This escorted tour takes you around Israel’s diverse cities, religious sites and to the shores of the Dead Sea. The Holy Land’s sites are familiar to almost everyone but there’s nothing quite like seeing them for yourself. Spend a couple of days in Tel Aviv, the Middle East’s most vibrant city, and Haifa – your base for Roman ruins and beautiful rolling hills – before reaching the extraordinary city of Jerusalem.

• Tel Aviv: 2 nights
• Haifa: 2 nights
• Jerusalem: 4 nights

8nights Escorted Small Group Tour

This escorted tour takes you around Israel’s diverse cities, religious sites and to the shores of the Dead Sea. The Holy Land’s sites are familiar to almost everyone but there’s nothing quite like seeing them for yourself. Spend a couple of days in Tel Aviv, the Middle East’s most vibrant city, and Haifa – your base for Roman ruins and beautiful rolling hills – before reaching the extraordinary city of Jerusalem.

• Tel Aviv: 2 nights
• Haifa: 2 nights
• Jerusalem: 4 nights

8nights Escorted Small Group Tour
 
 
ITINERARY

Day 1: UK to Tel Aviv Depart from the UK on your flight to Tel Aviv. On arrival, meet your tour representative and head to your hotel by the old harbour to check in and have dinner on your first night. Stay: Cinema Hotel (or similar). D.

Day 2: Tel Aviv The Middle East’s most vibrant city is the perfect start to this tour. It’s a busy first day, starting at the ‘State of Mind’ Innovation Center, which displays products like machines that convert the humidity in air to drinking water. Wander around Jaffa, a pretty tumble of aged stone alleys, restaurants and craft shops that make up this ancient port city, which Tel Aviv grew from, before trying out bites of Israeli cuisine on a tasting tour. Carmel Market is Tel Aviv’s biggest market – there are mountains of pomegranate, pyramids of sweet halva and tubs of ground spices – and its buzzy vibe makes it the best place to have a taste of local food. Afterwards, it’s a trip to the attractive Rothschild Boulevard to see Tel Aviv’s collection of 1930s and ‘40s Bauhaus buildings in its White City. Wind down with the rest of the evening to spend however you like. Stay: Cinema Hotel (or similar). B.

Day 3: Tel Aviv to Haifa Leaving Tel Aviv, today is all about exploring Israel’s coastline. Head north to Caesarea, a restored Roman port built by Herod the Great, and walk among the ruins of a hippodrome once used for chariot races and see its impressive amphitheatre, now used as a concert venue. Next is Zichron Yaakov, a small town on the Mediterranean with quaint cafés and one of Israel’s oldest wineries, Carmel Winery. Stop for a wine tasting and after, continue to Nazareth, famously known as the town Jesus grew up in. A visit isn’t complete here without seeing the Church of the Annunciation; take a tour of the church and see the old city’s markets before ending the day at your hotel in Haifa. Stay: Bay Club Hotel, Haifa (or similar). B.

Day 4: Haifa Visit Tzfat, a Jewish settlement of quaint cobbled streets, beautiful synagogues you can take a peek into and an artists’ quarter of workshops and galleries. It’s where Kabbalah, Jewish mysticism, was born – a faith famously followed by Madonna. Continue to a family-owned winery, Pelter Winery, for a wine tasting and visit the remains of a Talmudic village near Katzrin for a glimpse into life in ancient Israel. Return to your hotel in Haifa. Stay: Bay Club Hotel, Haifa (or similar). B, D.

Day 5: Haifa to Jerusalem Leave Haifa for Acre (Akko), a UNESCO World Heritage-listed port city steeped in Crusader history. Go underground and see the imposing crypt-like Crusader Halls of the Knights of the Hospitaller Fortress and spend time in the local bazaar. Next, travel into Haifa to visit the immaculately laid-out Bahá’í Gardens, the holiest site in the Bahá’í faith and the resting place of the prophet, Báb. Head to the top of Mount Carmel to the Arabic-speaking Druze village, Daliyat El Carmel, and learn about the community. Then travel on to Jerusalem, where you’ll stop at Mount Scopus for views over the city before checking in to your modern boutique hotel. This evening you’ll get to learn about Jewish faith by joining a local family for the first meal of Shabbat (Sabbath). Stay: Harmony Hotel (or similar). B, D.

Day 6: Jerusalem & the Dead Sea Today you’ll travel to the Dead Sea, the lowest point on earth where the water is so salty it’s practically impossible to do anything other than float on the water. Your first stop is Masada, where Herod the Great built his desert fortress on a rocky plateau. Walk around the remains of a synagogue and bath houses and after, descend from the mountaintop fortress by cable car. Your next stop is the Dead Sea, where you can take a mineral-rich mud bath in its waters for super-soft skin. Have lunch by the Dead Sea shore and after enjoying your natural spa time, drive to Wadi Qelt for views out to the crumpled Judean Desert and the 5th-Century Monastery of St. George which is nestled in the cliffside. Back in Jerusalem, you’ll be treated to a sound and light show in the medieval courtyard at the Tower of David. Stay: Harmony Hotel (or similar). B, L.

Day 7: Jerusalem Take a tour of Jerusalem’s Old City and visit major sites like the Western Wall, also known as the Wailing Wall. The Western Wall is Judaism’s most important pilgrimage site; thousands of Jews come all year round to say their prayers or leave written prayers in the cracks of the wall. Browse the shops at the Cardo, an ancient Roman street where souvenirs mingle with archaeological artefacts. The bazaar in the Arab Quarter (Muslim Quarter) is a Middle Eastern pocket of sweet treats, Arabic coffee and colourful trinkets in narrow alleyways. Go on a behind-the-scenes rooftop tour to see the Old City and its diverse neighbourhoods from above and follow Via Dolorosa, the road Jesus is believed to walked on to the Church of the Holy Sepulchre, where he was crucified and buried. The rest of your evening is free to find a local restaurant or spend more time getting to know this historic city independently. Stay: Harmony Hotel (or similar). B.

Day 8: Jerusalem & Bethlehem Visit Yad Vashem, Israel’s main museum to commemorate victims of the Holocaust. Built to tell the stories of the individuals who lost their lives, including the 1.5 million Jewish children’s lives who are remembered at the Children’s Pavilion, the museum is a heartbreaking but essential experience. Follow on with the Israel Museum to see the Dead Sea Scrolls, which include text that pre-dates the Bible and matches almost all of the Old Testament; and the Model of Jerusalem, a huge model showing the city as it was before the Second Temple was destroyed, leaving only the Western Wall. At the Yvel Design Center, learn about how luxury jewellery is made and the philanthropic efforts that help immigrants. Then it’s on to the little town of Bethlehem and the Church of the Nativity, where Jesus was born. Choose where you want to spend some time on your last evening; maybe head to the comforts of Mamilla Mall, a modern shopping centre for high-end boutiques, or soak up the lively atmosphere on Ben Yahuda Street, a shopping street with cafés that are great for people watching. Stay: Harmony Hotel (or similar). B.

Day 9: Jerusalem Transfer to the airport for your flight back to the UK or extend your tour in Petra (Jordan). B.


Stay longer

Petra extension
Day 1: Amman
Arrive in Amman, Jordan’s historic capital, and meet your private tour representative before transferring to your hotel for check-in and dinner. Stay: Corp Amman Hotel (or similar). D.

Day 2: Amman & Jerash
Travel north to Jerash, a city you might mistake for Rome thanks to its preserved Roman ruins. Have lunch at a local restaurant before returning to Amman for a day of sightseeing. The city views are excellent from the Citadel, and the ruins around the ancient city includes a giant stone hand of a Hercules statue. Explore Amman’s restored Roman amphitheatre and spend some time downtown where you’ll get to try some falafel and kunafeh in a tasting tour before going back to your hotel. Stay: Corp Amman Hotel (or similar). B, L.

Day 3: Mount Nebo, Madaba & Petra
Take in the views over the Holy Land from your first stop, Mount Nebo. At Madaba, visit The Church of Saint George to see its intricate mosaics and have lunch at a local restaurant. Your journey to the Rose Red City of Petra begins this afternoon; on arrival, check in to your hotel for dinner before walking the short distance to Petra for your first look at this Wonder of the World. It’s an enchanting first experience as lanterns illuminate Petra’s Treasury against the night. Return to your hotel for a good night’s sleep before your full day at Petra. Stay: Mövenpick Nabatean Castle Hotel (or similar). B, L, D.

Day 4: Petra
This is your day to see Petra in all its glory. Follow Al Siq, the narrow gorge entrance that leads to the famous Treasury, and take in the soft rock-cut façade that has stood the test of time. It was crowned one of the Seven New Wonders of the World, an impressive feat for structures built around 2000 years ago. You’ll have plenty of time to see Petra’s sites beyond the Treasury, like the Street of Façades and the Colonnaded Street as you’re guided around this UNESCO-listed marvel by a local guide. Stay: Mövenpick Nabatean Castle Hotel (or similar). B, L, D.

Day 5: Petra After breakfast, transfer to their airport for your return flight back to the UK. B.


Day 1: UK to Tel Aviv Depart from the UK on your flight to Tel Aviv. On arrival, meet your tour representative and head to your hotel by the old harbour to check in and have dinner on your first night. Stay: Cinema Hotel (or similar). D.

Day 2: Tel Aviv The Middle East’s most vibrant city is the perfect start to this tour. It’s a busy first day, starting at the ‘State of Mind’ Innovation Center, which displays products like machines that convert the humidity in air to drinking water. Wander around Jaffa, a pretty tumble of aged stone alleys, restaurants and craft shops that make up the ancient port city Tel Aviv grew from. While you’re here, you’ll get to try Israeli food on a tasting tour. Carmel Market is Tel Aviv’s biggest market – there are mountains of pomegranate, pyramids of sweet halva and tubs of ground spices – and its buzzy vibe makes it the best place to have a taste of local food. Afterwards, it’s a trip to the attractive Rothschild Boulevard to see Tel Aviv’s collection of 1930s and ‘40s Bauhaus buildings in its White City. Wind down with the rest of the evening to spend however you like. Stay: Cinema Hotel (or similar). B.

Day 3: Tel Aviv to Haifa Leaving Tel Aviv, today is all about exploring Israel’s coastline. Head north to Caesarea, a restored Roman port built by Herod the Great, and walk among the ruins of a hippodrome once used for chariot races and the impressive amphitheatre, now used as a concert venue. Next is Zichron Yaakov, a small town on the Mediterranean with quaint cafés and one of Israel’s oldest wineries, Carmel Winery. Stop for a wine tasting and after, continue to Nazareth, famously known as the town Jesus grew up in. A visit isn’t complete here without seeing the Church of the Annunciation; take a tour of the church and see the old city’s markets before ending the day at your hotel in Haifa. Stay: Bay Club Hotel, Haifa (or similar). B.

Day 4: Haifa Visit Tzfat, a Jewish settlement of quaint cobbled streets, beautiful synagogues you can take a peek into and an artists’ quarter of workshops and galleries. It’s where Kabbalah, Jewish mysticism, was born – a faith famously followed by Madonna. Continue to a family-owned winery, Pelter Winery, for a wine tasting and visit the remains of a Talmudic village near Katzrin for a glimpse into life in ancient Israel. Return to your hotel in Haifa. Stay: Bay Club Hotel, Haifa (or similar). B, D.

Day 5: Haifa to Jerusalem Leave Haifa for Acre (Akko), a UNESCO World Heritage-listed port city steeped in Crusader history. Go underground and see the imposing crypt-like Crusader Halls of the Knights of the Hospitaller Fortress and spend time in the local bazaar. Next, visit Haifa’s immaculate Bahá’í Gardens, the holiest site in the Bahá’í faith and the resting place of the prophet, Báb. Head to the top of Mount Carmel to the Arabic-speaking Druze village, Daliyat El Carmel, and learn about the community. Then travel on to Jerusalem, where you’ll stop at Mount Scopus for views over the city before checking in to your modern boutique hotel. This evening you’ll get to learn about Jewish faith by joining a local family for the first meal of Shabbat (Sabbath). Stay: Harmony Hotel (or similar). B, D.

Day 6: Jerusalem & the Dead Sea Today you’ll travel to the Dead Sea, the lowest point on earth where the water is so salty it’s practically impossible to do anything other than float on the water. Your first stop is Masada, where Herod the Great built his desert fortress on a rocky plateau. Walk around the remains of a synagogue and bath houses and after, descend from the mountaintop fortress by cable car. Your next stop is the Dead Sea, where you can take a mineral-rich mud bath in its waters for super-soft skin. Have lunch by the Dead Sea shore and after enjoying your natural spa time, drive to Wadi Qelt for views out to the crumpled Judean Desert and the 5th-Century Monastery of St. George which is nestled in the cliffside. Back in Jerusalem, you’ll be treated to a sound and light show in the medieval courtyard at the Tower of David. Stay: Harmony Hotel (or similar). B, L.

Day 7: Jerusalem Take a tour of Jerusalem’s Old City and visit major sites like the Western Wall, also known as the Wailing Wall. The Western Wall is Judaism’s most important pilgrimage site; thousands of Jews come all year round to say their prayers or leave written prayers in the cracks of the wall. Browse the shops at the Cardo, an ancient Roman street where souvenirs mingle with archaeological artefacts. The bazaar in the Arab Quarter (Muslim Quarter) is a Middle Eastern pocket of sweet treats, Arabic coffee and colourful trinkets in narrow alleyways. Go on a behind-the-scenes rooftop tour to see the Old City and its diverse neighbourhoods from above and follow Via Dolorosa, the road Jesus is believed to walked on to the Church of the Holy Sepulchre, where he was crucified and buried. The rest of your evening is free to find a local restaurant or spend more time getting to know this historic city independently. Stay: Harmony Hotel (or similar). B.

Day 8: Jerusalem & Bethlehem Visit Yad Vashem, Israel’s main museum to commemorate victims of the Holocaust. Built to tell the stories of the individuals who lost their lives, including the 1.5 million Jewish children who are remembered at the Children’s Pavilion, the museum is a heartbreaking but essential experience. Follow on with the Israel Museum to see the Dead Sea Scrolls, which include text that pre-dates the Bible and matches almost all of the Old Testament; and the Model of Jerusalem, a huge model showing the city as it was before the Second Temple was destroyed, leaving only the Western Wall. At the Yvel Design Center, learn about how luxury jewellery is made and the philanthropic efforts that help immigrants. Then it’s on to the little town of Bethlehem and the Church of the Nativity, where Jesus was born. Choose where you want to spend some time on your last evening; maybe head to the comforts of Mamilla Mall, a modern shopping centre for high-end boutiques, or soak up the lively atmosphere on Ben Yahuda Street, a shopping street with cafés that are great for people watching. Stay: Harmony Hotel (or similar). B.

Day 9: Jerusalem Transfer to the airport for your flight back to the UK or extend your tour in Petra (Jordan). B.


Stay longer

Petra extension
Day 1: Amman
Arrive in Amman, Jordan’s historic capital, and meet your private tour representative before transferring to your hotel for check-in and dinner. Stay: Corp Amman Hotel (or similar). D.

Day 2: Amman & Jerash
Travel north to Jerash, a city you might mistake for Rome thanks to its preserved Roman ruins. Have lunch at a local restaurant before returning to Amman for a day of sightseeing. The city views are excellent from the Citadel, and the ruins around the ancient city includes a giant stone hand of a Hercules statue. Explore Amman’s restored Roman amphitheatre and spend some time downtown where you’ll get to try some falafel and kunafeh in a tasting tour before going back to your hotel. Stay: Corp Amman Hotel (or similar). B, L.

Day 3: Mount Nebo, Madaba & Petra
Take in the views over the Holy Land from your first stop, Mount Nebo. At Madaba, visit The Church of Saint George to see its intricate mosaics and have lunch at a local restaurant. Your journey to the Rose Red City of Petra begins this afternoon; on arrival, check in to your hotel for dinner before walking the short distance to Petra for your first look at this Wonder of the World. It’s an enchanting first experience as lanterns illuminate Petra’s Treasury against the night. Return to your hotel for a good night’s sleep before your full day at Petra. Stay: Mövenpick Nabatean Castle Hotel (or similar). B, L, D.

Day 4: Petra
This is your day to see Petra in all its glory. Follow Al Siq, the narrow gorge entrance that leads to the famous Treasury, and take in the soft rock-cut façade that has stood the test of time. It was crowned one of the Seven New Wonders of the World, an impressive feat for structures built around 2000 years ago. You’ll have plenty of time to see Petra’s sites beyond the Treasury, like the Street of Façades and the Colonnaded Street as you’re guided around this UNESCO-listed marvel by a local guide. Stay: Mövenpick Nabatean Castle Hotel (or similar). B, L, D.

Day 5: Petra After breakfast, transfer to their airport for your return flight back to the UK. B.


ABOUT THIS TOUR

Is this for you?

This escorted tour is ideal for first-timers who want to learn about Israel’s history, and see the most important historic and religious places and landmarks.

Good to know

• For guests over 16 (unless travelling on a private journey, where the minimum age is 8)

• Average group size of 6 guests

• A maximum of 16 guests

• Journey times do not take into account stops or traffic conditions.

What to expect

• Plenty of walking on city tours (and on the Petra extension)

• Some free evenings to explore on your own

• Modest clothing is needed when visiting places of worship

• Guide tips are not included; we recommend tipping at the end of your stay

• Dinner on Day 4 will be at either the hotel or a local restaurant.

Accommodation on tour

We’ve chosen cool and comfortable boutique-style hotels with great locations and bold designs that show off Israel’s artistic side. There’s sea views and modernist design at Tal by the Beach in Tel Aviv; The Bay Club in Haifa is in a landmark building with Art Deco vibes and in Jerusalem, you’ll be nestled down a side street close to the Old City and Ben Yehuda Street. Most of the hotels we’ve picked also host a complimentary happy hour, too.

Single travellers

Sole-use room supplement from £675

Is this for you?

This escorted tour is ideal for first-timers who want to learn about Israel’s history, and see the most important historic and religious places and landmarks.

Good to know

• For guests over 16 (unless travelling on a private journey, where the minimum age is 8)

• Average group size of 6 guests

• A maximum of 16 guests

• Journey times do not take into account stops or traffic conditions

• We recommend travelling with no more than one suitcase and one day bag.

What to expect

• Plenty of walking on city tours (and on the Petra extension)

• Some free evenings to explore on your own

• Modest clothing is needed when visiting places of worship

• Guide tips are not included; we recommend tipping at the end of your stay

• Dinner on Day 4 will be at either the hotel or a local restaurant.

Accommodation on tour

We’ve chosen cool and comfortable boutique-style hotels with great locations and bold designs that show off Israel’s artistic side. There’s sea views and modernist design at Tal by the Beach in Tel Aviv; The Bay Club in Haifa is in a landmark building with Art Deco vibes and in Jerusalem, you’ll be nestled down a side street close to the Old City and Ben Yehuda Street. Most of the hotels we’ve picked also host a complimentary happy hour, too.

Single travellers

Sole-use room from £3430

DATES AND INCLUSIONS

Tour dates

2019 Nov 04

Included in price

• Quality accommodation

• Insightful local tour leaders

• Handpicked itineraries

• Flexible arrival times

• Small groups

• Porterage

• Meals where most convenient (B=Breakfast, L=Lunch, D=Dinner)

• All specified flights.

Upgrade your tour

Private tour Upgrade to a private tour with a local tour leader on the same itinerary,  departing on the date of your choice from a supplement of £2157 per person, ref IL0061.

Tour dates

2020 Mar 23; May 11; Jun 15; Sep 07; Nov 02

Included in price

• Quality accommodation

• Insightful local tour leaders

• Hand-picked itineraries

• Flexible arrival times

• Small groups

• Porterage

• Meals where most convenient (B=Breakfast, L=Lunch, D=Dinner)

• All specified flights.

Upgrade your tour

Private tour Upgrade to a private tour with a local tour leader on the same itinerary, departing on the date of your choice from a supplement of £4806 per person.

Kuoni highlights

As well as visiting some of the most famous biblical sites and beautifully restored Roman ruins, we’ve included time for an afternoon dip in the Dead Sea and a tasting tour at Carmel Market – giving first-timers a well-rounded experience of Israel. You’ll also get to spend the beginning of Shabbat, the Jewish day of rest, with a local family and learn about traditions firsthand.

Kuoni highlights

As well as visiting some of the most famous biblical sites and beautifully restored Roman ruins, we’ve included time for an afternoon dip in the Dead Sea and a tasting tour at Carmel Market – giving first-timers a well-rounded experience of Israel. You’ll also get to spend the beginning of Shabbat, the Jewish day of rest, with a local family and learn about traditions firsthand.