TBA Meet in the departure hall at Toronto’s Pearson Airport Terminal 1, to check in for the Air Canada flight to Tel Aviv. Leave Toronto at TBA on your overnight, direct, nonstop Air Canada flight destination Israel, meals served on board.
WELCOME TO ISRAEL
Arrive at Ben Gurion International Airport TBA. Meet your tour guide. Drive north through the Plain of Sharon, along the coastal road known in antiquity as the Via Maris, which linked Egypt and Babylon. Stop at Caesarea the largest port in the Mediterranean built by King Herod the Great. Here Pontius Pilate had his seat; Cornelius lived and was baptized (Acts 10); Paul embarked to Tarsus (Acts 9:30) and Philip preached (Acts 8:40). Visit the Roman Theatre, the Hippodrome, and the Crusader City. Stop at the visitors’ center to view the audio visual presentation. Continue to your hotel. The remainder of the afternoon is at leisure. Check in to some rooms might be after the end of Sabbath. 1 night: Leonardo hotel ~ Haifa [Dinner]
View Muhraka (the burned place) on Mt. Carmel, where the prophet Elijah challenged the 400 false prophets of Baal (1 Kings 18:30). Then proceed along the Jezreel Valley to Megiddo, one of King Solomon’s fortified city kingdoms (1 Kings 9:15; 10:26) with impressive ruins of 20 levels of civilization. From here the Books of Daniel and Revelation will come alive as you read about the final Battle of Armageddon, while viewing the fertile plains of the Jezreel. Proceed via Mt Precipice to Nazareth (John 1:46), the boyhood town of Jesus. Visit Nazareth Village to relive village life from the time of Jesus. View the Church of the Annunciation. Continue via Cana in the Galilee where you can view the churches commemorating the wedding miracle (John 2:1-11). An optional stop is provided for those who would like to renew their wedding vows. Continue to Tiberias, travelling via Magdala and the Sea of Galilee (John 21:1) to the hotel. 2 nights: Leonardo hotel ~ Tiberias [Breakfast & Dinner]
JESUS’ MINISTRY IN THE GALILEE
Emulating the disciples sail on the Sea of Galilee and visit the ancient boat from the time of Jesus. Drive north along the foot of the Golan Heights to visit Banias, one of the sources of the Jordan River, site of ancient “Caesarea Philippi” and the northern extent of Jesus’ Ministry, where Peter made the confession of faith in Christ (Matt. 16:16). Continue to the Mt. of Beatitudes where Jesus delivered “The Sermon On The Mount” (Matt.5). Proceed to Capernaum centre of Jesus’ Ministry in the Galilee and the site of many of his miracles (Mark 2:4; Matt.8:5; 14-7; 9: 1-7; 17: 18), including the remains of St Peter’s house and the ancient synagogue where Jesus taught. (Mark 1:21; Luke 4:31). [Breakfast & Dinner]
GALILEE – JERUSALEM
Travel south to Beit Shean, where the body of King Saul and his sons were placed on the walls by the Philistines (1 Samuel 31:10), in Jesus’ time also known as Scythopolis, capital of Decapolis to visit one of the largest archaeological sites in Israel. Drive through the Jordan Valley, where the desert now blooms with flowers and vegetation of every description (Isaiah 35:1-2). Stop at Kaser El Yahud on the Jordan River where John Baptised Jesus. (Mat 3:13-17). Then ascend through the Judean Desert Wilderness to the Holy City. Enter Jerusalem as the Galileans did stopping on Mt Scopus to recite a Psalm of Ascent and to enjoy the first view of the Holy City. Travel to Bethlehem to visit the Church of the Nativity the birthplace of Jesus (Mat 2:5). 3 nights Nativity hotel ~ Bethlehem [Breakfast & Dinner]
Start the day at Yad Vashem – national memorial and Museum of the Shoah (Holocaust) – to pay tribute to the six million Jewish victims of the Shoah (Holocaust) in Europe during the Second World War. Visit the new Museum and walk along the Avenue of the Righteous Amongst the Nations, commemorating those who risked their own lives to save Jewish souls. Travel through the land of Benjamin to Tel Shiloh – to visit Joshua’s ancient capital from the time of the Israelite conquest of Canaan (Joshua 18:1). Enter the Old City view the Dome of the Rock and Al Aqsa Mosque built on the Temple Mount. Visit the Davidson Centre and the South Western Wall of the Temple Mount, including the very same steps that Jesus and the Galileans used to enter and exit the Holy Temple (Luke 41:2). Stop at the Western Wall (Kotel) to visit the sacred Jewish prayer area adjacent to the Temple Mt. [Breakfast & Dinner]
Drive to the top of Mount of Olives for a panoramic view of Jerusalem. Stroll down the Mountain to the Garden of Gethsemane at the Church of All Nations, with time for prayer in the Olive grove. Continue along the Kidron (the Valley of Jehoshaphat) past the Tombs of Absalom, Zechariah and James en route to King David’s City including, the Canaanite tunnel and the Pools of Siloam. Continue to Mt Zion to visit the Upper Room ~ site of the last supper (Mark 14:12-26), King David’s Tomb and the Church of St. Peter in Gallicantu, marking the site of High Priest Caiaphas’ home (Mat26:57). Enter the Old City. Walk through Zion Gate, the Armenian and the Jewish Quarter. Visit the ancient street known in the Roman period as the “Cardo”. Continue walking through the “Suk” (the colourful bazaar), the quaint alleyways and colourful stalls to the Church of the Holy Sepulchre, Known in Jesus day as Golgotha – site of the crucifixion, death, burial and resurrection of Christ (John 19:17). End the day at the Garden Tomb with time for contemplation and to celebrate communion. [Breakfast & Dinner]
MASADA / DEAD SEA
Drive through the Judean desert to the lowest point on earth at the Dead Sea (over 1300 feet below sea level). Stop at Qumran, home of the Cult of the Judean Desert, where a shepherd boy discovered the Dead Sea Scrolls (1947) in a nearby cave. Continue south, view Ein Gedi an Oasis in the desert en route to Masada. Ascend by cable car to the summit of King Herod the Great’s remote desert fortress, later the last stronghold of the Jewish Zealots in the revolt against Rome (73 ace). Travel north along the Dead Sea, stop at a Dead Sea Beach to float on the Dead Sea– you cannot sink! Continue to Jerusalem. 2 nights Caesar hotel ~ Jerusalem [Breakfast & Dinner]
Spend a day of leisure in this fascinating city. With time to re-visit the Old City for shopping in the bazaars or walk through the new city along Jaffa Road and Ben Yehuda Street. Visit one of the many Museums that Jerusalem has to offer or simply relax at the hotel. Enjoy a farewell dinner in the hotel. [Breakfast & Dinner]
RETURN TO YOUR COUNTRY OF RESIDENCE
Transfer to Ben Gurion airport for your return flight to Canada leaving Tel Aviv at TBA on your nonstop, direct Air Canada flight to Toronto arriving at TBA, meals served on board.
START THE NEW YEAR TOGETHER IN ISRAEL
What is the deadline for registration?
There is no deadline. We accept registration on a “first-come-first serve” basis. There is always a limited number of spaces available and as soon as we sell them – the group is completed. To avoid disappointment please register as soon as you decide.
When is the final payment?
Usually it is 60 days before departure, but there are some exceptions for non-standard tours. Your invoice will indicate clearly when your payments are due.
What happens with my deposit when you cancel a group?
In a very unlike situation when we have to cancel a group for reasons out of our control, your deposit is protected and fully refundable. When you cancel on your own please make sure that your non-refundable deposit is protected by your own insurance.
Can I request a specific seat on a flight?
For the group reservations the airlines don't give us an option of selecting specific seats. When your ticket is issued your seat is guaranteed, but usually not printed on the e-ticket. However, you can always check-in online 24 hours before departure and change your seat based on availability.
Tell me which hotels we will be staying?
We always book best, first-class hotels. We frequently check them for best quality. Hotels are confirmed about two months before departure and we will give you all details in the final itinerary
I'm traveling alone & don't have a roommate. What should I do?
Please register ASAP. We will take a note of your request and will try to match you with another passenger willing to share. Other options are single room (with a supplement) or forming a triple room if you know another two people willing to share.
I have several food allergies. Can I request a special menu?
Please let us know about your food restrictions. We will order special meals for your flights, if available. All breakfasts and some dinners at the destinations are buffets, so you can select food by yourself. The restaurants at the destinations will do their best to offer you individual alternate to standard set menus for the group. You will need to communicate your needs through tour leaders.
What is eTA? Does it apply to me?
If you are Canadian or US citizen – no need to worry. It applies to citizens of other countries. They will need an Electronic Travel Authorization (eTA) to fly to or transit through Canada. Be prepared: Apply for an eTA before you book your flight to Canada. Most applicants get approved within minutes. However, some applications can take several days to process so don’t wait until the last minute. Apply and get help at http://www.cic.gc.ca/english/visit/eta-start-int.asp
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**THE ITINERARY IS SUBJECT TO CHANGE AND MAY VARY IN THE ORDER YOU VISIT**