Familiarization Pilgrimage / Trip to the Holy Land

A Familiarization Trip/Pilgrimage for Group Coordinators
December 3-12, 2012

Monday, December 3: Fly from Newark to Tel Aviv, Israel


Tuesday, December 4: Tel Aviv – Bethlehem

Upon arrival into Tel Aviv, board your private motor-coach and head towards Bethlehem for check-in and dinner at your hotel. (D)


Wednesday, December 5: Excursion to the Wailing Wall – Temple Mount – St. Ann’s – Shepherds’ Field – Bethlehem

This morning visit the Wailing Wall of the Temple, the holiest site for the Jewish people. Continue to the Temple Mount, the site of Solomon’s Temple. Then visit St. Ann’s Church, built where Our Lady’s parents lived. After lunch on your own, visit Shepherds’ Field, where angels appeared on the first Christmas night. In Bethlehem, visit the Church of the Nativity, marking the site of Our Lord’s birth. Nearby, visit St. Catherine’s Church and the grottoes of the Holy Innocents, St. Joseph, and St. Jerome, where he wrote the Vulgate. Tonight enjoy a welcome dinner at Bedouin Tent for special Middle Eastern food. Overnight in Bethlehem. (B, WD)


Thursday, December 6: Valley of Elah – Caesarea Maritima – Haifa – Nazareth

Depart Bethlehem via the Valley of Elah, where David fought Goliath. Stop at Caesarea Maritima, where the first pagan Cornelius was converted. There visit the Roman Theater, Herod’s palace, and the Roman aqueducts. Continue to Haifa and Mt. Carmel, where the Carmelite order was instituted. Afterwards, travel to Nazareth to visit the church of the Annunciation and the Archaeological Museum showing remains of Nazareth from the time of Our Lord Jesus Christ. Overnight in Nazareth. (B, D)


Friday, December 7: Nazareth: Excursion to Cana and the Sea of Galilee

Today travel to the Sea of Galilee. En route, stop at Cana where Our Lord’s first public miracle took place. Continue to Capernaum, Our Lord’s home town, to visit the basilica built over the ruins of St. Peter’s house. Then to the Mt. of Beatitudes, where the Sermon on the Mount took place. Next, visit the Church of the Multiplication of the Loaves and Fishes. Nearby, on the lake shores visit the church that commemorates the Primacy of St. Peter. Then, take a boat ride on the Sea of Galilee to Kibbutz Ginosar. On your way back to Nazareth stop at the Jordan River, to remember Our Lord’s baptism. Overnight in Nazareth. (B, D)


Saturday, December 8: Nazareth – Tabor – Jericho – Qumran – Jerusalem

This morning travel to Mt. Tabor, the site of Our Lord’s Transfiguration. Continue to Jericho to visit the ruins of what is believed to be the oldest city in the world. From a distance, have a view of the Mt. of Temptation. Afterwards, travel to Qumran, where the Dead Sea Scrolls were found. Travel south along the shores of the Dead Sea for a dip into its salty waters. Reach Jerusalem in time for dinner and overnight. (B, D)


Sunday, December 9: Jerusalem: Excursion to Bethany, Mt. of Olives & Mt. Zion

Start the day with a visit to Bethany, where Our Lord rose Lazarus from the dead. After visiting Lazarus’ tomb, continue for a panoramic view from the Mt. of Olives and walk along Palm Sunday road. Visit the Church of the Paternoster built on the site where Jesus Christ taught the Lord’s Prayer. Next, visit the Dominus Flevit Chapel which stands on the rock Our Lord sat on when He wept over the fate of Jerusalem. Nearby visit the Garden of Gethsemane, the site of Judas’ betrayal and the Grotto of Gethsemane, where Our Lady was laid to rest. In the afternoon, continue to Mt. Zion to Caiaphas’ Palace, where St. Peter denied Our Lord. Next, visit the Church of the Dormition, commemorating the Blessed Virgin Mary’s Assumption. Close by visit King David’s Tomb and the Hall of the Last Supper. (B, D)


Monday, December 10: Jerusalem: Via Dolorosa – Holy Sepulcher – Old City

Today is a day dedicated to the passion of Our Lord Jesus Christ. Begin with a morning walk and prayer along the Via Dolorosa, which Our Lord walked on the way to His Crucifixion. End the walk at the Church of the Holy Sepulcher, the site of His Crucifixion, burial, and Resurrection. Afterwards, spend some free time in the old city. Next, visit the Church of St. Mark, built on the site of the house of Mary, mother of St. Mark the Evangelist; it was here that St. Peter took refuge after being released from prison by the Angel of God. See the icon of the Blessed Virgin Mary believed to be the work of St. Luke, while you hear the singing in Aramaic of the Lord’s Prayer and the Hail Mary. Continue for a walk through the Jewish Quarter. End the day with a visit to the Israeli Museum to see the Model of Ancient Jerusalem. Tonight enjoy a farewell dinner in the company of your travel companions. (B, FD)


Tuesday, December 11: Jerusalem – Fly from Tel Aviv to Newark

The day is free to explore Jerusalem on your own. Late in the evening, transfer to Tel Aviv airport for your flight to Newark. (B)


Wednesday, December 12: Arrival into Newark

Arrive early this morning into Newark, NJ airport.


(B) Breakfast; (D) Dinner; (WD) Welcome Dinner; (FD) Farewell Dinner


For more information or to register, please contact Catholic Heritage Tours at (800) 290-3876 or (785) 437-2191.

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