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Middle East Cultural Experience

Middle East Cultural Experience to Jordan, Israel and Palestine. Optional Extension to Lebanon.

15 JUNE - 3 JULY 2019 – Amman (2 nights), Jerash, Ajloun, Dead Sea (1), Mt Nebo, Madaba, Kerak, Petra (2), Wadi Rum, Aqaba (2), Bethlehem (2), Tiberias (3), Jerusalem (6) • Optional 4 Night Extension to Lebanon.
 
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Middle East Cultural Experience

MEAL CODE: B: Breakfast   L: Lunch   D: Dinner
DAY 1: SATURDAY 15 JUNE – ARRIVE AMMAN
On arrival at Amman airport we will be met and transferred to our hotel for check-in. Enjoy some free time before dinner. Amman overnight (D).

DAY 2: SUNDAY 16 JUNE – AMMAN, JERASH, AJLOUN, AMMAN
Today we will be transferred north to visit Jerash, which was known as the city of a thousand Pillars. See the Triple Arched Gate, the Huge Hippodrome, The Theatre, and the only Roman Forum surrounded by 63 jonick columns. Continue to Ajlun where we will view the Jordan valley from Saladin’s imposing Qalat Al-rabad fortress. Return to Amman in time for dinner. Amman overnight (BD)

DAY 3: MONDAY 17 JUNE – AMMAN CITY TOUR & DEAD SEA
Start the day with a tour of Amman, visiting the Citadel, the Roman theatre, the old Souq, old and new part of Amman. In the afternoon, our journey takes us 400 metres below sea level to experience an unforgettable swim in the salty waters of the Dead Sea. Dead Sea overnight (BD)

DAY 4: TUESDAY 18 JUNE – MT. NEBO - MADABA - KERAK - PETRA
Travel south along the Kings Way, one of the oldest trade routes in the world which runs 200 miles along Jordan’s hilly backbone. Ascend to the Byzantine Church of Mt. Nebo, and then proceed to Madaba where we will see a unique Mosaic Map of Palestine. Visit the Great Crusaders Castles of Kerak before continuing to the ancient ‘Red Rose’ city of Petra. Petra overnight (BD)

DAY 5: WEDNESDAY 19 JUNE – PETRA EXPLORATION
A full day dedicated visit of the lost Nabataeans city of Petra. Start with a morning ride on a Bedouins guided horse (optional). Pass through the famous Siq - an immense sandstone which opens out to reveal the treasury. Continue to see hundreds of ancient Temples, Royal Tombs, Roman theatres and houses. Petra overnight (BD)

DAY 6: THURSDAY 20 JUNE – PETRA - WADI RUM - AQABA
Depart in the morning to the magical desert of Wadi Rum, home of “Lawrence of Arabia”. Enjoy a mint tea or cardamom coffee before touring this moon-like landscaped desert in a Bedouin driven jeep. Continue to Aqaba – Jordan’s Gate on the Red Sea. Aqaba overnight (BD)

DAY 7: FRIDAY 21 JUNE - AQABA
Today we enjoy a day at leisure by the Red Sea. Aqaba overnight (BD)

DAY 8: SATURDAY 22 JUNE – AQABA TO BETHLEHEM
Today we will be transferred to the border, crossing into the Holy Land of Israel. Journey north by coach to historical Masada where, on arrival, we will embark on the cable car offering spectacular scenery to the summit. We will have a guided tour of Herod’s fortress and the Zealot’s last stand. After this fascinating visit we will continue to Bethlehem. Bethlehem overnight (BD)

DAY 9: SUNDAY 23 JUNE – BETHLEHEM
We will visit the Church of Nativity built over the stable where Jesus was born. Bending low, we enter the church through the Door of Humility and descend into the Grotto of the Holy Manger. Time can be spent having a wander around the Manger Square where the famous Christmas Tree is shown to millions around the world at Christmas time. An orientation tour of Bethlehem University is planned where we will meet some of the Palestine students and hear their stories. We will hopefully be able to share lunch with the students which will be prepared by the hospitality school. Bethlehem overnight (BLD)

DAY 10: MONDAY 24 JUNE – BETHLEHEM TO TIBERIAS (VIA CAESAREA/HAIFA/AKKO
After breakfast we travel north to the crusader port city of Caesarea to see the maritime city built by Herod the Great and once the Roman capital of Israel. Visit the impressive excavations, the amphitheatre and the Herodian port. Continue north to the town of Haifa which is the largest city on Northern Israel, and the third largest city in the country. The Mediterranean Sea wraps around three sides of Haifa with intoxicating blue and gold beaches. We will stop to view the immaculately landscaped terraces of the Baha’i Gardens and, at their heart, the gold-domed Shrine of the Báb. We will carry onto Akko for some free time and lunch. Akko is an atmospheric old town surrounded by lofty fortifications. Much of its picturesque stone architecture has been preserved, making this one of the most interesting towns to explore in the country. Journey east to our hotel in Tiberias on the shores of Lake Galilee. Tiberias overnight (BD)

DAY 11: TUESDAY 25 JUNE – GALILEE & SURROUNDS
Today we will spend time in the Galilee area where we will visit Mt Tabor and Mt Beatitudes. Also visit the Nof Ginnosar Kibbutz, within which is preserved the remains of a first century fishing boat as in the days of Christ. We will then set off from the shore in a traditional sailing vessel on the Lake Galilee. A ‘Peters Fish’ lunch will be included today at a local restaurant. En route back to our hotel we will make a stop at Cana where married couples may take the opportunity to renew their wedding vows. Tiberias overnight (BLD)

DAY 12: WEDNESDAY 26 JUNE – GOLAN HEIGHTS
This morning we will travel to Mount Bental in the Golan Heights where the overlook provides stunning views of Mount Hermon and the Golan. Mount Bental is 1170 metres above sea level. We can see Mount Hermon 3,000 metres above sea level, several Druze villages as well as a network of old bunkers and trenches. We plan on doing a trek to one of the waterfalls before returning to Tiberias for our overnight accommodation. Tiberias overnight (BD)

DAY 13: THURSDAY 27 JUNE – VIA SAMARIA TO JERUSALEM
Departing Lake Galilee, we journey south through Samaria. We will stop for lunch at Sebastia (once called Samaria). No part of the Holy Land offers so many biblical glimpses as this stretch of the West Bank territory. One cannot fail to observe remains of terraces, originally built by the Israelites some 3000 years ago to increase the area of land available for planting. On the outskirts of Nablus we will visit Jacobs Well – “being wearied with his journey Jesus sat on the well and met the Samaritan woman from nearby Askar.” The well itself is in use to this day and is 32 metres deep. Time permitting, we will then have a stop at Taybeh where we can try the local beer at the Taybeh Beer Factory. Finally, we arrive in Jerusalem. Jerusalem overnight (BD)

DAY 14: FRIDAY 28 JUNE – JERUSALEM
We start our time in Jerusalem at the Israel Museum where we have an orientation viewing of the Second Temple scale model of Jerusalem. We will proceed to the Mt of Olives, enjoying a panoramic view over the city and a spectacular photo opportunity. We then enter the Jewish Cemetery for a guided walk. Exiting the cemetery, we commence our walk down the Palm Sunday Road. We will stop at Dominus Flevit and carry on to visit the Garden of Gethsemane before returning to our hotel for some free time. Jerusalem overnight (BD)

DAY 15: SATURDAY 29 JUNE – JERUSALEM
Today we pass through the walls of the Old City to the vicinity of the Temple Mount to view the Dome of the Rock, El Aqsa Mosque and the Western Wall. We will carry on to the Holy Sepulcher Church – we will walk the stairway climbing to the actual site where the Cross of Jesus once stood. The glass panels reveal the natural rock below which we may come to touch with our pilgrim hands. Also enter the Edicule containing the tomb where Our Lord rose from the dead. We will have some free time for lunch in the markets before we carry onto the Ecce Homo convent where we will be taken underneath the city. We enter the Muslim Quarter to the Pools of Bethesda. Jerusalem overnight (BD)

DAY 16: SUNDAY 30 JUNE – JERUSALEM
Early this morning we arise and set off by foot on the “Good Samaritan Track” through the stark desert landscape towards Jericho. En route we will visit the Monastery of St George and explore the amazing desert landscape (subject to weather conditions). We continue to Jericho the ‘City of Palms’ which is said to be the oldest inhabited city and most famous oasis. Across the valley we view the Mt of Temptation. Here in Jericho we can give our feet a well deserved rest and enjoy a traditional Palestinian meal. We will then be transferred back to our hotel for the remainder of the afternoon at leisure. Jerusalem overnight (BLD)

DAY 17: MONDAY 1 JULY – JERUSALEM
Today we visit the vicinity of the Temple Mount – the holiest site in Judaism. Afterwards we will continue to Mahande Yehuda. A tour full of flavors and fragrances in and around the market: Combining interesting stories, history, encounters with colourful characters and more. We will travel through the alleys of the market and taste locally made halva, homemade Jerusalem ice cream, natural health drinks and more. The tour gives you a taste of Jerusalem fragrances that combine the picturesque Nahlaot neighborhood and the market. Their authenticity is comprised of an entire mosaic of people, stalls, butcheries, galleries, synagogues, and restaurants that only the Machne Yehuda market and Nahlaot neighborhood can offer in one place. Jerusalem overnight (BD)

DAY 18: TUESDAY 2 JULY – JERUSALEM
Enjoy our final day in Jerusalem at leisure to explore at your own pace. Maybe visit the Yad Vashem Museum/Diamond Factory/Markets of the Old City. We will finish our journey with a special evening at the Notre Dame Cheese and Wine Restaurant which offers our guests a breathtaking view of the Jerusalem skyline. It’s the perfect place to unwind after a long day of touring. Relax while watching the setting sun cast its golden hue over the Old City with fine food and wine at hand. Jerusalem overnight (BD)

DAY 19: WEDNESDAY 3 JULY – DEPART THE HOLY LAND
Today we will be transferred across the border back in to Jordan and on to Amman Airport for our home-bound flight connections. Depart Jerusalem (B)


Harissa Lebanon

Optional Lebanon Extension 5 Days / 4 Nights


DAY 1: WEDNESDAY 3 JULY – ARRIVAL BEIRUT AIRPORT
Meet at the gate, by our friendly Airport staff who shall provide full assistance through immigration & custom. Transfer to hotel in Beirut. Beirut overnight (D)

DAY 2: THURSDAY 4 JULY – BEIRUT / DEIR EL-QAMAR / BEITEDDINE / BEIRUT
Drive to the Chouf-mountains then to Deir El-Qamar, a former ruler-residence, today a little village of full Charms whose landmark is sign the minaret of the Mosque Fakhreddins. Proceed to Beiteddine and Sightseeing of the palace, the little museum and the Mosaic-Exhibition. Beirut overnight (BD)

DAY 3: FRIDAY 5 JULY – BEIRUT / HARISSA / BYBLOS / BEIRUT
Sightseeing tour of the capital of Lebanon, Beirut, where the history reveals a long phase of different invasions. Drive along the seashore to the picturesque rocks of the pigeons’ Rock through Hamra commercial area to the National museum and the Martyr’s Square. Then drive along the coasts street to Harissa to take the Cable up toward the outstretched arms of the Virgin of Lebanon in Harissa – a breathtaking view to Jounieh and Beirut. Proceed to Byblos, the city of the most ancient port in the world. Visit the old Souks, Old ramparts, citadel, St. John Church and Roman amphitheater. Beirut overnight (BD)

DAY 4: SATURDAY 6 JULY – BEIRUT / BAALBECK/ ANJAR / BEIRUT
Drive through the Mount Lebanon via the Beka’a valley to discover Baalbeck, the small town outstanding for its acropolis considered among the most important Roman ruins ever built. Continue to Anjar, the unique fortified city in Lebanon dated back from Omayyad period. Beirut overnight (BD)

DAY 5: SUNDAY 7 JULY – TRANSFER TO BEIRUT AIRPORT FOR DEPARTURE
Transfer to Beirut Airport including our assistance during departure formalities. Depart Beirut (B)


cost
+ Tour Code: PV3819
+ Tour Begins/Ends: Amman, Jordan
+ Tour Cost in Twin Share: AUD $8650
+ Single Room Supplement: AUD $3600
+ Tipping Made Easy: AUD $15 pp/per day

post tour options
LEBANON (5 DAYS / 4 NIGHTS)
Tour Cost(Twin Share): AUD $1340
Single Room Supplement: AUD $360

Inclusions
Accommodation and Meals: Based on Superior accommodation • Most meals –18 Dinners / 18 Full Breakfasts / 3 Lunches.
Touring and Transportation: Deluxe Air Conditioned Coach touring • Local Guides • Sightseeing and Entrance Fees.
Other: Fully Escorted • Porterage at hotels • Harvest Backpack, Pilgrims Journal and Tour Wallet.

Insurance
CANCEL FOR ANY REASON COVER
Enjoy Peace of Mind against the unexpected when you take out cover with Harvest’s preferred Travel Insurance provider. Pay a nominal premium to access the new feature of “Cancel for Any Reason” cover to minimise your cancellation fees regardless of the reason for your withdrawal. Conditions Apply.

Questions? Call us

AU Free Call: 1800 819 156
NZ Free Call: 0800 819 156
USA Free Call: 1888 405 7920