Experience Biblical Israel Tours
We arrive at the Ben Gurion Airport in the early afternoon. Here we are met by our Israeli guide and driver. We leave the airport and make one stop in Jaffa. We spend our first night in Bat Yam along the Mediterranean Sea in the Tel Aviv. We enjoy a late dinner. After an abundant breakfast buffet, we begin our biblical Israel tours we journey north along the coast to Caesarea, built nearly 2000 years ago by King Herod. From here we depart to Mt. Carmel, site of Elijah’s confrontation with the prophets of Baal. Then we proceed to Megiddo. Across the Jezreel Valley is Sepporis, a large city in the days of Jesus. We see the Cardo, the theater, and many mosaics, including the “Mona Lisa” of the Galilee. We end the day by driving to the precipice of Nazareth. Driving through Cana, we finally arrive at the outskirts of Tiberias at our “kibbutz-hotel” located right on the Sea of Galilee shoreline. We begin the day of our biblical Israel tours by driving into the Golan Heights. We make a stop on the northeast corner of the Sea of Galilee. Our next site is Gamla, a Jewish city that was taken by the Romans during the Revolt in the 60’s A.D. Here we see a first century synagogue, as well as the ruins of the city, called the “Masada of the north.” Close by is the site of Qatzrin, a partially reconstructed Talmudic village. Next, we drive to the base of Mt. Hermon. We’ll enjoy a bite to eat here (not included). Next, we descend the Golan Heights and visit Caesarea Philippi. Nearby is the amazing nature preserve and archaeological site of Dan. We end the day by visiting Misgav Am on the Hills of Naphtali. We look down to Abel Beit Maacah where Dr. John excavated in 2014. We drive back through the Huleh Valley to our hotel in Tiberias. We begin the day of our biblical Israel tours by visiting Arbel, a mountain on the northwest corner of the Sea of Galilee. We have the option to hike to the top of this 800-foot cliff. From here we drive to Magdala. Next is another New Testament city, Chorazim. Then we visit Capernaum, the home center of ministry for Jesus here in Galilee. Next, we enjoy a boat ride on the Sea of Galilee, with a quiet and peaceful worship service. Upon landing, we also see the “Jesus boat” from the first century, a vessel found here along the shores of Galilee in 1986. Next, we travel to the southern end of the Sea of Galilee and enjoy optional baptism in the Jordan River at Yardenit.
Floating in the Dead Sea
We begin the day by driving south to the Jordan Valley to the site of Beth Shean, an impressive Roman city of the Decapolis. We’ll see many ruins from the Roman city, including the theater, the pillared “cardo,” bathhouse, and many mosaics. An optional hike to the top of the Old Testament tel is available. From here our biblical Israel tours south through the Jordan River Valley to Jericho. After lunch (not included), we climb the tel and see portions of the wall that “came tumblin’ down.” Nearby is the Dead Sea where you have the opportunity to “float” in the unique body of water rich with minerals and salt. On our way to Jerusalem, we make a brief stop overlooking the Wadi Qelt and the Judean Desert. We start the day with an orientation to Jerusalem from the Mt. of Olives. We then follow the traditional Palm Sunday road to the church known as the Dominus Flevit. After viewing the Golden Gate, we walk downhill to Gethsemane. From here our biblical Israel tours enter the Old City where we first will visit the Pools of Bethesda and St. Anne’s Church, perfectly preserved from the Crusader period with remarkable acoustics. We then follow the Way of the Cross to the Holy Sepulche. In the afternoon, our biblical Israel tours visit Herodium. Located on the edge of the Judean Desert, this is where Herod the Great was buried. We then drive into Bethlehem and visiting the Shepherds’ Field. We then return to our hotel in Jerusalem. We begin the day of our biblical Israel tours by walking through the Western Wall Tunnel. Next, we visit the southern wall excavations where we see more massive stones erected by King Herod, even the “pinnacle” of the Temple. From here we walk down to the City of David and the new excavations of David’s palace. Those who want to can walk through the water of Hezekiah’s Tunnel. Others can walk through the “dry” Canaanite tunnel. Both groups converge at the Siloam Pool where we listen to the story of John 9. Following a late lunch (not included), we end the day with a visit to the Garden Tomb, an alternative location for the crucifixion and burial site of Jesus. We end this part of our biblical Israel tours with a Farewell Dinner together. Following dinner, we drive to the airport for our flight home.
Did You Know? Al-Khazneh appears in the movie “Indiana Jones and the Last Crusade.”
Optional Israel & Jordan Extension
We begin the day by entering the Old City and ascend to the Temple Mount itself. This is where both Solomon’s and Herod’s Temples once stood. Today, the Dome of the Rock stands. From here we visit the Jewish Quarter. We also visit Shorashim where we will hear Moshe, on Orthodox Jew, talk about his faith. Following some free time and lunch in this area (not included), we drive out to West Jerusalem and visit the Israel Museum and the spectacular Jerusalem Model of the 2nd Temple Period as well as Yad Vashem and the Holocaust Memorial. We begin the day by driving south to the Jordan Valley the Allenby Bridge. Here we make the crossing from Israel to Jordan. After border formalities, we meet our Jordanian guide and bus and drive to Bethany Beyond the Jordan. Then we climb to Mt. Nebo to stand where Moses stood and viewed the Holy Land. We continue our biblical Israel tours to Medeba dubbed the “City of Mosaics” due to the vivid sixth century Byzantine mosaic map in the church of St. George. Time permitting, we will then drive to Macherus, one of Herod’s palace-fortresses. In the late afternoon, we drive south down the Desert Highway to Petra, where we spend the night. We arrive this morning at the entrance of Petra and spend the entire day within this red-rose ancient city. A walk through the Siq, the main entrance to Petra, brings us to the first monument “The Treasury” “Al-Khazneh” a dramatic site. A walk further down through the outer siq with all of its tombs and burial chamber brings us to one of the largest theaters in Jordan. From here we walk uphill to the Royal Tombs for a great view of the lower part of Petra with all its Roman remains. There will be the option to walk to the “Monastery” of Petra and/or the High Place. Leaving the site of Petra in mid-afternoon, we drive south to Wadi Rum. We then stay in Wadi Rum at Captain’s, a Bedouin Village.
The Fortress of King Herod
Following breakfast, we leave Wadi Rum and drive to the southern border to cross back into Israel. Greeted once again by our Israeli guide and bus, our biblical Israel tours make a brief stop to see the coral reefs of the Red Sea. From here we drive north through the Aravah to Timnah. We also walk through a full-size replica of the Old Testament Tabernacle. Continuing north, we drive to Ein Bokek . We check into our hotel and have a chance to float in the Dead Sea. We begin today driving north along the western coastline of the Dead Sea to Masada. Here we ascend high upon the wilderness mountain by way of cable car to the fortress built by King Herod. We survey the ruins of the fortifications, waterworks, the synagogue, temples and palaces. Our next stop is Ein Gedi, where David hid from King Saul, and we enjoy a walk back to the waterfalls. Continuing north, we visit Qumran and the settlement of the first century sect known as the Essenes, the authors of the Dead Sea Scrolls. After lunch (not included), we visit the ruins of Qumran. From here we drive west through Jerusalem to Gezer located in the Ajalon Valley. If time permits, we end the day by visiting Kh. Qeiyafa in the Elah Valley. On our way to the airport, we will enjoy dinner together before our night flight home.