Explore the highlights of Egypt, Jordan and the promised lands of Israel – neighbouring countries, steeped in history. From the pharaoh’s greatest accomplishment – the grand Pyramids of Giza, to the architectural feat of the Nabataeans in Petra and the most sacred of biblical sites in Jerusalem and Bethlehem
DAY 1: DEPART USA: Depart en route to Amman with complimentary meals and beverages served aloft.
DAY 2: ARRIVE AMMAN: Upon arrival to Amman, we are welcomed by our HLTC guide. We head to our hotel. At night we gather for a welcome Reception.
DAY 3: PETRA: Although much has been written about Petra, nothing really prepares you for this amazing place. It has to be seen to be believed. Often described as the eighth wonder of the ancient world, it is without doubt Jordan’s most valuable treasure and greatest tourist attraction. It is a vast, unique city, carved into the sheer rock face by the Nabataeans, an industrious Arab people who settled here more than 2000 years ago, turning it into an important junction for the silk, spice and other trade routes that linked China, India and southern Arabia with Egypt, Syria, Greece and Rome.
DAY 6: CANA, TIBERIAS, SEA OF GALILEE, BAPTISMAL: Begin the day with a visit to the small village of Cana, site of Jesus’ first miracle at the wedding feast. Here, couples will have the opportunity to renew their wedding vows. We then visit Capernaum where our Lord Jesus chose to center his ministry. Celebrate mass in the Church of St. Peter. At Tabgha, you will visit the Church of the Multiplication of the Fishes and Loaves, and visit the Chapel of Primacy of Peter. Then we take a boat ride on the Sea of Galilee. Stop at the Baptismal site before returning to Nazareth.
DAY 5: CAESAREA, HAIFA, MT. TABOR, NAZARETH: This morning we drive to Caesarea, once capital of the Roman Province, to visit Roman and Crusader remains and the Roman Theatre. Continue our journey by visiting Haifa and the Summit of Mount Carmel, this magnificent garden features 19 terraces and its centerpiece, the gold-domed Shrine of the Bab. We continue to Nazareth where we visit the Basilica of the Annunciation for Mass at the Grotto, then continue to St. Joseph’s Workshop, Mary’s Well, and then head to Mt. Tabor, the site of Christ’s Transfiguration, and the beautiful scenery of the Valley of Jezreel.
DAY 6: CAESAREA PHILIPPI, BETHSAIDA: Drive to the Golan Heights and visit Caesarea Philippi, where Jesus traveled with his disciples and where nearby Peter made his great profession of faith. Continue on to Bethsaida where Jesus chose five of his disciples, and see ruins from Jesus’ time as well as of King David’s Time. Continue to the Mount of Beatitudes where our Lord preached to the multitudes. Here we celebrate mass. We then head to Bethlehem for overnight.
DAY 7: JERUSALEM: MT. of OLIVES, GARDEN of GETHSEMANE: This morning, drive to the top of the Mt. of Olives for a spectacular view of Jerusalem. Visit the Church of Pater Noster, the Chapel of Ascension, and then walk the “Palm Sunday Road” to Dominus Flevit, where Our Lord wept over Jerusalem. Continue to the Garden of Gethsemane and the Church of All Nations for Mass on the Rock of Agony. After lunch, we continue onto the Church of St. Peter in Gallicanctu (where Peter denied Christ), the House of Caiphas, the Church of the Dormition of Our Lady, and the Upper Room, commemorating the Last Supper.
DAY 8: JERUSALEM: EXCURSION TO BETHLEHEM, EIN KAREM, CHURCH OF VISITATION: Today we start by celebrating Mass at Shepherds’ Field, and then visiting the Church of the Nativity, St. Jerome’s Chapel, and St. Catherine’s Church. After lunch we head to Ein Karem where we visit the Church of St. John the Baptist and the Church of the Visitation. The balance of the day is at leisure to browse in the local markets. This evening we request a meeting with the Latin Patriarch of Jerusalem.
DAY 9: JERUSALEM: THE OLD CITY, HOLY SEPULCHER: We begin today entering through Stephen’s Gate, with a visit to the Church of St. Anne, marking the place of birth of the Blessed Mother, visiting as well the nearby Pools of Bethesda. We proceed to the Chapel of the Flagellation (where Our Lord was scourged), then carry the cross as we follow the Via Dolorosa (Stations of the Cross). After the Stations, we return to the Ecce Homo Arch and Lithostrotos, where we celebrate Mass. Balance of the day in the Old City, where we will have time to visit the Dome of the Rock & Temple Mount (conditions permitting). At night, we all gather for a special dinner and overnight.
DAY 10: JERICHO, DEAD SEA, SINAI: We depart early this morning towards Jericho to view the Mt. of Temptations. We then visit the “Dead Sea” for a day swim (bring your swim suit). Later we depart towards Eilat to cross the Israeli-Egyptian border and drive to St Catherine in Sinai.
Optional: At day break climb Mt. Sinai in the early morning. You may choose renting a camel for assistance 2/3 of the way up to see the sunrise. Enjoy a time of praise and incredible views of the Sinai wilderness, where in the book of Genesis God revealed himself to Moses and where he received the Ten Commandments.
DAY 11: ST. CATHERINE, TRANSFER TO CAIRO: After Breakfast we visit St Catherine Monastery. Set beneath the mountain where Moses is said to have received the Ten Commandments, Saint Catherine Monastery has been one of the world’s great centers of religious pilgrimage for over fifteen centuries. Within its imposing walls rests a citadel like no other, incredibly rich in important religious and historical structures. Among its treasures is a library of ancient manuscripts and icons second only to the Vatican’s itself, and a 6th century church reputed to lie directly on the site of the Burning Bush. Quite simply, the monastery is a defining feature of the Holy Land. Later we drive to Cairo.
DAY 12: CAIRO, MUSEUM, PYRAMIDS, SPHINX: Today we visit the Egyptian Museum. This is a place of true discovery and without doubts one of the greatest collections of all times. Over 250,000 genuine artifacts are presented, including an exhibit dedicated to the Tut-Ankh-Amon collection of treasures, gold, and jewelry, as it was enclosed in his tomb for over 3,500 years before it was discovered in the 1920s when his tomb was excavated. We then visit the great Pyramids – Cheops, Chephren & Mykerions. Cheops is the most colossal ever built. Next is a close-up look at the Sphinx – a huge funeral complex guarded by the legendary lion body with the face of king Chephren. At night we gather for a Nile Cruise Dinner.
DAY 13: CAIRO: This morning we start our day by visiting the Citadel and Mohamed Ali mosque. We then visit Abu Sergha Church. Later we travel to Khan Khalili Bazaars; The Khan El-Khalili is one of the most interesting bazaars, not only in Egypt, but also in the whole Middle East. It was named after Prince Jaharkas Al-Khalili, who was one of the powerful Mamluke Princes in the 14th century. It is famous for its unusual, typically oriental souvenirs, and handmade crafts. The Medieval atmospheres of this traditional market, together with the labyrinth layout of the streets, gives visitors a lot of pleasure and a glimpse into what medieval markets once were like.
DAY 14: RETURN TO USA: Today we arrive home with unforgettable memories, knowing we have walked in the footsteps of Jesus.