The Itinerary for the Orchard Hill Church 10 Day Biblical Israel Tour (with a service day & southern Israel 4 day option)
All Inclusive Price: $4,047 from Pittsburgh. $3,759 from JFK, NY. $3,277 for “land only” travelers. The optional “service day & southern Israel extension is $1,052.
NOTE: This is an exclusive tour for the Orchard Hill Church of Wexford, PA (link HERE). At this time, registration is currently only open to attenders and friends of Orchard Hill. The tour is led by Dr. John DeLancey and Pastor Mike Hatch of Orchard Hill Church. This tour will be limited to one bus.
Registration Details for this Israel Tour
On-Line Registration Form
(This link will take you directly to the web site of our Holyland travel agent, imagine Tours & Travel. This is a safe & secure way to place your $500 deposit instantly with your credit card and reserve your spot on this tour. Please enter the tour code – OrchardHill18 – to register for this trip).)
Price of this Holyland Tour includes: Airfare & US & Int’l Departure-fuel taxes ($590), gratuities ($145), hotels, 2 meals daily on land, and all entry fees. $4,047 from Pittsburgh includes the domestic flight to and from JFK, NY (additional departure cites available upon request). The optional “service day” (with Bridges for Peace) & southern Israel price of $1,052 includes the expenses related to the day of service and tips. The land only price for the Israel tour includes all the above except the airfare. Sign-up deadline: July 12, 2018.
Early Bird Discounts: With your deposit of $500 to reserve your spot on this Israel tour, you will earn the following discounts off the overall price: $70 for deposits made before 1/12/18; $60 before 2/12/18; and $50 before 3/12/18.
This Israel tour features over 40+ sites! We first drive north to the Galilee. On the way we will see both OT and NT sites. We spend 3 nights in the Galilee. This is the area for the home ministry base of Jesus. We then drive south through the Samaritan Hill Country to the Dead Sea area before ending the trip in Jerusalem. We see lots of sites here, including many sites related to both OT and NT Jerusalem and the life and ministry of Jesus. The optional extension includes a “service day” with Bridges for Peace in Jerusalem. We also travel south to see even more genuine biblical sites.
The Israel Tour Itinerary:
DAY 1 – FRIDAY, OCTOBER 12: DEPART U.S.A.
Tour members meet for our ight. After dinner is served, sit back and relax, enjoying the on-board entertainment as you prepare for this exciting adventure of a lifetime.
DAY 2 – SATURDAY, OCTOBER 13: TEL AVIV, JAFFA, NETANYA
Upon arrival at Ben Gurion Airport, we meet our local Israeli representative who assists us with baggage and transfers us to our motor coach. We take a short drive to our hotel in Netanya for dinner and overnight beside the beautiful Mediterranean Sea. On the way, we make a brief stop in Jaffa, the home of the Jonah and Peter’s stories (Jonah 1, Acts 9 & 10).
DAY 3 – SUNDAY, OCTOBER 14: CAESAREA, CARMEL, MEGIDDO, PRECIPICE OF NAZARETH, TIBERIAS
After breakfast, we journey north along the coast to Caesarea, built 2000 years ago by King Herod. We walk through the ancient theater, the Crusader city and the fantastic aqueduct that served as a back drop for the book of Acts. From here we depart to Mt. Carmel (1 Kings 18), site of Elijah’s confrontation with the prophets of Baal. Then we proceed to Megiddo (Armageddon; 1 Kings 9:15; Rev. 16:16). Across the Jezreel Valley is the precipice of Nazareth (Luke 1 and 4). We end our day here as we are introduced to the life and ministry of Jesus in this area. Driving through Cana (John 2), we finally arrive at the outskirts of Tiberias (John 6:23). We arrive at our “kibbutz-hotel” located right on the Sea of Galilee shoreline. After dinner, we enjoy sitting together for a time of fellowship and worship.
DAY 4 – MONDAY, OCTOBER 15: GAMLA, QATZRIN, SYRIAN BORDER, CAESAREA PHILIPPI, DAN
We begin the day by driving into the Golan Heights. Stopping on the northeast corner of the Sea of Galilee, we are able to see the area of Bethsaida and the location where the Feeding of the 5,000 took place (John 6). Then our next site is Gamla, a Jewish city that was taken by the Romans during the Revolt in the 60’s A.D. Here we see a first century synagogue (one of seven that date to the first century), as well as the ruins of the city, called the “Masada of the north.” Close by is the site of Qatzrin, a partially reconstructed Talmudic village. We see what a typical village looked like during the days of Jesus. Sitting in a reconstructed stone house, we’ll read from Mark 2 about the lame man being lowered down to Jesus through the roof. Driving along the northern border, we will stop and look into southern Syria. Here we learn about the modern wars of Israel, primarily the 1967 and 1973 wars with Syria. Next, we drive past Mt. Hermon (Psalm 133) and descend the Golan Heights and visit Caesarea Philippi. It was here Jesus asked His disciples, “Who do you say I am?” (Mt. 16). Nearby is the amazing nature preserve and archaeological site of Dan, one of the sources of the Jordan River. We walk through this quiet national park and hear the stories of disobedience that took place here (Judges 18, 1 Kings 12). We end the day by driving back through the Huleh Valley to our hotel in Tiberias. After dinner, we meet down by the water’s edge once again to review the day.
DAY 5 – TUESDAY, OCTOBER 16: ARBEL, MAGDALA, CHORAZIM, CAPERNAUM, SEA OF GALILEE BOAT RIDE, MT. OF BEATITUDES
We begin the day by visiting Arbel, a mountain on the northwest corner of the Sea of Galilee. We will have the option to hike to the top of this 800-foot cliff (the bus will take others to the top from the other side). The view from the top is the best there is of the whole Sea of Galilee below! From here we drive to Chorazim, one of the three cities condemned by Jesus (Mt. 11). We see the basaltic ruins of this city, including a synagogue dating to the 3rd century AD. Close by on the water’s edge is Capernaum, the home center of ministry for Jesus here in Galilee. Here we read about the many stories related to the ministry of Jesus in the 4th-5th century AD synagogue. We also spend some reflection time on the shoreline. It was in this area where Jesus called His first disciples. After lunch we enjoy a boat ride on the Sea of Galilee, with a quiet and peaceful worship service. Upon landing, we also see the “Jesus boat” from the first century, a vessel found here along the shores of Galilee in 1986. We end the day by reading from Matthew 5 on the Mount of Beatitudes. We walk down the pathway, recollecting the transforming words of Jesus shared in this place. We return to our hotel for dinner and an optional gathering once again by the water.
DAY 6 – WEDNESDAY, OCTOBER 17: BETH SHEAN, SHILOH, JERICHO, JERUSALEM
We begin the day by driving south to the Jordan Valley to the site of Beth Shean (1 Sam. 31), an impressive Roman city of the Decapolis. Driving south along the Jordan Valley and then turning west into the area of Samaria, we visit the rather new excava ons of Shiloh. This is where the Tabernacle once stood. Here we see impressive archaeological ruins dating to the days of Samuel. Driving past Bethel (Gen. 12, 28) and through the Desert of Pareth (Jeremiah 13), our next stop is Jericho. After a late lunch here, we climb the tel (ancient mound) to see portions of the fortification wall that supported the mud-brick walls that “came tumblin’ down” (Joshua 6). En route to Jerusalem, we end the day with a brief stop at Wadi Qelt. Here we hear the words of Isaiah 40 and Psalm 23 in the context of the Judean Desert. From here we drive the rest of the way to Jerusalem for overnight. After checking in our hotel and dinner, an optional walk to the Western Wall will take place.
DAY 7 – THURSDAY, OCTOBER 18: MT. OF OLIVES, POOL OF BETHESDA, WESTERN WALL, ISRAEL MUSEUM, YAD VASHEM
We get our first glimpse of Jerusalem from the Mt. of Olives, beholding a breath-taking panorama of the Holy City. We walk down the “Palm Sunday” route to the Garden of Gethsemane. Next, we enter the Old City of Jerusalem through the Lion’s Gate (St. Stephens) and visit the Pools of Bethesda (John 5). We also enjoy some marvelous singing in St. Anne’s church from the Crusader period. Our walk through the Old City will take us to the Western Wall, the most holy place for Jews today! We continue from here to the Christian Quarter to the Church of the Holy Sepulcher. In the afternoon, we see the fascinating Israel Museum and the model of Jerusalem (1:50 scale model of Herodian Jerusalem as it would have appeared in Jesus’ time). Here we also explore some of the artifacts in the archaeological museum. We end the day with a visit to Yad Vashem, Israel’s Holocaust Museum. We see the Children’s Memorial and walk through the museum on our own. We return to our hotel in Jerusalem for dinner and a free evening to allow you to explore or relax.
DAY 8 – FRIDAY, OCTOBER 19: CITY OF DAVID, HEZEKIAH’S TUNNEL, SOUTHERN WALL EXCAVATIONS, A FEW FREE HOURS, GARDEN TOMB
We begin the day by visiting the City of David and the new excavations of David’s palace. Those who want to will take an optional adventurous walk through the water of Hezekiah’s Tunnel (1,720 feet long). We then sit on the steps of the Siloam Pool and listen to the story of John 9. From here, we walk up through an exposed Herodian drainage channel that takes us to “Robinson’s Arch” and the southern wall excava ons. We walk on a Roman street and ascend the Temple steps. We eat lunch in the Jewish Quarter (not included) and enjoy a few hours of free time. Our day ends at the Garden Tomb for Communion, and we return to our hotel for dinner and overnight.
DAY 9 – SATURDAY, OCTOBER 20: MASADA, EIN GEDI, QUMRAN, WILDERNESS OF JUDAH, JERUSALEM
This morning we begin our drive southward along the western coastline of the Dead Sea to Masada. Here we ascend high upon the wilderness mountain by way of cable car to the fortress built by King Herod. We survey the ruins of the fortifications, waterworks, synagogue, temples and palaces. An optional walk down the Snake Path will be offered, the others can take the cable car back down. Our next stop is Ein Gedi, where David hid from King Saul, and we enjoy a walk to some of the waterfalls in the canyon. Finally, we visit Qumran and the settlement of the first century sect known as the Essenes, the authors of the Dead Sea Scrolls. Over the lunch hour, you will have the opportunity to explore the famous Cave 1 where the first Dead Sea Scrolls were found in 1947. From here we drive to the northern end of the Dead Sea where you will have the opportunity to float! It will be a unique experience! We then return to Jerusalem for our farewell dinner at the hotel. After dinner, those flying home will be escorted to the Ben Gurion Airport for the night-flight home. Those taking the extension will enjoy a free evening or optional walk.
DAY 10 – SUNDAY, OCTOBER 21: ARRIVE HOME
We arrive back in the U.S.A. After going through U.S. Customs, we board our domestic flight back to Pittsburgh at the end of a life-transforming trip!
OPTIONAL SOUTHERN ISRAEL EXTENSION $1052 per person
Price is based on minimum of 20 travelers for price to be valid (Includes: Gratuities of $45)
DAY 10 – SUNDAY, OCTOBER 21: OLD CITY, WAILING WALL, WESTERN WALL TUNNEL, JEWISH QUARTER, HERODIUM, BETHLEHEM
The day begins in the Old City and we visit the famous Western (Wailing) Wall, the most holy place in Judaism. Here we walk 400 yards in the Western Wall Tunnel along the retaining wall of the Temple Mount itself. Upon completing this unique walk, we return to Jewish Quarter for a visit of the Burnt House. Here, archaeologists discovered ruins of a house that was destroyed by the Romans in 70 AD. Following this, we visit Moshe, an Orthodox Jew, to talk about his Jewish faith. We have lunch (not included) in this area of the Old City as well. In the afternoon, we visit Herodium. Located on the edge of the Judean Desert, this is where Herod the Great was buried. We end the day by driving into Bethlehem. We visit Shepherds’ Field and reflect upon the unfolding of Gods amazing redemptive plan. The day ends shopping at an olive wood store. We drive back to our hotel for dinner. After dinner, we will attend the 40 minute-long sound and light show at the City of David excavations.
DAY 11 – MONDAY, OCTOBER 22: SERVICE DAY WITH BRIDGES FOR PEACE
Today will be a service day. Working the Messianic ministry of Bridges for Peace, we will serve the less fortunate in Jerusalem. The projects are varied based on the current need at the time. We will serve somewhere in Jerusalem. At the end of the day, we return to the hotel for dinner and a free night.
DAY 12 – TUESDAY, OCTOBER 23: GEZER, BETH SHEMESH, QEIYAFA, BEIT GUVRIN, LACHISH, BEERSHEBA
We leave our hotel in Jerusalem and drive west to the Shephelah (lowlands) of Judah. Our first site is Gezer to see ruins from Solomon’s day and beyond. The famous “Gezer calendar” was found here. From here, we drive to Beth Shemesh, where the Ark of the Covenant was returned. Next, we travel to Tel Kh. Qeiyafa located along the Elah Valley and see where David fought Goliath (1 Samuel 17). As we listen to the story we see how this famous battle took place! Continuing south, we visit the Mareshah Caves in Beit Guvrin with hundreds of bell-shaped caves caused by ancient Roman quarrying. This was the home of the prophet Micah (Micah 1). Our last site of the day is Lachish, a city that was conquered by the Assyrians (2 Chronicles 32). Here, we see where the famous “Lachish Letters” were discovered. We end the day by driving south to Beersheba for overnight. After dinner, we gather to review the day and prepare for tomorrow.
DAY 13 – WEDNESDAY, OCTOBER 24: TEL BEERSHEBA, ARAD, SDE BOKER, DESERT OF ZIN, ASHKELON, TEL AVIV
This is the last day of our trip together. Nearby we visit Tel Beersheba. This was the main ancient city of the Negev in biblical times. The three Patriarchs (Abraham, Isaac, and Jacob) were all here. Here at this small archaeological site we will see the water well, Solomonic gate structure, the rounded streets, typical 4 room Israelite houses, and the impressive water cistern system. On the eastern edge of the Negev is Tel Arad. This was an early Canaanite city later developed by the Judeans. We will see ruins from both time periods. We will read about the religious reforms brought to cities like this by Hezekiah and Josiah (2 Chr. 34). Driving south, we made our way to the Desert of Zin. At Sde Boker, we will make a brief stop to see the grave of David Ben Gurion, Israel’s first Prime Minister in 1948. We hope to see ibex (wild goats) here as well. Following this, we will enjoy a hike in the canyon of Zin. The spies (Numbers 13) came up through this area. This was also the region where Moses struck the rock (Numbers 20). From here (as time permits) we drive west to Ashkelon. This was one of ve ancient cities of the Philistines. We will see an impressive Middle Bronze gate as well the beautiful coastline of the Mediterranean Sea. Making our way north, we will enjoy our farewell dinner in Jaffa before arriving at the airport for our night ight home.
DAY 14 – THURSDAY, OCTOBER 25: ARRIVAL HOME
We arrive back in the States in the morning. Going through U.S. Customs, we then board our domestic connecting flight back home. The end of a great trip together!
*While we do our very best at making sure all items listed in your itinerary are included, there are times when conditions beyond our control affect your program/itinerary, including but not limited to air carrier changes, delays, weather, political climate, time constraints, or changes by your tour leader and tour guide.