|Every Sunday & Wednesday|
|Length of Tour:||11 Hours|
|Tel Aviv Departure||6.30 am - Hyarkon48 Hostel (map)|
|Jerusalem Departure||8.30 am - YMCA, King David Street (map)|
|Return||6pm to Tel Aviv - 7.30pm to Jerusalem -|
|Cost:||$120 - From Jerusalem
$145 - Tel Aviv
|Lunch not included|
Detailed DescriptionThe tour begins with a drive through the arid Judean Desert passing Jericho and heading north along the ancient route of the Jordan Valley, essentially a rift between two of the planet’s tectonic plates. The Kingdom of Jordan is visible over the border mine fields, an the mix of Bedouin communities and Israeli settlements will stimulate conversation about the distribution of water, the forceable removal of the Bedouin and other political and ecological issues.
The Jezreel Valley and Moshav Zippori is the next stop - a Jewish farming village established in 1948, reestablishing the ancient first temple community. During the Roman period, Zippori became one of the most important cities in the country, and served as capital of the Galilee.
The large Arab village of Safouria was later built on the site of the ancient city. However the village was destroyed by Israeli forces in 1948, the residents made refugees, and the Moshav and a national park established on village lands. You'll visit the Crusader era St. Anne's Church and learn about the history of the locale and the ongoing issues between the Arabs and the Jews who live in the area.
Then on to Kawkab abu Elheja, a Sculpture Garden for Peace and Co-existence in Kawkab (an Arab Moslem village in Gush Segev, Galilee). With the assistance of Kawkab villagers, Israeli and Palestinian artists became involved in this project and donated their works of art to the garden. It offers panoramic views westwards towards the northern sea coast and Carmel mountains, and southwards towards the Nazareth Hills.
You’ll visit Nazareth’s famous sites, including its two contrasting churches, each with a claim to be where Mary was visited by an angel to tell her she was carrying the son of God. One, at Mary’s Well, includes the city's ancient spring. Along the way, we wander through the charming alleys of the souq (market) to visit its Ottoman mansions, the oldest mosque in Nazareth, a traditional spice shop, a “synagogue church”, and a surprising, mysterious discovery – a large Roman bath house from the time of Jesus.