Classic Catholic Israel Tour – 8 days, 7 nights

Israel, where it all began! This very special Holy Land pilgrimage tour takes you to the places where Jesus walked. Experience a spiritual journey that will include church services and inspiring visits to sites such as Nazareth, Bethlehem, Jerusalem mountains and the Sea of Galilee.

Day 1

Arrival at Ben Gurion Airport.

Meeting & assistance by an Amiel Tours representative.

Group transfer and check-in at your hotel

Dinner and overnight: Tel Aviv

Day 2

Drive to the old city of Jaffa to see the church of House of Tabitha, the Artists’ Quarter, the reconstructed Egyptian gate and enjoy a panoramic view of Tel Aviv and Jaffa Bay. Visit the archaeological park (from the times of Christ) & Saint Peter’s Church. Drive north to Caesarea (Acts 9 and 25), where Cornelius, the first Gentile converted, and where Paul testified before Agrippa (Acts 21:8). Proceed to the Muhraka on Mount Carmel (1Kgs.18). Drive via the Druze village of Usafiya and learn about this great community that lives in Israel and serves in the Israeli Defense Foreces. Then stop in Haifa for a visit and Mass at the Stella Maris Monastery. Pause for a panoramic view of Haifa Bay and the beautiful Bahai Gardens. 

Overnight: Tiberias

Day 3

Visit Mount of Beatitudes (Matt. 5-7) where Jesus uttered the immortal words of the beatitudes, and paticipate in a Mass . On to Tabgha (Feeding of 5000; Mark 6) to visit the Church of the Loaves and Fishes. Our day spent around the lake, which looks the same as it did 2000 years ago, will take us to Capernaum (Matt. 4:13), believed to be the home of both Jesus and Peter. Drive up the Golan Heights to a viewpoint and learn about the importance of this land for Israel. Finish the day with a boat ride on the Sea of Galilee

Overnight: Tiberias

Day 4

After breakfast head to Zippori, the birthplace of Mary, to see the famous mosaic of the “Mona Lisa of the Galilee”. Continue to Nazareth via the village of Cana where Jesus turned water into wine; to visit the Church of the Annunciation, Holy Grotto, Ancient village of Nazareth and Saint Joseph’s workshop. Mass at the Church of Annunciation. Drive to Mount Tabor to visit the Church of the Transfiguration. Drive through the Jordan Valley and ascend up the Judean Mountains and arrive into Jerusalem for the night.

Overnight : Jerusalem

Day 5

Ascend the Mount of Olives for a breathtaking panoramic view of the Old City of Jerusalem. Walk along the Palm Sunday Walk to Pater Noster Church and to Dominus Flevit, where Christ wept over the lost peace of the city (Luke 19:42). Enter the Garden of Gethsemane, with the ancient olive trees believed to date back to the times of Christ, see the Church of All Nations and the Gethsemane Grotto, where Christ condemned violence (Matt. 26:52). Mass will be held at the Garden of Gethsemane. Enter the Old City of Jerusalem through St. Stephen’s Gate; visit the Crusader Church of St. Anne and walk along the Via Dolorosa to the Church of the Holy Sepulcher. This is in fact, a complex of various chapels built on what is called the Hill of Golgotha

Overnight: Jerusalem

Day 6

Visit Bethlehem, site of the birth of Jesus. Our visit here includes Shepherds’ Field and the Church of the NativityMass at the Church of the Nativity. Return to Jerusalem and visit Mount Zion to see King David’s Tomb, the Upper Room – where according to tradition Christ met with the disciples before and after his death and resurrection (John 20:19-21). Walk through the Jewish Quarter including the Roman Cardo and the Hurva Synagogue. We will then proceed to holiest place in Judaism today, the Western Wall – “Kotel”. Finish the day with a walk through the colorful Arab Bazaar.

Overnight: Jerusalem

Day 7

We start our day with a tour of  the Yad Vashem, considered the primary memorial and museum of the Holocaust. Depart for the Dead Sea area and descend to the lowest land point on earth at 1388 feet (423m) below sea level. Continue on and view Jericho and stop at Kaser-El-Yahud, the site of the place of Baptism of Christ (Luke 3) and the Ascension of Elijah the Prophet (II Kings 2:11). Proceed to Massada and ascend, by cable car, the desert fortress of King Herod the Great to visit the Western palace, the ancient synagogue and Roman bathhouses. Time for floating on the Dead Sea before returning to Jerusalem.

(TIME PERMITTING) Stop at Qumran, where in 1947 a young Bedouin shepherd discovered what would become known as the renowned Dead Sea Scrolls.

Overnight: Jerusalem

Day 8

Visit the Israel Museum to see the Shrine of the Book (where the Dead Sea Scrolls are exhibited) and the scale model of Jerusalem at the time of Christ. Drive to Abu Gosh, a large Arab village on the outskirts of Jerusalem, for an authentic Middle Eastern mealThe village is known for having good relations with its Jewish neighbors and some of the best hummus in Israel some say the world.

Transfer to Ben Gurion International airport for return flight home