believe we saw as much as we did. In just 10 days, we went from the bustling ports and luscious Bahá’i Gardens in Haifa, to cruising on the Sea of Galilee, to floating over the never ending desert town Masada in a cable car. I was also surprised by how easily we crossed into the West Bank and visit holy sites. The media has instilled our country with fear about traveling to that part of the world but my experience was completely beautiful, peaceful and educational.
What shot turned out to be your favorite?
Picking a favorite shot is difficult, but I really love the aerial shot of the men praying at the Western Wall. Seeing this internationally known landmark and a crowd of devout Jewish men praying at the wall in person really took my breath away for a moment.
See more of Jessica’s photos on Instagram