Arrival to the Ben Gurion International Airport in Tel Aviv. Welcome to Israel! Upon arrival at the airport, you will be met and assisted by our airport representative. Transfer to your hotel. Dinner and overnight in Tel Aviv or Netanya.
Our first full day of touring begins with a visit to the Ancient Port of Joppa where we will visit the home of Simon the Tanner, as well as, stroll along the Mediterranean Sea wall adjacent to Tel Aviv. From here we will travel to the ruins of ancient Caesarea Maritima. Onward to Mount Carmel to see the site where Elijah the Prophet overcame the Prophets of Baal in the name of the God of Israel. Next is Megiddo, the Armageddon of the Book of Revelation. Then we drive to Nazareth where Jesus lived for most of the first 30 years of his life visiting the Basilica of the Annunciation, the Synagogue Church and the “Mount of the Leap “so-called because it was from the brow of a steep hill that the inhabitants of Nazareth wanted to cast him. Then we drive on thru Cana in the Galilee Region, before finally arriving at the Sea of Galilee for check in to our hotel. Dinner and overnight in Tiberias or Nazareth.
The Region of Sea of Galilee is our focus for today’s travels. We begin this day on Mt. Arbel from which there is a wonderful panoramic view of all the surrounding areas including the Kinneret and Mt. Hermon. Next, we will Magdala, the birthplace of Mary Magdalene, as well as, a newly unearthed (2009) First Century Synagogue. Onward to see the fishing vessel known as “Jesus Boat”. Next up is the Mount of Beatitudes the scene of the Sermon on the Mount followed by Chorazim which is one of the cities where Jesus taught. We next visit the site of the multiplication of fishes and loaves in Tabgha. Here we will tour the Church of the Multiplication of the Loaves and Fishes and the Chapel of the Primacy. Then onward to Capernaum, where Jesus did many signs and wonders. Onward to the House of Peter and then visit an ancient synagogue. Up next is lunch at Kibbutz Ein Gev where we can have lunch of Peter Fish. Finally, a boat ride from there upon the Sea of Galilee coupled with praise, prayer, and meditation. A whirlwind day in the ‘Footsteps of Jesus’ concludes with a bus ride back to our hotel for dinner, rest and relaxation, and overnight in Tiberias or Nazareth.
Today after breakfast our first visit is the Yardenit baptismal site. Here is your opportunity to be baptized in the waters of the River Jordan. Onward to the Jordan Valley passing the ancient site of Gilgal, located on the eastern border of Jericho. This is where the Children of Israel, under Joshua, encamped after crossing the Jordan River. In Jericho, we may visit the Mount of Temptation and the Fountain of Elisha the Prophet. Onward to the Dead Sea and take a dip in its mineral-rich waters before driving up through the Judean Desert to Jerusalem. That first glimpse of Jerusalem will forever be etched in memory. We check into our hotel in Jerusalem for dinner and overnight.
After a hearty Israeli breakfast, we start our pilgrimage in Jerusalem with a drive to the top of Mt. of Olives, from where Jesus ascended to heaven after his resurrection. From the top of the Mount of Olives is a wonderful view over all the ancient and modern city of Jerusalem. Next, we will visit the holy shrines on the Mount of Olives and descend on down to the “Palm Sunday Road”. Here we will tour the Chapel of Dominus Flavit (where Jesus wept over Jerusalem) en route to the Garden of Gethsemane and the Church of All Nations. Onward we go within the old walled city of Jerusalem and walk in the footsteps of our Lord as he bore the burden of our sins to the Cross at Golgotha. We visit the Pools of Bethesda and walk on along the Via Dolorosa, following the 14 Stations of the Cross from Pilate’s Judgement Hall to the Church of the Holy Sepulcher. In the afternoon we shall visit the last standing remnant of the ancient Temple at the Western (Wailing) Wall. Next, we tour Mt. Zion with the Upper Room and the Church of St. Peter which is built over the Palace of Caiaphas. Besides the Church, we shall see the “Roman Steps” which were probably used by Jesus and his disciples on the day of his arrest in the Garden of Gethsemane. We return to our hotel in Jerusalem for a robust Israeli dinner buffet and much-needed rest and relaxation.
Following another scrumptious Mediterranean breakfast, we continue the tour in Jerusalem. We begin this day with a visit to the Israel Museum with the Shrine of the Book, where Dead Sea Scrolls are preserved. Also, there is located the model of the 2nd Temple period from Jerusalem. Onward we pass the Knesset, as we drive to Yad Vashem Museum of the Holocaust which preserves the memory of the victims of the Shoah. Next, we will visit the birthplace of John the Baptist, located in a city of Judah called Ein Karem. The Church of the Visitation recalls the visit of the Virgin Mary to her cousin Elizabeth and stands upon the location of the House of Zechariah. Onward to Bethlehem for a visit to the royal city of King David where Jesus was born. The Church of the Nativity is one of the oldest surviving Christian churches. Here we can kneel at the place of Jesus’ birth in the Grotto of the Nativity. Before leaving Bethlehem, we will visit Shepherd’s Field where the Gospels record shepherds watching their flocks to whom the Angels announced the birth of the Messiah. Finally, concluding the day’s tour in Jerusalem we shall make a visit to the Garden Tomb and Golgotha (Calvary). Time here is allocated for prayer and meditation. Upon completing our personal devotions/reflections, we will return to our hotel for dinner and overnight.
A hearty Israeli breakfast to start the day, followed by a visit to the Temple Mount where Jesus taught so often according to the Gospel accounts. So much of the historical events of Jesus took place in and about the Temple Mount. Onward to visit the so-called “City of David”, which King David reputedly captured from the Jebusites some three thousand years ago. On we go trekking through Hezekiah’s Tunnel and we can witness this magnificent tunnel system that provided much-needed water supply (2 Chronicles 32:30). Next, we visit the site where Jesus restored the sight of the man born blind at the Pool of Siloam. The remaining part of the day is ‘’free time’’ allocated for last minute shopping and other desired activities. Back to the hotel for dinner and overnight.
After breakfast, we will check out and leave the hotel driving to Tel Aviv’s Ben Gurion Airport for your homebound flight. You will be accompanied on your way by an IsraHome Tour Representative who will assist to provide the most efficient passageway at the airport. Soon onboard your flight, and we hope to reminisce about an amazing journey just completed through the Land of Israel! See you next year! Shalom!