Trip of a lifetime to Israel and Turkey (16 day trip)
Departure March 22, 2015 return April 6, 2015
This trip will be limited to 24 travelers
Bible Content: Old Testament Israel (Philistines too!), Life of Jesus, Early Church (Apostle John and the churches of Revelation and journeys of the Apostle Paul)
NEW! All items marked new have not been included in the last four group trips.
Day 1 – March 22 – Depart New York to Tel-
Day 2 – March 23 – Caesarea Maritima, Mt. Carmel overlook (Carmelite Monastery), Stay at Galilee Kibbutz.
Day 3 – March 24 – Galilee Area: Nazareth (St Gabriel's church, Basilica of the Annunciation), Arbel NEW!, Mt. of Beatitudes, Capernaum, Bethsaida, Boat on Galilee. Stay at Galilee Kibbutz
Day 4 – March 25 – Jordan rift valley from Galilee to Dead Sea: Beth Shean, start at top of tell and work down to Scythopolis NEW!, Qumran, En Gedi. Stay at Dead Sea Resort (swim in Dead Sea).
Day 5 – March 26 – Judean Wilderness to Jerusalem: Masada, Tel Khirbet Qeiyafa (Shaaraim) NEW!, Valley of Elah, Tell es-
Day 6 – March 27 – Jerusalem: Mt. Olives, Ancient Tombs on Mt Olives, Garden of Gethsemane, Caiaphas Palace, Church of Holy Sepulcher, Bethesda, Western Wall & Ophel (Temple Mount). Shopping Old City? Stay in Jerusalem
Day 7 – March 28 – Early morning flight Tel-
Day 7 continued – Flight from Istanbul to Izmir, Turkey. IST 11:00 am – IZM 12:05 pm via Turkish Airlines. Relax. Stay at Izmir
Day 8 – March 29 ALL NEW! – Pergamum (#3 Ruins of Pergamos; acropolis, library theater, altar of Zeus, Red building, Asclepion, etc. Include Bergama Museum), Thyatira (#4 Ruins of Basilica), Stay in Izmir.
Day 9 – March 30 ALL NEW! – Izmir (#2 Smyrna ruins, acropolis, agora). Plus History and Arts Museum. Plus free time in Izmir and area. Stay in Izmir
Day 10 – March 31 ALL NEW! – Sart (#5 Sardis; Temple to Artemis, Ancient Synagogue, Gymnasium, etc.); Alasehir (#6 Philadelphia, Church ruins). Stay in Kusadasi
Day 11 – April 1 ALL NEW! – Miletus (Four Harbours, theater, city) / Didyma (temple) / Priene (city, bouleuterion, etc). Stay in Kusadasi.
Day 12 – April 2 ALL NEW! – Ephesus (#1 Full City, Massive theater and Library). Stay in Pamukkale (hot spring resort!)
Day 13 – April 3 ALL NEW! – Pamukkale (White cliffs and hot springs. Heirapolis; city, necropolis / #7 Laodicea; city, churches, two theaters) / Colossae (unexcavated Tell). Stay in Pamukkale (hot spring resort!)
Day 14 – April 4 ALL NEW! – Psidian Antioch (Museum in Yalvac; City, Altar, Churches). Stay in Antalya (See Hadrian’s Gate at Old City by night)
Day 15 – April 5 ALL NEW! – Antalya: Perga (site), Aspendos (Theater). Stay in Antalya.
Day 16 – April 6 – Flight from Antalya to Istanbul. AYT 3:40 am – IST 4:55 am. Fly, Istanbul to JFK. IST 7:25 am – JFK 11:20 am
Optional two extra days in Istanbul if desired (opportunity to see Hagia Sophia, Blue Mosque, Basilica Cistern, Hippodrome and Obelisk, Grand Bazaar and more). Fly on April 8th if this option is selected.
Hotels: Excellent 4 and 5 star!
Meals: Breakfast and Dinner (Supper) included. Excludes beverages.
Transportation: Air and Bus transportation included (boat on Galilee too).
Price: In our ongoing quest to always get you an incredibly low price, we have been slightly delayed in getting final pricing from all countries. I’ve been assured it’ll be worth the wait! (We have already reserved 24 airline seats, so travel dates are now accurate).
Intensity: While a few days have a number of sites, especially in Israel with its shorter travel distances, the trip is interspersed with some lighter days and even some free time (especially in Turkey). As always in the Middle East, there’s walking which includes uphill. Relative to some of our earlier trips, this is very relaxed – perhaps closer to the pace of our 2013 trip or even a little lighter.