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2019 Highlight Tour
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You will arrive Ben Gurion Airport and will be met by a Shalom Journey’s representative, who will assist us with our luggage, escort us through customs and introduce us to our guide and vehicle with driver. You will continue to our hotel in beautiful Tel Aviv and to your hotel for check-in and for the remainder of the day at leisure (depending on flight times). Suggested stroll along the beautiful beachfront. Overnight in Tel Aviv.
Following a delicious Israeli buffet breakfast (which you will enjoy each morning), we will leave Tel Aviv and drive south via Ashdod and Ashkelon to Beer Sheba for a short visit of the Negev capital. Your tour will continue with a drive northeast, as you arrive to the shores of the Dead Sea, you will descend to the lowest point on the surface of the earth at 1305 feet (398m) below sea level. Continue to Massada which is situated right on an isolated cliff in the Judean Desert. The site has been declared as an UNESCO World Heritage Site in 2001. Ascend by cable car to the fortress, which was the last stronghold of the Jewish Zealots in their war against the Romans. Visit the excavations, King Herod’s Palace, the synagogue, bathhouse and more. Enjoy the breathtaking view of the Roman camps and the Dead Sea. Depending of if weather permits, bring your swimsuit for a possible to float on the salty, mineral rich water of the Dead Sea via Ein Gedi and Kalya. You will conclude your day with a drive through the Judean Hills to Jerusalem for overnight.
After breakfast, start the day at the top of Mount Scopus for a panoramic view of Jerusalem. Proceed to the bottom of Mount of Olives to visit the Garden of Gethsemane and Church of Agony. Continue to the Israel Museum and visit the Shrine of the Book, where the famous Dead Sea scrolls are housed, followed by a visit to the beautifully renovated model of the Herodian city of Jerusalem, dating back to the time of the Second Temple. Continue to Yad Vashem, the memorial to the six million Jews who were killed in the Holocaust. In the afternoon, visit the synagogue of Hadassah Medical Center with the famous Marc Chagall stained glass windows. Tou will return to your hotel via Ein Kerem, the birth place of John the Baptist. Overnight in Jerusalem.
After breakfast, you will enter the walled city and proceed to the Jewish Quarter, which was reconstructed after the city was unified at the conclusion of the Six-Day War in 1967. A special point of interest is the “Cardo”, meaning the “heart” of this ancient Byzantine City. You will see the ancient Roman road, beautifully restored after the 1967 war. View the unearthed main Roman thorough the ancient marketplace (bazaar) lined with the old Roman columns to the Holy Western Wall – the “Kotel” (Beit Hamikdash). After time at the Western Wall and Temple Mount area, you will walk on the Via Dolorosa and the Stations of the Cross ending at the Church of the Holy Sepulchre. In the afternoon, tou will continue to Bethlehem* to visit the Church of the Nativity and return to Jerusalem for overnight.
After breakfast, you will leave Jerusalem and drive north to Jericho*, the oldest city in the world dating back 10,000 years. You will continue along the lush Jordan Valley, where the dessert now blooms with flowers and vegetation of every description (Isaiah 35:1-2). You will proceed to Beit Shean to visit the excavations of this beautiful preserved Roman city which was destroyed in an earthquake. It is considered of the largest ongoing archaeological dig in the land of Israel with its amphitheater, colonnaded Roman streets, mosaics and Roman bathhouse (1st Samuel 31:10). Proceed to Tiberias, the old center of Jewish learning and drive along the shores of the Sea of Galilee to Capernaum and visit the ruins of the ancient synagogue. You will conclude at our kibbuts guest house for overnight.
After kibbutz breakfast, you will drive to the Golan Heights and visit the former Syrian fortifications and Druze villages. Visit Banias, the source of the Jordan River and proceed to Safed via the Hula Valley. The Mystical City of Safed, is one of the Four Holy Cities according to tradition and its Kabalistic studies. Stroll through the narrow, winding alleys, visit some of the beautiful synagogues, such as the Joseph Caro and the Ha’ Ari synagogues. If time permits, browse through the artists’ workshops and galleries found in the flourishing artists’ quarter. Continue to Nazareth and visit the Church of Annunciation, built on the site where archaeologists believe the Archangel Gabriel appeared to the Virgin Mary. You will also see Mary’s Well and Joseph’s Church. This city is where Jesus grew in his youth years and worked for his father in his carpentry shop. You will return to the kibbutz guest house for overnight.
After breakfast, you will drive west to Acre for a visit of the old, famous Crusader stronghold and medieval fortifications. Continue to Haifa, sightseeing tour of Haifa, including the Bahai Shrine, Persian Gardens and Mount Carmel for a panoramic view of the city and bay. Proceed along the coast to Caesarea, built by Herod the Great and once the seat of Roman rule. View the excavated Roman Theater, with its acoustic and theatrical sound. It was used for many performances throughout the centuries. Today, it draws major venue attractions, for concerts and festivals. You will walk through the excavated fortress and conclude the day with a short city tour of Tel Aviv-Jaffa and overnight in Tel Aviv.
After breakfast, you will depart from your hotel to the border. After border crossing procedures to enter Jordan. Drive to Jerash, city of the Decapolis located approximately 45 kilometers north of Amman in the fertile heights of Gilead. Visit the Roman city with colonnaded streets, the ancient heater, baths, hill top temple, triumphal arch etc. Continue to Amman for a city tour of the Jordanian Capital. Overnight in Amman.
After early breakfast, leave the hotel and travel south on the road to Wadi Musa. Continue on horseback to the “Siq” (Canyon) and then on foot to Petra, also known as “Sela Edom” or Red Rock City, the ancient capital of the Nabateans from the 3rd Century B.C. to 2nd Century A.D. Visit the most interesting carved monuments such as the Treasure (El Khazneh – a tomb of a Nabatean King), the field of tombs, obelisks, the altar (Al Madhbah). From this point, you can view the whole of the rock city, travel back to Wadi Musa village and drive back to Amman for overnight.
After breakfast, drive to Madaba to see the ancient mosaic map of the Holyland and ruins of the historical sites. You will continue for approximately 10 kilometers to Mount Nebo, from where Moses viewed the Promised Land. From there, you will see the Jordan Valley, Jericho, Dead Sea. Visit the remains of a Byzantine Church with a mosaic floor and drive back to the border for overnight in Tel Aviv.
After breakfast, transfer to Ben Gurion Airport for departure.
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