Traveling to Israel
We depart for our overnight flight to Tel Aviv, embarking on our life-changing journey! We will be met at Ben Gurion International Airport in Tel Aviv and assisted through customs, introduced to our guide and driver, and travel to the West Lagoon Hotel in Netanya for a delicious dinner and a well-deserved rest, overlooking the Mediterranean Sea. This morning, we begin our tour of biblical sites at Caesarea by the Sea, where Peter proclaimed the Good News to the Roman Centurion (Acts 10). We will also explore Megiddo and Mt. Carmel, where Elijah confronted the prophets of Baal (1 Kings 18). Then we drive to Ein Harod, the spring where Gideon chose his 300. Afterwards, we will visit Tel Jezreel, the city of Ahab and Jezebel. The final site for the day is a stunning overlook from Mount Gilboa where King Saul died. After dinner we arrive late at the Sofia Hotel in Tiberias by the Sea of Galilee for overnight. We begin our day atop Mt. Arbel and see the Sea of Galilee from a one-of-a-kind perspective. Then, we proceed to Capernaum, Jesus’ base for His ministry. Then we make our way to Chorazin, one of the cities Jesus cursed for not repenting. At the Mt. of Beatitudes, we’ll revisit the Lord’s Sermon on the Mount (Matthew 5-7). Next, we’ll visit the Church of the Primacy of Peter, where Jesus called Peter and later restored him. Then we’ll see the newly discovered site of Magdala and the synagogue where likely Jesus taught. We’ll experience the Ancient Boat Museum and conclude our day by taking a boat ride on the Sea of Galilee. We return to our hotel for dinner and overnight. This morning, we begin at Bethsaida where Jesus healed a blind man. Then, we drive north through the Huleh Valley and pass the Old Testament site of Hazor. At Tel Dan, we’ll see the altar of Jeroboam and the ancient gates of the city. After arriving at Caesarea Philippi, we’ll stand in the pagan Roman worship center and recall Peter’s profession, “You are the Christ, the Son of the living God.” We end the day overlooking of the Sea of Galilee at the Switzerland Forest. We return to our hotel for dinner and overnight.
The Lowest Spot on Earth
Today we begin by heading south to Beit Shean, one of the best-preserved cities of the Decapolis and where King Saul and his sons were hung from the city walls after being killed by the Philistines. We’ll drive to the top of Mount Gerizim and overlook ancient Shechem, the site where Abraham, Jacob, Joshua, and Jesus came. Then we visit Old Testament Shiloh, where the Tabernacle stood for centuries and where the Prophet Samuel grew up. We make a stop at the Jordan River and see the location where Jesus was baptized. Afterwards, we make our way to the Dead Sea (the lowest spot-on earth) to the Herod’s Hotel for dinner and overnight. After breakfast we travel along the shore of the Dead Sea toward Masada, where we ascend by cable car to King Herod’s amazing fortress. From here, we head to Tel Arad, the southern fortress of Judah where a forbidden high place was found. Our next stop is Ein Gedi where David hid from King Saul. We continue north to Qumran, where the Dead Sea Scrolls were discovered. We return to the Herod’s Hotel for a float in the Dead Sea before dinner and overnight. This morning we drive to Tel Lachish, the site of the Assyrian victory during the days of King Hezekiah. From there, we travel north to Beit Guvrin, and we will visit the Maresha Caves with hundreds of bell-shaped caves caused by ancient quarrying. This area was the hometown of the Prophet Micah. Then we drive to Beth Shemesh, where the Ark of the Covenant was returned (1 Samuel 6). Next, we travel to the Elah Valley to see where David fought Goliath (1 Samuel 17). Afterwards we visit the hill of Nebi Samuel to see a spectacular overlook of the CentralBenjamin Plateau. Finally, we arrive in the Holy City of Jerusalem and proceed to the beautiful Inbal Hotel for dinner and overnight. After breakfast, we drive to the top of the Mount of Olives and walk down to the Dominus Flevit Church and consider why Jesus wept over Jerusalem. Then we will enjoy a private section of the Garden of Gethsemane and contemplate Jesus’ pleading in prayer with the Father. Next, we will visit the Israel Museum and its model of 1st-century Jerusalem—as well as key biblical finds in archaeology. Afterwards, we visit Yad Vashem, Israel’s Holocaust Memorial and Museum. Finally, we will have a tour of the Western Wall Tunnel. Dinner and overnight in Jerusalem.
An Adventure Through Hezekiah’s Tunnel
We begin our day with the roosters at the Church of St. Peter in Gallicantu, the traditional house of Caiaphas where Peter denied Christ. Next, we stop at modern Mount Zion and the site of the Upper Room where Jesus shared the Last Supper with His disciples. We’ll walk to the Jewish Quarter and see the ancient Cardo and Hezekiah’s Broad Wall. We proceed toward the most sacred of Christian sites, the Church of the Holy Sepulcher—the location where Jesus died and rose again. Afterwards, we’ll visit the museum at the Tower of David. After some free time in the Old City, we will return to our hotel for dinner and overnight. We begin our day atop the Temple Mount, where Jesus taught and where the Jewish Temples stood. We’ll make our way past Lion’s Gate to sing in St. Anne’s Church, beside the Pools of Bethesda, where Jesus healed a lame man. Afterwards, we proceed to the City of David and venture through Hezekiah’s Tunnel. (Bring a small flashlight or head lamp and water shoes to walk through the tunnel. Or you can stay dry and walk through the Canaanite Tunnel.) Time permitting, we will visit the Pool of Siloam, where Jesus healed the blind man. We’ll walk on the Southern Steps of the Temple Mount—the very steps that Jesus climbed. We end our day with a communion service at the Garden Tomb. We will enjoy a farewell dinner before transferring to the airport for our return flight home. With heart‐changing memories of our walk in the land of the Bible, we arrive back home.