For the ultimate adventure, this overland tour featuring the Galilee and Jerusalem is unsurpassed. You will see the most important sites of the Three World Religions, you will experience lunch in a Kibbutz and will come into contact with the kaleidoscope of cultures that make Israel such a colorful place to visit. Spending the night in Jerusalem allows you to combine the wonders of the surrounding countryside with a tour of some of the Old City's most important sites. It also eliminates the need to make the round-trip journey in one day. This sensational tour undoubtedly maximizes the time you have to spend in this remarkable part of the world.
For the ultimate adventure, this overland tour featuring the Galilee and Jerusalem is unsurpassed. You will tour the most important sites of the Three World Religions, you will experience lunch in a Kibbutz and will come into contact with the kaleidoscope of cultures that make Israel such a colorful place to visit. Spending the night in Jerusalem allows you to combine the wonders of the surrounding countryside with a tour of some of the Old City's most important sites. It also eliminates the need to make the round-trip journey in one day. This sensational tour undoubtedly maximizes the time you have to spend in this remarkable part of the world.
DAY ONE - ASHDOD / JERUSALEM / BETHLEHEM
You'll visit the following sites:
GARDEN OF GETHSEMANE - Ancient olive trees shade this enclosure on the Mount of Olives overlooking Jerusalem. It was here in this garden that Judas betrayed Christ. Church of All Nations - Built at Gethsemane in 1924, the church features interior domes decorated with mosaic symbols of the countries that contributed to its construction. The Rock of Agony, where Christ endured His Passion is located at the Altar.
ISRAEL MUSEUM - A uniquely designed building, the Shrine of the Book, houses the "Dead Sea Scrolls" and artifacts discovered in Qumran near "Masada". The museum also has a model of the Second Temple Era of Jerusalem.
THE WESTERN OR WAILING WALL - In the Jewish quarter, revered as the sole remnant of the Second Temple which was destroyed by Rome in 70 A.D., the massive Western Wall is actually part of the Temple Mount foundation erected by Herod the Great. The Wall is the most sacred Jewish shrine in Jerusalem. From the plaza you can view the Temple Mount dominated by the El Aqsa Mosque and the Dome of the Rock, sacred to the Muslims.
VIA DOLOROSA - You will walk along the Way of Suffering and observe some of the Stations of the Cross through the city's narrow and crowded cobbled streets towards Calvary and the Church of the Holy Sepulcher, site of the final Stations of the Cross.
CHURCH OF THE HOLY SEPULCHER - The church is believed to enshrine the sites of Christ's crucifixion, entombment and resurrection. The 12th century church is shared by several Christian denominations. Steep steps lead to the second level where a shrine is situated in Calvary or Golgotha.
BETHLEHEM - You will visit the Church of the Nativity in Bethlehem, however there is no visit to the grotto which is renowned as the site of Jesus birth. As Bethlehem is in the Palestinian Authority, a locally-sourced Palestinian guide will join the bus at the check point and conduct the tour in Bethlehem. Please note Israeli citizens cannot enter Bethlehem. The visit to the Church is combined with shopping in the city.
There will be a photo opportunity at the Mount of Olives which has a panoramic view of the Old City. You will have time for shopping for religious artifacts and souvenirs in Bethlehem. Lunch with wine will be served in a leading Jerusalem hotel or restaurant. Your evening hotel accommodations and dinner will be in one of the leading hotels in Jerusalem and after dinner there will be an optional tour of the Old City by night.
DAY TWO - JERUSALEM / GALILEE / NAZARETH / HAIFA
After breakfast and check out at the hotel, you'll commence your tour to the Galilee.
You'll visit the following sites:
RIVER JORDAN - You'll visit the bank revered by the faithful as the spot where John the Baptist immersed Jesus in the waters of the Jordan.
MOUNT OF BEATITUDES - Christ delivered the Sermon on the Mount from this hill and in 2000, Pope John-Paul II celebrated the Eucharist on its slope. From the terrace of the domed Catholic Church, founded in 1937, there are splendid views of the Sea of Galilee.
TABGHA - The Church of the Multiplication is believed to occupy the site where Christ performed His miracle with two fish and five loaves. Consecrated in 1981, the current shrine protects a beautiful 5th century Byzantine mosaic floor depicting the miracle.
CAPERNAUM - Capernaum is considered to be the "centre" of Jesus' ministry in the Galilee. You will have a guided walking tour which visits the ruined synagogue where Christ preached.
NAZARETH - Nestled in a circle of cypress studded hills, Nazareth is the scene of Jesus' youth. You will visit the Basilica of the Annunciation, consecrated in 1969, which is the largest Christian Church in the Middle East and is said to mark the grotto where the Archangel Gabriel appeared to the Virgin.
Lunch will be served in a kibbutz or restaurant.
Note: Guests must be able to walk 2 miles over cobbles, narrow roads, which can be crowded at times. This tour is not recommended for guests with limited mobility, wheelchair bound passengers or guests with walkers. Admittance into certain religious sites requires attire that covers shoulders and knees. It includes hotel accommodation and meals. As you will be away from the ship overnight, we ask that you limit your luggage to one light hand-carry piece per person. You will be responsible for carrying your luggage on and off the motor coach and in and out of your hotel. Please do not forget to bring your medications and any other personal requirements. This tour has been planned with special security arrangements and requirements. Your tour in Bethlehem will be conducted by a local guide. The sequence of your itinerary may be altered.
Please note that there will be no visit to the Church of All Nations and Gethsemane and the Israel Museum for the visit of the Vision of the Seas on October 12 and October 24.