Jerusalem Express

Tel Aviv & Jerusalem
plus Eilat & the Red Sea optional extension

This itinerary is for a past tour program.
Check out our current tour & cruise packages in Israel.

Zion Square, Jerusalem  © IMOT
Zion Square, Jerusalem   © IMOT
Israel is a world-class destination for sophisticated travelers, with more museums per capita than most other countries, luxury hotels, glamorous spas and resorts, a hot restaurant scene, and a cultural life that rivals the USA, Canada and Europe. At the same time, Israel is the centerpiece of the world's three great religions: Islam, Judaism and Christianity. Everywhere you go, you find yourself walking in the exact places where the events of the Bible unfolded. Here in this ancient city, you will hear the Muslim call to prayer, the clanging of bells from Christian churches, and the chanting of prayers of the religious at the Western Wall.

jerusalem express map It is no wonder that Israel, and especially Jerusalem, continues to be a sought-after destination. There is hardly a visitor who has not been moved deeply and personally by the experience of visiting this fascinating and ancient land. For the sheer magnitude of its historical and archeological value, Israel is a place like no other on earth. And now you can experience Jerusalem for for an unbelievably low price.

But that's not all. Extend your adventure with a post-tour extension to the beautiful Red Sea resort of Eilat in Israel, with an optional tour to the fascinating lost city of Petra in Jordan.

Detailed Itinerary

Day 1: Depart USA. Your fascinating journey to Israel begins this evening as you check in at JFK International Airport in New York for your overnight non-stop flight to Tel Aviv via Israir.

Tel Aviv, Israel
Tel Aviv, Israel   © IMOT
Day 2: Tel Aviv/Jerusalem. Early evening arrival in Tel Aviv, Israel's thriving, bustling center. You'll be met by our representative at the airport, assisted with customs and then escorted to your hotel in Jerusalem, about 45 minutes away. Grand Court Hotel.

Jerusalem Old City & Dome of the Rock Day 3 - 6: Jerusalem. The next four days are yours to explore the world's most fascinating and coveted city, on your own or through our optional guided touring program. Your superior first class hotel is close to many of the major Jerusalem attractions, including the Old City, Zion Square and downtown.

Fruit stall vendor  © Albatross/IMOT
Fruit stall vendor   © Albatross/IMOT
To help you get to know Jerusalem "up close and personal," you will be offered a wide array of optional tours to Jerusalem's Old City, the New City, Masada and the Dead Sea, and the Galilee. You'll also have time to stroll through the markets including the famous Old City market, where religious items from the three major monotheistic faiths are displayed side-by-side with heaping mounds of fresh fruits and vegetables, colorful clothing, spices, olive wood carvings and pottery.

Jewish Quarter, Old City
Jewish Quarter, Old City   © IMOT
Visit Mount of Olives and the ancient olive trees in the Garden of Gethsemane. Walk the walls of Jerusalem's Old City. Visit the Shrine of the Book at the Israel Museum, where the world-famous Dead Sea Scrolls are housed and exhibited. Stop by the lobby of the famous King David Hotel, where heads of state from many nations around the world, including Egypt's Anwar Sadat, have sipped coffee and held court. Breakfast provided.

Western Wall Plaza, Jerusalem
Western Wall Plaza, Jerusalem   © Willem Proos
Day 7: Jerusalem/Evening Departure. Enjoy a final day at leisure in Jerusalem. This evening you'll be escorted to the airport to check in for your overnight return flight to the USA.

Day 8: Arrive USA. Your fascinating journey comes to an end as you arrive in the USA this morning. Or, continue your stay in Israel on a fascinating three day extension to Israel's popular Red Sea resort, Eilat, including an optional excursion to the Lost City of Petra in Jordan.

Eilat & the Red Sea Post-Tour Extension
plus Petra Optional Day Tour

Parasailing On The Red Sea
Parasailing On The Red Sea   © IMOT - Albatros
Israel's wonderful Red Sea resort of Eilat is only a one hour flight from Jerusalem. 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 a full day tour to this fascinating red rose city.

Eliat Marina On The Red Sea
Eilat Marina, Red Sea   © Itamar Grinberg
Day 7: Jerusalem/Eilat. Transfer to the airport this morning for your short flight to Eilat on the Red Sea. Transfer to your centrally located hotel and enjoy the balance of the day at leisure. Accommodations: Dan Panorama Hotel or Magic Palace Hotel. Breakfast provided.

Lost City of Petra, Jordan Day 8: Eilat/Petra Optional Tour. Enjoy the day at leisure or take advantage of a wonderful day tour to Petra. Early this morning we'll 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. After a tour of the ancient city, including a portion on horseback, we board our bus and return to Israel, arriving in Eilat for overnight. Breakfast provided.

Under Water in the Red Sea
Under Water in the Red Sea   © Itamar Grinberg
Day 9: Eilat/Evening Departure. Enjoy the morning at leisure to explore Eilat, swim in the Red Sea, visit the Underwater Observatory and see the extensive and magnificent corals and sea life of the Red Sea, or simply relax and enjoy the pool at your hotel. Late this afternoon, transfer to the airport for the short flight to Ben Gurion Airport near Tel Aviv where you'll check in for your overnight return flight to the USA. Breakfast provided.

Day 10: Arrive USA. Your fascinating journey comes to an end as you arrive in the USA this morning.

Eilat Extension Prices: $499 per person double occupancy. Add $150 per person for single occupancy rooms ($200 for Dec. 9 departure).

Petra Optional Day Tour: $159 per person. Taxes and border crossing fees are $35 in addition and must be paid in U.S. dollars at the border.

Special Optional Touring Package
Jerusalem, Masada & the Dead Sea, & the Galilee

In order to help you make the most of your time in Jerusalem, we have designed a special optional touring package that covers the most important sites you won't want to miss, with Jerusalem as your base. Without having to change hotels during your visit, you'll tour Old and New Jerusalem, Masada and the Dead Sea, and the Galilee. This special package is not a seat-in-coach tour that picks up passengers in different hotels throughout the city, but a private tour only for Friendly Planet passengers, escorted throughout by one of our exceptional, inspirational tour guides who know and love the land. All entrance fees to places visited are included. The three tours included in our special package are described below.

Church of the Holy Sepulcher, Jerusalem
Church of the Holy Sepulcher, Jerusalem   © IMOT
Full Day Tour of Jerusalem Highlights: Drive to the Mt. of Olives for a panoramic view of the city. Then, enter the Old City through the Jaffa Gate and walk through the Moslem and Jewish Quarters to the recently excavated and restored Cardo, the Roman Road. See the Jewish Western (Wailing) Wall, called kotel in Hebrew, and continue to the Christian Quarter. Walk along the Via Dolorosa and visit the Church of the Holy Sepulcher. Enjoy some time to explore the Old City market, then proceed to the New City, visiting Yad Vashem, the Memorial to the Holocaust and Ein Karem.

Note: Modest dress (no shorts or sleeveless shirts) and head coverings are required for visiting the holy places.

View from Masada, Israel Full Day Tour to Masada & the Dead Sea. Drive south through the Judean Hills and desert, then along the shore of the Dead Sea to Masada. Ascend by cable car and tour the mountain fortress built by Herod, where the Jewish Zealots made their last stand against the Romans. Visit the remains of the walls, palaces, water cisterns and mosaic floors.

Swimming in the Dead Sea
Swimming in the Dead Sea   © Itamar Grinberg
Descend by cable car and continue to a spa at the Dead Sea, the lowest place on earth, where you'll have an opportunity to relax and float in the strangely buoyant mineral-filled water.

Nazareth, Israel Full Day Tour to Nazareth, Tiberias & Capernaum. Depart after breakfast for Nazareth, the town where Jesus spent his boyhood. Visit the Church of the Annunciation and then continue to Cana, where Jesus performed His first miracle of turning the water to wine. Drive to Tiberias, the ancient town on the Sea of Galilee. Cross the Sea of Galilee by boat to Capernaum where you'll visit the ruins of the ancient synagogue where it is thought that Jesus taught. Continue to Tagbha, site of the Miracle of the Loaves and Fishes, located at the foot of the Golan Heights. Conclude the day at Yardenit, the site where the Jordan River leaves the Sea of Galilee and heads toward the Dead Sea, and a special spot for Baptism services.

Special Optional Tours Package Price: $210 per person, based on a minimum of 10 passengers.

Destination FAQs

For quick answers to Frequently Asked Questions about travel to Israel, click here.

For quick answers to Frequently Asked Questions about travel to Jordan, click here.

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