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ANZACs in the Holy Land

A Holy Land Pilgrimage with optional extension to Egypt.

Amman (1 night), Dead Sea (1), Bethany, Mt Nebo, Petra (2), Aqaba (2), Tel Aviv (1), Caesarea, Haifa, Tiberias (4), Nazareth, Cana, Sea of Galilee, Jericho, Jerusalem (4), Bethlehem. Optional Egypt Extension: Cairo (3), Alexandria (2), El Alamein.
 
anzacs in the Holy Land

 
MEAL CODE: B: Breakfast   L: Lunch   D: Dinner
Day 1: FRIDAY 12th APRIL - DEPART FOR JORDAN

Day 2: SATURDAY 13th APRIL - ARRIVE AMMAN
Today we fly into Jordan’s capital Amman, a city liberated from the Ottomans by the allied forces in the Second Battle of Amman in September 1918. On arrival we will be taken on a city tour with highlights including the Citadel, Amphitheatre and King Abdullah Mosque as well as enjoy short walking tour through the old city to sample falafel and Knafeh amongst the locals. We will then proceed to our hotel for check-in.
Amman overnight (LD)

Day 3: SUNDAY 14th APRIL - AS SALT & DEAD SEA
This morning we visit the Royal Tank Museum which tells the story of tanks throughout history. The Museum houses over 110 tanks from Jordan and around the world. Time permitting, we visit the Martyrs Monument, which is a museum but also a memorial to The Martyrs, who gave their lives in service of Jordan since 1915. We proceed to the town of As Salt that was once a major trading hub during the time of the Ottoman Empire. Here we will visit the Turkish War Cemetery, the final resting place to over 300 Ottoman soldiers who fell during the First Battle of Amman in March 1918. We later continue south to our hotel on the shores of the Dead Sea. Here we will unwind and take the ideal opportunity to float in the salty waters said to have healing qualities.
Dead Sea overnight (BD)

Day 4: MONDAY 15th APRIL - BETHANY BEYOND THE JORDAN, MT NEBO & MADABA TO PETRA
Following breakfast we visit Bethany Beyond the Jordan, one of the most recent archaeological and religious discoveries. The five springs here form a tributary of the Jordan River and are believed to be the Baptismal site of Jesus by John the Baptist. So authentic is this site that Pope Francis chose this as an essential place to visit on his last pilgrimage to the Holy Land. Continue east by coach to ascend Biblical Mt Nebo. Here, at the site where the Old Testament opened its door to the land of the New, Moses looked over into the Promised Land and blessed Joshua who was to lead the Israelites under God’s protection (Joshua 1:6-9). Also see the stunning collection of Byzantine mosaics preserved within the shrine. His Holiness Benedict XVI, on his pilgrimage to the Holy Land in 2009, said this while here on Mt Nebo: “Here, on the heights of Mount Nebo, the memory of Moses invites us to ‘lift up our eyes’ to embrace with gratitude not only God’s mighty works in the past, but also to look with faith and hope to the future which he holds out to us and to our world.” Continue to Madaba and visit St Georges Church with its precious 6th century mosaic map of the Holy Land comprised of more than two million pieces. We then journey south along the Biblical Kings Highway to the magnificent ancient trading city of Petra known as the ‘Red Rose City’ and one of the new Seven Wonders of the World. Here we are positioned in the biblical land of Edom (Judges 11:17-18) for the next two nights. Time permitting, view Wadi Mujib – the Jordanian Grand Canyon en route to Petra.
Petra overnight (BD)

Day 5: TUESDAY 16th APRIL - PETRA EXPLORATION
Enjoy an unforgettable guided walking tour today through the ruins of ancient Petra – the city that the Nabateans carved out of solid rock dating back to 300 BC! Our visit will follow a passage through the Siq, a chasm created in a prehistoric earthquake. It is one of the special moments to walk through this canyon which dramatically opens up to reveal the Treasury Building (Al-Khazneh) - a never to be forgotten experience. We will see also the Roman Theatre, Corinthian tomb along with churches, homes and many other buildings from this fascinating period. The remainder of the afternoon will be at leisure.
Petra overnight (BD)

Day 6: WEDNESDAY 17th APRIL - VIA WADI RUM TO AQAB
Travel out today to Wadi Rum to experience something of the vastness and beauty of this desert region. A moonscape of ancient valleys and towering weathered sandstone mountains rise out of the pink and white coloured sand. Here we will witness the stunning grandeur of this place made famous in the film Lawrence of Arabia and more recently The Martian with Matt Damon. Join the adventure of a Bedouin-driven jeep ride deep into the valley. Continue to Aqaba to check in to our delightful hotel on the shores of the Red Sea.
Aqaba overnight (BD)

“This pilgrimage was the epitome of my spiritual life. It was something that I NEEDED to do!” — Wal Glynn

Day 7: THURSDAY 18th APRIL – (HOLY THURSDAY) AQABA
Enjoy the day at leisure to rest, swim and relax at our hotel by the Red Sea. Optional Class boat ride with lunch & Snorkeling.
Aqaba overnight (BD)

Day 8: FRIDAY 19th APRIL - (GOOD FRIDAY) AQABA TO TEL AVIV
We farewell Jordan today as we cross over the border into the Holy Land of Israel, affectionately known by Christians as the land of the fifth Gospel. Journeying north, we visit Be’er Sheba where we see Abraham’s Well, the park of the Australian Soldier and the War Cemetery. On the 31st October 1917, the Australian Light Horse were engaged in a battle that has been noted in the history books as the greatest charge by the Australian Light Horse. The fall of Be’er Sheba swayed the battle against the Turks in Palestine; it also changed the history of the Middle East War. We continue north to Israel’s capital Tel Aviv to check in to our hotel.
Tel Aviv overnight (BD)

Day 9: SATURDAY 20th APRIL - (HOLY SATURDAY) CAESAREA / HAIFA / AKKO TO TIBERIAS
Travel north this morning to the crusader port of Caesarea Maritima, built by Herod the Great. The centurion Cornelius was baptized here by Peter, becoming the first gentile convert to Christianity (Acts 10). Also see the harbour from which St Paul was taken to Rome. Continue to Haifa, the largest city in Northern Israel. Here the Mediterranean Sea wraps around three sides of Haifa with intoxicating blue and gold beaches. In this region we come to the Stella Maris Monastery at Mount Carmel where in the lower cave, Elijah was said to have meditated on his victory over the false prophets of Baal (1 Kings 18:1-40). We enjoy lunch here before visiting and paying our respects at the military cemetery where 29 Australians are buried. Onwards to Akko which was taken by the 5th Cavalry Division of the British Indian Army on 22 September 1918. Visit the Crusader Tunnels and enjoy some free time in the Akko markets before we journey east to Tiberias on the shores of Lake Galilee.
Tiberias overnight (BD)

Day 10: SUNDAY 21st APRIL - (EASTER SUNDAY) GOLAN HEIGHTS
We begin our day at Tabgha where we celebrate a joyful Easter Sunday Mass by the shore of the Sea of Galilee. Departing Galilee, we pass by Magdala where our exhausted troops in 1918 were ordered to travel through in order to get to the other side of the lake. Continuing north we reach the Golan Heights, where we ascend the summit of the volcanic cone of Mt Bental and enjoy a wonderful panoramic view out over the current country borders, the Hula Valley and Mt Hermon among other views of interest. Return to Galilee where we visit the Turkish Pilots Memorial as well as the Light Horse Memorial in Semakh where the 4th Light Horse Brigade were tasked with taking the village and railway station. Following the liberation of Be’er Sheba, 12,000 Australian Light Horsemen were part of the ‘Great Ride’ that took place in September 1918. Here they travelled from Jaffa up to Megiddo and through to Semakh and from there on to Damascus, defeating the Turks at every point. The end result was the final liberation of the Holy Land from the occupying Ottoman forces.
Tiberias overnight (BD)

Day 11: MONDAY 22nd APRIL - NAZARETH, CANA & SEA OF GALILEE
Travel out to Nazareth today, the town of Jesus’ childhood. On arrival we will enter inside the Basilica of the Annunciation where a traditional cave becomes the focal point as we ponder Mary’s response “Let it be done to me according to thy word” (Luke 1:38). Whilst in Nazareth we also visit the German Military Cemetery, where most of the German troops laid to rest here died in the September 1918 Battle of Nazareth. Travel on to the village of Cana where Jesus, at the request of His Mother, performed his first miracle transforming the water into wine at the wedding feast (Jn 2:1-11). Returning to the Sea of Galilee we enjoy a traditional ‘St Peter’s fish’ lunch to commemorate our Galilee experience. We then set off from the shore on-board a traditional sailing vessel for a spectacular Harvest highlight – a boat ride on Lake Galilee. Here we will float in quiet tranquility and reflect upon the miracles of Jesus calming the storm and appearing to the apostles walking on this very water.
Tiberias overnight (BD)

Day 12: TUESDAY 23rd APRIL - VIA MEGIDDO / NABLUS / JERICHO TO JERUSALEM
Departing Lake Galilee this morning, we proceed to Megiddo – site of the final Allied offensive of the Sinai and Palestine Campaign in WWI as well as the site of Armageddon - the epitome of the battle of the ages and according to the Scriptures (Revelation 16:13-16), will be the site of the final battle. From here we pass through Nablus which was captured by 5th Light Horse Brigade on 19 September. Continue south to Jericho the ‘City of Palms’ and said to be the oldest inhabited city in the world dating back to the first hunter-gatherers around 9000 BC. In February 1918 the 1st Light Horse Brigade entered the town almost unopposed. While in Jericho we stop by the famous Sycamore tree used to commemorate the story of the tax collector Zacchaeus who climbed the tree to see Jesus, only to be singled out above the crowds. (Lk 19:1-10), We also view the Mt of Temptation, where Christ was tempted by the devil during his 40 day fast. Travelling west through the dry rocky landscape of the Judean Desert we finally journey up to Jerusalem – the City of our God.
Jerusalem overnight (BLD)

Day 13: WEDNESDAY 24th APRIL - JERUSALEM & BETHLEHEM
We firstly visit Ein Karem, the birthplace of St John the Baptist and Church of the Visitation of Mary to Elizabeth “Why should I be honoured with a visit from the mother of my Lord?” (Lk 1:43). From here we come to the Church of the Nativity of St John the Baptist, built over a natural grotto to the left of the altar, identified as his actual birthplace. Here at Ein Karem the 10th Light Horsemen used to patrol. Make a sobering visit to the Yad Vashem (Holocaust History Museum) to learn about the tragic events where six million Jewish victims lost their lives during the atrocities of World War II. We then travel out to Bethlehem, the City of David. Visit Shepherd’s Field to commemorate the appearance of the angels to the shepherds on that first Christmas night (Lk 2:8–16). Our day will culminate at the Church of the Nativity, the oldest complete church in the Christian world (6th century) and birthplace of Jesus. Bow low and enter the grotto through the Door of Humility as we descend to the Holy Manger where a silver star in the floor marks the actual spot where Jesus was born. The star’s inscription reads in Latin: Hic de Virgine Maria Jesus Christus Natus Est (Here of the Virgin Mary Jesus Christ was born). Finally, we come to St Jerome’s Cave where in 386 AD the saint spent 30 years translating the scriptures from Hebrew into Greek and Latin producing the first vernacular version of the Bible!
Jerusalem overnight (BLD)

Day 14: THURSDAY 25th APRIL - JERUSALEM – ANZAC DAY
Arise early this morning to attend the Dawn Service at the Jerusalem War Cemetery. After breakfast back at our hotel we proceed up to the Mt of Olives to visit the ‘Pater Noster’ Church where Jesus taught His disciples the Lord’s Prayer (Mt 6:7–15). Enjoy a panoramic view over the city. Walk down the Palm Sunday Road to Dominus Flevit Church, built on the site where Jesus wept over Jerusalem (Lk 19:41–44). We then come down to the Garden of Gethsemane, where we will enter the Church of the Agony containing the rock upon which Jesus is said to have prayed before his arrest. Enjoy some free time this afternoon.
Jerusalem overnight (BD)

Day 15: FRIDAY 26th APRIL - JERUSALEM
We commence our day at the site of Calvary in the Church of the Holy Sepulchre. 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 Tomb of Christ, the site believed to be where Our Lord lay buried for three days before rising from the dead. We then come to the vicinity of the Temple Mount to view the Dome of the Rock, El Aqsa Mosque and the Western Wall (once known as the Wailing Wall). Your afternoon is at leisure to rest or explore the Old City at your own pace. For our final night together, we will enjoy a Special Celebration Dinner with spectacular views over all of Jerusalem.
Jerusalem overnight (BD)

Day 16: SATURDAY 27th APRIL – DEPART THE HOLY LAND
Today we will be transferred back over the border into Jordan and on to Amman airport for our connecting flights home or optional Egypt Extension. (B)

Day 17: SUNDAY 28th APRIL - ARRIVE AUSTRALIA/NZ

Anzacs in the Holy Land

OPTIONAL EGYPT 5-NIGHT EXTENSION
In 1915, Ottoman forces invaded the British province of Egypt, threatening the Suez Canal which was vital to the British Empire’s war effort in the First World War. Fighting continued around Suez and Sinai (north eastern Egypt) until British forces went on the offensive in mid-1916 clearing Sinai and launching a counter invasion into Ottoman-controlled Palestine in 1917.

Day 16: SATURDAY 27th APRIL – FLY TO CAIRO
Today we will be transferred back over the border into Jordan and transferred to Amman airport for our flight to Cairo. Upon arrival we will be met and transferred to our hotel.
Cairo overnight (BD)

Day 17: SUNDAY 28th APRIL – CAIRO
We begin our day visiting the great Pyramids at Giza, the 7th wonder of the world and the only one still in existence, before coming eye to eye with the inscrutable Sphinx. It was here in the Valley of the Pyramids that some of the ANZAC’s camped whilst in Cairo. We then continue to the ancient Egyptian capital of Memphis. Here will visit the museum that houses the giant statue of Ramses II. We then proceed to the city’s ancient necropolis, Sakkara, which is famous for its step pyramids. In the evening, attend the Cairo Sound & Light Show.
Cairo overnight (BLD)

Day 18: MONDAY 29th APRIL – CAIRO
This morning we will explore the world famous Egyptian Museum which houses the treasures of the “Boy King” – Tutankhamun, the mummy of Ramses II (thought to be the ruler of Egypt at the time of the Exodus) as well as some of the most famous ancient art pieces in the world. Continue to spend some time at the Heliopolis Memorial (Port Tewfik) commemorating the 4000 men who served and died with the Indian Army during WWI. We return to our hotel for the remainder of the afternoon at leisure.
Cairo overnight (BLD)

Day 19: TUESDAY 30th APRIL – CAIRO TO ALEXANDRIA
Today we farewell Cairo, travelling north to Alexandria, known locally as the Bride of the Mediterranean. On arrival our guided visit will include the Roman catacombs, consisting of three levels cut in the rock. Continue to Pompey’s Pillar - constructed in honour of the Emperor Diocletian at the end of the 4th century. See the Qaitbay Citadel built on the site of the ancient pharaohs of Alexandria and was once one of the wonders of the ancient world. Before checking in to our hotel we will visit the impressive Bibliotheca Alexandrina.
Alexandria overnight (BLD)

Day 20: WEDNESDAY 1st MAY – EL ALAMEIN
Travel out to El Alamein today where we will visit the Commonwealth War Cemetery. Here we can pay tribute to the Commonwealth burials of WWII (more than 7000). Continue to the El Alamein Military Museum. We return to Alexandria for the remainder of the afternoon at leisure.
Alexandria overnight (BLD)

Day 21: THURSDAY 2nd MAY – DEPART EGYPT
Today we will be transferred to Alexandria Airport for our homebound flight connections. (B)

Day 22: FRIDAY 3rd MAY - ARRIVE AUSTRALIA/NZ

 
cost
Tour Begins:
Amman, Jordan
Tour Ends:
Amman, Jordan
Tour Ends:
Alexandria, Egypt (extension)
Tour Code:
PV1619
Tour Cost:
AUD $7990 Twin Share
Single Room:
AUD $2190
Tipping:
AUD $150
Egypt Extension
 
Tour Code:
PV1619E
Tour Cost:
AUD $1990 Twin Share
Single Room:
AUD $490
Tipping:
AUD $60

Inclusions
Airfares: Economy class airfare from Sydney, Melbourne, Brisbane, Perth, Adelaide to Amman & return (N.B. Airlines taxes are included on standard itinerary and subject to fluctuations).

Accommodation & Meals: Based on a combination of 3, 4 & 5 star accommodation throughout with breakfast, dinner daily & some lunches.

Miscellaneous Inclusions: Deluxe Air-Conditioned Motor coach with driver • Full time Australian group escort • Full Time local tour guides • Sightseeing and entrance fees throughout itinerary • Visa Costs (for Australian/NZ Passport Holders) • porterage of 1 piece of luggage per person at hotels.

Not Included: Passport • Prepaid tipping • Other meals not stated • Items of a personal nature including phone calls, laundry, beverages, etc. • Travel insurance (Harvest will recommend a special group policy rate).

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.

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