Your day by day itinerary is a partial list of your tour. The itinerary below is subject to change as needed at any time to accomplish everything we can in each area we visit. We will have local guides who will make sure we see the very best in the time we have.
Day 1: November 2: Fly to Amman
Today the tour departs the JFK and travels to Amman Jordan.
Day 2: November 3: Arrive Amman
After clearing customs we will transfer to your hotel in Amman Jordan.
Day 3: November 4: Petra
This morning we will travel to Petra, the newly voted “Wonder of the World”! We will walk down the narrow canyon to the breathtaking view of the Treasury, Petra’s most famous landmark. You will have time to visit this fascinating city carved from the cliffs of the canyon and experience some of the best ruins found anywhere in the world. We will then head back to Amman to overnight.
Day 4: November 5: Amman – Galilee
This morning we will pass Mt Nebo before we stop at the River Jordan where most scholars feel is the most likely place Jesus was baptized. We plan to also swim in the Dead Sea before we cross the border into Israel. After crossing the border we will drive through the Judean wilderness to visit Masada. On our way we will make a quick stop for a photo of the Qumran Caves where the Dead Sea Scrolls were found. Rising above the desert floor is Herod the Great’s fortress of Masada which we will visit via cable car. During the Jewish revolt in 70 C.E. Masada’s defenders committed suicide rather than be taken prisoner by the Romans. We will then travel to our hotel in Tiberius near the Sea of the Galilee.
Day 5: November 6: Nazareth – Galilee
This morning we will travel to Ein Harod, the spring where Gideon chose his three hundred men before routing the Midianites. Then it is on to the top of Mt Carmel where Elijah had his historic confrontation with the priests of Baal with its dramatic conclusion. We travel on to Nazareth, home of the Savior for thirty years of his life. Our day ends with a sweeping view of the Jezreel Valley from Nazareth dominated by Mt. Tabor where we will discuss the transfiguration of the Savior. Deborah and Barak gathered their forces at Mt Tabor and defeated Sisera’s iron chariots. We will also visit today the Arbel Cliff for a fantastic overview of the Sea of Galilee. Our day would not be complete without a boat ride on the Sea of Galilee where we can discuss Jesus walking on the water and stilling the storm.
Day 6: November 7: Galilee
Our journey today takes us north of the Sea of Galilee. We begin by visiting Capernaum where so many wonderful events and teachings of the Savior took place. We then stop at the Mount of Beatitudes where we will ponder the great truths delivered by Jesus in the Sermon on the Mount. Driving to the far north of Israel we pass the Canaanite city of Hazor on our way to Tel Dan. Here Jeroboam erected a golden calf for the Israelites to worship, marking the beginning of a road that would end with the “lost ten tribes. The restored walls and gates give us an excellent idea of the fortifications Joshua would have faced as he conquered the land. We will visit Banias, known as Caesarea Philippi in the days of Jesus where he asked his disciples, “Whom do ye say that I am?” At the end of the day we will return to our hotel in Galilee.
Day 7: November 8: Caesarea – Bethlehem – Jerusalem
This morning we turn west to the Mediterranean Sea. Our focus shifts now to the Apostles Peter and Paul as we discover Caesarea. Here the Roman centurion, Cornelius, became the first gentile convert to Christianity and Paul related his account of his vision on the road to Damascus to King Agrippa. We will visit the picturesque old Roman aqueduct and let you wade in the Mediterranean Sea. We conclude our visit to Caesarea at the Roman theatre, and hippodrome where chariot races were held. Then we will travel to Bethlehem where we will remember the wondrous account of the Savior’s birth as recorded in Mathew and Luke and retold each Christmas. We will walk through the Church of the Nativity and sing Christmas Carols. We will have time to shop in the best Olive Wood store in Israel, Nissan Brothers in Bethlehem. Tonight we overnight in Jerusalem.
Day 8: November 9: Jerusalem
Our attention today is drawn to the Old City of Jerusalem. We will explore the ruins located south of the Temple Mount where you can walk the sidewalks and stairs of Jesus’ time. We will climb the Temple Mount where both Solomon’s and Herod’s temples once stood and where the magnificent Dome of the Rock and Al Aksa Mosques now stand. We will stop at the Western Wall, the most sacred site for the Jewish faith. You can write a prayer on a piece of paper and place it into the cracks of the wall as millions have done before you. We will then travel to the new city of Jerusalem and visit the Shrine of the Book where the Dead Sea Scrolls are located, and the Model City, a reproduction of Jerusalem at the time of Jesus. We will also have time to visit the Jerusalem Museum, recently opened after a 2 year renovation. The day will end at your hotel in Jerusalem.
Day 9: November 10: Beit Lehi
We will then head to Beit Lehi to experience an archeological dig firsthand. Our visit to Beit Lehi includes beautiful early Christian mosaics, oil presses, a mikvah (a ritual bath) and the recently discovered columbary where doves were raised by the thousands for sacrifice at the Temple. There is also a New Testament period stable which will give you one of the best settings for the birth of the Savior. We will also stop at the Valley of Elah where David fought Goliath. We will then head back to Jerusalem to walk through Hezekiah’s Tunnel, built over 2500 years ago to secure the water supply of Jerusalem during the Assyrian siege. You will need a flashlight for the tunnel. At its end we find the Pool of Siloam where the man born blind washed as instructed by Jesus and came away seeing.
Day 10: November 11: Jerusalem
Today we reach the spiritual pinnacle of our pilgrimage as we retrace the footsteps of our Savior during the last hours of his life and feel the deep appreciation these places create for the sacrifice of the Son of God. We begin on Mt. Zion at the traditional site of the Upper Room where the Last Supper was shared with devoted apostles. We visit St. Peter in Gallicantu, the possible site of the cock’s crowing and the Palace of Caiaphas where Jesus was tried. From there we descend into the Kidron Valley to visit Gethsemane, the Garden of the Savior’s deepest prayers. In the afternoon we will enter the Old City and continue the last hours of the Savior’s life. We will visit The Church of St Anne where the Pools of Bethesda were located. Here Jesus commanded the impotent man to take up his bed and walk. We visit the Convent of the Sisters of Zion, the location of the Antonia Fortress where Pilate tried the Savior. Our highlight day concludes at Golgotha and the Garden Tomb where we will have time to ponder the Resurrection and final triumph of Christ.
Day 11: November 12: Fly Home
Early this morning you will be transferred to the airport in Tel Aviv to catch our return flight home.