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18 Day Exploring Egypt and Israel
 
Take a cruise on the Nile as part of your journey through Egypt and Israel, and experience what this river, the longest in the world, means to Egypt as a religious, cultural, political and sustainable part of its society. Explore pyramids and mosques, ancient synagogues and markets during your tour through this ancient civilization. Take the time to encounter with the locals from both countries, gaining their understanding of the places and issues of their people and societies.
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Tour Highlights

  • Entrance to a Giza pyramid
  • Visit to the Egyptian Museum
  • Visit to the Solar Boat Museum
  • Visit to the Valley of the Kings and Queens
  • Visit to the Temple of Horus
  • Sailing on a felucca
  • Israel: An Inside View of the Unique Character of the Country Active discussion and walking tour with your tour educator
  • Kibbutz Ideology and Israeli Reality in the 21st Century, night walk and dialogue
  • Participate in a program focused on kabbalah through artwork
  • Kabbalat Shabbat services at a Reform synagogue in Jerusalem, followed by a dialogue with Israeli members of the congregation
  • An Inside View into the Israeli Political Arena, dialogue with a Political Analyst
  • Special tour to the Western Wall Tunnels and the City of David
  • The new Davidson Center in Jerusalem
  • The refurbished Yad Vashem complex in Jerusalem
  • Visit Masada and swim in the Dead Sea
  • Rafting on the Jordan River (seasonal)
  • Jeep tour on the Golan Heights
  • Stars of Caesarea interactive center

 

Trip Includes


  • 17 nights accommodation in selected hotels
  • 2 nights Cairo
  • 4 nights on a luxury cruise ship
  • 2 nights Cairo
  • 1 night Tel Aviv
  • 2 nights Galilee
  • 1 night Haifa
  • 3 nights Jerusalem
  • Breakfast daily and 17 dinners and lunches as per itinerary
  • Sightseeing per itinerary in a modern air-conditioned motor coach with panoramic windows, reclining seats and footrests
  • Services of a friendly and professional English-speaking Expedition Educator throughout the trip
  • Entrance fees per itinerary
  • All hotel and airport portage and tipping included

DAY ONE: Friday
DEPARTURE

  • Depart the U.S. to Egypt.

Overnight: Flight


DAY TWO: Saturday
ARRIVAL TO CAIRO
  • Arrive at Cairo International Airport.
  • Welcome by our representative and assistance with arrival formalities.
  • Transfer to the hotel and check in. (Transfer from airport to hotel is included.)
  • Dinner at the hotel.

Overnight: Cairo


DAY THREE: Sunday
CAIRO: RELIGION & SOCIAL EXPOSURE

  • Breakfast at your hotel.
  • Tour the Cairo Museum, home to more than 120,000 artifacts.
  • Tour Old Cairo, and the late 19th century Ibn Ezra Synagogue where the Cairo Geniza was discovered. The Geniza housed more than 200,000 fragments of Jewish manuscripts dating from the 9th - 19th centuries, offering a wealth of information both scholarly and historical.
  • Visit Coptic Cairo - the Hanging or El Muallaqa Church and the Coptic Museum.
  • Mosques of Cairo - see either the Ibn Tulun Mosque, the oldest in Egypt and one of the largest in the world or the Sultan Hassan Mosque, a colossal campus including both Mosque, Madrasa and Mausoleum.
  • Dinner at a local restaurant.

Overnight: Cairo


DAY FOUR: Monday
CAIRO- LUXOR

  • Breakfast at your hotel.
  • Check out of the hotel - depart for the airport and early morning flight to Luxor, the ancient Egyptian city of Thebes and vast site of New Kingdom ruins - temples, tombs and monuments. 
  • Arrive in Luxor and board the cruise ship.
  • Lunch aboard the cruise ship.
  • Visit the Temple of Karnak or Ipet-Isut - a vast complex of buildings covering about 200 acres; its sheer hugeness of scale is overwhelming.
  • Cross to the West Bank of the Nile and the Valley of the Kings and Queens - see the magnificent Temple of Queen Hatshepsut at Deir-El Bahri and the 60-foot Colossi of Memnon, the twin statues of Pharaoh Amenhotep III from the 14th century BCE.
    Temple of Luxor - built during the New Kingdom, on the east bank of the Nile, it was dedicated to the three popular worship figures of the time.
  • Afternoon tea on board.
  • Dinner on board followed by a belly-dancing performance

Overnight: Sonesta St. George, Cruise


DAY FIVE: Tuesday
LUXOR- ESNA

  • Sail to Esna, ancient Upper Kingdom Egyptian city with remains from the later Ptolemaic period as well.
  • Breakfast on board.
  • Morning at leisure.
  • Lunch and afternoon tea on board.
  • Captain's welcome cocktail party in the evening.
  • Evening entertainment - Dinner and dancing.

Overnight: Sonesta St. George, Cruise


DAY SIX: Wednesday
ESNA- KOM OMBO

  • Breakfast on board.
  • Morning at leisure.
  • Lunch on board.
  • Afternoon: visit Edfu's Temple of Horus - second in size only to the Temple of Karnak in Luxor, it is also the best-preserved temple in Egypt and when first discovered in 1798, was buried under 39 feet of Nile river silt.
  • Return to the ship for afternoon tea and sail to Kom Ombo.
  • Dinner and galabya party on board.

Overnight: Sonesta St. George, Cruise


DAY SEVEN: Thursday
KOM OMBO- ASWAN

  • Breakfast on board.
  • Visit the temple shared by the two goddesses, Sobek and Haroeis, in Kom Ombo, ancient Egyptian remains from the Pharaoh and Ptolemaic periods as well.
  • Visit the High Dam in Aswan, representing thousands of years of man's attempts to control the Nile, as well as the nearby Granite Quarries in use since the time of the Pharaohs.
  • Temple of Philae - a UNESCO World Heritage Site, this ancient temple complex was moved in the early 1970s from the Philae islands to Agilkai, about 1/3 of a mile away in order to save it from the dam's flood waters.
  • Sail the Nile on a felucca - a traditional-style, wooden boat with triangular sails. Pass by Kitchener's Island, or the Island of Plants, and the Agha Khan Mausoleum on the west bank of the Nile near Aswan.
  • Afternoon tea on board.
  • Dinner on board.
  • Evening entertainment - Nubian folklore show.

Overnight: Sonesta St. George, Cruise


DAY EIGHT: Friday
ABU SIMBEL (Optional)

  • Breakfast on cruise ship.
  • Check out and disembarkation.
  • Flight from Aswan to Cairo for a day at leisure.

OR

  • Optional tour to Abu Simbel to view the four 65-foot figures guarding the Temple of Ramses II.
  • Flight: Aswan-Abu Simbel-Cairo
  • Return to Cairo.

Overnight: Cairo


DAY NINE: Saturday
CAIRO: SAKKARA, PYRAMIDS & SPHINX
  • Breakfast at your hotel.
  • Morning tour of the Necropolis of Sakkara (City of the Dead). Located on the western bank of the Nile, this vast cemetery was the royal burial place of choice for the ancient capital of Memphis. Visit Djoser's Step Pyramid, Egypt's oldest burial complex and the 35-foot tall statue of Ramses II nearby.
  • Lunch on your own.
  • The Great Pyramid of Giza, also known as Khufu's Pyramid or Pyramid of Cheops, it is the only remaining wonder of the original Seven Wonders of the World. Visit Giza and the three adjoining Pyramids, the Sphinx and the nearby Solar Boat Museum, which houses the reconstructed boat that was used to transport Pharaoh Khufu's remains across the Nile to his burial place, 4,600 years ago.
  • Dinner on your own.

Overnight: Cairo


DAY TEN: Sunday
CAIRO / TEL AVIV
  • Breakfast at the hotel.
  • Transfer to the Cairo International Airport.
  • Flight to Tel Aviv (Flights are included).
  • Welcome by our representative and assistance with arrival formalities.
  • Transfer to Tel Aviv, known as the “city that never sleeps” with its centers of culture and recreation such as the Habima Theater, sprawling beaches, Dizengoff Street and Rabin Square. Airport transfer included.
  • Check into the hotel.
  • Free day to acclimate to Israel.

Overnight: Tel Aviv


DAY ELEVEN: Monday
TEL AVIV
  • Breakfast at the hotel.
  • Enjoy a free day in Tel Aviv, sometimes known as the Big Orange.
  • Walk the busy streets, have a cup of coffee and sit by the beach.
  • Meet your Expedition director and fellow travelers and enjoy a Middle Eastern style dinner with a Yemenite touch at Maganda, offering a varied selection of salads and grilled meats, and located in the Yemenite Quarter of Tel Aviv.

Overnight: Tel Aviv


DAY TWELVE: Tuesday
ALONG THE COAST
  • Breakfast at your hotel.
  • Check out and departure.
  • Begin the day with an introduction and special visit to Independence Hall, site of David Ben Gurion's monumental proclamation of the State of Israel in December 1948.
  • Stroll down Rothschild Boulevard, Tel Aviv's Bauhaus architecture district that is recognized as a UNESCO World Heritage site and led to Tel Aviv's other name, the ‘White City'.
  • Visit the Nachalat Binyamin pedestrian mall, with its restored buildings and sidewalk artists, and continue onto the colorful Carmel Market and then to Sheinkin, a trendy Tel Aviv shopping street.
  • Lunch on your own.
  • Depart Tel Aviv.
  • Guided visit to Caesarea, one of ancient Israel's most important cities during the Roman Period. Visit the Herodian Theater and new excavations along the Mediterranean shore, concluding with a visit to the 900-year-old Crusader city built on the same site.
  • Walk through the 2,000-year-old underground water tunnels at Park Alona, which once brought water to Caesarea (weather permitting, water shoes recommended) or guided visit to Zichron Ya'acov, one of the first communities established by the early Zionist pioneers, including a walk along the colorful Pedestrian Mall or Wine tasting at a local winery.
  • Check into your kibbutz guesthouse.
  • Dinner at the guesthouse.

Overnight: Kibbutz guesthouse, Upper Galilee


DAY THIRTEEN: Wednesday
NATURE AND SECURITY
  • Breakfast at your kibbutz guesthouse.
  • Walk through the Tel Dan Nature Reserve located on the largest tributary of the Jordan River and near the biblical settlement of the tribe of Dan.
  • Take a jeep tour climbing into the Golan Heights, following in the footsteps of IDF soldiers and their battles in the Six Day War, Enjoy the beautiful, natural scenery and gain insight into the strategic complexity of the Golan, followed by a tour of the Golan Heights.
  • Cross the Golan Plateau to the border with Syria and observe the abandoned city of Kuneitra and the United Nations outpost located nearby.
  • Lunch on your own.
  • Enjoy rafting or kayaking on the Jordan River (weather permitting, water shoes recommended) or visit the Hula Nature Reserve and the Ophoria Interactive Experience, connecting birds, water and the Zionist endeavor.
  • Da'at Encounter: Dialogue with a kibbutz member.
  • Return to your kibbutz for dinner at the guesthouse.

Overnight: Kibbutz guesthouse, Upper Galilee


DAY FOURTEEN: Thursday
THE GALILEE AND THE CARMEL
  • Breakfast at your kibbutz guesthouse.
  • Check out and departure.
  • Explore Safed, ancient and modern center of Jewish mysticism, and the city's contemporary artists' colony, including guided visits to: The Ari, Caro or Abuhav synagogues with their great stories and mystical messages, followed by a shopping stroll through the quaint artists' colony and galleries.
  • Drive north to Rosh Hanikra, a collection of rock grottoes at the very northern tip of Israel. Rosh Hanikra was created when the strong Mediterranean waters carved subterranean tunnels out of the soft limestone rock, creating beautiful caves and formations.
  • Lunch on your own.
  • Visit Acre (Akko), a UNESCO Heritage Site with history ranging from the Crusader period into modern times. The tour includes guided visits to the newly renovated Crusader city, Jezzar Pasha Mosque, one of the most important mosques of Israel's Muslim community, and the Ottoman Fortifications around the city.
  • Da'at Encounter:Visit a Druze village in the Carmel Mountains for a window into the unique world of the Israeli Druze community, including dinner at a Druze home.
  • Drive to Haifa and check into your hotel.
  • Evening at leisure.

Overnight: Haifa


DAY FIFTEEN: Friday
THE LAYERS OF JERUSALEM
  • Breakfast at your hotel.
  • Check out and departure.
  • Stand on top of Mount Carmel for a scenic overlook of the Haifa Bay and Bahai Gardens and Shrine, one of the holiest sites of the Bahai religion.
  • Drive to Jerusalem via the Trans-Israel Highway for a close up view of the ‘Security Barrier' along the seam line between Israel and the Palestinian territories.
  • Upon entering Jerusalem stop to recite the ‘shehechiyanu' blessing, traditionally recited upon entering Jerusalem, followed by an introduction to the city.
  • Guided visit through the Old City of Jerusalem, travelling through 3,000 years of Jewish life.
  • Experience the sites, smells, and tastes of Jerusalem while walking through the Machaneh Yehuda market, with lunch on your own.
  • Check into your hotel.
  • Optional Kabbalat Shabbat services at local synagogues in Jerusalem, on your own.
  • Festive Shabbat dinner.

Overnight: Jerusalem


DAY SIXTEEN:  Saturday
SHABBAT IN JERUSALEM (NO GUIDE)
 
  • Breakfast at your hotel.
  • Optional Shabbat services.
  • Optional Day visit to Masada and the Dead Sea, with lunch on own (optional with additional cost).
  • Afternoon at leisure.
  • Enjoy dinner on your own in Jerusalem, at a choice of a wide array of restaurants.

Overnight: Jerusalem


DAY SEVENTEEN: Sunday
HEAVENLY AND EARTHLY JERUSALEM
  • Da'at FitnessWalkabout Jerusalem: Integrate Wellness and fitness into your trip experience with your athletic trainer in Liberty Bell Park.
  • Early breakfast at your hotel.
  • Guided visit through the newly renovated Yad Vashem complex, the Jewish National Memorial to the
    six million Jews who perished in the Holocaust, including the new Historical Museum, the Children's Memorial, and a memorial service.
  • Lunch on your own.
  • Return to the Old City and experience the special energy at the Western Wall (the Kotel), followed by a visit to the Western Wall Tunnel, the underground continuation of the Western Wall alongside the Temple Mount.
  • Guided visit through the City of David's new excavations, which have redefined the origins of Jerusalem and wade through the 2,600-year-old Hezekiah's Water Tunnel in the Kidron Valley (depending on weather conditions. Water shoes recommended).
  • Da'at Encounter: Israeli Society @ 2011 Dialogue with a scholar.
  • Enjoy dinner at Olive & Fish, a meat and fish restaurant, located across from the Liberty Bell Gardens.

Overnight: Jerusalem


DAY EIGHTEEN: Monday
RETURN TO THE U.S.
  • Breakfast at your hotel.
  • Check out and departure.
  • Transfer to Ben Gurion International Airport for your flight to the U.S. (arrival on the same day).
  • Tour prices are per person in U.S. dollars. All hotel accommodations, motor coach transportation, special dinners, sightseeing, admissions, luggage handling and the services of local guides, drivers, and the Expedition Educator are included.
  • Hotel Accommodations: The tour price includes all hotel accommodations, in hotel rooms with private baths. Our standard is to provide the best available hotels while considering value. Although the level of the accommodations may differ slightly from hotel to hotel, we are committed to your comfort. Two-bed rooms are reserved in most hotels. Triples are two-bed rooms with a rollaway cot where available and are not recommended when considering the comfort of those in the room. King-size beds are not available in most hotels; what is considered king-size usually consists of two single beds pushed together and made up separately, but with one headboard. Some two-bed rooms may have two twin - not full- or queen-size - beds.
  • Meals are included as specified in the itinerary.
  • Expedition Educator: All trips are conducted by our Expedition Educators or local guides who remain with the group throughout the tour.
  • Gratuities Included: All gratuities for restaurant and hotel staff.
  • Luggage Responsibility: All tour packages allow one piece of luggage per person and one carry-on bag. Excess luggage will be subject to charge of up to $100 per piece. The Travel Agent and/or Tour Operator shall not be held responsible for any damage to or loss of luggage/personal items. All damage/loss must be reported at time of incident and documented in writing by local authorities for submission to your insurance company.


Not Included


  • Airfare to the tour departure point and from the tour ending point is not included. Airfare may be purchased from us for travel originating in the United States. Please see Flights tab in the right-side toolbar.
  • Personal Expenses: All personal expenses such as: laundry, valet service, cables, telephone calls and postage are not included.
  • Guide and Driver Gratuities:
    • 4 seater - $70  (i.e. 2 pax) - per day
    • 7 seater - $90 (i.e. 3-5 pax) - per day
    • 10 seater - $110 (i.e. 5-7 pax) - per day
    • 10-19 passengers: Guide $10, driver $5 - per participant per day
    • 20 passengers and more: Guide $8, driver $4 - per participant per day 


       

Additional Information


  • Airline Security Measures: In the U.S., you must provide identification in the form of a passport at the time of airport check-in for travel to international destinations. Your passport name must match the name on your tour reservation and airline ticket or you may be denied boarding.
  • If you are traveling from an airport outside the jurisdiction of the U.S, you will need to determine what travel documentation and identification is required for that particular airport.
  • Due to heightened security regulations, certain items such as a metal nail file, pocketknife, cigarette lighter or tweezers, and some liquid, gel, or aerosol items may not be permitted in your carry-on luggage. Please call your airline prior to departure to obtain current information on non-permissible carry-on items and recommended airport check-in times. You may also wish to visit the Transportation Security Administration website atwww.tsa.govto obtain more information on acceptable identity documentation and prohibited luggage items.
  • Holidays and Museum Closures - Museum visits and personal shopping time may be disrupted due to unforeseen circumstances or the many religious, state and local holidays locally observed in the destinations being visited.
  • Photography During Tours: We will occasionally use photographs taken by fellow guests or your trip director for promotional purposes. If you prefer that your photo not be used in any marketing activities, please notify us at the start of your tour.
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