Your holiday summary

Holiday type Escorted tours
Country Israel / Palestine
Travel type Fly
Price range From £0
Travel partner Riviera Travel
Duration 7 nights
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Jerusalem, Galilee and the Dead Sea

Jerusalem and the Holy Land represent an extraordinary collection of both classical and Biblical sites unmatched anywhere else in the world. From the palaces of Herod the Great to the Sea of Galilee and the Old City of Jerusalem, the places we visit and the stories behind them are inextricably linked to the very basis of our western civilisation.

The price of this holiday is per person based on two people sharing a twin room and includes: return scheduled flights to Tel Aviv; return transfers; seven nights on half-board basis staying in four star hotels; all touring as mentioned, guided visits to Caesarea, Acre, Capernaum, Tabgha, Nazareth, Masada, Bethlehem and Jerusalem including the Dome of the Rock, the Western Wall, the Mount of Olives, the Garden of Gethsemane, Church of the Holy Sepulchre, Shrine of the Book and Yad Vashem; porterage of one item of luggage per person; the services of a Riviera tour manager. Single rooms are subject to availability at a supplement from £299 per person.

Please note visits to certain sites, such as Bethlehem, may be dependent on the prevailing security situation in the region.

  • Return scheduled flights from London Heathrow or Luton
  • Seven nights in four star hotels
  • Daily breakfast and seven dinners included
  • Guided tour of Caesarea, ancient Roman capital of Judea
  • Walking tour of Acre, the only fully-preserved crusader city in the world
  • Boat cruise on the Sea of Galilee
  • Visit the site of the Sermon on the Mount and the Church of the Multiplication
  • Visit the fortress of Masada
  • See Nazareth and the Church of the Annunciation
  • Guided visit to the holiest site in Christendom, the Church of the Holy Sepulchre in Jerusalem
  • See the Dome of the Rock and the Western Wall, holy sites of Islam and Judaism
  • Visit Bethlehem and the Church of the Nativity
  • Walking tour of the Jewish, Christian and Muslim quarters of the old city of Jerusalem
  • See the Dead Sea Scrolls and the Yad Vashem
  • Stay on the Dead Sea, the lowest point on earth
  • Escorted by our experienced tour manager
Day one

We fly to Tel Aviv and transfer to the four star Grand Beach hotel for one night, with dinner.

Day two - Caesarea, Acre and Nazareth

Today we visit the ancient city of Caesarea, built by King Herod as capital of Roman Judea to honour Caesar Augustus, thus ensuring he was appointed Governor, a position subsequently held by Pontius Pilate. It was the biggest port in the Eastern Mediterranean, the site of one of Herod’s palaces and today it has a host of remains to explore. Next we have the 12th century Crusader city of Acre: the vaulted Knights’ Halls are in a state of almost unrivalled preservation. Captured by Saladin, it was retaken by Richard the Lionheart, but Napoleon with all his might failed to breach its fortifications. We then visit Nazareth, where Jesus grew up and visit the great church of the Annunciation. We stay in Tiberias on the Sea of Galilee at the four-star Leonardo Plaza hotel for one night with dinner. Some tours will stay at the Kibbutz Lavi in the hills above Tiberias.

Day three - Capernaum and Tabgha

This morning we’ll be immersed in some of the most important events in Jesus’ early life. Crossing the Sea of Galilee by boat we arrive at Capernaum where Jesus lived, healed the sick and recruited his first five disciples. Nearby is Tabgha, the site of the miracle of the feeding of the 5,000. Overlooking the whole area is the Mount of Beatitudes, where Jesus gave the Sermon on the Mount. A simple octagonal church has been built, surrounded by gardens with views of the Sea of Galilee. Our hotel tonight is the four star Royal Rimonin on the shores of the Dead Sea.

Day four - Tabgha and Jerusalem

Today you can float like a cork in the Dead Sea, surrounded by the desert scenery of the lowest point on earth. Your hotel also offers relaxing spa treatments using salt extracts from the mineral-rich waters. Then we have the opportunity to visit the Masada fortress– site of one of the ancient Romans’ greatest sieges. After three years, the desperate defenders preferred mass suicide to capture and subsequent slavery or crucifixion. Reached by cable car, there are views across the Dead Sea towards Jordan. The desert climate has preserved the whole site and the eight Roman encampments surrounding the fortress – the only place in the world where the remains of a complete Roman military campaign are still visible. You continue to Jerusalem and the four star Leonardo for four nights.

Day five - Jerusalem

There is such an enormous amount to see, experience and absorb in this most remarkable of cities. Firstly we visit the Mount of Olives, the world’s oldest continually used cemetery, for a panoramic view of the ancient city, punctuated by the Dome of the Rock where Muhammed rose to heaven. After touring the Garden of Gethsemane, we enter the warren of streets and alleyways that make up the old city. Here, and in such proximity lie some of the holiest places for over half the world’s population. We visit the Western Wall and walk along the Via Dolorosa before we finally come to the Church of the Holy Sepulchre built over Golgotha, where Jesus was crucified. The richness of decoration is astounding and the atmosphere is indescribably moving. Containing the final five Stations of the Cross, the church is uniquely shared between the Catholic, Orthodox and Armenian churches.

Day six - Bethlehem and Jerusalem

Today we drive to Bethlehem to visit the Church of the Nativity. One of the oldest churches in holy land still in use, it marks the site where the Virgin Mary is said to have given birth to Jesus. For centuries it was one of the most fought over holy places. It was seized and defended by a succession of armies - including Muslim and Crusader forces - yet still retains fragments of mosaics and paintings from the fourth and 12th centuries. We also stop to see the Shepherds' Fields, where the Angel announced the birth of Jesus. Back in Jerusalem we visit the Yad Vashem, the Holocaust memorial and the Shrine of the Book where the Dead Sea scrolls are displayed.

Day seven - Free Day, Jerusalem

Today is at leisure to allow for a second, more detailed exploration of the sights in and around the old city. The Tower of David museum built on the remains of another of Herod the Great’s palaces provides a history plus views over the cityscape. Then you can explore under your own steam: see Roman shops still being used and the place where Lazarus was healed, shop in the bazaar, sample middle-eastern cuisine or wander into some of the quieter churches.

Day eight

At the appropriate time you transfer to Tel Aviv airport for the flight to the UK.
Tel Aviv – four star Grand Beach hotel

Located in the northern part of Tel Aviv, close to the sea. It has a rooftop pool, restaurant and lobby bar (late arrivals, after 9pm, will be provided with a cold plate in their room). There are 212 newly-renovated rooms, each with air-conditioning, en-suite bathroom, hairdryer, flat-screen cable TV, free wireless internet, writing desk, fridge and safe.

Tiberias - four star Leonardo Plaza hotel

Located right in the centre of Tiberias overlooking the Sea of Galilee. There’s an outdoor heated pool, fitness centre and spa, as well as two restaurants and lounge bar. The 258 comfortably-furnished rooms each have air-conditioning, en-suite bathroom, hairdryer, flat-screen cable TV, writing desk, minibar, safe and balcony.

Ein Bokek, Dead Sea – four star Daniel hotel

Located in the small resort of Ein Bokek on the shores of the Dead Sea. The Daniel is separated from the beach by a road (not busy), but also has a large outdoor and indoor pool, with an extensive spa centre using all local mineral products. Dining options include the main buffet restaurant, whilst snacks and desserts are available in the lobby and there’s also a lunchtime poolside bar and grill. The hotel’s 302 rooms are all air-conditioned, with en-suite bathroom and hairdryer, flat screen TV, writing desk, minibar, safe, tea/coffee-maker and balcony.

Jerusalem – four star Grand Court hotel

In an excellent location, about 10 minutes walk or a few minutes drive of the old city. The hotel has a large lobby with a bar, a restaurant, outdoor pool with sun deck and fitness area. The spacious 442 rooms are all air-conditioned, with en-suite bathroom, hairdryer, cable TV, free wireless internet, writing desk, safe and fridge.

Jerusalem – four star Leonardo

Located, about 10 minutes walk or a few minutes drive of the old city. The hotel has a large lobby with a bar, a restaurant, outdoor pool with sundeck. The 397 air-conditioned rooms offer bath, shower, hairdryer, minibar, safe, TV and coffee-maker.
This offer has no departures. [NEED SOME CONTENT HERE].

Wow! A Big thank you to everyone at Riviera for the best holiday we have ever had (and we’ve been on many over the past 30 years). Everything went smoothly and was well organised from beginning to end. We had excellent local Guides and our Tour Manager was superb. He was a most unusual Tour Manager in that he was always “around” if needed, he knew his subject and he genuinely cared that we had a good holiday. We are so impressed with Riviera that we are planning to book another holiday with you in the not too distant future. Again, many thanks all round.
Sep 2011
Mr & Mrs Bulmer, York