March 18 - April 2, 2019 Join Rev. James and Lilias Statham, again or for the first time, for a fun-filled two week adventure on an all-inclusive unforgettable journey through the land of the Bible.
- Return economy class airfare
- Current airline taxes, fuel surcharges and airport fees
- Superior Tourist class and First class hotels
- First class motorcoach
- Meals as shown (B=breakfast, L=lunch, D=dinner)
- Professional tour guide
- Sightseeing tours including entrance fees
- Luggage handling at hotels
- Tipping for all included services
- Rostad Tours travel gift
- Comprehensive and personalized tour documentation
Sun, Mar 17, 2019
Today we meet at the airport for an evening flight and the first leg of our journey.
Mon, Mar 18, 2019
Today, we continue our journey to Israel. Our experiences in the Holy Land will educate and enrich our lives as we watch the stories in the Bible come to life.
Tue, Mar 19, 2019
This morning we arrive at Ben Gurion Airport where we meet our guide and driver. From there, we will drive to Ashkelon. The old section of Ashkelon has remained in ruins to this very day and no new settlement has been erected on the ancient site. The National Park, site of Ashkelon's ancient cities, is located on the southern coast of modern Ashkelon. The main entrance road passes through the 12th century Crusader city walls and the massive Canaanite earth ramparts. The cliffs at the shore were integrated into the city's walls and later strengthened by large roman granite columns. Several ongoing excavation sites near the sea reveal the city's biblical past. In the afternoon, we will return to Tel Aviv and check into our hotel and enjoy dinner with our travelling companions.
Wed, Mar 20, 2019
Our morning departure takes us on a tour of Jaffa - one of the oldest towns in the world and mentioned in both the Old and New Testament. Then we travel north through the modern city of Tel Aviv - a UNESCO World Heritage Site (WHS), before returning to our hotel. Before dinner, we may want to take a stroll along the beach and dip our toes in the Mediterranean.
Thu, Mar 21, 2019
After breakfast, we leave Tel Aviv and head north to Caesarea. Excavated ruins of this sea-side town include an amphitheatre, a Roman road and a spectacular aqueduct. Then we proceed to Megiddo, also known as Armageddon as it is mentioned in the Book of Revelation as the site of the Final Battle. Megiddo contains ruins of Solomon's chariot stables, a Canaanite temple, and a water storage tunnel worth the climb down, down, down. Tonight we stay in Nazareth, Jesus' boyhood home. BD
Fri, Mar 22, 2019
This morning we visit Nazareth Village, an open air museum that reconstructs and reenacts village life in the time of Jesus. We will then see the Church of the Annunciation and the beautiful mosaics of the Madonna and Child created by artists from around the world. Then we travel to Sepphoris, just north of Nazareth, to see the remarkable Roman ruins from the First Temple period.
Finally, we take an exciting taxi ride to the top of Mount Tabor and visit the Basilica of the Transfiguration. From here there is an incredible view of the Jezreel Plain, site of many famous battles including the Israelites against the Canaanites.
Afterwards we return to our hotel in Nazareth.
Sat, Mar 23, 2019
Today we travel west to Mount Carmel, one of the most scenic National Parks in Israel. In ancient times, shrines dedicated to Baal were located on the hilltops. It was here that Elijah challenged and defeated the prophets of Baal. After a view of the picturesque city of Haifa, we travel north to Akko, an ancient port and the Crusader capital after the fall of Jerusalem.
Sun, Mar 24, 2019
This morning, we will visit Cana, site of the first miracle, on the way to Galilee. Then, after a short film about its recovery process, we view the 2000 year old 'Jesus Boat'. A cruise across the Sea of Galilee brings us to Capernaum, the village where Jesus spent many years preaching, and nearby Tabgha where He performed the miracle of the Multiplication of the Fishes and Loaves. Next is an inspirational visit to the Mount of Beatitudes, where Jesus gave the Sermon on the Mount. Then we make our way to the town of Safed, located high in the hills overlooking the Galilee region. Then we wind our way back to the Sea of Galilee where we will stay at a hotel on a kibbutz located along the shores of Galilee.
Mon, Mar 25, 2019
An interesting day starts with insights into the workings of a kibbutz. After, we visit Hazor, an ancient city where over twenty layers of civilization have been discovered. Joshua conquered the city in the 13th century BC and later Solomon built a fortress to protect the northern border of his kingdom. Then we travel north into Upper Galilee to visit Caesarea Philippi, at the foot of Mount Hermon. This is one of the sources of the Jordan River and the site where Jesus told Simon You are Peter, and on this rock I will build my church. Afterwards we return to our hotel and have the rest of the day free to relax or go for a swim.
Tue, Mar 26, 2019
This morning we will take a half day tour of Golan Heights.
Rising up from the Sea of Galilee, it is home to some of the most spectacular landscapes.
The rest of the day will be ours to enjoy as we wish.
Wed, Mar 27, 2019
Our first stop today is Yardenit, where the Jordan River flows out of the Sea of Galilee and a popular baptismal spot.
Then we visit Beth Shean (ancient Scythopolis), a city that belonged to a group of ten Greco-Roman centres called the Decapolis. It was destroyed by an earthquake and recent excavations show us how marvellous the city would have been during its glory days.
In the afternoon, we'll drive to Wadi Kelt before making our way to our hotel in Jericho.
Thu, Mar 28, 2019
This morning we'll visit the Dead Sea area, dropping 300 metres below Sea Level. First we stop to see the ruins at Qumran where the Dead Sea scrolls were found hidden in caves.
Driving through the desolate wilderness, we arrive at Masada (WHS) and take a cable-car to the top of the mountain to see the remarkable fortress built by Herod the Great. Then a chance to cure our ails in the restorative mud and water at the Ein Gedi Spa next to the Dead Sea. The sensation of floating in the salt water here is an experience not to be missed (bring your water shoes). Afterwards we relax as our motorcoach climbs to Jerusalem (WHS).
Fri, Mar 29, 2019
We start the day with a visit to the Mount of Olives, where we enjoy an incredible view over the Kidron Valley towards the Old City of Jerusalem. A walk through the Garden of Gethsemane brings us to the Church of All Nations. We then visit the City of David and Mount Zion to see the Upper Room and the Tomb of King David. Our morning also includes a stop to see the fascinating model of ancient Jerusalem. In the afternoon we drive to nearby Bethlehem to visit the Church of the Nativity to view the Manger and the Grotto of St. Jerome. We stop to see the Shepherd's fields, where sheep still graze among the barren rock, before returning to our hotel in Jerusalem.
Sat, Mar 30, 2019
Full day tour of the Old City including the Western Wall, where the Jews come to pray.
This is part of the original retaining wall of the Second Temple, built by Herod the Great in 20BC, and is the most holy of all Jewish sites.
On the Temple Mount we visit the beautiful golden Dome of the Rock and see the El Aksa Mosque. We'll also visit the Lithostratus, the pavement mentioned in John 19:13, below the Sisters of Sion convent, and stop at St. Anne's Church and the Pool of Bethesda then travel the Way of the Cross on the Via Dolorosa to the Church of the Holy Sepulchre. A walk through the Jewish Quarter brings us to the Cardo, a reconstructed Roman main street. Our final stop is just outside the Old City walls at the peaceful Garden Tomb, where we have the opportunity to take part in a private Communion service.
Sun, Mar 31, 2019
This morning we have some free time to prepare for our trip home. We may spend our time wandering through the Old City picking up last minute bargains and souveniers. In the afternoon we have a tour of the New City including a visit to the Church of Saint Peter in Gallicantu and the Shrine of the Book Museum, where the Dead Sea scrolls are preserved.
Then we visit the nearby Archaeological Museum.
Tonight we have a special farewell dinner to reflect on all our experiences in the Holy Land.
Mon, Apr 01, 2019
This morning we are taken to the airport for our return trip home where family and friends are eager to hear about our experiences.