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Led by Pastor Lance Ralston
May 30-June 11, 2023


DAY 1 – Tuesday, May 30 - Depart the USA. Overnight: Flight to Tel Aviv.

DAY 2 – Wednesday, May 31 - ARRIVAL IN ISRAEL - Arrive safely at Ben Gurion International Airport. Welcome by our representative, assistance with arrival formalities and after claiming luggage transfer to Tel Aviv. Time permitting, stop at Joppa (present-day Jaffa) from which Jonah departed before being swallowed by the whale. We'll visit the House of Simon the Tanner, on whose roof Peter had his vision that led to the baptism of Cornelius (Acts 10 1-23). Check into your hotel, enjoy a welcome dinner and hopefully get a good night's sleep. Dinner & Overnight: Tel Aviv

DAY 3 – Thursday, June 1 – CAESAREA- MEGIDDO-NAZARETH – After breakfast check out and drive north along the Mediterranean Coast to Caesarea (Acts 10) where we'll explore the ruins of the Roman and Crusader cities; built by Herod the Great, Caesarea is where Paul was imprisoned and tried and where Cornelius was converted to Christianity. From there we'll continue to Mt. Carmel (First Kings 18), site of Elijah the Prophet’s dramatic contest against the false prophets of Baal. Stop for a falafel lunch before continuing to Sepphoris, a great Roman and Byzantine city where we'll view a beautiful mosaic floor. We'll go on to Megiddo (Revelations 16,14-19) and visit Tel Megiddo to see the remains of King Solomon’s Stables, an altar from the time of Abraham, and the magnificent water tunnel. Then we'll continue to Nazareth, stopping on Mt. Precipice to look out over the city where Jesus spent most of His childhood.  Drive east to the Sea of Galilee and check into the hotel. Dinner & Overnight: By the Sea of Galilee

DAY 4 – Friday, June 2 - SEA OF GALILEE–THE CRADLE OF CHRISTIANITY – After breakfast drive to the northern shore of the Sea of Galilee and visit Capernaum (Matthew 9,10-13), where Jesus began His Ministry, and walk through the ruins of an ancient synagogue. Continue to the Heptagon Church at Tabgha (Matthew 14, 13), and view the beautiful mosaic floor which depicts the Miracle of the Multiplication of the Loaves and Fish that took place here. stop for a delicious St. Peter’s Fish lunch on the shores of the Lake. We'll then visit the Mt. of Beatitudes (Matthew 5), where Jesus delivered the Sermon on the Mount. We'll view the ancient Jesus Boat exhibited at the Yigal Alon Museum at Nof Ginosar. We'll continue to Magdala, the new archaeological site of the Village of Mary Magdalene followed by a visit to Kursi, overlooking the Sea of Galilee, where Jesus drove the swine into the sea. End the day sailing across the Sea of Galilee in a wooden boat much like the one used by Jesus and the disciples.  Return to the hotel.
Dinner & Overnight: By the Sea of Galilee

DAY 5 – Saturday, June 3 - NORTHERN GALILEE –  After breakfast we’ll have a full day to tour Israel's lovely northern region and dedicate our day to follow in the footsteps of Jesus. We'll begin by driving north through the Golan Heights and visit the Valley of Tears. We'll visit Caesarea Philippi (Matthew 16,12-23), the Banias, one of the contributory streams of the Jordan River. We'll then continue to Tel Dan (Judges 18, 27-31) where the tribe of Dan disobeyed God's order and created a golden calf. Stop for a light lunch. We'll drive through the beautiful Golan Heights and then end the day at the Yardenit Baptismal site, for a baptism in the Jordan River. Afterwards we’ll return to the hotel.  Dinner & Overnight: By the Sea of Galilee

DAY 6 – Sanday, June 4 - BEIT SHEAN–QUMRAN–DEAD SEA - After enjoying our rich Israeli breakfast we'll check out and head south towards the Dead Sea Basin. Our first stop will be at Beit Shean (First Samuel 31,8-13), Israel's largest archaeological site where we'll explore the ancient Roman city with its reconstructed amphitheater, buildings and streets. We'll then drive south along the Jordan Valley Rift, passing by the ancient city of Jericho and continue to Qumran, the place where the Dead Sea Scrolls were discovered. Continue to the Dead Sea Basin, check into the hotel and rest of the day at leisure to relax.

Dinner & Overnight:  By the Dead Sea


DAY 7 – Monday, June 5 - MASADA-EIN GEDI – After breakfast we'll visit Masada, the site of the Zealots' last stand against the Romans. Masada was originally built as a magnificent fortress and palace for Herod the Great and you'll be able to view the bathhouse, storage rooms, mosaics and the Byzantine Church. Those able can descend via stairways and see Herod’s Hanging Palace. We will then visit Ein Gedi, the largest oasis along the western shore of the Dead Sea and the area allotted to the Tribe of Judah and famous during the reign of King Solomon; this was also one of David's main places of refuge as he fled from the wrath of King Saul and where he wrote many of the Psalms. Next we'll return to the hotel for a free afternoon to relax, perhaps enjoying a float in the Dead Sea or to take advantage of the hotel's spa facilities!

Dinner & Overnight: By the Dead Sea

DAY 8 – Tuesday, June 6 – ASCENDING TO JERUSALEM – Following breakfast check out of the hotel. We'll depart the Dead Sea Basin and begin the ascent to Jerusalem, driving first into the Negev Desert to the Tel Arad National Park to view the ruins of a large walled Canaanite city and fortresses dating back to the period of the Israelite Kingdom. Continue to Tel Shiloh where the Tabernacles stood for 4,000 years. Explore Neot Kedumim, the Biblical Landscape Reserve, this unique recreation of the physical setting of the Bible in all its depth and detail allows visitors to see life as it was lived by our ancestors 3,000 years ago. Neot Kedumim embodies the panorama and power of the landscapes which shaped the values of the Bible and provided the rich vocabulary for expressing those values. We'll then enter the city of Jerusalem from the East and stop atop of the Mount of Olives for a magnificent view of the Old City. Check into the hotel.

Dinner & Overnight: Jerusalem



DAY 9 – Wednesday, June 7 – GARDEN OF GETHSEMANE - VIA DOLOROSA – Following breakfast we'll return to the Mt. of Olives and walk down the traditional Palm Sunday path to the Church of Dominus Flevit, continuing to the Garden of Gethsemane and the Church of All Nations to spend some time in the private Prayer Garden. We'll then enter the Old City via the Lions’ Gate, and visit the Pools of Bethesda (John 5,1-10), the Tower of Antonia, the Praetorium and Pilate’s Judgement Hall where our Lord was tried by Pilate, beaten by the Roman Cohort and took up His Cross for Calvary. The Ecce Homo begins the traditional Via Dolorosa and on the way we'll stop for lunch on own.  We will visit the Old City's Jewish Quarter, walking along the Cardo, Byzantine Jerusalem's main business thoroughfare, and Mount Zion, where we'll see the Room of the Last Supper (Matthew 26). We'll end at the Church of the Holy Sepulcher (Catholic site of Jesus' Crucifixion and Resurrection). Dinner & Overnight: Jerusalem.