Day 1 - Tuesday
Departure from Toronto flying with Air Canada from Terminal 1 not stop to Tel Aviv departing at 4:35pm.
JAFFA, TEL AVIV
Day 2 - Wednesday
Arrive in Tel Aviv at 10:10am where we will be met by our tour guide. We begin our tour in Jaffa, which affords us a breathtaking view of the city of Tel Aviv. At this picturesque port city of winding alleys, art galleries and crafts boutiques, King Solomon had the cedars of Lebanon rafted for the building of the First Temple in Jerusalem. You will view the spot of the House of Simon the Tanner. Balance of the day in Tel Aviv is at leisure.
Dinner and overnight in Tel Aviv at Herod’s Hotel, Tel Aviv.
Day 3 - Thursday
After breakfast we drive to the city of Rehovot to visit the Ayalon Institute. Now a museum, the Ayalon Institute was a secret ammunition factory disguised as part of a kibbutz to fool the British back in the 1940s. Jewish people used the factory in their efforts to fight for the independent state of Israel. Organizers went to extreme measures to build and sustain this secret factory within the Kibbutz. Between 1945 and 1948, the Ayalon Institute produced more than 2 million bullets. Return to Tel Aviv to visit the Anu Museum. the largest and most comprehensive Jewish museum in the world that portrays the story of the Jewish people through the generations and up to the present time. The Museum represents all parts of the Jewish people and highlights the creative works and cultural riches of a variety of communities in different periods of history. Continue to Independence Hall (under renovations and may be closed) dedicated to the signing of the Israeli Declaration of Independence and the history of Tel Aviv.
Dinner and overnight at Herod’s Hotel, Tel Aviv.
CAESAREA, MT.CARMEL, NAZARETH
Day 4 - Friday
After breakfast we drive north along the Plain of Sharon, the Mediterranean and the old coastal road- the Via Maris that linked Egypt and Babylon as we journey towards Galilee. We stop at Caesarea the incredible fortress city built by King Herod the Great. Here, Pontius Pilate had his base; where Cornelius lived and was baptized (Acts 10); where Paul embarked to Tarsus (Acts 9:30) and where Philip preached (Acts 8:40). Visit the Roman Theatre, the Hippodrome, and the Crusader City. We then travel north towards Haifa and ascend Mt. Carmel the site where the prophet Elijah fought the 400 false prophets of Baal (1 Kings 18:30). We will stop for an incredible panoramic view of Haifa. Visit the site on Mt. Carmel where this contest of Elijah took place. Continue to Nazareth, the boyhood town of Jesus. We will visit Nazareth Village depicting a village from the time of Jesus. Continue to the Sea of Galilee. Dinner and overnight at Ramot on the Sea of Galilee.
GALILEE, GOLAN HEIGHTS
Day 5 - Saturday
After breakfast, we will depart our day with a boat ride on the Sea of Galilee to Kibbutz Ginossar where we meet our bus and travel to Capernaum, the centre of Jesus’ Galilean ministry and the site of many of his miracles. We will see the remains of Peter’s house and the synagogue site where Jesus taught and worshipped. We will then proceed Magdala a first-century port and city on the Sea of Galilee, where Mary Magdalene is said to have lived. Recent archaeological finds the Magdala Stone likely the earliest known artistic depiction of the Second Temple. Continue to the Banias, one of the sources of the Jordan River and the site of ancient “Caesarea Philipi”, where Peter made the confession of faith in Christ. Ascend to the Golan Heights to visit Gamla the camel backed mountain. Founded by King Janneus around 80 B.C.E. Gamla was a Jewish town of 5,000 farmers. Excavations have revealed fascinating finds, including one of the world’s oldest synagogues. See the park of vultures and eagles. Continue to Har Bental where during the Yom Kippur War in 1973, one of Israel's largest tank battles took place at the foot of Mt. Bental. The fierce battle earned the area below Mount Bental the name Valley of Tears.
Dinner and overnight at Ramot on the Sea of Galilee.
SEPPHORIS, ARIEL, JORDAN RIVER, JERUSALEM
Day 6 - Sunday
Drive this morning to Tzippori (Sepphoris), capital of the Galilee in King Herod’s time and home of Joachim and Anna. The sites include a Roman theater, a Jewish residential quarter, ritual baths, churches and many mosaics including, notably the ‘Mona Lisa of the Galilee. Drive to the town of Ariel with its the Biblical themes, reflected by its large murals of Biblical landscapes, a Biblical garden, and replicas of Temple objects, including a full-scale replica of the Tabernacle. We then drive through the lush Jordan Valley, where the desert now blooms with flowers and vegetation of every description. Visit on the Jordan River the baptismal site Qasr El Yahud Ascend up the Judean Wilderness to the Golden City of Jerusalem.
Dinner and overnight in Jerusalem at the Ramada Hotel, Jerusalem.
OLD CITY OF JERUSALEM
Day 7 - Monday
We will drive to the top of the Mount of Olives, for a panoramic view of Jerusalem. Tracing the footsteps of Jesus, we will stroll down the Palm Sunday Route on the Mount of Olives to the Garden of Gethsemane and the Church of All Nations. From here, we proceed by bus across the Kidron Valley; past the Tombs of Absalom, Zechariah and James. Visit the City of David and explore the excavations from the time of King David and see the Hezekiah’s Tunnel and the Pool of Siloam. Continue to the Davidson Center to visit the Southern Wall excavations. Visit the Western Wall the holiest place in Judaism. We walk along the Via Dolorosa to visit the Pools of Bethesda, St. Anne’s Church. Walk through the Old City alleyways and exit from the Jaffa Gate where our bus will be waiting for us. Visit the Friends of Zion Museum brings stories of love and heroism in the world. You will enter a whole new world, where you will meet biblical figures, academics, businessmen, and military officials who through their faith have forged an everlasting bond between the Jewish and Christian people. This with original music score, fantastic surround sound, lighting and interactive displays. Finish the day at the King of Kings Pavilion.
Dinner and overnight at the Ramada Hotel, Jerusalem
Day 8 - Tuesday
We start the day at Yad Vashem, Israel’s memorial to the Holocaust commemorating the six million Jews who perished. Visit and walk through the newly opened Museum, visit the Children’s Memorial, walk along the Avenue of the Righteous Gentiles for those who risked their lives to save Jewish lives. Continue to the Israel Museum and visit the Shrine of the Book housing the Dead Sea Scrolls, the oldest manuscripts of the Bible ever found. Visit the Model of Jerusalem from the Second Temple Period as it looked from the time of Jesus at the Israel Museum complex. Proceed to Mt Zion to visit the traditional site of the Upper Room (Room of the Last Supper), King David’s Tomb and the Church of St. Peter’s in Gallicantu, built on top of the High Priest Caiphas’ house. End the day with a visit to the Garden Tomb or Gordon’s Calvary for a visit and a private communion service in the garden. Dinner and overnight at the Ramada Hotel, Jerusalem
QUMRAN, MASADA, DEAD SEA
Day 9 - Wednesday
Today is a fun day. We depart Jerusalem and descend to the lowest point on earth the Dead Sea, 1300 ft below sea level. Drive to Qumran for a visit where a young shepherd boy discovered the Dead Sea Scrolls in 1947 in the cave, which you will see. These scrolls are the oldest scriptures of the Bible ever found. Drive south along the shores of the Dead Sea to Masada. You will take a cable car to the summit of this magnificent fortress built by King Herod the Great and the last stronghold of the Jewish Zealots. You will walk around this historic ruins you will see the palaces, bath houses, swimming pool, the oldest synagogue in the world on this mountain in the middle of the desert. After descending this mountain by cable car we continue north along the shores of the Dead Sea for a chance to enjoy the therapeutic “unsinkable” waters of the saltiest body of water in the world the Dead Sea. Dinner and overnight at the Ramada Hotel, Jerusalem
Day 10 - Thursday
After breakfast, enjoy a day of leisure. Perhaps re-visit the Old City for shopping in the bazaars. Visit many of the Museums that Jerusalem has to offer that you did not see on the tour, shop in the largest indoor shopping mall in Israel or just relax at the hotel. Dinner and overnight at the Ramada Hotel, Jerusalem
Day 11 - Friday
Depart on Air Canada flying Non-Stop from Tel Aviv to Toronto departing at 11:55am and arriving in Toronto at 5:10pm at Terminal 1.
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