Archaeological Tour

Day 1. Arrive in Tel Aviv

Day 1. Arrive in Tel Aviv

Arrival at Ben Gurion Airport, where you will be met by our representative and transferred to your hotel.

Dinner & overnight in Tel Aviv


Day 2. Coastal Plain – Mt. Carmel

Day 2. Coastal Plain – Mt. Carmel

Begin the day in Old Jaffa at the ‘Gate of Faith’ monument, offering a panoramic view of Jaffa bay and modern Tel Aviv. Visit the Jaffa Artists’ Quarter, Pharaonic Gate – excavations from the Egyptian period, Church of St. Peter, Simon the Tanner’s house, the Crusader room and the underground archeological park (exposing remains from Christ’s time in Jaffa). Return to Tel Aviv to visit the Biblical Numismatic Museum, (optional meeting with chief numismatist). Drive through the Sharon Valley to Caesarea to view the Roman amphitheater, Crusader moat, Herodian aqueduct and remains of biblical Caesarea. Visit the Recanati Museum for Caesarea Excavations. Finish the day with a drive via Mt. Carmel to the Sea of Galilee.

Arrive at a kibbutz hotel for dinner and overnight.


Day 3. Acre – Zippori – Nazareth

Day 3. Acre – Zippori – NazarethAfter breakfast drive to Acre to explore the Crusader Halls, Crypt, secret passage, Arab market, Turkish khan, Pisanian port and the marine walls on the shore of the Mediterranean. Continue to Zippori, also known as Sepphoris, which is first mentioned in Josephus Flavius’ description of the reign of the Hasmonean King, Alexander Jannaeus, when it was the most important city in the Galilee. View the Crusader fortress on top of the hill, the villa built in the early third century with illustrations from the life of the Greek god Dionysis, and the stunning mosaic, known as the Mona Lisa of the Galilee. Explore the Roman-period lower city, with its carefully laid-out parallel and perpendicular streets, the Nile Mosaic building, a large fifth-century structure with an ornate mosaic floor depicting the festival held when the level of the Nile River reached its peak, and the giant underground waterworks, built in the first century and in operation until the seventh.
The 250-meter-long reservoir, which could hold 5000 cubic centimeters of water, is about a kilometer and a half away. Proceed to Nazareth to see the remains of this ancient city, buried under Church of the Annunciation, and visit the archeological museum.

Return to kibbutz hotel for dinner and overnight.


Day 4. Tiberius – Jordan River

Day 4. Tiberius – Jordan River

Start the day in Tiberius, with a visit to the Old Synagogue mosaics and the Hamat-Tiberias excavations, the discovery site of Crusader treasures. Drive to Capernaum to view the Byzantine synagogue, St. Peter’s House, and the underground mausoleum. Continue to the Upper Jordan Park and take a short nature hike along the holy riverbank to the site of Bet Tzaida, the recently-discovered third most-mentioned site in the New Testament, to view the fisherman’s house, the biblical street and the Israelite gate.

Return to kibbutz hotel for dinner and overnight.


Day 5. Upper Galilee – Mt. Hermon – Golan Heights

Day 5. Upper Galilee – Mt. Hermon – Golan HeightsBegin the day with a visit to the Dan Nature Reserve to walk along a nature trail among the largest springs in the Holy Land. Visit Tel Dan to see the Canaanite gate and temple. Continue to Caesarea Philippi (Banias) to view the waterfalls and visit the Hellenistic temple of Pan and the palace of Philipos and Salome. Ascend the Golan Heights to Mt. Hermon and visit the Nimrod Fortress, a monumental Muslim fortress from the twelfth century. Drive to Katzrin in the Golan Heights to visit its archaeological museum.

Return to kibbutz hotel for dinner and overnight.


Day 6. Jordan Valley – Judean Wilderness

Day 6. Jordan Valley – Judean Wilderness

Start the day with a visit to Bet Shean, ancient Schitopolis, to explore the Roman  amphitheater, Paladius Street, the Canaanite excavations, the Philistine temple, and the latest excavation area. Proceed through the Jordan Valley to Jericho for a visit to Visit Tel Jericho (Tel el-Sultan) and a meeting with a Palestinian archeologist. Drive through the Judean wilderness to Wadi Kelt for a donkey ride to the St. George monastery. Visit Elijah’s cave, the hermit cells and the upper monastery.

Continue to Jerusalem for dinner and overnight.


Day 7. Old City of Jerusalem

Day 7. Old City of Jerusalem

Spend the day exploring the treasures of the Old City of Jerusalem, site of King Solomon’s Temple. Visit the cotton sellers’ market, the Western Wall, the Hasmonian Tunnel, and the Litostratus excavations under the Sisters of Zion monastery. Continue to the Bethesda pool, the Crusader Church of St. Ann, the Lions Gate, the Christian Quarter, the Via Dolorosa, the Church of the Holy Sepulcher, the Golgotha, the Roman cistern and Josef of Aramathea’s tomb.

Return to Jerusalem hotel for dinner and overnight.


Day 8. Jerusalem – Mt. of Olives – City of David

Day 8. Jerusalem – Mt. of Olives – City of David

Begin the day on the Mt. of Olives, with a visit to the Crusader Church / Mosque of Ascension, the archeological site of Dominus Flevit, the Grotto of Gethsemane, and Mary’s Tomb. Continue to the City of David, site of ongoing excavations, to explore the Ben Shafan house, Hezekia’s Pool, The Siloam Tunnel and the recently-excavated Siloam Pool from the First Temple period. On to Mt. Zion to see King David’s tomb, the Upper Room, and Chaifa’s House, located under Assumpsion Church with its cisterns and storage rooms from the Second Temple period. Stroll through the Jewish Quarter to visit the Davidson Center Archaeological Park of Davidson Center and stand on the steps of the Southern Wall of the Temple.

Return to Jerusalem hotel for dinner and overnight.


Day 9. Israel Museum

Day 9. Israel Museum

Spend the morning at the Israel Museum. Tour the Shrine of the Book, home of the Dead Sea Scrolls, the Biblical Archaeology Department and the Model of Second Temple Jerusalem. In the afternoon, attend a seminar on “Current Schools in Biblical Archeology”

Return to Jerusalem hotel for dinner and overnight


Day 10. Bethlehem – Herodion – Beit Guvrin

Day 10. Bethlehem – Herodion – Beit Guvrin

After breakfast, drive to Bethlehem to visit the Church of the Nativity, including its Byzantine basilica and the Grotto of Nativity. Tour the excavations of ancient Bethlehem under the Greek monastery, and continue to Shepherds Field to view the new excavations of the Byzantine farm, along with Father Girnaux, a local archeologist. Drive to Herodion to tour King Herod’s desert castle, the ancient synagogue, bath house, underground tunnels and cisterns. Proceed to Beit Guvrin to visit the underground Hellenistic city, including the Sidonian wall paintings and the Omayan quarries. Fortress, Nebi Mussa, Moses’ desert tomb, and the Muslim “monastery”.

Return to Jerusalem hotel for dinner and overnight.


Day 11. Dead Sea

Day 11. Dead Sea

Depart Jerusalem for Qumran, the discovery site of the Dead Sea Scrolls. Tour the Visitors’ Center, the Essene farm and the Qumran Caves, where the Dead Sea Scrolls were found. Continue along the shores of the Dead Sea to Massada, the Herodian desert fortress and the site of the Zealots last stand against the Romans. In the afternoon, take swim and float in the Dead Sea.

Return to Jerusalem hotel for farewell dinner and overnight.


Day 12. Departure

Day 12. Departure

Transfer to Ben Gurion Airport for your departure flight.


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