Country
Israel
Duration
11 Days/10 Nights
Travel Type
Tour
 

Explore how life was in Biblical times as you tour ancient Christian and Roman sights along the holy roads that Jesus once walked.

Additional Information

Note

Special Notes

1

Day 1 Arrival

Upon arrival to Ben Gurion Airport, our representative will meet you in the arrival hall to assist you with your luggage. You will meet your guide and bus and travel to your hotel along the Mediterranean coast. Dinner and overnight at hotel.

Meals : Dinner

2

Day 2 Kingdoms and Cultures in Conflict

Our morning begins at the port-city of Caesarea built by Herod the Great (Matt. 2). This was the second largest harbor in the Roman Empire during the first century. At Caesarea, Peter visited the gentile centurion Cornelius (Acts 10), and he and his household became the first gentile followers of Jesus. The Apostle Paul remained under house arrest in Caesarea for two and a half years. Here he stood before Felix, Festus, and Agrippa II (Acts 23-25). From the harbor of Caesarea, Paul sailed to Rome leaving Israel for the last time. While at the site, we will visit the ancient theater with its magnificent view overlooking the Mediterranean Sea. We will see Herod the Great’s palace that served as the residence of the Roman officials in the land, like Pontius Pilate. We will remember Pilate’s governorship of Judaea by looking at a replica of a stone inscription mentioning Pilate dedicating a temple to the Roman Emperor Tiberius. Our visit takes us through the ancient stadium and harbor and ends looking at the ancient aqueduct of Caesarea that supplied the city with its water. After departing Caesarea, we travel to Mount Carmel where Elijah challenged the prophets of Ba’al (1 Kings 18). We then journey through the Valley of Jezreel. At Megiddo we will view the excavations of 21 layers of settlement superimposed one on the other including remains from Solomon's days (1 Kings 9). Dinner and overnight on the Sea of Galilee.

Meals : Dinner

3

Day 3 The Galilee of Jesus

Our morning begins with a visit to one of the most exciting and important ongoing archaeological excavations in Israel, Magdala. Here we will visit one of the few, excavated, first century synagogues in the land of Israel. Its date coincides with the time of Jesus ministry in the area. We will also see wealthy homes from the village, as well as the first century harbor. From Magdala, we travel into the Galilee visitin the capital of the Galilee when Jesus was growing up, Sephhoris. Here we will see one of the cities of Jesus’ Galilee with its theater, mosaics, and paved streets. Next we travel to a fun learning and engaging experience: Kefar Kedem. Here we will experience the land of the Bible in a unique way as we learn about shepherding, making bread as they did in the time of the Bible. The flora of biblical Israel comes alive within this small park as the Bible is illuminated as we learn how the land was so important in writing the Bible. Our day concludes at the boyhood home of Jesus, Nazareth. We visit the Church of the Annunciation, built over the traditional place where the angel Gabriel announced to Mary that she would be the mother of Jesus (Luke 1:26-37). The church is built on top of the ancient village of Nazareth, and we will visit a small museum that shows some of the finds and homes from the village. We will end our visit in Nazareth with an overlook of the Jezreel Valley from Mount Precipice. From this vantage point, we will see the settings for a number of biblical stories. Dinner and overnight at our hotel on the Sea of Galilee.

Meals : Dinner

4

Day 4 Who do men say that I am?

Today we travel into the Golan Heights and the upper Jordan Valley. Our day begins at the nature reserve of Dan. The ancient city of Dan, which formed the northern boundary of biblical Israel, sits on the Dan Spring, one of the three tributaries of the Jordan River. In addition to walking through the beautiful nature reserve, we will visit the ancient site of Dan seeing its high place (1 Kings 12:29), Israelite gate, and the Middle Bronze Age gate from the time of Abraham (Gen. 14:14). Next, we travel to Banias, ancient Caesarea Philippi (Matt. 16:13; Mark 8:27). In the vicinity of Caesarea Philippi, Jesus asked his disciples, “Who do men say that I am?” From Banias, we drive up into the foothills of Mount Hermon (Ps. 133) and into the Golan Heights. At a high overlook on the Israel-Syrian border, we look into Syria towards Damascus. Dinner and overnight on the Sea of Galilee.

5

Day 5 The Ministry of Jesus

Our journey today focuses upon the ministry of Jesus around the Sea of Galilee. Our morning begins at Yardenit, which provides an opportunity for people to be baptized in the Jordan River. Next, we travel to Katzrin, a Talmudic village located in the Golan Heights that has been reconstructed to help guests visualize ancient villages in Galilee and Golan, like those Jesus traveled to and ministered. Next, we journey to Chorazin one of the three cities cursed by Jesus (Matt. 11:21; Luke 10:13). At this site, we see the ancient homes and Jewish ritual immersion pools, as well as the magnificent basalt synagogue from the fifth century AD. Inside the synagogue is a replica of a Seat of Moses (Matt. 23:2). Our journey continues with a stop at the Mount of Beatitudes, a traditional site overlooking the Sea of Galilee where we reflect upon Jesus’ Sermon on the Mount (Matt. 5-7). We travel next to the ancient town of Capernaum where Jesus made his home around the lake (Matt. 4:13). Here he healed the centurion’s servant (Matt. 8:5). In our visit, we will see the modern church built over an ancient church, which was built over a first century home, identified as the home of Peter. The magnificent limestone synagogue of the fourth century AD has been party reconstructed and looms over the site. From Capernaum, we travel to the small museum at Kibbutz Ginnosar that houses an ancient boat discovered in the 1980s in the Sea of Galilee. This boat dates to the first century and was a boat used by fisherman on the lake. Our day concludes with an evening boat-ride on the Sea of Galilee. The ancient fishermen fished the lake at night. Riding on the waters of the lake in the evening offers a unique opportunity to connect with Jesus and his disciples on the lake.
Dinner and overnight at the hotel on Jerusalem

Meals : Dinner

6

Day 6 Desert Refuge

Today we drive from the Sea of Galilee, the lowest fresh water lake in the world, through the Jordan River Valley, to the Dead Sea, the lowest place on earth. Our first stop is the desert palace-fortress built by Herod the Great, Masada. During the First Jewish Revolt (AD 66-73), Jewish rebels lived on Masada until they were surrounded by the Tenth Roman Legion. According to the first century Jewish historian Josephus, the rebels chose to commit suicide instead of slavery and death at the hands of the Romans. While visiting the site, we will see the palaces of Herod the Great, his bath houses and store rooms. We will also see buildings converted by the Jewish rebels for their use, like the synagogue. Evidence of the Roman siege can be seen in the siege ramp and Roman camps that surround Masada. We travel next to En Fescha where the words of Isaiah 35 come alive right before our eyes as we see streams flowing in the desert. From En Fescha, we visit the site of Qumran. In caves around the site, the world-famous Dead Sea Scrolls were discovered. Qumran was the settlement of the community that produced many of the Dead Sea Scrolls. After visiting Qumran, participants have the unique experience of floating in the Dead Sea. Our day ends with an overlook of the Wadi Qilt, the ancient road between Jerusalem and Jericho. This was the setting for Jesus’ story of the Good Samaritan (Luke 10:25-37). On Jesus’ final journey to Jerusalem, he used this road as he came from Jericho to Jerusalem (Luke 19:1-11). Dinner and overnight at our hotel in Jerusalem.

Meals : Dinner

7

Day 7 Biblical Jerusalem

Our morning in Jerusalem begins with a visit to the Israel Museum. Here we will see a scale-model of Jerusalem on the eve of its destruction in AD 70. We will visit the Shrine of the Book, which houses some of the Dead Sea Scrolls, including some of the oldest copies of the Old Testament. Our tour of the museum concludes with a walk through the archeological wing to visit the two galleries dedicated to Israel in the Old and New Testament periods. We will see original artifacts found in sites we visited, as well as other artifacts that make the Bible come alive. Next we journey to the City of David, the oldest part of Jerusalem, the city David conquered and made his capital. From David’s capital, we travel to his hometown, Bethlehem. In Bethlehem, we remember the birth of Jesus and visit the Church of Nativity, the oldest church in the Holy Land, built over the traditional site of Jesus’ birth. Dinner and overnight in Jerusalem.

Meals : Dinner

8

Day 8 New Testament Jerusalem

Our morning begins with a beautiful view of the city of Jerusalem from the Mount of Olives. We walk down the mountain following the modern path used by pilgrims on Palm Sunday visiting the church of Dominus Flevit, which remembers Jesus’ weeping over the city as he rode into it, and the traditional location of the Garden of Gethsemane. We cross the Kidron Valley into the Old City and visit St. Anne’s Church built over top of the Pools of Bethesda (John 5) where Jesus healed the lame man. We will take the opportunity to sing in the beautiful Crusader church on the site. We conclude our tour along the southern wall of the Temple Mount. On the first century street, we see the shops and markets around the Temple, a possible location for the money changers (Luke 19:45-48). We then proceed to the southern entrances of the Temple where we walk the steps ancient pilgrims took to ascend to the Temple. we stop at the Western Wall, the most sacred site for Jews. If time permits we visit Yad Vashem, the memorial to the Holocaust. Dinner and overnight at the Jerusalem hotel.

Meals : Dinner

9

Day 9 Jesus' Final Days

Our journey begins at Jaffa Gate where in the first century Herod’s palace stood. Here the story of Jesus begins (Matt. 2) with the visit of the wisemen to Herod, and here his story ended because at Herod’s palace Jesus stood before Pontius Pilate (Mark 15:16). From Jaffa Gate, we walk into the Jewish Quarter and visit the Herodian Quarter, a series of priestly homes from the first century. We then walk along the Byzantine Cardo and see the walls of Jerusalem from the eighth century BC and the first century BC. Passing the Gennath Gate, we follow the historic route Jesus traveled from Pilate to his place of execution at the Church of the Holy Sepulcher. Free time in the Old City. Dinner and overnight at our hotel in Jerusalem.

10

Day 10 - New Testament Jerusalem

Our morning begins with a beautiful view of the city of Jerusalem from the Mount of Olives. We walk the path used by pilgrims on Palm Sunday visiting the church of Dominus Flevit, which remembers Jesus’ weeping over the city. Garden of Gethsemane is next as we cross the Kidron Valley into the Old City and visit St. Anne’s Church built over top of the Pools of Bethesda. We conclude our tour along the southern wall of the Temple Mount. We then proceed to the southern entrances of the Temple where we walk the steps ancient pilgrims took to ascend to the Temple. Our day ends with a communion service. After a farewell dinner, we depart Jerusalem for Ben Gurion Airport where you will return to your home country refreshed, challenged, and renewed in your faith.

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