Rabbi Jeffrey Bennett
Exploring Israel on Temple Sinai‛s Adult Tour
Led by Rabbi Jeffrey Bennett
October 22 – November 2, 2017
Sunday, 22 October – USA Departure Overnight flight to Israel
Monday, 23 October – Going up into the Land – Afternoon arrival in Israel to be met and assisted by your ITC representative. Tour the alleys of Old Jaffa, the ancient port city once known as the Gate of Zion. Shekhiyanu-Welcome ceremony on top of Tel Jaffa overlooking modern Tel Aviv. Check-in to the Metropolitan Hotel on Tel Aviv’s Mediterranean Coast. Welcome dinner and orientation at Maganda Yemenite Restuarant. Overnight: Metropolitan Hotel, Tel Aviv
Tuesday, 24 October – The Hebrew City and the Jewish State – Walking tour of historic “Little Tel Aviv” – Discover the quaint Neve Tzeddek neighbourhood that gave birth to the “first Hebrew city in 2,000 years”. Relive David Ben Gurion declaring the new State of Israel at Independence Hall. Hear about the establishment of Tel Aviv at the Founders’ Monument then stroll down Rothschild Boulevard to view the Bauhaus architecture for which central Tel Aviv’s “White City” was declared a UNESCO World Heritage Site. Lunch on your own and free time to explore the Nachalat Binyamin crafts fair. While there checkout the nearby Carmel Market and bohemian Sheinkin Street – All Three of these Tel Aviv icons meet at the “Magen David Junction”. Travel to Rehovot for a guided tour of the Ayalon Institute – an underground bullet factory used by Jewish forces before the founding of the State of Israel. Free time to swim in the Mediterranean Sea and enjoy beach side Promenade. Free evening. Dinner on own.
Overnight: Metropolitan Hotel, Tel Aviv
Wednesday, 25 October – Along the Mediteranean Coast – Depart for northern Israel. Visit the ruins of Caesarea, including its Roman Theater, Amphitheater, Hippodrome and Promontory Palace. Ponder a rabbinic debate over Jews attending gladiator games. Look out from the top of the Bahai Gardens on Mt. Carmel in Haifa for a panoramic view of the region. Lunch on own. Explore the old synagogues and picturesque alleys of the mystical city of Tzfat – Discover the origins of our Friday night service where Lecha Dodi was written. Check–in to the Kibbutz Lavi Hotel on Kibbutz Lavi in the Galilee. Overnight: Kibbutz Lavi.
Thursday, 26 October – Ancient and Modern Geopolitics and Natural Wonder – Tour of the strategic Golan Heights to visit bunkers where the Syrian army used to look down at Israel below. Then look out from the peak of Mt. Bental to gain a special perspective on Israel’s complex geopolitics.
Lunch on own. Walk in the lush Tel Dan Nature Reserve, one of the sources of the Jordan River, where you’ll discover biblical intrigue and one of the oldest arches in the world. Visit Agamon Hahuleh, described as a “paradise for birds and people” to see thousands of migrating birds coming to roost for the night. Dinner at hotel. Overnight: Kibbutz Lavi.
Friday, 27 October – Across Israel: A Multicultural Jewish Society – Tour of Lavi led by a local kibbutznik to hear about kibbutz life.
Discover Ethiopian Jewish culture at the Germachin Center in Beit Shean. Hear a personal account of this community’s modern day Exodus story and about the challenges facing the Ethiopian Israeli community today. Lunch on own. Continue south through the Jordan Valley and ascend to Jerusalem. Check-in to the Prima Kings Hotel in Jerusalem. Free time to relax and prepare for Shabbat. Join hundreds of other Jews from around the world to Greet the Sabbath at the Western Wall. Option to pray as a congregation at the “Egalitarian Kotel”, where men and women can stand together. Festive Shabbat Dinner at hotel. Overnight: Prima Kings Hotel, Jerusalem
Shabbat/Saturday, 28 October – And on the Seventh Day… in Jerusalem – Optinal Shabbat morning services – To be determined with Rabbi Bennett. Walk on the Walls of the Old City of Jerusalem from Jaffa Gate to the Jewish Quarter or Mt. Zion. Traditional Shabbat Lunch at hotel
Free time to relax or explore on own. Shabbat afternoon options: Afternoon walking tour to the historic Montefiore Windmill to discover the first neighbourhood built outside the walls of the Old City. AND/OR: Walking tour to First Temple period burial site at Ketef Hinnom – Where archaeologists discovered the oldest biblical text ever found. Havdalah with Rabbi Bennett. Free evening. Dinner on own. Recommendation for the evening: Visit the First Station Compound, Jerusalem’s restored Ottoman railway station turned restaurant – cafe area.
Overnight: Prima Kings Hotel, Jerusalem
Sunday, 29 October – The Old City of Jerusalem: An Ancient Jewish Legacy – Please choose one of the following two ancient Jerusalem touring options for group: Explore the City of David, including its ancient water systems, using the Bible and archaeology to reveal chapters from the city’s ancient past. AND/OR: Discover the archaeological story of the Western Wall and episodes of Jewish life 2,000 years ago at Robinson’s Arch and the Southern Wall Excavations, including a recent discovery related to the Channukah story. Visit the Western Wall and connect to an ancient Jewish legacy. Walk through the Western Wall Tunnels to discover underground Jerusalem. Lunch on own. Tour of Jewish Quarter including the Herodian Mansions, Cardo, Broad Wall and Rooftops followed by free time to shop and explore on own. Free evening. Dinner on own. Recommendation for the evening: Checkout the Ben Yehuda Street pedestrian mall in downtown Jerusalem. Overnight: Prima Kings Hotel, Jerusalem
Monday, 30 October – Masada and the Dead Sea: Freedom Fighters or Fanatics? – Set out early across the Judean Desert and ascend Masada by cable car to tour the ruins of Herod’s palace and the last outpost of Jewish independence. Discussion: Which Jewish Legacy – Masada or Yavne?
Swim in the Dead Sea, the lowest place on earth, at a local resort. The resort also has a fresh water pool and spa facilities. Massage and spa treatments available by prior reservation at own expense. Lunch at Dead Sea resort. Time permitting: Walk in Ein Gedi Nature Reserve opportunity to bath in waterfalls and hear how David hid there from King Saul. Return to Jerusalem. Free ewvening. Dinner on own.
Overnight: Prima Kings Hotel, Jerusalem
Tuesday, 31 October – Holocaust, Remembrance and Continuity – Guided tour of Yad Vashem – Israel’s national Holocaust memorial and museum, including the Historical Museum and Children‛s Memorial. Lunch on own. See the world renown Chagall Windows at Hadassah Hospital.
Meaningful visit to the Mt. Herzl Cemetery to discover chapters in the history of Israel at the graves of Yitzhak Rabin, Golda Meir, Theordore Herzl and Hannah Senesch. Tasting tour of the raucous Machane Yehuda Market using “Shuk Bites”. Watch the Night Spectacular – Sound and light show at the Tower of David. Overnight: Prima Kings Hotel, Jerusalem
Wednesday, 1 November – Jerusalem: Capital of Israel – See the Knesset Menorah, a remarkable bronze sculpture depicting scenes from Jewish history. Tour of the Knesset Building to learn about Israel’s democratic system. Visit the Israel Museum to see the Dead Sea Scrolls in the Shrine of the Book and the Model of Jerusalem in the first century. Free time to explore additional exhibitions on own – Recommendations: Modern Israeli art, Synagogue interiors in the Judaica section and the Archaeology Wing. Lunch on own. Remainder of afternoon free to explore on own and get in last minute shopping. Late check-out. Farewell dinner at Olive and Fish Restaurant. Transfer to Ben Gurion Airport – See you again soon!
Thursday, 2 November – Arrive in USA – Begin planning your next Israel trip with Rabbi Bennett and ITC Tours
Land Only $2795
Land and Air* Package
$4035 Single Room Supplement add: $780
Third person over 18 in triple room: subtract $120
Added to the above pricing are tips for Guide, Driver, Restaurants and Porterage $190 per person