Classic Israel - Introduction to Israel

February 13 - 20, 2020

 

 

Click here for the registration form

 

Thursday, February 13

 

■ Ben Gurion Airport

■ Enjoy a stunning lookout over Jerusalem from Mount Scopus & make the Shehechiyanu blessing
■ Opening Dinner
■ Tower of David Sound and Light Show
■ Jerusalem Lodging General

 

Friday, February 14

 

■ Jerusalem Lodging General

■ Mount of Olives
■ Jewish Quarter
■ Church of the holy sepulcher
■ Muslim quarter - Jerusalem
■ מנהרת הכותל The Western Wall Tunnels
■ Western Wall
■ Shabbat of a Lifetime

 

Saturday, February 15

 

■ Jerusalem Lodging General

■ Masada-National Park
■ Ein Gedi
■ Dead Sea
■ Jerusalem Lodging General

 

Sunday, February 16

 

■ Jerusalem Lodging General

■ Yad Vashem
■ Israel museum
■ Mount Herzl
■ Machane Yehuda Market
■ Caesaria National Park
■ NORTH ISR LODGING general

 

Monday, February 17

 

■ NORTH ISR LODGING general

■ Mount of Beatitudes
■ Ancient Katzrin Pa
■ Assaf Winery
■ Mount Bental
■ Naseeba Samara Druze Home Hospitality
■ NORTH ISR LODGING general

 

Tuesday, February 18

 

■ NORTH ISR LODGING general

■ Agmon haHula-National park
■ Tzfat
■ Ein Camonim
■ Basilica of the Annunciation
■ TLV ISR LODGING general

 

Wednesday, February 19

 

■ TLV ISR LODGING general

■ Jaffa
■ Carmel Market (Shuk HaCarmel)
■ The Independence Trail
■ Graffiti Tour
■ Tel Aviv Nightlife
■ TLV ISR LODGING general

 

Thursday, February 20

 

■ TLV ISR LODGING general

■ Neot Kedumim Park

 

 

DAY 1: Thursday, February 13

 

Welcome to Israel!

 

 

Ben Gurion Airport - You will be greeted at Ben Gurion Airport by your tour guide, meet the group participants and transfer to Jerusalem.

 

Enjoy a stunning lookout over Jerusalem from Mount Scopus & make the Shehechiyanu blessing - Enjoy a stunning lookout over Jerusalem from Mount Scopus & make the Shehechiyanu blessing.


■ Opening Dinner


Tower of David Sound and Light Show - Amidst the archaeological remains in the David Citadel courtyard the story of Jerusalem unfolds through virtual reality images. The Night Spectacular uses trompe l'oeil technology – the stones of the walls and structures fade into the scenes and the viewers are part of a multi-sensory experience.


Jerusalem Lodging General - Overnight: Jerusalem

 

 

DAY 2: Friday, February 14

 

JERUSALEM - HOLY TO ALL

 

 

Jerusalem Lodging General - Overnight: Jerusalem


Mount of Olives - Start the day at Mt. of Olives for a panoramic lookout over the city. There are countless Jewish, Christian and Muslim traditions - from here the Messiah will come, and from here the dead will be resurrected in the vision of the End of Days.


Jewish Quarter - Tour the Jewish Quarter of the Old City, including the ancient Cardo and the Sephardic Synagogues, King David’s Tomb and more. Learn about the rich history and multi archaeological layers in the old city.


Church of the holy sepulcher - The Holy Sepulcher is situated on the hill called Golgotha or Calvary. The Church contains the last five Stations of the Cross including the sites of Jesus' crucifixion and burial. Several Christian denominations claim ownership to various parts of the site so holy to Christendom.


Muslim quarter - Jerusalem - Walk through the Arab Shuk – check out the local humus and sweets.


מנהרת הכותל The Western Wall Tunnels - Explore what’s under the Kotel through the Kotel Tunnels Tour. The Western Wall is impressive, but its greatness is truly discovered when you descend underground to the Western Wall Tunnels. The tunnels run along approximately 488 meters of the Western Wall, giving visitors a taste for the challenge that stood before Herod the Great during this biggest of all his immense building projects—the expansion of the Temple Mount.


Western Wall - Take the time to reflect and appreciate its centrality in the Jewish faith.


Shabbat of a Lifetime - Head back to the hotel to prepare to the special day of the week - Shabbat.
Experience Shabbat Friday night home hospitality in a local family.

 

 

DAY 3: Saturday, February 15

 

 

Jerusalem Lodging General - Breakfast at the hotel.


Masada-National Park - Atop a lone rock cliff at the western end of the Judean Desert lies Masada, combining natural beauty and deep meaning. Together, we will ascend and tour King Herod’s private fortress which, following the destruction of the Jerusalem Temple in 70 BCE, became a base for a small band of Jewish zealots in revolt against the Romans. Although the rebels held their own, they were eventually overcome by siege, and according to historian Josephus, chose mass suicide over surrender. Masada has come to symbolize the fierce determination of the people of Israel, but its tragic history also raises questions about the price of freedom.


Ein Gedi - The landscape, climatic conditions and water sources at the Ein Gedi Nature Reserve have created a unique ecosystem of springs, waterfalls and pools surrounded by lush greenery in a desolate desert setting. We will have the opportunity to hike up to and cool off in the refreshing pools and waterfalls of the Ein Gedi Nature Reserve. The stunning Ein Gedi oasis consists of two separate waterways: Nahal David (David’s Stream), where David took refuge from King Saul; and Nahal Arugot, where remains of a 6th-century synagogue were discovered.


Dead Sea - At 1,300 feet below sea level, the Dead Sea is the lowest point on earth. Venture into the waters for a “float”.


Jerusalem Lodging General - Overnight: Jerusalem

 

 

DAY 4: Sunday, February 16

 

 

Jerusalem Lodging General - Breakfast & Check out from hotel


Yad Vashem - Option 1: Visit Yad Vashem museum, Israel’s National Memorial to the Holocaust. Tour this memorial to the darkest moment in world and Jewish history, its children’s memorial, and exquisite gardens.


Israel museum - Option 2: Visit the unique collections and expansive grounds of the Israel Museum, the country’s national museum. Linger over the renowned international and Israeli art, the world’s most complete Judaica collections and the charming Billy Rose Sculpture Garden. You can also visit the Shrine of the Book, home to the exceptional archaeological finds of the Dead Sea Scrolls and other rare ancient manuscripts.


Mount Herzl - Stop at Mount Herzl, the burial site of prominent Zionist, Israeli politicians, and others who greatly influenced the development of the state. However, the true spirit and anguish of Mount Herzl is in the vast expanse of the Israel Defense Forces’ official military cemetery in which thousands of soldiers are buried. Meet some of the famous and lesser known people who are buried here and understand the price Israel has paid to exist.


Machane Yehuda Market - Lunch at Machane Yehuda market- experience the hustle and bustle with all the rich fragrances, colors and sounds this market has to offer.


Caesaria National Park - Caesarea National Park, where 2,000 years ago King Herod built a large port in honor of Emperor Augustus. Pontius Pilate later ruled the country from his Caesarea, and it was from here that Paul set sail to the communities where he preached all over the Mediterranean. Visit the Roman Theater, Herod’s palace, the walled Crusader town with its galleries and restaurants and Caesarea’s latest attraction, the Time Trek, a fascinating multimedia presentation.


NORTH ISR LODGING general - Overnight: North

 

 

DAY 5: Monday, February 17

 

NORTH ISR LODGING general - Breakfast at the hotel.

Mount of Beatitudes - Enjoy an inspiring view of the Sea of Galilee from the top of the mountain where tradition says Jesus preached the Sermon on the Mount.


Ancient Katzrin Pa - The ruins of the ancient Jewish village of Katzrin are located in the central Golan.
The location of the village, mentioned in ancient Jewish sources, was identified at the end of the 19th century. The synagogue and the village was discovered and excavated about 30 years ago. The remains of ancient Katzrin have been restored after excavation: the columns of the synagogue are upright once more and the houses near the synagogue are two stories high and roofed. Samples of ancient household utensils and agricultural implements are displayed in the houses and there are
activities showing life during ancient times.


Assaf Winery - Tasting at the family-owned boutique Winery


Mount Bental - In the Golan Heights Stop at Mount Bental, site of a courageous battle during Israel’s war for the Golan. Have a Geo-political discussion and a lookout over the border with Syria.


■ Naseeba Samara Druze Home Hospitality


NORTH ISR LODGING general - Overnight: North

 

 

DAY 6: Tuesday, February 18

 

PHYSICAL AND SPIRITUAL HEIGHTS

 

NORTH ISR LODGING general - Breakfast & Check out from hotel

Agmon haHula-National park - At one time, the Hula Valley was an important resting place for migrating birds and many species of rare fish and plants creating a wonderland of flora and fauna. In 1948, the government decided to drain the swamps and pond and convert them into agricultural fields. Due to efforts to conserve at least part of the original landscape the Hula Valley Nature Reserve was the first nature reserve in Israel. Because the wasteland had already sunk below its original level, it in any case flooded during every rainy winter. The intentional flooding of the wasteland improved the quality of the water in the Sea of Galilee. Now the water "rests" in the Hula Valley, giving the organic materials time to sink, whereas previously these substances flowed into the Sea of Galilee, polluting the water.


Tzfat - Discover Tzfat which sits at a higher altitude than any other city in Israel and has been known since the 16th century as a major center of Kabbala, Jewish mysticism. The old synagogues, narrow alleyways and artists’ studios add to the hilltop city’s unmistakable charm.


Ein Camonim - During your visit to the Ein Camonim, we will have a guided tour of Israel’s leading goat farm and first boutique cheese dairy accompanied by professional explanations of the cheese making process and tastings from our organic cheeses as well as those from around the world. We will also learn how to taste cheese, what is unique about a boutique dairy and more.


Basilica of the Annunciation - Nazareth, the childhood home of Jesus, is closely associated with Christianity. It is a major attraction for pilgrims throughout the last two thousand years. The most popular site in Nazareth is The Catholic Church of Annunciation, also known as the Basilica of the Annunciation. It is one of the holiest sites for Christians and the largest, most magnificent, and spectacular churches in the Middle East today.

Mary's Well - the spring and its water are considered holy by both Muslims and Christians. Earlier generations attributed unusual healing properties to it.


TLV ISR LODGING general - Proceed to Tel Aviv.

Check in to hotel in Tel Aviv
Overnight: Tel Aviv

 

 

DAY 7: Wednesday, February 19

 

TLV ISR LODGING general - Breakfast at the hotel

Jaffa - Start the day in Jaffa and discover the ancient and modern situated side-by-side. Stroll through the alleyways of the Old City filled with artist studios as well as archaeological discoveries. Discover which Jewish and Christian stories took place in the city.


Carmel Market (Shuk HaCarmel) - Head to Shuk Ha Carmel, the most famous of all Tel Aviv’s marketplaces. In recent years, it’s even joined the ranks of Tel Aviv’s trendy spots for bars, restaurants, coffee shops and chef-owned food stalls. Enjoy a tasting and culinary tour.


The Independence Trail - Inspired by the Freedom Trail in Boston, the new Independence Trail follows 10 stops of Tel Aviv’s heritage sites learning about the history of this great city along the way. The trail begins at the intersection of tree-lined Rothschild Boulevard and Herzl Street, home to Tel Aviv’s first kiosk. The trail ends across the street at Independence Hall, where on May 14, 1948, David Ben-Gurion read aloud the Declaration of Independence as Israel was declared an independent Jewish state.
Explore the beautiful architecture and restorations projects, hear abut Israel's "silicon Valley" and Israel as a Start Up Nation.


Graffiti Tour - Go on an evening tour and explore Florentine on an urban Graffiti Tour. Who are the people going out at night and changing the face of the neighborhood? What kind of story do these images and words tell us about the people living there? What is unique about graffiti in Israel and in Tel Aviv? We will walk through Florentine, the neighborhood of Tel Aviv best-known for graffiti art to answer these questions and many more in a dynamic and inquisitive tour.


Tel Aviv Nightlife - Experience the "city that never sleeps" by a fun bar hopping tour. (optional)


TLV ISR LODGING general - Overnight: Tel Aviv

 

 

DAY 8: Thursday, February 20

 

TLV ISR LODGING general - Breakfast & Check out from hotel

Neot Kedumim Park - The Biblical Landscape Reserve in Israel, embodies the power of the landscape that helped shape the values of the Bible and provides a rich vocabulary for expressing them. Enjoy a biblical cooking workshop and a morning snack.

 

 

Via Sabra's itineraries and proposals are built with great care and consideration. We welcome questions and feedback and look forward to working with you on your trip.

 

 

BOOKINGS TERMS

 

■ This quote is not based on confirmed hotel availability, Hotels will be confirmed on acceptance of the proposal and subject to change based in equivalent options based on availability.

■ Request for changes to the itinerary once the proposal has been confirmed are possible, however, differences in costs and/or change fees may apply based on the nature of the request at Via Sabra's discretion.
■ By making the booking you accept that you have the authority to bind all members of your party to these terms and conditions of booking.
■ It is essential that upon receipt of our confirmation itinerary, you check the experience details we have made and confirm and/or inform us immediately of any errors. Where this is not done, and there is an unreasonable delay in notifying any apparent discrepancies in the confirmed arrangements, we will not be responsible for any charges that may arise as a result of alterations that have to be made to the experience booking.
■ Unless otherwise stated a touring day consists of up to 10 hours of touring and 200 km of travel. Where you have booked multiple days of touring the kms (but not the guiding hours) will be averaged out over the entire tour.
■ All transfers are priced on the basis that you arrive for the transfer at the pre-arranged time. Where a transfer is left waiting for you for any reason, you will be charged USD 30 per half hour of waiting time.
■ Travel insurance is recommended at this link .

 

Payments

 

■ If a trip you book with us is due to take place within the two-month period following the booking, full payment will be due at the time of booking.

■ If you book an experience with us due to start more than two months after the date of the booking, a non-refundable deposit will be due at the time of booking. The balance will be due 45 days before the experience start date.
■ If you book your experience less than 7 days in advance of the time when the experience is due to take place, payment by credit card will be the only acceptable form of payment.
■ Payment by credit card incurs a 2% surcharge.
■ If you choose to pay by bank transfer, you will be responsible for all bank and transfer costs.

 

 

Cancellation Policies

 

■ Cancellations up to 90 days prior to departure, the deposit will be charged (non-refundable).

■ 89 to 60 days prior to departure the cancellation penalty will be 30% of the total tour cost per person
■ 59 to 30 days prior to departure the cancellation penalty will be 50% of the total tour cost per person
■ We regret we are unable to refund cancellations made with less than 30 days’ notice.
1. Where you have made a group booking and you have been informed that Via Sabra has obtained group rates for you, then no refund will be available for any cancellation or part cancellation of any part of the experience, including but not limited to a reduction in the size of your party, unless you give more than 90 days’ notice before the due start date of the experience. Where you give over 90 days’ notice of cancellation or part cancellation you will be entitled to a full refund minus your 20% deposit or 20% of the value of the cancellation (where the full amount has already been paid).
1. Where you have made a group booking and you have been informed that Via Sabra has obtained group rates for you, then no refund will be available for any cancellation or part cancellation of any part of the experience, including but not limited to a reduction in the size of your party, unless you give more than 90 days’ notice before the due start date of the experience. Where you give over 90 days’ notice of cancellation or part cancellation you will be entitled to a full refund minus your 20% deposit or 20% of the value of the cancellation (where the full amount has already been paid).
1. Where you have made a group booking and you have been informed that Via Sabra has obtained group rates for you, then no refund will be available for any cancellation or part cancellation of any part of the experience, including but not limited to a reduction in the size of your party, unless you give more than 90 days’ notice before the due start date of the experience. Where you give over 90 days’ notice of cancellation or part cancellation you will be entitled to a full refund minus your 20% deposit or 20% of the value of the cancellation (where the full amount has already been paid).
2. Should you need to amend the dates of your booking with Via Sabra, such amendment will be granted subject to availability, an administration fee of USD 250, and the payment in full at the time of making the changes of any increased price of the experience. If alternative dates are not available for your booking and you need to cancel your booking, then cancellation terms as above will apply.
3. Clause 2 above is applicable to FIT (non-group) bookings where the change is requested 21 days in advance of the due start date of the experience. A change of date requested with less than 21 days' notice will be treated as a cancellation.
4. Clause 2 above is not necessarily applicable to group bookings. Where a change of date is requested for a group booking, we will do our best to accommodate your request but any change will be subject to the particular terms of our suppliers.
5. It is a condition of your booking through Via Sabra that you obtain full travel insurance. We strongly advise that travel insurance includes cover for ‘cancellation under any circumstances and for any reason’. If your Israel itinerary includes extreme activities such as jeep rides, scuba diving, helicopter rides, hot air balloon rides, rappelling, cycling, hiking, kayaking, water skiing or any other similar activities then you must ensure that your travel insurance specifically covers such activities.

 

 

Liability

 

■ Via Sabra is not responsible for loss or injury to any of your belongings or the belongings of anyone travelling in Israel pursuant to a Via Sabra booking, nor for any injury or death to any person travelling in Israel pursuant to a Via Sabra booking.

■ Where Via Sabra uses a third-party provider to provide any element of your Israel experience the third party, and not Via Sabra, is liable for their own actions and omissions.
■ We will not be responsible for your arrival to, or entry into Israel. It is your responsibility to check that you have the correct travel documents (including passports and visas) and health conditions to travel to Israel. We will not accept liability if you or any member of your party is refused entry into Israel or the Palestinian Territories, or if you are denied boarding onto a carrier travelling to Israel, due to failure on your part to carry correct documentation or to comply with relevant health requirements. Moreover, entry into Israel and the Palestinian Territories is always subject to security clearance at the port of departure and the point of entry. We will not be responsible for any person travelling to Israel who is denied entry for security reasons. Should you or any member of your party be denied boarding onto a carrier or entry into Israel for any reason, we will not be able to refund any part of payments made to us. Likewise, travel out of Israel is subject to security clearance and we will not be responsible for delays, missed flights or other loss caused by security procedures at any port of departure from Israel.
■ Compensation will not be payable in any cases where an amendment, change or cancellation is due to an unusual or unforeseeable event or circumstance beyond our reasonable control (’Force Majeure’). Such events include, but are not limited to, war, threat of war, riot, civil disturbance or strife, terrorist activity (actual or threatened), industrial disputes, technical or maintenance problems with transport, machinery or equipment, power failure, natural or nuclear disaster, fire, flood, drought, adverse weather conditions, levels of water in rivers, acts of god, closure of airports, changes of schedules or operational decisions of transport providers.

 

 

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