Israel & Jordan Escape 2019 - Ref: GIJ
Number of Days: 13
Destination: Middle East
See Israel and Jordan on this guided tour of the historic Middle East, and enjoy shorter travel time, fewer crowds, and lower costs than the busy travel season. Begin in Tel Aviv, stop in the port of Jaffa, then through the Holy Land to Caesarea to visit the Roman Amphitheatre and Crusader Fortress, and Nazareth in Galilee to visit the Church of the Annunciation. Stop in Cana—site of Jesus’ wedding miracle—on your way to Haifa. Visit the sites of Jesus’ life, including the Mount of Beatitudes and Capernaum. Travel to David and Goliath’s Valley of Elah; Samson and Delilah’s Valley of Ayalon; and cruise on the Sea of Galilee. You’ll also visit the birthplace of Jesus in Bethlehem and enjoy a four-night stay in Jerusalem.
Take an excursion to Yad Vashem Holocaust Memorial, and visit the Israel Museum, which holds the Shrine of the Book, and the Dead Sea Scrolls. Visit Jerusalem’s Old City, the Garden Tomb, and the Mount of Olives. See the Garden of Gethsemane, follow the Stations of the Cross along the Via Dolorosa, and visit the Church of the Holy Sepulchre at the site of the crucifixion. View the Temple Mount, the Dome of the Rock mosque, and the holy Western Wall; take an excursion to historic Masada to visit the cliff-top fortress; and float in the waters of the Dead Sea—with fewer crowds in this low-season travel to Israel.
In Jordan, travel to Bethany Beyond the Jordan, where John the Baptist is said to have baptized Jesus; Madaba with its archaeological treasures; Mount Nebo, where Moses saw the Promised Land; and Jordan’s “Grand Canyon” at Wadi Mujib. Take an exciting four-wheel drive through the pristine desert of Wadi Rum. Visit Petra, one of the New 7 Wonders of the World®—stand in awe in front of the 1st-century-BC Treasury, carved into the sheer sandstone rock, and walk down the Siq, the colourful gorge between the high cliffs; also sip tea in a Bedouin tent. From Jordan’s capital Amman, travel to Umm Qais and the Greco-Roman city of Jerash. Ancient sites and fascinating landscapes await you on this off-season guided tour of Israel and Jordan—without the crowds, costs, or lengthy travel schedule of the high-season!
Day by Day
ARRIVE IN TEL AVIV, ISRAEL.
Welcome to Tel Aviv! Enjoy this evening's welcome dinner with your travelling companions and Tour Director. (D)
Stop in Jaffa for a walk through the beautifully restored ancient port, where medieval pilgrims started their strenuous 2-day trek to Jerusalem. Then, continue your tour of the Holy Land to Caesarea, the perfect place to learn about the Roman and Crusader presence in the country. Visit the ROMAN AMPHITHEATER and the impressive CRUSADER FORTRESS and admire Herod's stadium and harbour. On to Nazareth in Galilee, to visit the contemporary CHURCH OF THE ANNUNCIATION. Then on to Cana, site of the first miracle where Jesus changed water to wine at a wedding. To this day, many couples renew their wedding vows at this sacred place. Arrive in Haifa, a city with a long history dating back to biblical times. (B,D)
HAIFA. EXCURSION TO MOUNT OF BEATITUDES- CAPERNAUM-SEA OF GALILEE.
Start your day with a visit to the golden-domed BAHA'I SHRINE, the world centre of Baha'i faith. Heading towards the Sea of Galilee, visit the MOUNT OF BEATITUDES, where Jesus delivered his Sermon on the Mount. Then proceed to CAPERNAUM, where Jesus recruited his first followers among the fishermen. Via the ruins of Kursi arrive at the Jordan River and visit the BAPTISMAL SITE, followed by a relaxing CRUISE on the Sea of Galilee. (B,D)
HAIFA-VALLEY OF ELAH-LATRUN-BETHLEHEM- JERUSALEM.
Drive into the ancient land of the Philistines and the Valley of Elah. Stop at the site of David's victory over the Philistine champion, Goliath, and hear about this biblical event. Later, refresh your memory with the tale of Samson and Delilah as you travel through the land of the Dan tribe to the wide Valley of Ayalon. At strategic Latrun, visit the MONASTERY OF THE TRAPPIST MONKS. Stop en route for a breath-taking panoramic view of the Holy City of Jerusalem, considered one of the oldest places in the world, with a history dating back as far as 4000 BC. Proceed to Bethlehem and see Shepherd's Field, where the angels announced the birth of Jesus. Next, visit the CHURCH OF THE NATIVITY, which stands on the site where Jesus was born. Overnight in Jerusalem. (B)
JERUSALEM. EXCURSION TO THE ISRAEL MUSEUM, YAD VASHEM, AND MOUNT ZION.
Visit the ISRAEL MUSEUM with the Shrine of the Book, and the Dead Sea Scrolls, followed by the YAD VASHEM MEMORIAL created to commemorate the six million martyrs of the Holocaust. Continue to MOUNT ZION, and visit the UPPER ROOM, where Jesus and his disciples had the last supper, and then the TOMB OF KING DAVID. (B)
JERUSALEM. EXCURSION TO THE OLD CITY.
This morning we visit the GARDEN TOMB. After a stunning panorama of the city from the revered MOUNT OF OLIVES, start your guided walking tour. Via the Chapel of Dominus Flevit, designed in the shape of a tear drop to symbolize the tears of Christ, arrive at the GARDEN OF GETHSEMANE, where Jesus prayed the night before his arrest. Nearby are the Caves of the Assumption of Mary and of the Betrayal. Follow the Stations of the Cross along the VIA DOLOROSA to Golgotha and visit the CHURCH OF THE HOLY SEPULCHRE. Erected over the site of the crucifixion, this church is shared by six Christian communities. Also view the Temple Mount and the Dome of the Rock, a splendid mosque on the holy mount. Continue to the WESTERN WALL, the most holy shrine in the Jewish religion. (B)
JERUSALEM. EXCURSION TO MASADA AND THE DEAD SEA.
Drive through the Judean wilderness to the Dead Sea, the lowest point on the surface of the Earth. Enjoy the scenery as you follow the road between the salty water and majestic desert mountains. Catch glimpses of the caves of Qumran, where the precious Dead Sea Scrolls were found. Ascend by cable car to the spectacular cliff-top FORTRESS of Masada and hear how 960 Jewish zealots preferred death at their own hands to the indignity of surrender to overwhelming Roman forces. Around lunchtime, reach one of the comfortable Dead Sea resorts and experience the feeling of buoyancy in the heavy water. Return to Jerusalem to enjoy a farewell dinner with your travelling companions to commemorate an unforgettable journey through the Holy Land. (B,D)
JERUSALEM, ISRAEL-ALLENBY BRIDGE-JERASH, JORDAN- UMM QAIS-AMMAN.
A comfortable drive across the Allenby Bridge, brings you to Jordan. Drive north to JERASH, which was inhabited as early as 3200 BC. Although the city was impacted by the earthquake of 749 AD, it is the site of the best preserved Greco-Roman ruins in the Middle East. Next, stop in Umm Qais, site of the Gadarene swine miracle, before arriving in Jordan's capital, Amman. (B,D)
An exciting visit to Wadi Rum is on the program today. Wadi Rum is the largest wadi (ravine) in Jordan and made eternally famous through the movie Lawrence of Arabia. Enjoy spectacular FOUR-WHEELING through the sand dunes and receive a keffiyeh, a local headscarf. Continue to the "Rose-Red City" of Petra, where you can relax at your hotel this evening or explore the ancient city. (B,D)
Full day of guided sightseeing in Petra, a UNESCO World Heritage Site and one of the New 7 Wonders of the World. Lost to the world for centuries, it is located in the biblical land of Moab. Enjoy an unforgettable experience as you walk down the SIQ, the narrow gorge made famous in the movie Indiana Jones and the Last Crusade. Stand in awe in front of the iconic and famed TREASURY. You'll see spectacular temples and tombs created out of the rose-coloured sandstone, and sip tea in a real BEDOUIN TENT. (B,D)
PETRA-KERAK-WADI MUJIB-DEAD SEA.
This morning features Kerak, with a visit to the CRUSADER CASTLE and Wadi Mujib, the "Jordanian Grand Canyon." Continue to your hotel at the Dead Sea for your 2-night stay. (B,D)
DEAD SEA. EXCURSION TO MADABA, MOUNT NEBO & BETHANY BEYOND THE JORDAN.
A fascinating day awaits! Stop in Madaba to visit ST. GEORGE'S CHURCH, which houses a precious 6th-century mosaic map of the Holy Land. Also explore the MADABA ARCHAEOLOGICAL MUSEUM. Today's major highlight is a visit to MOUNT NEBO, where Moses saw the Promised Land. Next is Bethany Beyond the Jordan, where Christians believe that Jesus was baptised by John the Baptist. Return to the Dead Sea to enjoy a farewell dinner with your travelling companions to commemorate an unforgettable journey. (B,D)
Your holiday ends with breakfast this morning (the nearest airport is Amman). (B)
12 Breakfasts & 9 Dinners.
Full buffet breakfast (B) daily, 9 three-course dinners with wine (D): including a welcome dinner in Tel Aviv, and a farewell dinner at the Dead Sea.
- TEL AVIV - Welcome dinner.
- JAFFA - Walking tour of the ancient port.
- CAESAREA - Visit the Roman Amphitheater and the Crusader fortress.
- NAZARETH - Visit the Church of the Annunciation.
- CANA - Visit the site of the first miracle.
- HAIFA - Visit the Baha'i Shrine.
- MOUNT OF BEATITUDES - Visit the site where Jesus delivered his sermon.
- CAPERNAUM - Visit the site where Jesus recruited his followers.
- JORDAN RIVER - Visit a baptismal site.
- SEA OF GALILEE - Enjoy a cruise.
- LATRUN - Visit the site of David's victory over Goliath in the Valley of Elah and the Monastery of the Trappist Monks in Latrun.
- BETHLEHEM - Visit the Church of Nativity.
- JERUSALEM - Visit the Israel Museum, Yad Vashem, and Mount Zion; guided walking tour; the tomb of King David, the Upper Room, the Garden Tomb, a panoramic view from the Mount of Olives; visit the Garden of Gethsemane, follow the Stations of the Cross along the Via Dolorosa, visit the Church of the Holy Sepulchre, the Western Wall; farewell dinner.
- MASADA - Ride a cable car and visit the cliff-top fortress.
- DEAD SEA - Experience the buoyancy feeling in the Dead Sea water.
- AMMAN - Welcome dinner; guided sightseeing, visit the amphitheatre; excursion to Jerash and Umm Qais.
- WADI RUM - Visit the largest wadi in Jordan and enjoy a four-wheel drive to the desert of Wadi Rum and receive a local scarf.
- PETRA - Guided sightseeing, including the Siq and the Treasury; sip tea in a Bedouin tent.
- KERAK - Visit the Crusader Castle.
- WADI MUJIB - Visit the Jordanian Grand Canyon.
- MADABA - Visit St. George's Church and the Archaeological Museum.
- MOUNT NEBO - Visit the mountain where Moses saw the Promised Land.
- BETHANY BEYOND THE JORDAN - Visit the site of John the Baptist's settlement.
- DEAD SEA - Farewell dinner.
- TRANSPORTATION - Motorcoach or minibus; boat cruise, cable car.
- FREE WI-FI - Available on your motorcoach and in most hotel lobbies.
- $2,629 tour departures are guaranteed.