Day 1: Welcome to Israel
Landing in Ben-Gurion Airport you will be greeted by our staff and together head out to your hotel.
The Maaleh Hamisha hotel combines a nature experience with the convenience of a quality hotel.
During the evening, you will be introduced to our staff and re-ceive your personal Israel-Experience booklets.
Dinner will be served in the dining room overlooking the breathtaking scenery of the Jerusalem Mountains.
The scent of pine and cypress trees and the clear fresh mountain air will allow you to rest from the flight, before embarking on your exciting venture into the past.
Day 2: The Birth of Religion
Morning: We begin our travel through time from the virgin land-scape of the Judean Hills where Abraham once traveled. Was there something about this landscape that provoked such revolu-tionary concepts of faith?
We drive to Nazereth, now an Arab city it was once a Jewish village under Roman rule. We will see where it is believed Gabriel announced the birth of Jesus, and strolling through his childhood home we will understand the background that spawned a new religion.
Noon: As Israel in its entirety unfolds in front of us we will climb to Tzipori where the Sanhadrin Jewish wise men signed off on some of the most important Jewish texts. We will observe ancient Mosaics that will portray the extent of Greek-Roman influence on Jewish thought.
Afternoon: We rejoin Christianity at Capernaum, this ancient fisherman's village on the banks of the Sea of Galilee was home to the apostils. Peter, James, John, Mathew, and Andrew. They were moved by the new voice, preaching of tolerance, but what contribution did they have on Christianity? We will climb to the Mount of Beatitudes. In its original pastoral setting we will read one of the most spiritually influential speeches of the time: the sermon of the mount.
As the day dawns we will sail on the Silver-Turkiz waters of the Sea of Galilee. As we enjoy the tranquil breeze we will hear of Christianity's presence in Israel today from our guest speaker from the Christian Embassy in Jerusalem.
Day 3: Conflict in the Holy Land
Morning We will enjoy traditional coffee and sweets in a Druze village while a local tells us the story of Muhammad, the last of the prophets and the an-cient split in Islam. From there, it is a short drive to the magnificent Nimrod fortress, where Tzalah A-din and his Muslim forces called for Holy war against the crusaders.
Noon: We drive to Katzrin an 11,000 year old settlement, set in Tuscan like surroundings we will lunch and enjoy Israeli wine tasting. From there we will continue to Ein Gev and hear of the many conflicts that occurred in the city since the kingdom of David up until 1948. Yael Unterman will guide us in a Biblical Drama workshop on the Origin of Conflicts.
Afternoon: the Star of Jordan, was the last of the crusaders' fortresses to fall to the Muslim forces. We will imagine the battles to understand their ramifica-tions on the future of Israel, Europe and the world.
Evening: We will arrive at Beit Shaan, after witnessing the birth of the 3 great religions. Here, each religion, culture and empire built its foundations on top of its predecessor. Walking through the ghostly ancient streets we piece together the history of the land. Did these cultures leave more than just ruins in their wake? We will watch a sound and light show that will bring these ancient ruins to life.
The First Conflict-A Biblical Drama
Unterman is an Author who lectures internationally about biblical texts. In her workshop tourists will bring to life a bibli-cal scene and gain an insight to the origin of conflict
Day 4: Age of Empires
Morning: Acre was a key location in the Islam Christian wars and in the subse-quent Ottoman Empire. The ominous fortresses standing brazenly against the violent waves are a testament to the city's violent past and strategic importance.
We will drive through Haifa. For centuries the symbol of Jewish-Muslim co-existence, Haifa is now a modern, hi-tech port metropolis. It is precisely this spirit of tolerance that inspired the leaders of the Bahai faith to pick this rare location for their stunning temples and well pampered gardens.
Noon: We will eat the catch of the day in an authentic fisherman's restaurant in Atlit. Through its history and antiquities, we will try to understand the complexities of British Imperial rule in the holy land.
Afternoon: Ceasrea is nothing short of a gigantic time capsule. By now, you have seen the Greek rule, the birth of religion, the holy wars, the Ottoman Empire and the British Mandate. Each of these steps in the road to modern history have left their mark on this ancient marvel. We will enjoy a time travel light show, thrust-ing us through 3000 years of history through the eyes of an an-cient port city.
Day 5: Jerusalem - a Divided City
Morning: From the commissioners palace we will have a bird's eye view of the eastern city, the Arab housing around the ancient city walls, the golden dome overlooking the wailing wall and the modern separation barrier.
Rest of the day We will mount our Segway vehicles (optional) and roll effortlessly through the timeless city visiting Gethsemane, the Pool of Bethseda, the Stations of the Cross, the Holy Sepulcher, the Temple Mount Al Aqsa Mosque and the Dome of the Rock. The religious fervor that broke out when Jesus made his way through this holy city is still in existence in these stony ancient streets. Then we will dis-cuss Israel's Security ap-proach with Sheldon Shulman.
Day 6: Israel's Melting Pot
Morning: We will visit Yad Vashem, the world re-nowned WWII museum has been visited by nearly all the world's leaders. It's mission to teach us the lessons of history, xenophobia and genocide is as relevant today as it ever was.
Noon: We will drive through Mea Shearim, there the closely knit ortho-dox community will give us a glimpse into life in European ghettos of the past century. How do these people relate to the newly established state?
Afternoon: Sybil Caplan a best selling cookbook author and culinary journalist is well acquainted with the peoples market at Mahaneh Ye-huda. With her enchanting guidance we will negotiate with the local vendors and take in the diverse aromas and flavors of Israeli food. We will be invited into the kitchen of a Jerusalem restaurant and discuss the characteristics that make up an Israeli Meal.
Evening: Rabbi Nataf will talk to us about the Jewish Biblical ideal for government and rule of law.
Sheldon Shulman has held senior positions in the Government of Israel, at the Foreign Ministry and as the Director of a Department in the Prime Minister's Office.
Jewish Biblical Utopia
by Rabbi Francis Nataf
Nataf is not only a reli-gious leader but also a well respected scholar.
Day 7: Desert Zeal
Morning: We drive through the desert landscape to Messada. The Jew-ish people that had once settled this desert fortress were proud and zeal-ous. They believed in an apocalyptic end that would follow a battle be-tween good and evil. Their ideas would have an affect on Christianity and on Judaism. For them the last battle occurred here on this scorched earth. With the Roman siege closing tightly around them they took their own lives - What was their message in their last troughs?
Noon: The Dead Sea is a salty oasis and the lowest place on earth. The minerals in the mud and waters are said to have miraculous medicinal powers. The waters are heavy from salt and minerals and will allow us an enjoyable effortless floating experience.
Day 8: Jerusalem - Under the surface
Morning : Jerusalem is believed to be a city in the heavens but it is underground where it holds its truly magnificent ancient treas-ures. Beneath the bustling city streets lay the timeless passage-ways that lead into the past to the Kingdom of David and Sol-emn.
Noon: We will emerge in the Southern Excavations 500 years later when Herod ruled the land. We will see the site of the Sec-ond Temple of which the Western Wall still stands. We will leave our prayers neatly folded and tucked in-between the 2000 year old stony walls. We will visit the El-Aqtza Mosque with its golden dome that dominates the skyline.
Day 9: Current Events
Morning: We visit the Knesset a shining examples of liberal western pluralistic political institutions.
Noon: We will visit a settlement and talk to a settler, we will observe a modern Palestin-ian refugee camp and talk of the difficulties of living in the disputed territories.
Afternoon: A music workshop will show us how culture blend harmoniously in music. With David's tower in the horizon we will shop till we drop in the newly renovated Ma-milla Boulevard.
Day 10: Modern and Old Cocktail
Morning: The piercing vertical minarets (mosque towers) of Jaffa stand in obstinate opposition to the horizon of the Mediterra-nean sea. The sister of Tel Aviv, old and rundown saviors of the Levant traditions. As we stroll through arched passageways and flee market vendors the Tel Aviv skyline, shiny and modern seems almost light years away.
Noon: Tel Aviv was named by National Geographic one of the top 10 beach cities in the world. We will visit the new wooden boardwalk that has attracted many artists and poets. Known for a "coffee poet" tradition , Tel Aviv coffee shops have been the meeting place for artists and intellectual since the days of Alexander Pope.
Afternoon - Your Identity Workshop-discover what all this has to do with your own personal identity.
Evening-fly home, hope you enjoyed our tour!
Living in Harmony
Judy Lewis is Israel's #1 Jazz pianist. In her work-shop she invites you to use your vocal cords in an at-tempt to create harmony.
(Please note that the above is a tentative schedule that is none essential in nature. It is standard designated industrial practice to portrait and to show how a trip looks with information on it.)