Day 1. Tuesday, May 23: USA – Tel Aviv
Depart today towards the Holy Land.
Day 2. Wednesday, May 24: Tel Aviv – Sea of Galilee
Upon arrival in Tel Aviv, meet your guide and driver. Transfer to Mount of Beatitudes Hospice overlooking the Sea of Galilee for a welcome dinner with your travel companions. (WD)
Day 3. Thursday, May 25: Sea of Galilee: Excursion to Caesarea Maritima – Carmel – Nazareth – Cana
This morning visit the magnificent remains of Herod’s Palace at Caesarea Maritima; it is here that St. Paul was imprisoned before being sent to Rome. Continue to Mt. Carmel and visit the Carmelite Monastery of St. Elias, where this holy prophet triumphed over the false prophets of Baal. Next to it, visit Stella Maris Carmelite Monastery, built in an area that for centuries was frequented by hermits, and where the Carmelite Order was founded. Then travel to Nazareth and stroll through Nazareth’s colorful bazaar as you walk Mary’s road to her home and the site of the Annunciation, as well as the Church of St. Joseph, built where the carpentry workshop of St. Joseph used to be. Next, visit Cana, where Our Lord performed His first miracle by turning water into wine; you may take this opportunity to renew your marriage vows. Return to Mount of Beatitudes Hospice for dinner and overnight. (BB, D)
Day 4. Friday, May 26: Sea of Galilee
The Sea of Galilee is rich in memories of the three years of Our Lord’s Ministry. The day opens with a visit to the Church of the Loaves and Fishes situated in the place of the miracle of the Feeding of Five Thousand; nearby, visit the Chapel of the Primacy situated at the shores of the Sea of Galilee, where Our Lord appeared to His disciples after His resurrection. Then enjoy a boat ride on the Sea of Galilee followed by a lunch of the traditional dish “St. Peter’s Fish” at a typical restaurant. Next stop is at the Valley of the Doves, where Our Lord used to walk from Nazareth to the Sea of Galilee. Afterwards, explore the ruins of Capernaum, including the ancient Jewish synagogue and St. Peter’s house. The last visit of the day is to the Mount of Beatitudes, the scene of the Sermon on the Mount. (BB, L, D)
Day 5. Saturday, May 27: Sea of Galilee – Mount Tabor – Jordan Baptismal Site – Jericho – Bethany – Jerusalem
Drive to Mt. Tabor and enjoy beautiful views of the Jezreel Valley and the Plain of Esdraelon. Visit the Church of the Transfiguration, built on the site of Our Lord’s Transfiguration. Afterwards, stop at the site on the Jordan River where it is claimed that St. John baptized Our Lord. Travel to Jericho, the oldest city in the world, where Our Lord healed Bartimaeus, the blind beggar, and dined with Zacchaeus, the rich tax collector. Continue to Bethany the home of Lazarus, Martha, and Mary Magdalene. Dinner and overnight in Jerusalem. (BB, D)
Day 6. Sunday, May 28: Jerusalem: Excursion to Qumran, Masada, Dead Sea
Today visit the Caves of Qumran, the site where the Dead Sea Scrolls were found, and enjoy a spectacular view of the Dead Sea. Continue to visit Masada, the isolated mountain-top fortress, the last Jewish stronghold held by less than 1,000 defenders, before the walls were breached in 73 AD by the Roman army. On your way back to Jerusalem, you may take the opportunity to wade and bathe in the Dead Sea. Continuing towards Jerusalem, stop for views of the Judean Desert and St. George Monastery to remind us of the story of the Good Samaritan. (BB, D)
Day 7. Monday, May 29: Temple Mount and excursion to Ein Karem, Shepherds’ Field & Bethlehem
This morning visit Judaism’s holiest site, the Wailing Wall, and the Temple Mount, where Our Lord used to preach, traditionally the site of Solomon’s Temple, and since 691 AD an Islamic site. Afterwards, travel into the “hill country of Judea” to the city of Ein Karem, the birthplace of St. John the Baptist. Visit the Church of St. John the Baptist and the Church of the Visitation, built over the home of Zacharias. Continue to Shepherds’ Field, also the site of Boaz’s field, to visit the cave of the shepherds where the angels appeared and announced the birth of Christ. Later, embark on a sightseeing tour of Bethlehem, the royal city of David, to pray at the Cave of the Nativity, the birthplace of our Savior. Return to Jerusalem for dinner and overnight. (BB, D)
Day 8. Tuesday, May 30: Jerusalem
Today visit the Chapel of the Ascension and the Church of Pater Noster, where Our Lord taught His disciples how to pray. Continue down on the Palm Sunday road on Mount Olivet visiting the Church of Dominus Flevit, where Our Lord wept over the city of Jerusalem. Arrive into the Kidron Valley to the Garden of Gethsemane and the Church of All Nations, where Our Lord began the way of His Passion. Then, to Mt. Zion to visit the Upper Room where the Last Supper took place, the Church of the Dormition where Our Lady was assumed into heaven, and the Church of St. Peter in Gallicantu and the Palace of Caiaphas, where Our Lord was imprisoned. (BB, D)
Day 9. Wednesday, May 31: Jerusalem
Very early, walk the path of Our Lord’s Passion to Calvary and end at the Church of the Holy Sepulcher. Then, enjoy an in-depth tour of this church, including a visit to the tomb of our forefather Adam and the tombs of Nicodemus and Joseph of Arimathea. Rest of the day is at leisure. Your day concludes with a special farewell dinner. (BB, FD)
Day 10. Thursday, June 1: Tel Aviv – USA
Very early this morning, transfer to Tel Aviv airport for your flight back to the USA. (BB)
Buffet Breakfast (BB); Lunch (L); Dinner (D); Welcome Dinner (WD); Farewell Dinner (FD)
* In case of unforeseen events, this itinerary is subject to change.
For more trip information or to register, please contact Catholic Heritage Tours or Group Coordinator: Carmine Esposito at (817) 455-5077 or firstname.lastname@example.org. For Spanish, call Fr. Fernando at (817) 326-2131.