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Israel and Beyond

Israel holds a unique place in the Middle East. With sacred sites central to three of humanitys major religions, you could spend a lifetime here and never experience all of its wonders. Look over Jerusalem from the Mount of Olives, stay in a kibbutz hotel at the Sea of Galilee, walk the ruins at Capernaum, and discover how it feels to float in the Dead Sea. Make your own pilgrimage to this beloved place.

Middle East

Duration: 8 Days Guaranteed Departure: Yes
For lovers of: Local Culture & Cuisine, History Physical rating: 2 - Light
Accommodation standard:   Moderate% Traveller Tour Rating: 0%  
Your Guide: English speaking Tour code: 155195
Starts: Jerusalem, Israel Finishes: Tel Aviv, Israel
You will visit
  • Jerusalem
  • Tel Aviv

Itinerary

01

Day 1: Jerusalem

Arrive at any time. Arrival transfer included.

Included Activities:
Arrival Day and Welcome Meeting

Transport:
Private Vehicle

02

Day 2: Jerusalem (1B)

Take a specially designed walking tour of the Old City of Jerusalem with both Israeli and Palestinian guides trained by National Geographic Emerging Explorer Aziz Abu Sarah. This unique dual-narrative tour allows travellers a deeper understanding of the diverse cultural, religious, and political aspects of Israel. Visit key sites including the Temple Mount, Dome of the Rock, and the Al Aqsa Mosque. Continue to the Western Wall, then walk through the Stations of the Cross to the Church of the Holy Sepulchre. This afternoon, visit the Mount of Olives, the Garden of Gethsemane, and the Church of All Nations. Later, enjoy a discussion on the current state of affairs with a leading Israeli scholar.

Included Activities:
Old Jerusalem Walking Tour
Discussion with Israeli Scholar

Transport:
Private Vehicle

03

Day 3: Jerusalem (1B)

Take a sobering visit to Yad Vashem Memorial to learn about the Holocaust and its ramifications today. In the afternoon, visit the famed Israel Museum. View the Dead Sea Scrolls, housed in the Shrine of the Book, and walk through the museum's state of the art archeological exhibition.

Included Activities:
Yad Vashem (Holocaust Museum) Visit
Israel Museum & Dead Sea Scrolls

Transport:
Private Vehicle

04

Day 4: Jerusalem (1B, 1L)

Enjoy a second exclusively designed dual-narrative tour of Bethlehem with Israeli and Palestinian guides. Visit Manger Square and the Church of the Nativity. Walk through a nearby Palestinian refugee camp and then head to a local Palestinian family's home for a cooking class and lunch. Later, visit Herodion, a hill fortress built by Herod the Great.

Included Activities:
Bethlehem Walking Tour
Palestinian Family Meal
Visit Herodium Hill & Fortress

Transport:
Private Vehicle

05

Day 5: Jerusalem/Tiberias (1B)

Start the day with a guided visit to the UNESCO World Heritage site of Masada with stops at Herod's Palace, the Bathhouse, and the Synagogue. Next, visit Qumran, the site where a Bedouin shepherd found the Dead Sea scrolls. After that, it's off to the Dead Sea for a swim and mud bath before continuing along the Jordan Valley north to the Sea of Galilee, where we'll stay in a kibbutz hotel for the next two nights

Included Activities:
Masada Guided Tour
Dead Sea Visit (Israel)
Qumran caves

Transport:
Private Vehicle (4.00-5.00 hours)

06

Day 6: Tiberias (1B)

Visit the Mt. of Beatitudes, for gorgeous views of the Sea of Galilee and visit the church that was built atop this hill, where Jesus is believed to have delivered his “Sermon on the Mount” speech. Continue to the ruins of Capernaum, where Jesus lived and preached, and where many apostles, including Peter, made their home. Learn about the lives of Israeli Arabs on the way to Nazareth, where we visit the Basilica of the Annunciation, one of the largest churches in the Middle East.

Included Activities:
Sea of Galilee area tour
Nazareth Guided Tour

Transport:
Private Vehicle

07

Day 7: Tiberias/Tel Aviv (1B)

Continue to the Mediterranean, visiting the coastal city of Haifa and then south to Caesarea Maritima to see the ruins of Herod's harbour city. After, continue toward Jaffa, an ancient port city dating back to the Bronze Age. Continue on to the bustling city of Tel Aviv for our last evening.

Included Activities:
Caesarea Guided Tour

Transport:
Private Vehicle (7.00-8.00 hours)

08

Day 8: Tel Aviv (1B)

Depart at any time.

Included Activities:
Departure Day

Inclusions:
    Activities
    • Arrival transfer
    • Walking tour of the highlights of Old Jerusalem
    • Visit the Garden of Gethsemane and the Church of All Nations
    • Entrance to Yad Vashem (the Holocaust Museum)
    • Lecture with a rabbi
    • Visit the Israel Museum and view the Dead Sea Scrolls
    • Tour Bethlehem
    • Visit a Palestinian refugee camp
    • Take a cooking class in a local home
    • Visit Herodion
    • Guided visit to Masada
    • Swim in the Dead Sea
    • Explore the Sea of Galilee area including Caesarea and Nazareth
    • Visit Haifa, Caesarea Maritima, and Jaffa
    • Interesting articles, helpful tips, and photography advice from National Geographic before you depart
    • All transport between destinations and to/from included activities
    Accommodation
    • Hotels (7 nts)
    Meals Included
    • 7 breakfasts, 1 lunch, 0 dinners
    Transport
    • Private van/bus, walking
    Group Leader
    • Chief Experience Officer (CEO) throughout, local guides
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Tour Highlights:
  • Take a dual-narrative walking tour with an Israeli guide and a Palestinian guide
  • Stay in a kibbutz hotel at the Sea of Galilee
  • Walk the ruins at Capernaum
  • Float in the Dead Sea