4 nights from: $895 Single Supplement: FREE
Though it occupies an area of less than one square mile, the history and spiritual significance of Jerusalem is immeasurable. From the ancient desert fortification of Masada—Herod the Great—to the archaeological splendor of the City of David, journey to this holy capital to discover the sacred sites that inspire historians and the religious faithful alike.
- It's Included:
- Accommodations for 4 nights
- 9 meals: Daily breakfasts, 2 lunch, and 3 dinners
- Included tours: Yad Vashem Holocaust Museum & Israeli Parliament • Masada • City of David • Israel Museum & 9/11 memorial
- Dedicated services of a local Program Director
- Gratuities for local guides and motorcoach drivers
- All transfers
Today you travel to Yad Vashem, the stirring “everlasting memorial” to the more than six million Jewish victims of the Holocaust. With the world's largest archives of material relating to the Holocaust—more than 50 million documents and artifacts—this museum and memorial complex, while built on the Mount of Remembrance, aims not only to remember, but to educate. You'll spend the morning at this solemn site learning about the horrors of Hitler's “Final Solution.” You may even have the chance to hear a moving first-person account from a Holocaust survivor, although this cannot be guaranteed.
After lunch on your own, you’ll visit the Knesset (Israeli Parliament) building for a glimpse into the inner workings of the national government. Enjoy free time to explore Jerusalem independently for the remainder of the afternoon before returning to your hotel. Tonight, join your fellow travelers for a dinner at a local restaurant.
This morning, set off on two-hour drive along the Red Sea to Masada, an ancient fortification perched atop a rocky plateau near the Judean Desert. Originally built by Herod the Great, the Roman-appointed King of Judea, as a personal refuge, the site was eventually taken over by the Jews during their revolt against the Romans. In retaliation, Roman forces laid siege to the fortress and began to penetrate the walls. Rather than die at the hands of their oppressors, the Jewish military and civilians committed suicide.
A cable car will transport you to the top, where you’ll walk among 20 acres of ruins, and learn more about the great battle that was waged here.
After lunch on your own, you’ll return to Jerusalem, where the balance of the afternoon and evening are at leisure.
This morning you visit the City of David, an archaeological park whose ruins shed light on the establishment of Israel under King David in 1004 BCE and the history of the Jews during Biblical times. A highlight of the site is an ancient 1500-foot-long water tunnel built by King Hezekiah in 701 BCE to protect Jerusalem's water source from invading Assyrians. Your tour concludes at the Davidson Center, where you’ll view a virtual reality reconstruction of the Herodian Temple Mount as it stood prior to its destruction.
Prior to your included lunch, discover another side of Jerusalem during a visit to Machaneh Yehuda Market, a popular local shopping spot filled with vendors selling everything from baked goods and spices to housewares and textiles. The balance of the afternoon is yours to further explore the Old City, perhaps taking a stroll through the Armenian quarter, home to the oldest remaining diaspora community outside of Armenia.
Dinner is at your hotel this evening.
Your day begins with a moving visit to Jerusalem’s 9/11 Living Memorial Plaza. Here, you’ll see a waving American flag monument built from remnants of the Twin Towers to honor the men and women who lost their lives on September 11, 2001.
Your discoveries in Jerusalem continue at the Israel Museum. Here, you'll see the expansive model of Jerusalem from the Second Temple period. You'll also take a close look at the Dead Sea Scrolls, which are housed in a wing called "the Shrine of the Book"; the top of the shrine was designed to look like the clay pot in which the scrolls were originally found.
Return to your hotel this afternoon, and spend the balance of the day doing as you please.
This evening, reminisce about your discoveries with your fellow travelers during a Farewell Dinner at a local restaurant.
Transfer to Tel Aviv today for your flight home.