About the Tour Guide
Leah Bowman, licensed guide in Israel, moved to Israel with her husband 30 years ago. Originally from the Jewish community of the Detroit area, Leah attended Cranbrook Kingswood school and later graduated from the University of Michigan with a BA in English Literature and Israel Studies. While in university, Leah used the summers to explore different options including a career in political journalism in Washington, D.C. and life in Israel. On one trip to Israel, she met Shmuel and they realized it was "meant to be," and they decided that they would marry and live the dream of moving to Israel together. They lived in Toronto for one year (his home town), and then made aliyah (moved to Israel). Leah invested many years in raising their 5 children full-time and occasionally organizing some educational travel programs. When their children were a little older, Leah went back to school to do the tour guide course. The Israeli guide course is an intensive multidisciplinary course touching on all aspects of the Land of Israel: history, religions, archaeology, geology, and much more. After completing the licensing exams, Leah understood that the course was just the beginning of a wonderful journey of learning and exploring the Land of Israel which she has continued for over a decade. And her children are sure that the years she spent at home with them is what makes her an exceptional guide also for children of all ages. Leah is now continuing her formal studies for a Masters Degree in Political Science: Religion and Politics in the Middle East at Bar Ilan University.
Leah says, “The Prophet Jeremiah said that Jerusalem will be 're-built on its ancient mound.'" Today, through archaeology, we can see how it is literally built in layers. This is very symbolic, because it also has many layers of meaning and history. These layers mean that we cannot understand Jerusalem all at once. Learning about Jerusalem and the Land of Israel is a very fulfilling, but never-ending process. There is always more to learn: additional sources, new routes, new excavations and new behind-the-scenes stories. Leah has made it her goal to explore every corner of Jerusalem and the Land of Israel and to share her journey with others. Leah’s aim is that every tour will be an exceptional experience, and meaningful and interesting for everyone whether it is their first visit or they have toured many times, whether they are 5, 45 or 85 years old. Every tour or Zoom tour is its own adventure.
Leah has guided thousands of groups of all sizes, including Jewish and Christian groups, religious and secular, VIPs, families and individuals. Leah is also one of the guides on staff at the Western Wall Tunnels as well as several other sites in Jerusalem.
Leah loves to show people all the key sites and behind-the-scenes places they most enjoy. Now she is also bringing these beautiful places, inspiring stories and fascinating history to homes and organiztions via Zoom as well.