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Best of Israel (Winter Season)

9 Days from $2,525 per person

Style: First Class | Pace: Active

Visit the tomb of King David and the Mount of Beatitudes, where Jesus delivered the Sermon on the Mount. Float in the Dead Sea, pray at the Wailing Wall and explore Tel Aviv.

This page shows Winter Season departures and itinerary; click here to see the main season version of this tour!

Travel to Europe often requires an overnight flight. Please arrange for flights to arrive on or before Day 1.

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Overview

Visit the tomb of King David and the Mount of Beatitudes, where Jesus delivered the Sermon on the Mount. Float in the Dead Sea, pray at the Wailing Wall and explore Tel Aviv.

This page shows Winter Season departures and itinerary; click here to see the main season version of this tour!

Travel to Europe often requires an overnight flight. Please arrange for flights to arrive on or before Day 1.

  1. Your pilgrimage through a land regarded by many as the holiest of the holy begins in the sacred city of Jerusalem, which you will have an opportunity to explore before joining your Travel Director and fellow travelers for a Welcome Drink to herald an epic journey into antiquity. L'chaim!

    hotel:Dan Panorama
  2. Tread in the footsteps of prophets, crusaders and kings, admiring the Old City of Jerusalem and its protective walls from the sacred vantage point of the Mount of Olives. Ascend to Mount Zion to visit the tomb of King David and see the room where Jesus and his disciples shared in the Last Supper near Zion Gate. We stroll through the Jewish Quarter to the Wailing Wall. Here we'll dive into culture and watch faithful Jews cede their prayers to the crevices of its ancient rocks. See the Dome of the Rock on Temple Mount and follow the path taken by Christ past the Stations of the Cross along the Via Dolorosa to Golgotha, arriving at the 4th-century Church of the Holy Sepulchre, where Christians gather to commemorate at the traditional site of His Resurrection.

    meal(s):Breakfast
  3. Journeying across the rocky Judean Desert, we pass by the sight where the Dead Sea Scrolls were found accidentally by a Bedouin boy in 1947. A short drive and journey up the cableway brings us to the striking cliff-top fortress of Masada where a Roman siege ended in the tragic mass suicide of over 900 Zealots. Their sacrifice remains as a symbol of Israel's pledge to remain free. Stroll through the excavations of Herod's palatial retreat, before returning to the lowest point on earth to float in the salty waters of the Dead Sea (time permitting). This evening, we share a traditional meal at our hotel in Jerusalem.

    meal(s):Breakfast, Dinner
  4. Enjoy a full day at leisure to delve into the fascinating centuries-old history of Jerusalem. Discover the meeting place of three great religions and the ancient sites that remain as a testament to their vast heritage. From the Christian Quarter Road and market stalls of the Muslim Quarter, to Hurva Square, the social center of the Jewish Quarter—the city's treasures and diverse community are yours to explore during your free time. Wander through the Old City and into the New City to celebrate its talented artists in Ein Kerem or enjoy a coffee stop at a friendly café in the German Colony.

    meal(s):Breakfast
  5. We continue our compelling discovery of Jerusalem and visit Yad Vashem to commemorate the millions of lives lost in the Holocaust during World War II. We'll see the Dead Sea Scrolls at Israel Museum's Shrine of the Book, the Knesset and the Givat Ram Campus of the Hebrew University, before traveling through the farmlands of the Jordon Valley. Celebrate a strong sense of community at your overnight stop at a Kibbutz hotel, where you'll dine this evening.

    meal(s):Breakfast, Dinner
    hotel:Lavi Kibbutz
  6. Ascend to the hilltop 'chariot city' and battlegrounds of Megiddo to see the excavations of Solomon's Stables. Our next stop is the sacred Catholic shrine of the Church of the Annunciation at Nazareth and the ruins of the old synagogue at Capernaum, said to have been built on the home of St. Peter. Later, we continue to the Mount of Beatitudes where Jesus delivered the Sermon on the Mount. This evening, we dine at our hotel in Galilee.

    meal(s):Breakfast, Dinner
  7. Venture to one of Judaism's Four Holy Cities and the birthplace of the Kabbalah movement, exploring the ancient synagogue and artists' colony of Tzfat. We continue to the almost-intact 12th-century underground City of Acre to admire its medieval Crusader buildings, before enjoying views of the Baha'i Shrine and the beautiful Persian Hanging Gardens of Haifa, created as a memorial to the founders of the Baha'i faith. Imagine seafaring traders plying their wares in the ancient port city of Caesarea, then travel to the vibrant city of Tel Aviv, our home for the next two nights.

    meal(s):Breakfast
    hotel:Dan Panorama
  8. Join a Local Specialist this morning to stroll through the ancient ruins of Old Jaffa to explore biblical stories and ancient mythology. Continue to Newe Zedek, the first neighborhood of Tel Aviv. Soak up the cosmopolitan atmosphere of Rothchild Boulevard, then drive to Rabin Square, where you'll learn about the assassination of Prime Minister Yitzhak Rabin who has become a symbol of the Israeli-Palestinian peace process. Indulge all your senses on your final stop in Tel Aviv—the smells of roasted coffee and freshly baked bread provide a welcome backdrop for your leisurely journey past bustling market stalls before you return to your hotel for an evening at leisure.

    meal(s):Breakfast
  9. Our epic journey through the sacred lands of Israel has come to an end. All that's left to say is a fond farewell to fellow pilgrims as you prepare for your journey home. Transfers are available. Conditions apply.

    meal(s):Breakfast
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    We promise you’ll enjoy a stress-free travel experience from the minute you start your vacation planning or we’ll refund your deposit. Make your reservation with a $350 deposit. If you change your mind for any reason within 30 days of booking, we’ll offer you a full refund.

  • Add air to your reservation

    Let our Air Specialists handle your air reservations. We have direct access to the most current airfare routes and prices, so you’ll get the best value available when we book your flights. We never charge a booking fee and you’ll enjoy the flexibility to pay for air 60-90 days prior to departure.

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  • Definite Departure
  • Festive Celebrations
Depart Date Return Date Price Discount Availability Price
31 Oct 19 8 Nov 19 $2,525pp AARP members save an additional $100 Request Quote Book Now
7 Nov 19 15 Nov 19 checkmark $2,525pp AARP members save an additional $100 Request Quote Book Now
14 Nov 19 22 Nov 19 $2,525pp AARP members save an additional $100 Request Quote Book Now
21 Nov 19 29 Nov 19 $2,525pp AARP members save an additional $100 Request Quote Book Now
28 Nov 19 6 Dec 19 $2,525pp AARP members save an additional $100 Request Quote Book Now
5 Dec 19 13 Dec 19 $2,525pp AARP members save an additional $100 Request Quote Book Now
12 Dec 19 20 Dec 19 $2,525pp AARP members save an additional $100 Request Quote Book Now
19 Dec 19 27 Dec 19 $2,550pp AARP members save an additional $100 Request Quote Book Now
Festive Celebrations
26 Dec 19 3 Jan 20 checkmark $2,775pp AARP members save an additional $100 Request Quote Book Now
2 Jan 20 10 Jan 20 $2,525pp AARP members save an additional $100 Request Quote Book Now
9 Jan 20 17 Jan 20 $2,525pp AARP members save an additional $100 Request Quote Book Now
16 Jan 20 24 Jan 20 $2,525pp AARP members save an additional $100 Request Quote Book Now
23 Jan 20 31 Jan 20 $2,525pp AARP members save an additional $100 Request Quote Book Now
30 Jan 20 7 Feb 20 $2,525pp AARP members save an additional $100 Request Quote Book Now
6 Feb 20 14 Feb 20 $2,525pp AARP members save an additional $100 Request Quote Book Now
13 Feb 20 21 Feb 20 $2,525pp AARP members save an additional $100 Request Quote Book Now
20 Feb 20 28 Feb 20 $2,525pp AARP members save an additional $100 Request Quote Book Now
27 Feb 20 6 Mar 20 $2,525pp AARP members save an additional $100 Request Quote Book Now
5 Mar 20 13 Mar 20 $2,525pp AARP members save an additional $100 Request Quote Book Now
12 Mar 20 20 Mar 20 $2,525pp AARP members save an additional $100 Request Quote Book Now
19 Mar 20 27 Mar 20 $2,525pp AARP members save an additional $100 Request Quote Book Now
26 Mar 20 3 Apr 20 checkmark $2,525pp AARP members save an additional $100 Request Quote Book Now
  • Festive Celebrations: Christmas and/or New Year Celebrations have been arranged for these departures.

Price is per person and is based on two people sharing a twin bedded room. Single rooms are available at a supplement.

Single Room Supplement: from $1,180 per person

Triple Room Discount: $400 per person

Shared Rooming: Room Share is not available on this trip.

Transport: Smaller coaches without toilet facilities are used on this trip.

Airport transfers: Complimentary transfers will be provided for guests who have provided their flight details.

Religious holidays: Due to the frequency of religious holidays in Israel, the hotels and order of the sightseeing program may be changed.

AARP Members are entitled to an exclusive Member Benefit Discount on all Grand European Travel vacations. Plus receive a free travel gift! Call Toll Free: 1-866-847-3858 for details.

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  • Professional Travel Director Professional Travel Director
  • Breakfast Daily Breakfast Daily
  • Expertly Selected Hotels Expertly Selected Hotels
  • Hotel Tips Hotel Tips
  • Personal Flight Options Personal Flight Options
  • VIP Access VIP Access
  • WIFI on Coach and in Hotels WIFI on Coach and in Hotels

Meal Summary

11 meals: 8 breakfasts, 3 dinners.

New Year's Eve Highlights: Christmas Days is not celebrated in Israel. The December 26 departure will celebrate New Year's Eve in Lower Galilee. This specially arranged festive meal celebration will replace one of the included meals featured in the itinerary.

Included Highlights

Dive into Culture

  • Visit the Western Wall, otherwise known as the Wailing Wall, renowned as one of the holiest places for the Jewish faith

Sightseeing Highlights

  • City tour in Jerusalem
  • Visit the tomb of King David on Mount Zion, the Fortress of Masada, the Church of Annunciation in Nazareth, the old Synagogue and the Mount of Beatitudes near Capernaum, the ancient Synagogue and artists' colony at Tzfat, the underground Crusader City of Acre
  • View the Wailing Wall in Jerusalem, the Baha'i Shrine from the summit of Mount Carmel in Haifa, the excavations of Solomon's Stables and the Roman Amphitheater, the aqueduct at Caesarea
  • See the Mount of Olives, the former Syrian bunkers at Golan Heights
Request a Quote
  • 30 Day Refund Guarantee

    We promise you’ll enjoy a stress-free travel experience from the minute you start your vacation planning or we’ll refund your deposit. Make your reservation with a $350 deposit. If you change your mind for any reason within 30 days of booking, we’ll offer you a full refund.

  • Add air to your reservation

    Let our Air Specialists handle your air reservations. We have direct access to the most current airfare routes and prices, so you’ll get the best value available when we book your flights. We never charge a booking fee and you’ll enjoy the flexibility to pay for air 60-90 days prior to departure.

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Reviews

Friday, January 11, 2019
Heather Manion Gallagher
Service:
Vacation:
Service rating : Guide and accommodations were both good. I recommend, when we are buying our own lunches that those truck stop places not be used as the daily lunch. Food was not good. It's our money, let's work out a better lunch option.
Vacation : You take care of lots of guests. Your trips are well organized and the information imparted is wonderful.. Meals are weak.
Friday, January 11, 2019
Trusted Customer
Service:
Vacation:
Service rating : Satisfactory
Response from Grand European Travel:
We are sorry to hear about some of the shortcomings during your trip. We will be sure to share them with our Quality Control team and ask for immediate improvement. Thank you for your honest feedback.
Friday, January 11, 2019
Vacation : The food was poor, the one hotel was poor, and the guide didn't give information about the different religions to compare.
Request a Quote
  • 30 Day Refund Guarantee

    We promise you’ll enjoy a stress-free travel experience from the minute you start your vacation planning or we’ll refund your deposit. Make your reservation with a $350 deposit. If you change your mind for any reason within 30 days of booking, we’ll offer you a full refund.

  • Add air to your reservation

    Let our Air Specialists handle your air reservations. We have direct access to the most current airfare routes and prices, so you’ll get the best value available when we book your flights. We never charge a booking fee and you’ll enjoy the flexibility to pay for air 60-90 days prior to departure.

Print Itinerary
  • U.S. citizens traveling to Israel must have a current passport valid for six months beyond the conclusion of their trip. You can find information on how to apply for a passport here, and how to renew a passport here. No visa is required for U.S. citizens entering Israel for less than 90 days.

  • The currency in Israel is the Shekel. While it’s a good idea to bring some money for when you first arrive, you’ll usually find a better exchange rate in your destination.  The most convenient way to obtain cash is to use your ATM card at local banks. We recommend you also bring a valid credit card for purchases while you are traveling.  It is important that you inform your financial institutions of your travel plans before you leave home so they don’t flag your purchases as potentially fraudulent charges.

  • Like the country's population, Israeli cuisine is a diverse mix of Middle Eastern, European, and African flavors.  You'll find variations on common Mediterranean dishes like falafel, hummus and baba ganoush, plus plenty of rice and fresh salads.  For a quick lunch try a shwarma -  grilled meat (usually chicken or lamb) thinly sliced and served with salad in pita bread.  

    You will encounter some restaurants that adhere to Kosher dietary requirements, meaning that you will not be able to get dairy and meat products during the same meal. 

  • We suggest bringing a variety of lightweight clothing items, which can be layered to save space in your suitcase and give you more options for how to dress. Keep in mind that your shoulders and knees should be covered while visiting religious sites. We also recommend that women bring a light weight scarf to demonstrate respect for the different religions with historical ties to the region. For more helpful information please refer to our Packing Tips & Packing List.

  • Tipping is expected when dining out, although tends to be less generous than in the United States. It’s appropriate to leave 10-15%.  Please advise your server if you need to add the tip onto your credit bill, or simply leave your tip on the table.

    At the end of your guided vacation, it’s customary to offer your motor coach driver and Travel Director a gratuity.  We recommend €3.00 per person/per day for your driver and €5.00 per person/per day for your Travel Director.  Recommended gratuity for a Local Host and Local Specialist is 1-2 euros per person, paid at the conclusion of each guided visit.  A convenient option is to prepay your tips before your departure.

  • Baggage on our trips is restricted to one large suitcase per person with dimensions not exceeding 30x19x10 inches and a maximum weight of 50 pounds. You are also permitted one piece of hand luggage, which should be small enough to fit under your coach seat or on the small overhead shelf compartment. Please note that luggage with an adjustable handle and wheels will not fit in the overhead compartment of the coach. Hotel porterage is included in your vacation.

  • You will need to be comfortable on your feet, walking and standing for up to three hours in various weather conditions.  All of our vacations involve walking, often on cobblestone and uneven surfaces in historic city centers.  In order to get the most out of your vacation you need to be able to comfortably walk 1-3 miles unassisted in one day, be in good condition and be able to keep pace with the group. 

    If you need any medications, it is important that you bring enough to last you the whole trip and keep them in your carry-on bag while you travel.

  • We highly recommend our optional Travel Protection Plan, which allows you to cancel for any reason up to 24 hours before departure. The plan also includes trip interruption, baggage loss or delay, and medical and emergency assistance. Click here for a summary of coverage details, terms and conditions.

Request a Quote
  • 30 Day Refund Guarantee

    We promise you’ll enjoy a stress-free travel experience from the minute you start your vacation planning or we’ll refund your deposit. Make your reservation with a $350 deposit. If you change your mind for any reason within 30 days of booking, we’ll offer you a full refund.

  • Add air to your reservation

    Let our Air Specialists handle your air reservations. We have direct access to the most current airfare routes and prices, so you’ll get the best value available when we book your flights. We never charge a booking fee and you’ll enjoy the flexibility to pay for air 60-90 days prior to departure.