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The day has arrived and we depart CLT on an overnight journey to Israel.
Today we arrive at Tel Aviv’s Ben Gurion Airport, where we will be met by our guide. Time permitting, we visit the ancient town of Jaffa where Peter had his vision on the roof top of the house of Simon the Tanner. Daniel Herzliya or similar. D.
Overnight Tel Aviv
Today we travel towards Caesarea Maritima (entrance included), where we will have a brief visit to this magnificent city with Roman, Byzantine, and Crusader ruins. Here we will elaborate on the story of the baptism of Cornelius, the first gentile convert to Christianity, and on the travels of Paul — those events that led Caesarea Maritima to become the springboard for the Gospel to the West. We continue to Mount Carmel (entrance included) and consider the contest between the Prophet Elijah and the false prophets of Baal, discussing the reasons why the prophet chose that place for the contest, and the lessons we learn from the story. We visit Tel Megiddo (entrance included), from where we take in views of the Armageddon Valley. We then depart for the Sea of Galilee, passing Cana of Galilee where Jesus performed his first miracle. Caesar Tiberias or similar. B, L, D.
Overnight Sea of Galilee
After a buffet breakfast, we will start our day by sailing on the Sea of Galilee in a replica of a boat used for fishing on the Sea of Galilee in the 1st Century AD (included). Then we visit Bethsaida (included), the hometown of five of Jesus’ disciples, a point on the “triangle” where Jesus’ ministry was centered (together with Korazim and Capernaum). We visit Capernaum (included), Jesus’ Galilean ministry base. We will see the house of Peter’s mother-in-law and the ancient synagogue where many of Jesus’ teachings took place. During lunch (included) you will have the opportunity to try St. Peter’s fish, commonly eaten by people in Jesus’ day. We finish the day by visiting Mt. Arbel (entrance included). Caesar Tiberias or similar. B, L, D.
Overnight Sea of Galilee
We begin our day with a visit to Tel Dan National park (included), the northern extremity of biblical Israel and the site of the main source of the river Jordan. We will visit the location of the altar where the golden calf was placed by King Jeroboam and see the impressive gates dating from 10th – 8th centuries BC. We will see the Gates of Laish, known as the “Abraham Gates,” dating to 1800 BC. We proceed to Caesarea Philippi, known also as Banias (included), where Peter confessed that Jesus is the Son of God. After lunch we visit the high place seeing the gates of Hades, Augustus’ Temple and the High Place where the false god Pan was worshipped. We will see where Herod’s Palace stood, as well as the in tact Roman bridge dated to 28 BC. We will drive along the Golan Heights with views over the road to Damascus. Caesar Tiberias or similar. B, L, D.
Overnight Sea of Galilee
This morning we proceed to Beth Shean (entrance included), the capital of the Decapolis. There we will see the ruins of the Roman and Byzantine cities. We will also discuss the demise of King Saul and his sons, whose bodies were hanged on the walls of Beth Shean. We continue traveling south to Bet Arabah where John the Baptist was baptizing on the Jordan River. Enjoy Hotel or similar. B, L, D.
Overnight Dead Sea
We begin our day visiting Masada (entrance & cable car included), the fortress built by King Herod the Great and made famous by the Zealots in 73/74 AD with their standoff against the Romans. We visit the fortress and see the ruins that are considered a World Heritage Site by UNESCO. We continue to Ein Gedi, the oasis in the desert where the meeting between David and King Saul took place, and where many of the psalms were written by David. En route to Jerusalem we stop at Wadi Qelt. Grand Court or similar. B, L, D.
This morning we take in a view of Jerusalem from the Mount of Olives. We will walk down the Palm Sunday Procession Road to the Garden of Gethsemane, where Jesus agonized on the night before his crucifixion. We travel to the Israel Museum (entrance included), and then on to the Western Wall, which is the holiest place in Judaism. Afterwards we visit the Western Wall Tunnel (Rabbinical Tunnel) (entrance included). On to visit the Pool of Bethesda where, John 5 recounts, Jesus healed a disabled man.Grand Court or similar. B, L, D.
Today we ascend the Temple Mount, discussing its connection to both the Old and New Testaments. We continue to the City of David (entrance included), visiting Hezekiah’s Tunnel and the Pool of Siloam. In the afternoon it’s on to the Elah Valley (Socoh overlook & Tel Azekah), where David defeated Goliath. Grand Court or similar. B, L, D.
This morning we visit the “Upper Room,” the traditional place where Jesus and his disciples ate the Last Supper, followed by a visit to nearby location of the home of the High Priest, Caiaphas (entrance included). We then visit the Antonia Fortress (entrance Included), where Jesus was condemned to die by Pontius Pilate. We walk the Via Dolorosa, the traditional path that Jesus walked on the way to the crucifixion. Finally, we make our way to Golgotha and the Garden Tomb, potential sites for Jesus’ crucifixion, burial, and resurrection. Your flight home may depart either tonight or the next day. If the next day, and an overnight is required, overnight Jerusalem. Grand Court or similar. B, L, D.
Your flight home may depart either the previous night or today. If today, and time allows, breakfast is included today. Either way, today we arrive back at CLT.