Archive for the ‘The wonders of Israel’ Category


Travel Preparation

This article is meant especially for people who are going to Israel.

Are you ready to go to Israel?

I said, are you READY?

Let’s check.

Below we’ll discuss some of the information you might want to have before you leave for a real visit to Israel and some suggestions about what to bring and how to otherwise prepare for the experience of a lifetime. Of course, one of the great things about taking our virtual tour is you don’t need anything. You can just GO!

Packing Checklist

Vaccination Certificate
Wallet/Hand bags
Travelers Check/Cash/Credit Card
Phone Numbers
First Aid supplies
Camera/Video & film
Alarm Clock/Watch
Needles and thread
Plastic bags
Safety pins, Soap (laundry/bath)
Spot remover, Suntan lotion,Tooth brush/paste
Umbrella Pen/Pencil Paper/Journal
Addresses/stamps (Sun) Glasses Medicines
Aspirin/Lomotil Razor (shaving cream) Hat
Gloves Bathing suit Pajamas
Raincoat Sweater/Sweatshirt Handkerchiefs/scarves
Robe Shirts (casual/dress) Socks
Pants (casual/dress) Walking shoes/boots Slippers/thongs
Dress shoes Sandals Sport coat & tie
Underwear Belt(s) Cosmetics
Dresses Backpack/day pack Hose
Jewelry Canteen Lingerie

How much you pack depends partially on how long you stay. In Israel, you’ll probably be moving around a lot and you won’t want to pack and unpack a lot of stuff. Generally, it’s a good idea to travel light and expect that you will need more room in your bags when you go home than when you left to accommodate gifts, dirty clothes and the tendency for clothes to take up more space on the return flight. Also, remember that the power supply is 220 volt AC-50 cycles. Make sure your electrical items can operate or purchase an adaptor kit (hotels sometimes can spare them).

1 You don’t need any shots to visit Israel, but it is good to have your records in case you come down with something or travel to another country.

2 Every visitor to Israel must have a valid passport to travel to Israel. Note that it usually takes several weeks to obtain a passport, so apply well ahead of time if you don’t have one yet. It’s a good idea to make two copies of the first two pages of your passport. Keep one at home and put the other separate from your passport. This will help speed the process of replacing your passport if it’s lost or stolen. Citizens from many countries, including the U.S., are issued free visitors’ visas when they enter the country.

3 Travelers have different opinions regarding carrying wallets and purses. Some people believe it’s safer to put valuables in a pouch or conceal them. The kind of pouches and backpacks people wear outside their clothes make you stand out as a tourist and don’t necessarily protect you from thieves. Valuable items are best left in a safe deposit box in a hotel.

4 As you’ve heard on the commercials, travelers checks are generally as good as cash and can be replaced if lost. It’s best to keep most of your money in this form until you need it. The cost of the checks is usually low (often free) and will save you a lot of trouble and worry.

5 It is a good idea to have some cash with you for emergencies, transportation and small purchases. Fifty dollars should be plenty. Bring an ATM card and you can get more from local banks without having to worry about exchange rates and fees. If you go inside the bank, or to a post office, you’ll have to pay a fee. Hotels and money exchangers usually have the worst rates and highest fees. Beware of money changers on the street.

6 Most businesses accept credit cards. It’s always nice if you can put off paying for things until later (but pay on time or the finance charges will kill you!) and the credit card companies usually give you good exchange rates.

7 Bring important phone numbers with you for emergencies and to contact friends and family in Israel.

8 Even if you don’t normally keep a journal, bring a note pad or diary to record your feelings and experiences. When you come home, and years later, you’ll be glad you did. Bring a camera and/or video and try to take pictures of people rather than just buildings. The shots will be more memorable when attached to faces.

9 Getting sick away from home is always depressing. Several items on the checklist are meant to keep you healthy and insure you have the basic remedies for common maladies. Health care in Israel is excellent, but you still want to be safe rather than sorry. The food and water in Israel should give you no trouble, but, just in case, bring medication to relieve the symptoms of stomach problems.

The U.S. State Department’s Top 10 Travel Tips

1. Make sure you have a signed, valid passport (and visas, if required). Also, before you go, fill in the emergency information page of your passport!

2. Read the Consular Information Sheets (and Public Announcements or Travel Warnings, if applicable) for the countries you plan to visit. (See “Consular Information Program” section for more details.)

3. Familiarize yourself with local laws and customs of the countries to which you are traveling. Remember, the U.S. Constitution does not follow you! While in a foreign country, you are subject to its laws.

4. Make 2 copies of your passport identification page. This will facilitate replacement if your passport is lost or stolen. Leave one copy at home with friends or relatives. Carry the other with you in a separate place from your passport.

5. Leave a copy of your itinerary with family or friends at home so that you can be contacted in case of an emergency.

6. Do not leave your luggage unattended in public areas. Do not accept packages from strangers.

7. If you plan to stay abroad for more than two weeks, upon arrival you should notify by phone or register in person with the U.S. embassy in the country you are visiting. This will facilitate communication in case someone contacts the embassy looking for you.

8. To avoid being a target of crime, try not to wear conspicuous clothing and expensive jewelry and do not carry excessive amounts of money or unnecessary credit cards.

9. In order to avoid violating local laws, deal only with authorized agents when you exchange money or purchase art or antiques.

10. If you get into trouble, contact the nearest U.S. embassy.


Israel is seven hours ahead of Eastern Standard Time, eight hours ahead of Central Time, nine hours ahead of Mountain Time and ten hours ahead of Pacific Time. It is two hours ahead of Greenwich Mean Time.

Dress & Manners

You can’t generalize anymore about Israelis than any other people. You’ll find good and bad. As a visitor, you should always be courteous, even if you encounter a native who is not.

Unless you specifically go to Arab neighborhoods, most Arabs you meet will probably be working in Israeli hotels or merchants. If you do go to Arab towns in Israel or the territories, you will find they are typically very hospitable and likely to invite you into their homes for tea and a bite to eat. Some may be comfortable talking about politics, others may not. Be a good guest.

Dress in Israel is casual. Even Israeli prime ministers frequently wear short-sleeve shirts without ties. You’ll notice the checklist has a variety of apparel. You’ll need warm clothes during winter months. If you plan to go to religious shrines or services, you should bring nice clothes. Jewish holy places usually allow you to enter with shorts, but the shrines of other faiths often require more modest dress. This is true also in religious Jewish neighborhoods where women, especially, are expected to wear sleeves below the elbow and skirts below the knees. One alternative is to carry a shawl that you can wrap around your shoulders or bare legs, or a wrap skirt to cover your shorts. Regardless of your personal views, respect those of the people who live there and you will have no trouble.


Israel enjoys long, warm, dry summers (April-October) and generally mild winters (November-March), with somewhat drier, cooler weather in hilly regions, such as Jerusalem and Safed. Rainfall is relatively heavy in the north and center of the country with much less in the northern Negev and almost negligible amounts in the southern areas. Regional conditions vary considerably, with humid summers and mild winters on the coast; dry summers and moderately cold winters in the hill regions; hot dry summers and pleasant winters in the Jordan Valley and year-round semi-desert conditions in the Negev.

Average Temperatures


Israel has great food. Most people are probably familiar with falafel — fried ground chick peas served with salad in pita. Meat eaters will love shwarma, lamb sliced off a spit and served in pita (similar to gyros). Both are cheap, filling meals. Lots of other Mediterranean specialties like shishlik (shish kebab), baklawa (sweetmeat made of dough, honey, and nuts) and moussaka (baked eggplant, minced meat, onion and parsley) will stimulate your taste buds. The Americanization of Israel also means you’ll find such familiar names as McDonald’s, Burger King, Pizza Hut and Dunkin’ Donuts.

The water in Israel is safe to drink; nevertheless, it is different from what you are used to and people with sensitive stomachs may want to stick to bottled water. Also, Israelis don’t usually put ice in their drinks, so if you want some, ask for kerakh.

Keep in mind that not everything in Israel is kosher. Restaurants that are kosher serve either dairy or meat and close on Shabbat. The restaurant should have a Teudat certificate either in the window or available for inspection. Unless the menu or check says otherwise, tips are not included.


Forget what you’ve read in the papers or seen on TV; Israel is a very safe place to visit. You are far more likely to run into trouble in any major U.S. city than anywhere in Israel. Behave in Israel the way you would in those cities. Be careful where you go at night and travel in groups when possible. Generally, it is safe in most places in Israel to walk alone at night. The territories are a different story. It is advisable only to go into Gaza or the West Bank in a group and with an Israeli guide.

One of the first things you’ll notice when you arrive in Israel is the number of people carrying guns. It can be disconcerting. Soldiers carry them on the streets, in cars and on buses. Soldiers are required to keep their weapons with them, and since so many Israelis are on duty, it is common to stand next to someone on the bus with an Uzi hanging around their neck. You’ll quickly get used to it and realize it’s a fact of life in Israel and nothing to fear.

In an emergency, dial 101.

Make sure to check out this website for important safety tips about driving in Israel. The Association for Safe International Road Travel has important guidelines as well.

Prayer for Travelers

May it be Thy will, Lord our God, God of our fathers, to lead us on the way of peace and guide and direct, so that Thou wilt bring us happily to our destination, safe and sound. Save us from danger on the way. Give us good grace, kindness and favor in both Thine eyes and in the eyes of all whom we may meet. Hear this, our prayer, for Thou art a God who dost hearken to the heart’s supplication and communion. Blessed art Thou, Lord, who hearkens to prayer.

Alcohol & Drugs

Have fun in Israel, but be smart. Tour directors take a dim view of misbehavior of any kind and the quickest way home from Israel is to be kicked off your trip — and it does happen.

Don’t even think of using illegal drugs in Israel. If you do, don’t expect your American citizenship to get you out of trouble if you’re caught. Before going to Israel, rent the film Midnight Express. Israeli prisons aren’t anything like the Turkish one in the film, but you’ll get the point that getting high isn’t worth the risk of getting caught.

Useful Hebrew Words

Whenever you go to a foreign country, it is a good idea to familiarize yourself with the local language and customs. Most people in Israel speak English, but, with the influx of Jews from the former Soviet Union, you’re almost as likely to run into someone who speaks just Russian as Hebrew. Even if you aren’t fluent in the language, natives usually appreciate it when visitors make an effort to speak in their native tongue. Below are a few common Hebrew phrases that will help you get by in Israel. If you don’t learn anything else, memorize “Please,” “Thank you” and “You’re welcome.”

hello sha-LOM
goodbye sha-LOM
good morning BO-ker TOV
good evening erev TOV
goodnight lie-lah TOV
see you later le-HIT-rah-OTT
thank you to-DAH
please be-va-ka-SHA
you’re welcome be-va-ka-SHA (lo-davar)
I don’t speak Hebrew AH-NEE lo m’dah-BEHR ee-VREET
Do you speak English? at-TAH m’dah-BEHR ang-LEET?
money KES-sef
bank bahnk
yes ken
no loh
excuse me slee-CHA
wait REG-gah
what mah
when mah-tie
where is AY-fo
How are you? ma shlomcha? (masc.)
ma shlomech? (fem.)

I’m fine be-se-der
See you later le-hit-ra-ot
to the right ye-mi-na
to the left smo-la
straight ya-shar
bus o-to-bus
taxi ta-ksi (mo-nit)
market shuk
newspaper i-ton
How much does it cost? kama zeh o-leh?
Where’s the bathroom? Ay-fo ha sher-u-teem?
expensive ya-kar
cheap zol
post office do-ar
postcard glu-ya
stamps bu-lim
correct (right) na-CHON
doctor ro-feh
hospital bet kho-lim
police mish-ta-rah
breakfast a-ru-chat bo-ker
lunch a-ru-chat tzo-ho-ra-yim
dinner a-ru-chat erev
restaurant mi-sa-da
salad sa-lat
fish dag
chicken oph
french fries chips
menu taf-rit
waiter mel-tzar
meat ba-sar
bread le-khem
vegetables ye-ra-kot
salt me-lakh
pepper pil-pel
water ma-yim
egg be-tza
ice kerakh
ice cream gli-da
milk kha-lav
plate tza-la-khat
knife sa-kin
fork maz-leg
spoon kaf
napkin ma-pit
wine ya-yin
beer beera
vegetarian tsim-cho-ni
check chesh-bon
coffee ka-fee
glass kos
today ha-yom
yesterday et-mol
tomorrow ma-khar
week sh-vu-a
month kho-desh
year sha-na
Sunday yom ri-shon
Monday yom shey-ni
Tuesday yom shli-shi
Wednesday yom re-vi-i
Thursday yom kha-mi-shi
Friday yom shi-shi
Saturday sha-bat
one a-khat
two shta-yim
three sha-losh
four ar-ba
five kha-mesh
six shesh
seven she-va
eight shmo-ne
nine te-sha
ten e-ser
twenty es-rim
thirty shlo-shim
forty ar-ba-im
fifty kha-mi-shim
sixty shi-shim
seventy shi-vim
eighty shmo-nim
ninety ti-shim
one-hundred me-a
one-thousand e-lef
Arabic is also the official language of Israel, so consider picking up some Arabic phrases as well. Arab speakers will also appreciate hearing you say min fadlak (please), shokran (thank you) and ahfwan (you’re welcome).

Getting Around

Since most Israeli cities are small, you can walk most places you need to go. You’ll see a lot and have more opportunities to interact with the people. If you’re on your own, get a map from a hotel or tourist office and you’ll be in good shape.

You can rent a car, but driving in Israel is not for the faint of heart. The roads are probably the most dangerous places in Israel and the traffic, especially in and around Jerusalem and Tel Aviv, is terrible.

Taxis are a common mode of transportation, but, as in most places, drivers are not always honest. They will frequently try to take you for a ride without using their meter. NEVER let them do this. Always ask before you get in the cab how much the fare should be and insist they use a meter. The one exception is for long trips, such as between Tel Aviv and Jerusalem (and from the airport) where the fares are usually set before you leave. For those longer trips, it is usually more inexpensive, though less comfortable and convenient, to take a group taxi or sherut. You can also learn a lot about Israel by talking to cab drivers; they’re usually not shy about offering their opinions. You do not have to tip cab drivers.

Table of Local Distance in Kilometers
Tel Aviv Jerusalem Eilat Haifa
Akko 118 181 474 23
Beer Sheva 113 83 243 208
Eilat 356 326 – 451
Haifa 95 158 451 –
Jerusalem 63 – 326 158
Ben Gurion Airport 18 51 341 112
Netanya 32 95 388 63
Tel Aviv – 63 356 95
Tiberias 135 198 491 70
Ovda Airport 296 266 60 390
Caesarea 60 110 40
The most popular mode of travel is the bus. Busses are inexpensive and the newer ones are very comfortable. Don’t be afraid to ask the driver or other passengers for help in identifying your stop. Because of the long distance, some people choose to fly to Eilat (under $200 in early 2000), but it’s usually part of the itinerary on student trips traveling by bus.

You can make overland crossings into Egypt at Rafiah, about 30 miles southwest of Ashkelon, and Taba, the last town Israel returned to Egypt as part of the peace treaty, which is just south of Eilat. Buses run between Cairo and Tel Aviv and Jerusalem. It is also possible to take a series of taxis. The trip is a long one through the desert, broken up by a short boat ride across the Suez Canal, that you are unlikely to forget.

It is also possible to visit Jordan by crossing the Allenby Bridge near Jericho (about 25 miles from Jerusalem), going via the Arava Terminal in Aqaba near Eilat or taking the northern route through the Jordan River Terminal just north of Bet She’an.


Even if you’re on a tour, you may have some free days to tour and you’ll need a place to stay. Israelis are wonderfully accommodating and if you have long-lost relatives, they’re more than likely to be excited to meet you and offer you a bed.

If you don’t have friends or family in Israel, it is usually possible to find people who will take you in, particularly for Shabbat. This is one of the best ways to really get to know Israelis.

Some yeshivas will also let people stay in their dorms. Keep in mind that you are allowed to visit in the hope you’ll decide to spend a prolonged period studying there, but usually there’s no requirement that you attend classes. Of course, you might find the opportunity to study with some of the world’s leading scholars rewarding.

Israel has youth hostels that are inexpensive and part of the international hostel system.

Many kibbutzim also have guest houses. Though less luxurious than hotels, don’t expect them to be cheap.

Israel has camp grounds as well in many of the beautiful parks around the country and in the desert.


Israel is a good place to buy souvenirs. As in other Middle Eastern countries, haggling in Israel is a tradition. Keep the following points in mind when you’re shopping:

It is rare that you should ever have to pay the full price listed on an item (note this applies mostly to souvenirs, not everything in the markets and is not true of ordinary retail shops like department stores).

Always be ready to walk out of a shop and don’t be surprised if the sales person follows you out.

Don’t think you’ll get any better deal from Jews than Arabs. Sometimes the opposite is true.

The merchants in the market in the Old City, in particular, can be very aggressive. Don’t be intimidated. Remember, you’re the customer and it is their job to satisfy you.

Keep in mind what you can afford and don’t let yourself be talked into paying more. You’ll probably see the same items in more than one store, so shop around before you decide.

Be clear on the exchange rate before you buy.

Haggling is an art, and involves some gamesmanship, but it isn’t polite to waste a merchant’s time if you have no intention of buying something.

Items common in the U.S., such as film and books are likely to be more expensive in Israel than at home. By paying with a credit card, you can usually get a better exchange rate. Sometimes you can get a better price if you pay with U.S. dollars.

Also, Israel assesses a Value Added Tax (VAT) of 17% on goods and services. Prices should include this tax. For purchases over $50, you can get a refund of the tax at the airport before you leave. To do so you’ll want to get to the airport early so you can go to the customs office. When you make your purchase, the merchant should put it in a clear plastic bag with a copy of the receipt inside. Keep the original. The bag must be sealed and remained unopened to get the refund.

Staying in Touch

If you can’t live without knowing what’s happening in the U.S., you can watch CNN in most hotels and pick up an International Herald Tribune newspaper. The Jerusalem Post is the only daily Israeli paper in English. Channel 1 on television also has programs in English and recent movies are in the theaters with Hebrew subtitles.

Long-distance phone calls can get very expensive, especially if made from a hotel room, where substantial service charges are added. Most major long-distance companies have numbers in Israel that allow you to use their rates. It may be less private, but you’ll save money using public phones. A prepaid phone card can also be purchased from the Post Office.

Cell phones are probably the easiest and most cost-effective way to communicate in Israel and you may find it remarkable how good the service is compared to the United States. While I often can’t talk to my wife right near my home in Maryland, I had no trouble talking to her from the middle of the desert or anywhere else in Israel. If you are planning to use a cell phone in Israel purchased in the United States, be sure that it is either a triband or quadband. Check with your provider before you leave to be sure the phone will work in Israel; you may also need to pay extra for an international calling plan. You can also rent cell phones at the airport when you arrive in Israel. You will have to pay a fixed price for the phone and an allocation of minutes. If you go over the allotment, additional charges apply and there is no rebate for unused minutes.

A Final Thought

Israel is like a museum. You will see relics that date from antiquity, buildings that are not considered old unless they were built thousands of years ago. Israel offers you a time portal, almost like the ones you see in science fiction movies, through which to see the past. Virtually every step you take is on ground many consider to be holy. You can visit all the sites and have a wonderful time and learn a lot, but if you think of Israel only as a museum, a place no different than Rome or Athens, you will miss perhaps the most remarkable aspect of Israel — the vibrancy of the modern Jewish state and its people. Israel has increasingly become Westernized and “Americanized,” but it is still a place very different from any other on earth.

Once I sat on the steps by a gate at David’s Tower. I placed my two heavy baskets at my side. A group of tourists was standing around their guide and I became their target marker.

“You see that man with the baskets? Just right of his head there’s an arch from the Roman period. Just right of his head.”

“But he’s moving, he’s moving!” I said to myself: Redemption will come only if their guide tells them, “You see that arch from the Roman period? It’s not important: but next to it, left and down a bit, there sits a man who’s bought fruit and vegetables for his family.”

–Yehuda Amichai

You are in Israel to have fun, make friends, experience different cultures and learn about your heritage. It is a trip of a lifetime, so make the most of it!

Ten Days Holy Land Tour Travel to Israel



Departure on your way to IsraelThe Land of the Bible.

Day 2 – SUNDAY

Tel Aviv

Welcome to Israel, upon arrival into Ben Gurion International Airport, you will be met and assisted by our airport representative. Transfer to Tel Aviv – Israel largest and modern city with short distance to Jaffa. Check in at your hotel for dinner and overnight. Your hotel is conveniently located near the shore of the Mediterranean Sea and close to Tel Aviv city center, shopping and attractions, and famous promenade sidewalk’s with outdoor shopping stores, restaurants, and coffee shops. If your time permit, visit the artistic neighborhood of Neve Tzedek.
Overnight- including Full Buffet Breakfast and Dinner.


Day 3 – MONDAY

From Tel Aviv/Jaffa to the Sea of Galilee, Mediterranean coast and the Valley of Armageddon
Caesarea / Mt. Carmel / Megiddo / Nazareth/ Sea of Galilee / Tiberias 

In the morning visit to the Old Town Jaffa, walk through the narrow passages of Old Jaffa, believed to be the oldest port city in the world, see St. Peter Church and take a spectacular view of Tel Aviv Shoreline from Jaffa Hilltop. St. Peter came to Jaffa (Joppa) from Lydda to raise Tabitha (Dorcas) from The dead (Acts 9: 36. 42 ). While in Jaffa, the apostle stayed at the house of Simon the Tanner. The Church of St. Peter marks the traditional site of Peter’s vision of the Great Sheet. Depart Tel Aviv driving north along the coastal plain to Caesarea Maritima (Acts 9:30 Acts 10:24 -48) which was the center of early Christians, and capital of Judea under the Romans. Visit the excavations of this ancient city, the Roman theatre and aqueduct, here where Paul made his defense before Festus and King Agrippa prior to his final journey to Rome (Acts:25 Acts:26). We’ll stop at Mount Carmel(Muchraka), where Elijah issued his challenge to the False Prophets. We continue and enjoy a breath taking panoramic view ofHaifa Bay and the Western Galilee region. Continue to Megiddo (1 Kings 4:28, 9, 15, 2 Kings 23, Kings 29 & Reveletion 16:16), identified as the site of Armageddon (Revelation 16), see the remain from Solomon’s days, view the site where the Battle of Armageddon will be fought. Visit the archaeological excavations at Megiddo, including the well preserved water supply system. Continue along the Jezerel Valley to visit the town of Nazareth (Luke 1:26Luke 4:16 Luke 4:29Matthew 2:23we will take a beautiful view from the top of Mt. Precipice, also known as Mount of Precipitation, or Mount of the Leap of the Lord. It’s believed to be the site of the rejection of Jesus, described on (Luke 4:29 Luke 4:30), continue to the Church of Annunciation if time permits, we drive to Cana of Galilee where Jesus performed his first public miracle, the turning of water into wine at the wedding feast (John 2:1 John 2:11), and the Lower Galilee region to the beautiful Sea of Galilee to the town of Tiberias. The hotels situated right on town’s center and the shores of the Sea of Galilee make it possible to walk along the shores of the Sea of Galilee and explore the town of Tiberias.
Overnight Sea of Galilee– including Full Buffet Breakfast and Dinner.


Day 4 – TUESDAY 
Sea of Galilee, the Upper Galilee and the Golan Heights
Sail on the Sea of Galilee / Jesus Boat /Golan Heights / Upper Galilee / Caesarea Philippi / Yardenit 

We begin by boarding a wooden boat and sail on as the disciples did 2000 years ago. We’ll dock at Kibbutz Nof Ginosar and visit the “Ancient Jesus Boat” the remains of a 2,000 years old boat that was discovered in 1986. This boat was used at the time of Jesus and his disciples. We will drive to the beautiful Golan Heights. Visit Banias– ancient Ceasarea Philippi (Matthew 16:13and Mark 7:27) where Jesus said “On this rock I will build my Church.” Continue to the Hula Valley and the Upper Galilee, returning to the Sea of Galilee with visit to Yardenit– the baptismal site on the Jordan River.
Overnight Sea of Galilee– including Full Buffet Breakfast and Dinner.



Jesus early Ministry along the Sea of Galilee, Jordan River
Mount of Beatitudes / Tabgha / Capernaum / Beit She’an / Dead Sea 

Today will visit early Jesus Ministry around the Sea of Galilee, visiting Mount of Beatitudes (Matthew 5Matthew 6Matthew 7,Matthew 8) where Jesus preached the Sermon on the Mount, see the famous Chapel, constructed in 1939 by the noted architect Antonio Barluzzi and enjoy the view. Visit Tabgha– the site of the Feeding of the 5,000 and Primacy of Peter (Matthew 13Mark 33Mark 45, & John 21), Church of Multiplication with its 4th Century Mosaic floor, Capernaum (Matthew 4:13Matthew 13:54Matthew 17:24Luke 7Mark 1:2John 4:46 John 4:54) where is believed to have been Jesus’ home and the center of his ministry, here we can stand in what is left of the synagogue in which Jesus ministered, and where he preformed many miracles, and it’s in Capernaum where Peter’s mother-in-law lived and was healed. Through the Valley of Beit She’an to the ancient city ofBeit She’an (Mark 5:20Mark 7:31), view the archeological site. It was here that after defeating Saul and his sons on Mount Gilboa, the Philistines hanged their bodies on the walls of Beth Shean, continue through the Jordan Valley past the city of Jerichoand arrive to the Dead Sea, the lowest place on earth. Check in at the hotel located at the shores of the Dead Sea, enjoy optional spa treatments and a massage, float on the salty water of the Dead Sea or enjoy a swim in your hotel pool.
Overnight Dead Sea- including Full Buffet Breakfast and Dinner.



Dead Sea, Masada, Ein Gedi, Qumran, Judean Desert, Jerusalem

Today on your Holy Land tour will visit the 1500 feet mountaintop fortress of Masada famous for being the last stronghold of the Jewish rebellion against the Romans. We will ascend to Masada by cable car and discover the first century Synagogue, King Herod’s Bathhouse and other sites atop of Masada, descend and continue to the oasis of Ein Gedi, where David hid in a cave when running from Saul (Samuel 23), it was here that David composed several of his Psalms, next visit to Qumran where a cache of ancient biblical texts the Dead Sea Scroll were discovered in 1947. Continue to the Golden City of Jerusalem, and proceed to a panoramic view of Jerusalem from Mt. Scopus, and take time for prayer. Continue to the hotel conveniently located within walking distance from the Old City Jerusalem.
Overnight Jerusalem- including Full Buffet Breakfast and Dinner.


Day 7 – FRIDAY

Old Jerusalem, Temple Mount in Jesus times, Mount of Olives/Kidron Valley/Garden of Gethsemane/Western Wall tunnels (Kotel Tunnels)/Pool of Bethesda/Church of Holy Sepulcher/Via Dolorosa/Christian Quarter

From the top of Mount of Olives where the Lord ascended into heaven (acts 1) we will have a view across the Kidron Valley to the Eastern Gate where the prince of Peace will enter (Ezekiel 44). We pass by Pater Noster Church and visit Dominus Flevitwhere “The Lord wept” as he beheld the Holy City. Through Palm Sunday Road proceed down to the Gethsemane where you will see 2,000 year old Olive trees that date back to the time of Christ. Then to the Western Wall– The holiest site in Judaism and one of the original walls that retained the Temple. We will visit the Western Wall Tunnels running along the base of the Western Wall will lead us through the Second Temple era and reveal the amazing construction of the Temple Mount, water supply and Roman street where our Lord was led to judgment. Continue to St. Anne Church and the Pool of Bethesda. We will walk the stations of the Cross– the Via Dolorosa to visit Judgment Hall of Pilate all the way to Church of the Holy Sepulcher (Matthew 27Matthew 33:57Matthew 28:10). In the afternoon you will enjoy time to shop the colorful bazaars (markets). We’ll join the prayer at the Western Wall, return to the Hotel for Shabbat Dinner.
Overnight Jerusalem– including Full Buffet Breakfast and Dinner.



Jerusalem Old and New City
Mt. Zion / Upper Room / King David Tomb / Jewish Quarter / Ein Kerem / Bethlehem / Church of the Nativty / Shepherd’s Field / Garden Tomb 

Drive to Mt. Zion, visit the Upper room (Luke 22), Lord’s Supper, visit King David Tomb, and walk through the Jewish Quarter. Drive through the New City pass the Israel Parliament (Knesset) and continue to Ein Karem, the Birthplace of John the Baptist (Luke 1:39 -80), visit Church then Continue to Bethlehem to visit the Church of the Nativity (Luke 2: 1-7). Visit the Shepherd’s Field (Luke 2:8-20), where an angel appeared to announce the birth of Jesus. In the afternoon visit the Garden Tomb, to celebrate the resurrection with a time for prayer (Luke 23). Enjoy a evening farewell Dinner at the hotel.
Overnight Jerusalem- including Full Buffet Breakfast and Dinner.


Day 9 – SUNDAY
Enjoy free day in Jerusalem later in the day transfer to Ben Gurion airport according to your flight schedule

After Breakfast, and by 12 noon, Check out from your hotel and store your luggage at the hotel storage room to enjoy free day in Jerusalem. Passengers booked 4 Stars First class hotels ,in Jerusalem the Grand Court hotel within walking distance to the Old City. Passengers booked 5 stars Deluxe hotels, in Jerusalem The Leonardo Plaza hotel within walking distance from the Old City and the center of West Jerusalem.
You can visit again the Holy sites and the colorful bazaars, Yad Vashem Israel’s memorial to the victims of the Holocaust, the Davidson Center at the Western Wall, Ben Yehuda street with shopping stores, restaurant and coffee shops, Mahaneh Yehuda market, with authentic Jerusalem Restaurants, and food markets. Explore on your own the newly renovated Israel Museum and Shrine of the Book.

Transfer from the lobby of your hotel to Ben Gurion International Airport 4 hours Prior to flight departure.


Tour Registration Form



Please complete this form and mail to:


Haim Ben-Eliezer


43 Dowers Way Delmar, NY 12054


518-729-3752, 518-859-0065


Please print all information clearly in blue or black ink.




Title: _______________

Legal name:______________________________ (Mr/Mrs/Ms/Dr/Rev, etc.) (As it appears on passport) Passport # __________________Passport issue date:__________Expiration date: _____________ Issuing country of passport: ______________________________ I am/not a US citizen: Ibikeisrael Is not responsible to provide any travel documents to any of our destinations, including visas. It is the sole responsibility of the traveler to confirm with the consulate of each country visited, about any necessary travel documentation/visas required to enter these countries.   Date of Birth: ______________ Male /Female

Street Address: ____________ City: ____________________State: _______________ Zip: _____________________ Phone#: ____________Alternative Phone#: ________________Email: ________________________ Emergency contact phone: ________________________ Roommate Name: needs:_____________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________


 Payment Information:

A deposit of $250 check payment per person must be remitted in order to process this registration. Deposit payment applies for land packages only, air travel will be purchased separately. If you are paying by check, your deposit payment must be received in our office within 10 business days to avoid cancellation.

Payment method: Credit Card or certified/teller Check payable to: Haim Ben-Eliezer, Ibikeisrael. 43 Dowers Way Delmar, NY 12054



Name (Please Print)_________________________

Cardholder Billing Address (if different from above):

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Card Identification Number :____________________(3 digits on back of the card or 4 digits on front)


Terms and Conditions

Tour Deposit: Your tour reservation will be confirmed upon receipt of your $250 check payment tour deposit (per person). Deposit payment applies for land packages only, air travel will be purchased separately. Final Payment: Final payment is due 60 days prior to departure. Please note: a 3% surcharge fee will be applied for payments made by credit cards. Payments made within 21 days of departure must be in the form of a certified check or credit card. Airline and Air Tickets: Passengers are responsible to ensure that Ibikeisrael. has the correctly spelled names for air tickets reservations. Due to newly introduced security measures, any name change including minor spelling corrections may require airline reservations to be canceled and rebooked. Ibikeisrael will not be held responsible for the denial of services by a carrier due to any name discrepancy. Subsequent name corrections will be subject to an airline rebooking fee of up to $250 per ticket. Air reservations are subject to availability at the time of rebooking. All airline tickets issued in conjunction with this tour are subject to air penalties per individual carrier’s rules and regulations which will be applied. Cancellation Policy: Once a deposit or full payment has been made, cancellations will only be accepted in writing. Cancellation terms will be applied based on the date that the written cancellation is received. Refunds for flights cancellation will be processed as per Airlines and/or tickets conditions/regulations. Land tour cancellation as follows: * Cancellation up to 90 days or more prior to departure – $100 service charge will apply. * Cancellation between 89 and 60 days prior to departure – $250 cancellation fee per person (tour deposit) will apply. * Cancellation between 59 and 31 days prior to departure – cancellation fee of 50% of the tour land cost will apply. * Cancellation between 30 days to day of departure or non show – cancellation fee of 100% of the tour land cost will apply. No refund will be paid for unused land services such as: transfers, sightseeing, meals, hotel accommodation, entrance fees, or any others unused services that are listed in the tour program. Travel Insurance: Travel insurance is not included in the tour price. Ibikeisrael strongly recommends the purchase of comprehensive travel insurance package, which covers health, luggage and trip cancellation. Please note that we cannot accept responsibility for any losses or expenses, which you or any member of your party may incur as a result of failing to secure adequate coverage.  By signing below, I (we) affirm that all the information I have provided on this application is accurate. In addition, I affirm that I have read and agreed to the terms and conditions included with this tour package.   Signature(s)…………………………………………./………………………………….Date:……………………….


Israel travel adventures


Day 1 – Departure    
Depart USA to Israel

Day 2 – Arrival in Israel – Bruchim Haba’aim – Welcome to Israel 
Arrival in Israel where you will be met by our representative to assist

you through security & customs and provide transfer to your hotel in

Tel Aviv. Evening introduction and orientation. Welcome dinner and

Service. Overnight: Tel Aviv

Day 3  – Tel Aviv / Jaffa/ Caesarea / Acre / Galilee
After breakfast we will visit ancient Yope (Jaffa): here was the house of Simon the Tanner (Apostles 10: 9-16) and the place of the Miracle of the resurrection of Tabita (Apostles 9: 36-43). After the visits, drive North to

Caesarea Maritima. Visit the Roman Theater, the Herod’s Palace, the Palace of the Roman Procurator (Apostles 23: 23 and Apostles 26: 23 – Paul; Apostles 10: 20-48 – Peter and Cornelius), the Amphitheater, the Crusaders’ City and Harbor. Proceed to Mount Carmel to visit the Monastery of the Muhraka, where Elijah fought with the Baal priests. From the roofs of this Monastery, we have a beautiful view of the Jezreel Plain. Through the Druze villages, Daliyat el Carmel and Usifiya, we proceed to Haifa with a panoramic view of the city and harbor. Continue to the Church of Stella Maris (a Carmelite Monastery) with the cave of the Prophet Elijah. Proceed to Acre to visit the old city with the city walls, the Knights’ Halls and the Harbor. Through the Galilee proceed to Tiberias for check in and dinner.

Overnight: Sea of Galilee 


Day 4 – Galilee
After breakfast boat ride on the Sea of Galilee, where Jesus walked on the water (Matthew 14: 22-23). The ride will end at Ginnosar, where we shall visit the Ancient Boat from the time of Jesus that was found nearby. Proceed to Nazareth, visiting the Church of Annunciation (Luke 26: 28) and Mary’s Well (in the Greek Orthodox Church). Drive on to Cana in the Galilee, site of the First Miracle (John 2: 1-11 and John 4: 46-54). Return to the hotel for Dinner. Overnight: Sea of Galilee 

Day 5 – Galilee
After breakfast drive to the Mount of Beatitudes (Matthew 5: 7) where we shall visit the heptagonal church that was built by the Italian architect Berluzzi. Proceed to Banyas, the ancient Caesarea Philippi (Matthew 16: 13-20) one of the main sources of the Jordan River. Through the Golan Heights, drive to Capernaum, the town of Jesus, where he lived in the house of Peter performing from there his miracles and healings (Matthew 4: 13, Matthew 8: 14-15). Proceed to Tabgha, where we shall visit the Church of the Loaves and the Fish (Matthew 14: 14-34) and the Church of Mensa Christi, where Jesus elected Peter as His Representative on Earth (John 21). Return to the hotel. Overnight: Sea of Galilee 

Day 6 – Mount Tabor / Megiddo /Jerusalem
After breakfast drive to Mount Tabor, the site of Transfiguration, visiting the Catholic Church (Matthew 17: 1-8). From the rooftop of the church we can enjoy a beautiful view of the Lower Galilee and the Plain of Jezreel.Through the town of Afula, drive to Megiddo, named also Armageddon – the place where the last battle of mankind is due to take place (the Apocalypse of St. John) – where we shall visit the Museum and this 5,000 year old city with the Gates from the times of King Solomon, the old Canaanite temples and the water tunnel from the time of King Ahab. Proceed through the Hills of Judea to Jerusalem for check in and dinner. Overnight: Jerusalem

Day 7 – Old City Jerusalem 
After breakfast ascend the Mount of Olives to visit the Chapel of the Ascension (Luke 24: 50-53), the Church of the Pater Noster (Luke 11: 1-4) and have a wonderful panoramic view of the Old City of Jerusalem, with the Temple Mount. Walking down the Mount of Olives, we shall reach the Church of Dominus Flevit (Luke 19: 41-44) for the visit and proceed to the Garden of Gethsemane, the place where Jesus was arrested (Matthew 26: 36-58), to see the old olive trees and visit the Basilica of the Agony.
Through the Lion’s Gate we shall walk into the Old City to visit the Church of St. Anne and the Pool of Bethesda (John 5: 1-15). Proceed through the Via Dolorosa walking along the Stations of the Cross from the remains of the Antonia to the Church of the Holy Sepulcher. After the visits, walk through the colorful bazaar and return to the hotel. Overnight: Jerusalem

Day 8 – New City Jerusalem / Bethlehem
After breakfast drive to Mount Zion to visit the Room of the Last Supper (Cenacle) and the Tomb of King David. Walking through the Jewish Quarter, reach the Wailing Wall – the holiest place for the Jews – and the Dung Gate, to drive through the New City of Jerusalem to Ein Kerem to visit the Church of St. John (Luke 1: 1-25). Drive to Yad Vashem, the Memorial to the victims of the Holocaust. Proceed to Bethlehem * to visit the Church of the Nativity (Luke 2: 1-7) and Shepherd’s Field (Luke 2: 8-20).
Return to the hotel. Overnight: Jerusalem

Day 9  – Massada / Dead Sea

After breakfast drive via the Good Samaritan Inn (Luke 8: 25-37) to the mountain fortress of Massada, stronghold of the Jews in the war against the Romans. Ascend to the fortress by cable car to visit the palaces of Herod the Great with its Roman baths and pools. Descend for a possible “dip” and “float” in the salty water of the Dead Sea, the worlds lowest place. On the way back to Jerusalem, stop in Qumran – the city of the Essens – where the Dead Sea scrolls were found in a cave by a shepherd. Drive back to Jerusalem for dinner. Overnight: Jerusalem

Day 10 –  Abu Gosh / Emmaus (Latrun) / Jerusalem
After breakfast drive to Abu Gosh, the biblical Kiryat Ye’arim, from where King David brought the Holy Shrine back to Jerusalem. Driving via Emmaus (Latrun) (Luke 23: 39-44) return to Jerusalem to visit the Israel Museum with its Shrine of the Book, where the Dead Sea scrolls are kept. Return to the hotel for a farewell dinner and than drive to the airport for our transatlantic flight back home.

Day 11 – Arrival in the U.S
Arrive home early this morning and and start planning your next trip to to the Holy Land……..

The Israel Kabbalah Experience

1st day – landing and check in to hotel in J-M

Kbbalistic prayer at the Western Wall
Workshop : building the spiritual Temple

2nd day
Visiting the Kabbalists ofJerusalem
Lecture – the history of Kabbalah
Kabbalah prayer at King David’s Tomb
Workshop – the Kabbalistic secrets of the Book of Psalms 

3rd day
Kabbalistic meditation in the Dead Sea
Workshop : the hidden scrolls and prophecies in Kabbalah
In depth study of original texts of ancient Kabbalah- Sefer Yetzira, Sefer Habahir

4th day

Arriving in Tzfat – the Capital of Kabbalah 
Walking tour of the ancient Tzfat cemetery 
Class: introduction to Tzfat Kabbalah
Special Kabbalah workshop: Kabbalistic musical Meditation – Meditating with The spiritual Kabbalistic melodies composed by the greatest Kabbalists

5th  day

A walking tour of ancient Tzfat – the birth place of Kabbalah –
Walk in the ancient alleys, visit the ancient synagogues and the places where the Kabbalists lived and worked.
A Kabbalah art show – understanding Kabbalah through art.
An inspiring presentation: ‘The Secret’ – the mystical power of the Hebrew letters
Study of the Ari Kabbalah

 6th day
A tour of the Galilean nature –  visiting Kabbalistic and mystical sites
Among the sites: holy gravesites of Kabbalists, Amukah (Kabbalah & love) and caves of Kabbalists. We’ll do special study of Kabbalah in those sites.
Galilean Medicinal Herbs workshop and Mimonides spiritual Remedies

7th day
Kabbalah prayer –Lurianic practices 
Zohar Tour : Peki’in , Meron, Idra cave – Study of Zohar ancient Kabbalah texts 
Study of 16th Century Kabbalah texts

8th day
Tour of Tiberias- holy gravesites of Rabbi Akiva and Mimonides – the Kabbalah of R.Akiva and Mimonides. 
understanding Kabbalah symbols
A visit to the ‘World of Kabbalah’ exhibit



Abraham’s Path of Palestine

Abraham’s Path Best of Palestine (15 days)
This tour is in the Nablus, Jericho, Bethlehem and Hebron regions of the trail.

Arrival Day, Jerusalem: Dinner and overnight in Jerusalem

Day 1, Nablus to Awarta: Meet in

Jerusalem for an early morning transfer to Nablus. Spend the morning exploring the city with its historic Old City, famous olive oil soap factories and Turkish baths. Walk to Tel Balata, site of the Bronze Age city of Shechem, where Abraham built an altar and made a sacrifice. Explore Jacob’s Well, housed in a unique Greek Orthodox church. In the afternoon, the real walking begins with a jaunt through the open countryside to Awarta village. Dinner and overnight with host families. (10.2km, easy)

Day 2, Awarta to Duma: Depart Awarta by way of Mount Arma and the villages of Aqrab, Majdal and Bani Fadil. Enjoy breathtaking views of the Jordan Valley and enjoy the challenge of the hilly terrain. The evening may bring a bonfire with local families who might treat you to a taste of their traditional dances. Dinner and overnight with host families. (18.6km, moderate-difficult)

Day 3, Duma to Kufr Malek: The path from Duma passes the village of Mughayyir and the natural springs and archaeological site of Ain Samia. Dinner and overnight with host families. (14.9km, moderate-difficult)

Day 4, Kufr Malek to Taybeh: The path from Kurf Malek follows the edge of a high plateau with lovely views. The day ends in Taybeh, a Palestinian Christian village and home to the only beer brewery in Palestine, named “Taybeh” for the town. Visit the historical St George’s church and tour the Taybeh brewery, then relax with a refreshing beer (golden, amber, dark and non-alcoholic are usually on offer)! Overnight in guesthouse.

Day 5, Ein Samia to Auja: This routes traverses the desert east of Jerusalem and winds through Wadi Auja into the Jordan River Valley. The amazing scenery makes this one of the best day sections of the Abraham Path. Reward your hard work with a soak in the cool waters of the Auja spring. Overnight in Bedouin tent.

Day 6, Auja to Jericho: This shorter day leaves time to explore Jericho, one of the oldest continuously inhabited cities in the world. Sites range from a Neolithic tower that is 11,000 years old to the fascinating mosaics of Hisham’s Palace. Optional evening activity: a swim in the Dead Sea. Overnight at Jericho hotel. (12.0km, easy)

Day 7, Jericho to Nebi Musa: This route passes through Wadi Qelt, a marvelous desert canyon associated with the Psalm’s “valley of the shadow of death. “ The trail passes St. George’s monastery, home to ascetic monks for 1500 years. The walk ends at Nebi Musa, a site of Muslim pilgrimage that remembers the legacy of Moses. A bus will transfer walkers to Beit Sahour (near Bethlehem) for dinner and overnight with host families.

Day 8, Nebi Musa to Mar Saba: Walkers will return to Nebi Musa by bus to continue walking through the desert landscape toward the Dead Sea. The trail passes over the Kidron Valley and arrives to the ancient monastery of Mar Saba, founded by Saint Saba, a Cappadocian monk, and still inhabited by 20 Greek Orthodox monks. Dinner and overnight in Bedouin tent. (19.5km, moderate-difficult)

Day 9, Mar Saba to Bethlehem: Today’s walk climbs from the desert landscape and returns to greener vistas, passing St. Theodosius monastery. A bus transfer brings walkers to Bethlehem, a historic city best known as the birthplace of Jesus. Dinner and overnight in Beit Sahour guesthouse. (15.3km, moderate)

Day 10, Bethlehem to Artas: Visit the sites of Bethlehem, including the Church of the Nativity and the historic market. Most of this day is spent sightseeing, with an optional short walk to Soloman’s pools and the village of Artas, home of the Hortus Conclusus convent and thought to be the “closed garden” from Song of Solomon. Dinner and overnight at Beit Sahour guesthouse. (optional 1-hour easy walk)

Day 11, Artas to Tequa: This day begins from Solomon’s pools to the quaint village of Artas where a lush garden and beautiful convent recall the biblical Song of Songs. From Artas, the path leads to Tequa, the traditional birthplace of the prophet Amos, where the ruins of a Byzantine church rest today. Tequa’s Womens’ Society can teach visitors about traditional embroidery and rug making. Dinner and overnight with local families.

Day 12, Tequa to Reshayda: The path from Tequa dips into the Jihar Valley, a deep canyon leading toward the Dead Sea. Prehistoric flints and arrow heads indicate a human presence in this valley dating back almost 300,000 years. The valley leads to Reshaydah with its fantastic views of the Dead Sea area and welcoming Bedouin tents. Dinner and overnight in a Bedouin tent.

Day 13, Rashayda to Beni Naim: The sunrise over the desert is not to be missed! The path today leads by Byzantine monastery ruins. Be prepared for a steady uphill walk and not much shade as you enter the stark wilderness that so inspired the ascetic monks of the past. Shade returns in the lush farms around Beni Naim. Dinner and overnight with host families.

Day 14, Beni Naim to Hebron: The day begins at the sacred sites of Beni Naim, said to house the tomb of Lot and another mosque which marks, according to tradition, the place where Abraham watched the destruction of Sodom and Gomorra. The end of your journey comes in Hebron, home to the tomb of Abraham at the Ibrihimi Mosque. Visit the historic Old City and traditional glass blowing factory before transport back to Jerusalem or Bethlehem.

Day 15, Jerusalem: A day touring the fascinating and diverse city of Jerusalem, with sites including the Holy Sepulcher Church, the Western Wall, the Mount of Olives, and the Dome of the Rock. Walk the narrow streets of the Old City markets.

Proposed Dates for 2013-2014

October 21 to November 2, 2013
November 11 to November 23, 2013
March 10 to March 22, 2014
April 7 to April 19, 2014
Price per person in a double room: $1490

Rate based on 10 Participants, and subject to change if fewer participants

Price includes:

All Accommodation in hotels, local family stays and with Bedouins
All Food: Breakfast, Lunch and dinner each day
Luggage Transfer
Local English speaking escorts
Entrance Fees
Price does not include:

Personal expenses
Any other services not indicated above

“Visit Israel – You’ll Never Be the same!”

Visit Israel – You’ll Never

Be the same!”

People’s single greatest expression when they return from a visit to Israel is, “I’ll never be the same.” Something about sailing on the Sea of Galilee, walking the streets of Jerusalem, and viewing the empty tomb creates an eternal change of heart and spirit. Wherever you go, you can sense God’s presence. When you visit Israel, God’s Word becomes clearer, your faith becomes deeper, and your passion for the Lord becomes stronger

Discover Israel

There is only one Holy Land. For hundreds of years, people have continued to flock to Israel to visit the holy places. People want to walk where Jesus walked. It is often called the oldest tourist destination on earth. In Israel, you can experience the Mediterranean, the desert, mountains, green valleys, lakes, rivers, and cities and towns of every size. You can enjoy unique destinations like the Dead Sea and the Old City of Jerusalem. You can also find the very best in dining, accommodations, shopping, and entertainment

In Israel, you can retrace the life of Jesus as you visit Nazareth, Capernaum and Jerusalem. Stand at the shore of the Sea of Galilee, worship and pray at the Upper Room, the Mount of Olives, the Garden of Gethsemane, and the Garden Tomb.


Our Israel Travel Company provides personal, custom designed and quality travel to Israel.

 For more Information contact

Haim Ben-Eliezer




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