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|Style||Fully Escorted & Guided
Dedicated tour escorts & guides throughout
|Highlights||Jerusalem, Dead Sea, Tiberias, Tel Aviv. Shrine of the Book, Masada & Sea of Galilee. Optional Eilat, Red Sea & Petra extension.|
|What to Expect||Guaranteed small group, maximum 24 passengers. This moderately-paced, escorted tour involves a fair amount of walking or hiking, often on uneven terrain, requiring a good level of physical fitness to fully enjoy the trip. This tour also includes long scenic drives between destinations.|
|As Seen in|
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Transfers: Transfers for this tour are provided on a group basis only. For land-only passengers or for passengers deviating in any way from the group program, transfers are not provided. Individual, private transfers can be arranged at a supplement in price. Taxis and other forms of transportation are also available and may cost less than private transfers. If you wish to arrange private transfers, please request this service at the time of reservation.
Come join us in Israel and savor one of the most fascinating places on earth. This tiny speck of a country on the Mediterranean is a super-sized destination rich in culture and tradition, foundation of three world religions, steeped in history, yet one of the world's most modern and dynamic nations. We have been sending travelers on fun, educational, exciting and safe tours of Israel for more than 30 years, and we've drawn on that experience to craft our exceptional Classic Israel package.
This fully-escorted Israel tour package includes flights from the U.S., well-located and luxurious 5-star hotels, and guided tours of all the most popular and interesting sites you want to see throughout Israel, including an overnight at the lowest place on earth, the Dead Sea. You won't find any optional excursions here, because everything you should see is already included in our program as part of the low tour price. You'll be escorted throughout by a carefully selected teacher-guide who knows and loves this land and will make it come alive just for you. Want more? Add an extension to the lovely coastal resort town of Eilat on the Red Sea and the lost city of Petra in Jordan.
If you have dreamed of experiencing Israel for yourself, we invite you to join us on this journey of discovery. Our small groups, inspired guides, fantastic hotels and great prices are all part of the Israel experience just waiting for you.
Day 1: Depart USA. Board your overnight flight to Israel via Istanbul.
Day 2: Jerusalem. Arrive at Ben Gurion Airport near Tel Aviv. Meet your guide who will assist you with customs formalities and escort you to your waiting touring coach. Transfer to Jerusalem, stopping at the Haas Promenade for a view of the city below. This evening, enjoy a welcome dinner and orientation with your guide. Accommodations: Leonardo Plaza Jerusalem. Dinner provided.
Day 3: Old City of Jerusalem. Today, visit the walled city of Jerusalem, which is divided into the Christian, Jewish, Armenian and Muslim Quarters. In the Christian Quarter, visit the Via Dolorosa and the Church of the Holy Sepulcher. Walk through the restored Jewish Quarter and Cardo, an ancient shopping street filled with modern day stores. Visit the Western Wall, the last remnants of the Second Temple and explore the Rabbinical (Kotel) Tunnels. Breakfast provided.
Day 4: New City of Jerusalem. Start the day at the newly renovated Israel Museum and home of the Shrine of the Book, where the Dead Sea Scrolls are housed; as well as the model of the city during the Second Temple period. Continue to Yad Vashem, Israel's memorial to the Holocaust. Stop at Mount Herzl National Military Cemetery, where Israel's leaders and soldiers are buried. Drive to the Latrun Tank Museum, just outside of Jerusalem, to learn more about the Israeli Army. Return to Jerusalem. Breakfast provided.
Day 5: Masada, Dead Sea. Depart Jerusalem, descending through the Judean Desert. Stop at Genesis Land, for a unique experience of Biblical Hospitality, where you may get a chance to ride a camel! Arrive at the Dead Sea, the lowest point on Earth at 1,365 feet below sea level. Drive along the shores of the Dead Sea to Masada. Ascend and descend via cable car. Experience the historic fortress of Masada where, after the fall of Jerusalem in 70 AD, Jewish resistance continued against Rome. Continue to your hotel for overnight, and relax at the hotel's spa. Accommodations: Daniel Hotel Dead Sea. Breakfast & dinner provided.
Day 6: Jordan Valley, Beit She'an, Beit Alpha & Tiberias. This morning, head north through the Jordan Valley. Visit the extraordinary site of the Greco-Roman city, Beit She'an, destroyed by an earthquake in 749 AD. Drive to Kibbutz Beit Alpha, to view the remains of an ancient synagogue with an amazing mosaic floor, including a zodiac pattern. Arrive at your hotel in Tiberias on the shores of the Sea of Galilee. Accommodations: Leonardo Plaza Tiberias. Breakfast provided.
Day 7: Sea of Galilee, Capernaum, Safed & Golan Heights. Start the day with a boat ride across the Sea of Galilee. Visit Capernaum, the site of a Byzantine synagogue believed to be the site of St. Peter's House.
Ascend to the mystical Kabbalistic city of Safed, and explore the art galleries and synagogues. Drive through the Golan Heights to Har Bental and visit the former Syrian fortifications. Return to Tiberias. Breakfast & dinner provided.
Day 8: Megiddo, Haifa, Caesarea & Herzliya. Depart for Megiddo, also known as the Biblical Armegeddon, and the inspiration for James Michener's great novel, The Source. Designated a UNESCO World Heritage Site in 2005, Megiddo's twenty major strata contain the remains of around 30 different cities. Stop in one of the nearby Druze Villages and learn about their unique culture. Enjoy some shopping for souvenirs and gifts, as well as lunch. From here, proceed to Haifa, the third-largest city in Israel, stopping on Mt. Carmel for a panoramic view of the Haifa Bay and the Baha’i Shrine surrounded by magnificent Persian gardens. Drive to the Mediterranean coast and visit Caesarea, the Roman capital of Judea. View the beautifully restored theater. The audio-visual presentation will bring the ancient harbor city to life. Continue south along the shores of the Mediterranean Sea to Herzliya. Accommodations: Daniel Herzliya Hotel. Breakfast & lunch provided.
Day 9: Tel Aviv & Herzliya. This morning, visit Tel Aviv, designated a UNESCO World Heritage Site and nicknamed The White City. Take part in a walk through the bustling colorful Carmel Market, filled with fresh produce; and Neve Zedek, one of the first neighborhoods of the modern city of Tel Aviv, now an artists' colony with many restaurants. Visit ancient Jaffa, and walk through the winding streets filled with art galleries and cafes. Enjoy the views of the Tel Aviv coastline from the central square.
Later, drive through the tree-lined boulevards of Tel Aviv, and see the world's largest concentration of Bauhaus Architecture. Pass by Rabin Square and the memorial to Yitzhak Rabin and on to Dizengoff for some people-watching. Balance of the day at leisure for some last minute shopping, or stroll the beautiful Tayelet (Promenade) along the beach front. Return to Herzliya for overnight. Tonight, enjoy a farewell dinner at a typical local restaurant. Breakfast & dinner provided.
Day 10: Tel Aviv/USA. Early morning transfer to Ben Gurion Airport and board your return flight to the USA, via Istanbul, arriving later this afternoon. Or, continue on our extension to Eilat and the Red Sea. Breakfast provided.
Israel's wonderful Red Sea resort of Eilat is only a one hour flight from Tel Aviv, but you may as well be a whole world away. Here, at the southern tip of Israel, you'll enjoy the warm, calm waters of Israel's most popular vacation destination. One of the world's best coral reefs is located here, and you can scuba dive, snorkel, dive with dolphins and even take an evening camel safari into the desert. The lost city of Petra in Jordan is a short drive from Eilat, and during your stay you will be able to take part in an optional full day excursion to this fascinating pink city.
Day 10: Tel Aviv and Eilat. Transfer to the airport this morning for your short flight to Eilat on the Red Sea. Transfer independently to your centrally located hotel and enjoy the balance of the day at leisure. Take the opportunity to visit the Underwater Observatory to see the extensive and magnificent corals and under-sea life of the Red Sea, or simply relax and enjoy the pool at your hotel. Accommodations: Leonardo Plaza Hotel Eilat. Breakfast provided.
Day 11: Eilat. Enjoy the day at leisure or take advantage of a wonderful day tour to Petra. Breakfast provided.
Optional Excursion: Petra. Early this morning cross into Jordan at the Arava border and drive to the Nabatean capital of Petra, a secret and mystical city carved more than 2,000 years ago in pink sandstone. Enjoy lunch and a guided tour of the ancient city, including a portion on horseback, then board the bus and return to Israel, arriving in Eilat for overnight. See dates & prices tab for pricing information.
Day 12: Eilat. Enjoy the day at leisure in Eilat. Relax by the pool of your hotel or hit the sparkling beach. There are many other exiting options available locally, such as swimming with dolphins, a visit to an underwater observatory, jeep safaris and more. Breakfast provided.
Nov 15 and Dec 20, 2014 departures will depart Israel on Day 12, overnight in Istanbul, then return to the USA on Day 13.
Day 13: Eilat/USA. Early this morning, transfer to the Eliat airport for your short flight to Tel Aviv. Upon arrival, you will be transferred to Ben Gurion Airport for your return flight to the USA via Istanbul. Breakfast provided.
I've been fortunate to travel far and wide, but this trip was truly the experience of a lifetime! Great guides, knowledgeable, and VERY helpful. If you're considering this trip, DON'T MISS Abu Simbel! And Taybet Zaman in Petra—my favorite hotel! It's like a time capsule. Great job, Friendly Planet. You made my dream-trip come true!
J. Belli, Aubrey, TX