Israel & Jordan Tour
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This PRIVATE TOUR offers the best of Israel combined with the "must see" sites of Jordan. An upscale program, fully escorted from your arrival to Tel Aviv's Ben Gurion airport, featuring top rated hotels in both Israel and Jordan (according to trip advisor and traveler reviews). Included are visits to the "A" list of antiquity sites, cultural icons and nature preserves in both countries.
Day 01: (Sunday) ARRIVE TLV, TRANSFER TO JERUSALEM
Arriving TLV meet our staff in the terminal lobby for transfer to Jerusalem and either the Atlas Harmony or Atlas Arthur hotel. (please send flight details including name of airline, flight number and time of arrival).
VISAS: All travelers to Israel must have a visa. USA and Canada citizens can obtain one on arrival. Please let us know what passport you are traveling with and we will confirm whether you can get your's on arrival.
Day 02: (Monday) JERUSALEM
Your guide will meet you after breakfast in the hotel lobby and drive you to Mt. Scopus for a beautiful, panoramic view of Jerusalem. Next you will visit the Garden of Gethsemane and Church of the Agony. Continue on to the Israel Museum to visit the Shrine of the Book with the famous Dead Sea Scrolls and the beautifully renovated Model of Herodian Jerusalem, depicting the city at the time of the Second Temple. After seeing the Scrolls, you will visit Yad VaShem, Israel's national memorial to the Holocaust and then have an afternoon visit to the Hadassah Medical Center's Synagogue, with its Marc Chagall stained glass windows. You will be returned to your hotel via Ein Kerem, the birthplace of John the Baptist. Overnight Jerusalem
Meals: Buffet Breakfast
Day 03: (Tuesday) JERUSALEM
This morning depart the hotel at 8:30AM and you will walk with your guide through one of the gates to the walled Old City with the renewed Jewish Quarter, the Western Wall, the Temple Mount area, the colorful bazaars, and the Via Dolorosa ending at the Church of the Holy Sepulcher. Next you will drive to Mt. Zion and visit the tomb of King David, the Room of the Last Supper and Dormition Abbey. In the afternoon you continue to Bethlehem to visit Rachel's Tomb and the Church of the Nativity. Return to Jerusalem in the afternoon. Overnight Jerusalem
Meals: Buffet Breakfast
Day 04: (Wednesday) CAESAREA, HAIFA, ACRE, ROSH HANIKRA
Drive north to Caesarea, once the Roman capital of the region. See the excavations of the crusaders' city, the aqueduct and amphitheater which has been restored as a concert venue. Proceed to Haifa for a panoramic view from Mount Carmel and visit "Af Al Pi Chen", the naval museum of the illegal immigration to Israel at the time of the British mandate. Drive to Acre; walk along the old harbor and local market; continue to the northernmost point of Israel at Rosh Hanikra. Descend by cable car into the limestone grottoes. After the tour check in to the Bay Club hotel. Offering garden-view rooms with free Wi-Fi and a flat-screen TV, the luxurious Bay Club - an Atlas Boutique Hotel is halfway between Haifa Bay and the peak of Mount Carmel. The style of the property is inspired by the famous resort towns of the Mediterranean Sea. Overnight at Haifa
Day 05: (Thursday) BAHAI GARDENS, MEGIDDO, NAZARETH, TIBERIAS
Visit the incredible Bahai gardens then continue to Megiddo. One of the most important archeological sites in Israel from the time of the bible, Tel Megiddo is a beautiful and impressive national park. Megiddo was important in antiquity: it is mentioned in Egyptian writings and is forecast to be the site of Armageddon in the Christian Book of Revelations. Recognized as a UNESCO World Heritage Site in 2005, the impressive remains of several civilizations draw many visitors and pilgrims. Continue to Nazareth to visit the holy sites. End the day on the shore of the Sea of Galilee at the Scots hotel where you will have a Deluxe sea view room. Overnight Tiberias
Day 06: (Friday) TIBERIAS OLD CITY, MOUNT BERENICE, MOUNT OF BEATITUDES
The Old city holds important Jewish and Christian pilgrimage sites including the Tomb of Maimonides and Abulafia (Etz Chaim) Synagogue. The waterfront features the restaurant-lined Yigal Allon Promenade, a marina and a fish market. A few years after its establishment, around 30 C.E., Jesus Christ moved his base of activities to the northern shore of Lake Kineret, where several well-known miracles took place including walking on the waters of the lake. As Christianity took hold, many churches were built in Tiberias and its surroundings.
Tiberias has been continuously inhabited and various buildings and ruins from various periods are well-preserved. In the Old City, built during the Crusades and the Ottoman Empire, a number of early sites are visible, including Daher El-Amar's 18th century fortress, a Jewish ritual bath, the black basalt remnants of the city wall, and the Church of St. Peter. Today's church was constructed on the ruins of a Crusader church that had one nave and narrow windows similar to portholes representative of the hull of an overturned boat. The modern church centers on artwork symbolizing the four Gospels under an inscription of Jesus's words to Peter "Be shepherd of my flock." The stained glass windows depict fish and holy figures, while the rear courtyard houses a copy of a statue of Peter brought to Tiberias from Rome in 1833. Visit the Mount of Beatitudes and the Mount of Berenice. Overnight Tiberias
Day 07: (Saturday) BEIT SHE'AN RUINS, CROSS TO JORDAN, UMM QAIS (GADARA), JORDAN VALLEY
Beit She'an was first settled way back in the Chalcolithic Period (some 5,000 to 6,000 years ago). The city has had many conquerors, among them the Egyptians some 3,500 years ago. Beit She'an was a small town until the Egyptian Pharaoh Thutmose III in the 15th century BCE (recorded in an inscription at Karnak Temple) conquered the area and it became the center of the Egyptian administration of the region. A few hundred years later, the Philistines conquered it (it was they who fastened Saul's body to the wall of Beit She'an after the famous battle on Mount Gilbo'a: 1 Samuel 31 .8 – 11). Beit She'an became part of the kingdoms of David and Solomon, and was eventually destroyed in a fire, apparently at the hands of the King of Assyria (in 732 BCE). Beit She'an was rebuilt as a Hellenistic city about 2,300 years ago, and was renamed Scythopolis ("City of the Scyths"). In the succeeding Roman period, it spread south, reaching the peak of its greatness in the fifth century, when it had 30,000 – 40,000 inhabitants. The remains of this magnificent city can be clearly seen at the city's main site – the National Park of Beit She'an, which is one of the country's most beautiful and impressive national parks. In the northern part is Tel Beit She'an – the location of ancient Beit She'an. South and east of it are the ruins of Roman-Byzantine Scythopolis, which tell of its richness and greatness. Staff transfers you to the border crossing at Beit Shean, assists with exit formalities and you cross to Jordan. Arriving staff assists with clearing immigration and customs then visit Umm Qais (the ancient city of Gadara) before continuing to the Kempinski Ishtar Jordan Valley Resort and Spa where you will have a Superior sea view room. Overnight Jordan Valley
Day 08: (Sunday) JERASH
Jerash is the site of the ruins of the Greco-Roman city of Gerasa, also referred to as Antioch on the Golden River. Ancient Greek inscriptions from the city as well as literary sources establish the foundation of the city as being by Alexander the Great or his general Perdiccas, who settled aged Macedonian soldiers there. This took place during the spring of 331 BC, when Alexander left Egypt, crossed Syria and then went to Mesopotamia. It is sometimes misleadingly referred to as the "Pompeii of the Middle East or Asia", referring to its size, extent of excavation and level of preservation (though Jerash was never buried by a volcano). Jerash is considered one of the most important and best preserved Roman cities in the Near East. It was a city of the Decapolis. Overnight Jordan Valley
Day 09: (Monday) KINGS HIGHWAY, MADABA, MT. NEBO, KERAK, PETRA
Meet your guide in the hotel lobby and drive along the 5,000 year old Kings Highway to Madaba (the city of Mosaics, where the oldest known map of the holy land is set in a church floor), Mt. Nebo, where Moses looked on the promised land. Continue to Kerak to see the Crusader castle then on to Petra to overnight at the famous Movenpick resort, right at the entrance to the "Rose Red City" where you will have a superior room. Overnight Petra
Meals: Buffet Breakfast
Day 10: (Tuesday) PETRA REVEALED
Join your guide in the lobby for a full day tour of Petra and surrounding sites. Overnight Petra
Meals: Buffet Breakfast
Day 11: (Wednesday) DANA PRESERVE, DEAD SEA COAST
Departing Petra cross to the Dead Sea coast. Along the drive you will stop to visit The Dana Preserve: Established in 1989, Dana Biosphere Reserve is Jordan's largest nature reserve, covering some 123 square miles of rugged and beautiful landscape along the face of the Great Rift Valley. It sweeps down in a series of mountain ridges, from the 4,900 foot high plateau near Quadesiyya to the desert plains of Wadi Araba. The mountains are cut by many steep-sided wadis, often lined with a lush growth of trees and shrubs. Its geology is as varied as its landscape, switching from limestone to sandstone to granite. Dana Biosphere Reserve is the only reserve in Jordan that includes the four different bio-geographical zones of the country; Mediterranean, Irano-Turanian, Saharo Arabian and Sudanian penetration. As such, it is the most diverse nature reserve in the country in terms of habitats and species, hosting several vegetation types, including the Phoenician Juniper, evergreen oak, sand dunes, acacia, and rocky sudanian, among others. It is also home to the southernmost remaining forest community of Cypress Cupressus simpervirens. More than 800 plant species can be found within the reserve, three of which have only ever been recorded in Dana and nowhere else in the world. Their Latin names include the word 'Dana' in them. Dana supports a wide variety of wildlife, including many rare species of plants and animals. It is home to several globally threatened species of birds and mammals, such as Syrian Serin Serinus syriacus, Lesser Kestrel Falco naumanni, Blanford's Fox Vulpes cana and Nubian Ibex Capra nubiana. The largest breeding colony in the world for Syrian Serin is located in Dana, while the Lesser Kestrel is also found to breed in the area. Along the way stop to visit Lot's cave and the Dead Sea panorama complex. You will end the day at the Kempinski Ishtar resort on the northern end of the Sea where you will have a Superior Sea View room. Overnight Jordan Valley
Day 12: (Thursday) JORDAN TO TEL AVIV
Cross the border at King Hussien/Allenby Bridge and continue to Tel Aviv where you will enjoy a stay at the Rothschild Hotel where you will have a Premium room. In an iconic building on trendy Rothschild Boulevard, The Rothschild Hotel - Tel Aviv's Finest, provides modern rooms with espresso machine and free Wi-Fi. The famous Shenkin shopping street is a 2-minute walk away. Luxury rooms at the Rothschild all have contemporary furnishings and an eclectic style. They include an LED TV, a cordless phone, a minibar and air conditioning. Some rooms include a private balcony or terrace. The entire hotel was built to reduce the impact on the environment. This finely preserved building is definitely one of Tel Aviv's most famous, and most of the furniture has been designed and handmade by local craftsmen. Breakfast is available until noon.The hotel is on the middle at the junction between Tel Aviv's exclusive business district and its prestigious cultural area. The immediate surroundings have plenty of bars, restaurants and cafes. Overnight Tel Aviv
Day 13: (Friday) QUMRAN, MASSADA, DEAD SEA
Drive through the Judean Desert to the Dead Sea. Stop at Qumran, the site where the Dead Sea scrolls were found. Continue to Massada, ascend by cable car and tour the ancient fortress; visit the remains of the walls, palaces, synagogue, the bathhouses etc. Descend by cable car. Next stop for lunch (on your own) and Spa facilities in one of the leading hotels in the area. Return to Tel Aviv for the evening. Overnight Tel Aviv
Day 14: (Saturday) OLD JAFFA
Enjoy a tour of Old Jaffa. Many believe that the name derives from the Hebrew word "Yofi" - beauty. From archaeological discoveries and ancient documents we learn that Jaffa existed as a port city some 4,000 years ago, serving Egyptian and Phoenician sailors in their sea voyages. Historians believe that Jaffa is the only port in the world which can boast uninterrupted inhabitation throughout its entire existence. The biblical account mentions that the cedars from Lebanon for the construction of King Solomon's Temple came in via Jaffa. Jonah departed from this city in his flight from God. Greek legend tells of the chaining of the beautiful Andromeda to the rocks facing Jaffa's shore. Simon the Tanner lived in Jaffa, and it was here that the Apostle Peter performed a miracle. Roman legions, Richard the Lion Hearted, Napoleon and Turkish sultans all conquered the city; but with the eclipse of the Ottoman Empire, the city's vitality declined. Towards the end of World War I, the city was conquered by General Allenby, ushering in the period of the British Mandate.
Day 15: (Sunday) INTERNATIONAL DEPARTURE
Staff transfers you to the airport for your international departure (meals on the flight)
PRIVATE TOUR INCLUDES:
Ground Transfers by air-conditioned vehicle related to the tour starting with arrival to Ben Gurian airport (TLV). Baggage handling of no more than 1 piece of luggage per person however baggage and personal effects are at the owner's risk at all times during the tour. Hotels (based on double occupancy). Meals as noted. Included meals are in the main dining room, no speciality restaurants or room service. Fees for visiting antiquity sites and museums shown on the tour outline. Tours as noted in the outline with the services of an English speaking licensed guide. Hotel service charges and taxes.
NOT included are: Air, Items of a personal nature such as tips, entry visas, entry or departure taxes, phone calls, laundry, beverages of any nature at any time, any items not specifically covered in the included items.