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Itinerary 2016

Please note that the itinerary is not finalized and is subject to change based on time, weather, security and other considerations.


DAY ONE – MONDAY 28 MARCH - ARRIVAL

  • ‣ Arrive at Ben Gurion Airport

GROUP ARRIVALS - Our representatives will meet you as you exit the plane and escort you through passport control, baggage claim and customs. Your luggage will be delivered directly to hotel and will be waiting in your room upon arrival.

  • Explore the Biblical Landscape at Neot Kedumim

Neot Kedumim is a Biblical Landscape Reserve, the only one of its kind. At Neot Kedumim you can see and experience the Land of the Bible as it was 3,000 years ago during the era of our forefathers. At Neot Kedumim you can experience life in biblical times. The experience will provide insight into the daily challenges of the age and how biblical figures used the knowledge of their time to live with the natural environment while building their future.

  • Visit the Ohr Simcha Boarding School in Kfar Chabad
  • Lunch

Sit-down at HaAchuza Hall (included).

  • Discover the fascinating ruins of Caesarea

The Talmud recounts that Jerusalem and Caesarea are diametrically opposed and cannot co-exist. A tour through the beautifully preserved Amphitheater, Hippodrome, Bath house and Palace of King Herod himself provide a glimpse into the world and values of Ancient Rome. We can well understand how these values stood in contra-distinction to the spiritually of Jerusalem. It was in Caesarea that the Great Revolt broke out in 66 C.E. leading to the Destruction of the Second Temple and it was from here that the Romans and Byzantines ruled the Holy Land for close on 600 hundred years. The saintly Rabbi Akiva was tortured to death in Caesarea after the unsuccessful Bar Kochva Revolt against the backdrop of the gorgeous blue Mediterranean.

  • Dinner in Tel Aviv with guest speaker

We are thrilled to host the Opening Dinner of the JLI Land and Spirit 2016 Israel Experience at the exclusive Trask Hall, overlooking the azure waters of the Mediterranean. Situated on the waterfront in the Tel Aviv Port and the Yarkon River estuary, this highly sought-after venue is the perfect location to relax, toast L'Chaim and enjoy the company of fellow participants as we watch a glorious sunset.

  • Transfer to the hotel, check-in, unpack
  • Overnight: Tel Aviv

Participants who arrive in the late morning will join the group for lunch and continue on to Caesarea.
Participants who land in the early afternoon will join the group at Caesarea.
Participants who land in the late afternoon/ early evening will join the group at dinner or at the hotel.


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DAY TWO – TUESDAY 29 MARCH - OPTIONS DAY

Option A - Mishna & Mystics

  • At a glance

Departure time: 9:00AM
Return to Tel Aviv: +/- 7:00PM (approximately)
Length of tour: +/- 10 hours
Driving time to first destination: +/- 1.5 hours
Walking: Moderate
Stairs: Yes
Recommended for: First-timers as well as return visitors

  • Breakfast

Full Israeli breakfast at hotel with guest speaker

  • Visit Ancient Tzippori - hometown of Rabbi Yehudah HaNassi, where the Mishna was edited

It is difficult to over-estimate the impact of Tzippori on Jewish History. Following the destruction of Jerusalem by the Romans, the center of Jewish life moved first to Yavne, near the coast, and afterwards north to the Galilee. It was in Tzippori some 1800 years ago, that Rabbi Yehudah HaNassi (Rabbi Judah the Prince) scion of the Royal House of David, presided over the Sanhedrin and also edited and codified the Mishna. This monumental task ensured that the Oral Law which had been handed down generation to generation since Moses at Sinai would not be lost to the Jewish people. Thereby, Rabbi Yehudah ensured our very survival.

    Tzippori has been declared a National Park and features ruins from the times of the Mishna and Talmud including a colonnaded street, Roman Theater and synagogue with a beautiful mosaic floor. Visitors are afforded the opportunity to better understand what life was like for Jews who lived during these turbulent and trying times and faced the challenges of persecution and of prosperity.

    • Packed lunch
    • Experience the Mystical City of Tzfat

    No tour to the North of Israel can be complete without recharging one’s spiritual batteries in the vibrant city of Tzfat, and there is truly something here for everyone. Visiting the beautiful synagogues in the Old City we will encounter the larger-than-life personalities of the Arizal, R’ Yosef Karo, R’ Moshe Cordevero and others whose teachings revolutionized and revitalized the Jewish world following the trauma of the Spanish Inquisition. Strolling through the charming alleyways, we will meet with Kabbalistic musicians, artists, artisans, and even chefs whose work is inspired and shaped by the Mystical teachings. There will also be free time to shop, visit the Ancient Cemetery where the great luminaries of Tzfat are buried and dip in the ice-cold Mikva of the Arizal.

    • Return to Tel Aviv
    • Dinner on own in Tel Aviv
    • Overnight: Tel Aviv

    Option B: Western Galilee

    Departure time: 9:00AM
    Return to Tel Aviv: +/- 6:30PM (approximately)
    Length of tour: +/- 9.5 hours
    Driving time to first destination: +/- 1.5 hours
    Walking: Moderate
    Stairs: Yes
    Recommended for: First-timers as well as return visitors

    • Breakfast

    Full Israeli breakfast at hotel with guest speaker

    • Tour the impressive port of Akko

    The port of Akko is historically part of the inheritance of the Biblical Tribe of Asher, though the Children of Israel were initially unsuccessful in wresting control of the city from the Canaanites. Following the Destruction of the Second Temple - Akko was considered the northern-most border of the Land of Israel. The Talmud describes how the Sages would literally kiss the soil upon arriving in Akko, so great was their love for Eretz Yisroel. Those leaving Israel for Babylon, would weep bitterly upon crossing the border.
    Many of the spectacular ruins in Akko today, date back to the Crusader and Ottoman Periods and one can trace the tumultuous history of the Jewish People during these trying times. The great scholar Nachmanides, as well as other leading rabbis and noted scholars, spent time in Akko. Napoleon Bonaparte was unsuccessful in breaking the fortified walls of the city and eventually had to retreat back to Egypt.
    During the time of the British Mandate, fighters of the Haganah, Irgun and Lehi Underground Movements were incarcerated in the Old Turkish Prison - "Alcatraz" of the Middle East. They managed to stage a successful break-out in May 1947 during which 28 prisoners escaped.

    • Packed lunch
    • Explore the spectacular Rosh Hanikra Grottoes

    On the North-West tip of Israel lie the towering white cliffs of Rosh HaNikra. Over the ages, the pounding waves of the Mediterranean Sea have created a series of stunning grottoes where the azure waters meet the bone-white rock.

    • Security briefing and lookout over border with Lebanon
    • Return to Tel Aviv
    • Dinner on own in Tel Aviv
    • Overnight: Tel Aviv

    Option C - Tel Aviv & Jaffa

    Departure time: 9:00AM
    Return to Tel Aviv: +/- 5:00PM (approximately)
    Length of tour: +/- 8 hours
    Driving time to first destination: +/- 10 minutes
    Walking: Moderate
    Stairs: Yes
    Recommended for: First-timers as well as return visitors

    • Breakfast

    Full Israeli breakfast at hotel with greetings from a guest speaker.

    • Explore the Old Port of Jaffa - ancient Gateway to the Land of Israel

    Just minutes from our hotel, the Old Port of Jaffa affords a fascinating journey into Jewish History. It is from here that the Prophet Jonah set sail towards Tarshish in order to avoid his divinely ordained mission to reprove the inhabitants of Ninveh. Not long after setting out to sea, the ship was beset by a violent storm that only subdued once Jonah was cast overboard and subsequently swallowed by a large fish. Jaffa was also the entrance-way for centuries for Jews who sought to settle in, or visit the Land of Israel. Its relative proximity to Jerusalem, a mere three-day journey by donkey, made it the obvious landing point for those who wished to fulfill their life-long dream of reaching the holy city.

    • Experience the vibe at the Nachalat Binyamin Promenade

    The very name “Tel-Aviv” symbolizes the synthesis between the Old and the New, the Ancient and the Modern. The word “Tel” refers to an archeological mound replete with artifacts from the past, while “Aviv” is the term for the season of spring, symbolizing rebirth and rejuvenation. We will explore the Nachalat Binyamin Promenade with its popular arts-and-crafts market and get a feel for the modern city with its ancient roots.

    • Packed lunch
    • Showcase some of Israel’s incredible new technologies and promising start-ups

    Meet the business-people and scientists who are developing breakthrough technologies from cyber security and agricultural solutions to world-hunger solutions in Israel's Silicon Wadi. Silicon Wadi (lit: "Silicon Valley") is an area with a high concentration of high-tech industries in the coastal plain in Israel. "Wadi" is the Arabic word for a valley or dry river bed, also commonly used in colloquial Hebrew. Silicon Wadi is a pun based on the Californian region of Silicon Valley.

    At the turn of the new millennium, Israel boasts many high-technology companies in a wide range of fields such as telecommunications equipment, software, semiconductors, biotechnology and medical electronics. The majority of these companies are start-ups, with the most successful becoming world leaders in their respective fields. High technology and technology-rich products account for some 70% of Israeli exports. Multinational corporations have come to recognize Israel's technology abilities: leading global companies like Intel, Motorola, IBM, Microsoft, Alcatel and 3Com all have research and development facilities in Israel. Intel and Motorola also manufacture advanced products in Israel, and many other multinationals have purchased local companies, buying their patents and acquiring their human talent.

    • Discover the incredible story of the Jewish People’s survival at the Diaspora Museum

    The Jewish People have been dispersed throughout the world following the destruction of the Temple. Without question, the story of Jewish survival is unparalleled in the annals of history and is a source of both pride and wonderment. The museum’s exhibits trace the far-flung communities celebrating their diverse traditions as well as recording their fate.

    • Dinner on own in Tel Aviv
    • Overnight: Tel Aviv

    Option D - In the footsteps of the Bible

    Departure time: 9:00AM
    Return to Tel Aviv: +/- 7:00PM (approximately)
    Length of tour: +/- 10 hours
    Driving time to first destination: +/- 1.5 hours
    Walking: Moderate
    Stairs: Yes
    Recommended for: First-timers as well as return visitors

    • Breakfast

    Full Israeli breakfast at hotel with greetings from a guest speaker.

    • Discover the fascinating ruins of Megiddo where the thousands of years of history come to life.

    Megiddo lies at the Western entrance to the fertile Jezreel Valley, on the crossroads of the ancient trade route - the Via Maris that stretched from Egypt in the South through Israel to the Northern empires of Syria, Anatolia and Mesopotamia (modern day Iran, Iraq, Turkey and Syria). As such, whoever ruled Megiddo, effectively controlled the passage of merchants, goods and also armies along the Fertile Crescent. It should come as no surprise, therefore, that Megiddo was a highly fortified city and that many battles took place between competing civilizations for its control.

    A visit to the site today reveals impressive remains from thousands of years of history, including the times of the Canaanites, King Solomon and King Ahab. In 2005, Megiddo was declared a UNESCO World Heritage Site and continues to draw tens of thousands of visitors every year.

    • Visit Tel Yizre'el

    The Book of Judges (Chapter 7) recounts the incredible story of Gideon’s campaign against the far superior army of Midian. Upon instruction from G-d, Gideon dismantled most his army of over 30,000 warriors so that once victorious, the feat would clearly be seen as miraculous. "Armed” with a shofar and a flaming torch hidden inside a clay vessel, Gideon and just 300 men surrounded the city of Midian. Upon instruction from Gideon, his men broke their clay vessels, blew their shofars and loudly announced, “To G-d and to Gideon”. The Midianites, confused and terrified, began fighting amongst themselves and retreated. Gideon’s directive to his men to follow his example is a lesson in leadership that is emblazoned on the wall of the prestigious IDF Officers Training Academy near Mizpe Ramon. Also learn the tale of the wicked King Ahab and his evil wife, Queen Jezebel, whose palace stood at this very site.

    Gideon’s tactics of guerrilla warfare, inspired the Jewish defenders in modern times against their aggressors from the local Arab villages. Gideon’s exhortation to his men to follow his example is lesson in leadership and is emblazoned on the wall of the prestigious IDF Officers Training Academy near Mizpe Ramon.

    • Packed lunch
    • Ascend Mt Gilboa where King Saul fell in battle against the Philistines

    King Saul, facing battle against the Philistines, is told that neither he nor his sons will survive the encounter. Nonetheless, accepting his fate, he leads his men to war on the mountains of Gilboa. His army routed, his sons killed and his own capture imminent, Saul orders his weapons-bearer to strike him dead. The young man cannot fulfill the king’s wishes and so Saul falls down on his own sword to avoid the disgrace of desecration of G-d’s name, of falling alive into the hands of the Philistines.

    • Return to Tel Aviv
    • Dinner on own in Tel Aviv
    • Overnight: Tel Aviv

    Option E - Bird's eye view of Israel

    This tour is offered at an additional cost

    • Breakfast

    Full Israeli breakfast at hotel with greetings from a guest speaker.

    • Take to the skies by light airplane, helicopter and see Israel as never before!!!
    • Possibilities include fly over the coast, Masada, Negev or Golan Heights with experienced pilots
    • Return to Tel Aviv
    • Packed lunch
    • Showcase some of Israel’s incredible new technologies and promising start-ups

    Meet the business-people and scientists who are developing breakthrough technologies from cyber security and agricultural solutions to world-hunger solutions in Israel's Silicon Wadi. Silicon Wadi (lit: "Silicon Valley") is an area with a high concentration of high-tech industries in the coastal plain in Israel. "Wadi" is the Arabic word for a valley or dry river bed, also commonly used in colloquial Hebrew. Silicon Wadi is a pun based on the Californian region of Silicon Valley. At the turn of the new millennium, Israel boasts many high-technology companies in a wide range of fields such as telecommunications equipment, software, semiconductors, biotechnology and medical electronics. The majority of these companies are start-ups, with the most successful becoming world leaders in their respective fields. High technology and technology-rich products account for some 70% of Israeli exports. Multinational corporations have come to recognize Israel's technology abilities: leading global companies like Intel, Motorola, IBM, Microsoft, Alcatel and 3Com all have research and development facilities in Israel. Intel and Motorola also manufacture advanced products in Israel, and many other multinationals have purchased local companies, buying their patents and acquiring their human talent.

    • Dinner on own in Tel Aviv
    • Overnight: Tel Aviv

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    DAY THREE - WEDNESDAY 30 MARCH - SECURITY & BORDERS

    • Breakfast

    Full Israeli breakfast at hotel with greetings from a guest speaker.

    • Checkout & departure

    Luggage will be transferred to hotel in Jerusalem & delivered directly to your room.

    • Boat Ride

    See the Land of Israel from a new perspective as we take to the seas for a short boat ride on the Mediterranean. Some groups will follow in the footsteps of Biblical Jonah who set sail from the Port of Jaffa, while others will take to the seas from the ancient Philistine stronghold of Ashdod. We will also have a chance to relax and enjoy some music before returning to dry land.

    • Tour the communities on the outskirts of the Gaza Strip (Kibbutz Alumim / Sderot)

    Here is a chance to hear first-hand from those whose lives are directly affected by the often-precarious security situation in the South. We will have the opportunity to speak candidly with the families who have chosen to settle in these communities and understand what motivates them, what concerns them and what gives them and their children the strength to persist. We will tour the neighborhoods and see their homes, educational institutions, community centers and play-grounds - seeing how every-day activities are often conducted in extra-ordinary circumstances.

    • Lunch
    • Lookout over the border of Gaza and hear a security briefing

    A lookout over the border into the strongholds of the Hamas and Islamic Jihad will grant us a perspective that cannot be gained from media-coverage of the Middle East.

    • Camel rides, desert experience and dinner at Genesis Land with live music and dancing

    Set in the Biblical landscape of the Judean Desert, where Abraham once sojourned is Genesis Land. As we disembark from your bus, overlooking the Plains of Jericho we will be invited to join a journey through time, thousands of years back to the days of the Bible. Dressed in traditional garb, we can experience what daily life was like for our Patriarchs and Matriarchs, riding camels, baking pita, drawing water from a well, fashioning clay or writing with quill and ink. Alternatively, feel free to enjoy the beauty and solitude of the desert before enjoying a Biblical-style meal and live entertainment. This is evening that will not be forgotten!!!

    • Transfer to Jerusalem
    • Check-in to hotel
    • Overnight: Jerusalem

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    DAY FOUR – THURSDAY 31 MARCH - JERUSALEM

    • Optional early-morning visit to Kever Rachel

    Rachel our Matriarch was the beloved of her husband Jacob. Yet while her sister, and fellow-wife, Leah was blessed with many children, Rachel remained childless for the first years of her marriage. This was a source of great pain and anguish to her, and when her son Joseph was born, her joy knew no bounds. She became pregnant with another child, but tragically died during labor after delivering Benjamin. Jacob buried her on the side of the road leading to Bethlehem and her tomb stands there until today, drawing tens of thousands of visitors every year who come to pray at the resting place of “Mama Rochel”.

    • Breakfast

    Full Israeli breakfast at hotel with greetings from a guest speaker.

    • Participants will be able to choose in advance different tour options for the first part of the day as follows:

    Option A: Classic Tour

    • At a glance

    Departure time: 9:15AM
    Walking: Moderate
    Stairs: Yes
    Recommended for: First-timers

    • Explore the fascinating Jewish Quarter

    Few places in the world have the power to excite and ignite the imagination, as does Jerusalem. It is a city to which turn our bodies in prayer, our hearts in hope and our thoughts in devotion declaring “If I forget Thee O Jerusalem…” Within the Jewish Quarter itself, it is possible to find traces of so many of the significant moments in Jewish History and almost every stone has a dramatic story to tell. We will explore but a few of these tales visiting the Cardo, Tzemach Tzedek, Broad Wall, Batei Machase, Mt Zion and more…

    • Lunch on own in the Jewish Quarter
    • Discover the splendor of the Second Temple at the Southern Excavations and Davidson Center

    Our Sages teach us that “whoever has not seen the Second Temple, has not seen a beautiful building in all his life…” While the scope and grandeur of the Temple have been preserved in our written works and oral tradition, until recent times, the physical evidence has been kept hidden from sight. Following the Six Day War, however, large-scale archeological excavations, outside of the Temple Mount, have uncovered truly impressive remains. This has allowed us to gain an unprecedented appreciation of what Jerusalem must have looked like some 2000 years ago. As if frozen in time, we can also find scenes from the Destruction of Jerusalem by the Roman Legions.

    Option B: Unearthing Jerusalem's secrets

    • At a glance

    Departure time: 9:00AM
    Walking: Plenty
    Stairs: Yes
    Recommended for: First-timers as well as return visitors

    • Walk in the footsteps of Prophets and Kings in the City of David

    From the time that King David conquered the city from the Jebusites, establishing his eternal capital, Jerusalem has been the very heart of the Jewish People, unifying us. It is here that King Solomon built the First Temple and from whence we were exiled to Babylon by Nevuchadznezer. It is here that King Hezekiah was miraculously saved from the Assyrian onslaught and where the great Prophets Isaiah and Jeremiah proclaimed the messages of hope that inspired generations. Using the Bible as our guidebook, today we can see the physical remains, preserved like snapshots from thousands of years ago.

    • Lunch on own in the Jewish Quarter
    • Take part in a real-life archeological excavation as you sift through rubble from the Temple Mount at Emek Zurim

    Due to the political and religious sensitivity of the site, there has never been a proper archeological dig on the Temple Mount itself. A number of years ago the Islamic Waqf, excavated hundreds of tons of earth from the site, in order to construct a huge mosque. This was done without any supervision and the rubble was dumped in the nearby Kidron Valley. Archeologist Gabi Barkai, greatly disturbed the turn of events, received permission to sift through the rubble to see what artifacts could yet be found and saved. Since the inception of the project, thousands of volunteers have given of their time and have discovered coins, arrowheads, mosaics and other artifacts that have shed light on thousands of years of history of this most important site.

    Option C: Jerusalem off-the-beaten-track

    • At a glance

    Departure time: 9:30AM
    Walking: Moderate
    Stairs: Yes
    Recommended for: Return visitors

    Jerusalem has undergone many upheavals in her tumultuous history. We focus on some of the key events of the past hundred years that helped shaped the city as we know it today.

    • North-East Jerusalem

    Survey the city from the ridge of Mount Scopus / Mountain of Olives before tracing the seam line that divided the city for 19 long years.

    • Lunch on your own in Kenyon Hadar
    • Visit Ammunition Hill and the neighborhood of Abu Tor

    Recognize and internalize the impact of the Six Day War, and comprehend the demographic, geopolitical and security issues facing Jerusalem today.

    Option D: Israel's Leaders & Heroes

    • At a glance

    Departure time: 9:30AM
    Walking: Moderate
    Stairs: Yes
    Recommended for: Return visitors

    • Trace the life of Menachem Begin at the state-of-the-art Begin Museum

    At this experiential museum, a multimedia exhibit tells the story of the birth of modern-day Israel through the life of Menachem Begin. Through historical reconstructions and reenactments, rare dramatic documentary videos, interactive touch-screen exhibits and striking presentations, visitors take a journey through Begin’s life and experience his childhood in Poland, his years as the commander of the Irgun underground, the leader of the Opposition in the Knesset and finally, as Prime Minister of the State of Israel.

    • Visit the formidable prison in the Russian Compound where members of the Underground were imprisoned during the British Mandate
    • The Knesset
    • Lunch on own in Jewish Quarter

    All groups meet up at the western wall in late afternoon

    • Time for reflection at the Western Wall
    • JLI Experience at the Wall
    • Tour the Western Wall Tunnels (optional)

    This fascinating tour leads one deep beneath the current street-level along the length of the Western Wall and includes impressive Herodian masonry, a mikva from 2000 years ago fed by a hidden spring, the largest building block in antiquity weighing some 600 tons and the spot closest to the Kodesh HaKodashim.. The area is undergoing continued excavation and new sections are being prepared to be visited by public.

    • Dinner at leisure in Jerusalem
    • Optional lecture at hotel in evening
    • Overnight: Jerusalem

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    DAY FIVE – FRIDAY 01 APRIL - HEVRON / JERUSALEM

    Option A

    • Breakfast

    Full Israeli breakfast at hotel with greetings from a guest speaker.

    • Explore Hevron the City of the Patriarchs including tour of Jewish neighborhoods of Avraham Avinu, Bet Hadassah, Tel Romeida

    Hevron is one of the four Holy Cities in the Land of Israel and is the place where our Patriarchs and Matriarchs lived, raised their families and spread the message about the existence of the Creator. Upon Sarah’s death, Abraham purchased a burial plot, the Cave of Machpela, from the local population for an exorbitant price. The negotiation concerning the sale and Abraham’s refusal to accept a gift are recorded in meticulous detail in the Book of Genesis. In later years, Abraham, Isaac, Rebecca, Jacob and Leah were all interred in the Cave of Machpela, and so it is no wonder than the Jewish connection to Hevron has remained strong for millennia, despite its turbulent history. Our tour will take through the Jewish neighborhoods of where we will encounter the complexities of life in the city today, meet with local residents and connect with our heritage. The highlight is, of course, a visit to the Cave of Machpela itself.

    • Meet with Rabbi Danny and Batsheva Cohen – Chabad Shluchim of Hevron
    • Kumsitz together with Rabbi Simcha Hochbaum and musicians outside the Cave of Machpela
    • Feel the vibe at the colorful and lively Machane Yehudah Outdoor Market including time for lunch
    • Prepare for Shabbat
    • Candle-lighting at hotel
    • Friday night service at the hotel OR Welcome the Shabbat with thousands of Jews from around the globe at the Kottel

    Following candle- lighting at the hotel, we will join thousands of Jews from around the world in joyful celebration of Shabbat at the Western Wall. Together we will sing, dance and pray, feeling the sanctity of this holy day in the holy city.

    • Friday night dinner and farbrengen at the hotel together with Lone Soldiers
    • Overnight: Jerusalem

    Option B

    • Breakfast

    Full Israeli breakfast at hotel with greetings from a guest speaker.

    • Israel museum

    Among the museums most famous exhibits, are the Shrine of the Book, housing the Dead Sea Scrolls, and the Model of Jerusalem in the Second Temple Period.

    • Feel the vibe at the colorful and lively Machane Yehudah Outdoor Market including time for lunch
    • Prepare for Shabbat
    • Candle-lighting at hotel
    • Friday night service at the hotel OR Welcome the Shabbat with thousands of Jews from around the globe at the Kottel

    Following candle- lighting at the hotel, we will join thousands of Jews from around the world in joyful celebration of Shabbat at the Western Wall. Together we will sing, dance and pray, feeling the sanctity of this holy day in the holy city.

    • Friday night dinner and farbrengenat the hotel together with Lone Soldiers
    • Overnight: Jerusalem

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    DAY SIX – SHABBAT 02 APRIL

    • Breakfast

    Full Israeli breakfast at hotel

    • Davening at the David Citadel Hotel with guest speaker
    • Shabbat Lunch

    Full course Shabbat lunch followed by Chassidic Farbrengen at the hotel.

    • Rest, relax and rejuvenate

    Option A

    • Walking tour of the beautiful Yemin Moshe Neighborhood and Montefiore’s Windmill

    The first Jewish neighborhood outside the walls of the Old City was established by Sir Moses Montefiore in 1860 and was called Mishkenot Sha’ananim. It consisted of one elongated building with 22 rooms and most were too frightened to live outside the security of the Old City Walls. From these humble beginnings, however, Jerusalem expanded to the city it is today. Yemin Moshe named in honor of Montefiore was situated for 19 years on the Seam Line between Jordan and Israel but today it hosts a thriving community and has been restored to its full glory.

    • Bring out Shabbat with a Musical Havdala and a mini-concert in the Mamilla-Alrov Promenade overlooking the Old City Walls. Chassidic melodies played by local musicians will carry the inspiration of Shabbat to the days to come.
    • Dinner on own
    • Optional lecture at hotel in evening
    • Overnight: Jerusalem

    Option B

    • Walking tour of the Jewish Quarter
    • Bring out Shabbat with a Musical Havdala and a mini-concert in the Mamilla-Alrov Promenade overlooking the Old City Walls. Chassidic melodies played by local musicians will carry the inspiration of Shabbat to the days to come.
    • Dinner on own
    • Optional lecture at hotel in evening
    • Overnight: Jerusalem

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    DAY SEVEN – SUNDAY 03 APRIL

    Option A: Judean desert

    • At a glance

    Departure time: 9:00AM
    Tel Aviv: +/- 5:00PM (approximately)
    Length of tour: +/- 8 hours
    Driving time to first destination: +/- 1.5 hours
    Walking: Moderate
    Stairs: Yes
    Recommended for: First-timers

    • Optional early-morning visit to Kever Rachel
    • Breakfast

    Full Israeli breakfast at hotel with greetings from a guest speaker.

    • Ascend the desert fortress of Masada

    Following the destruction of the Second Temple in the year 70 C.E. the Zealots continued the Great Revolt against the Roman Empire from the remote desert fortress of Masada. They adapted the luxurious palaces and bathhouses that King Herod had built for himself, and lived off the water cisterns and vast stores of food that he had put in place, a century prior. It was not long before the crack Roman Tenth Legion under Flavius Silver arrived to quell the rebellion with thousands of troops and auxiliaries. While the Zealots were hopelessly outnumbered, they managed to keep the Romans at bay at the foot of the mountain due to the cunning fortifications and the sheer difficulty of ascent. Not to be outdone, the Roman built a massive ramp and siege tower with a huge battering ram and on the eve of Passover in the year 72 C.E., the defensive wall was breached leaving the path open for the legions to ascend and conquer the mountain. The Zealots chose to end their own lives rather than be subjected to the tyranny of the Romans, and the next morning, when Flavius ascended Masada, he was met with a silence that continues to reverberate until today.

    • Packed lunch at the foot of Masada
    • Float in the Dead Sea

    The Dead Sea is situated in the Jordan Rift Valley and is the lowest place on Earth. Due to the extremely high mineral content of the water, it has been renowned for centuries as place of healing for a variety of ailments and skin conditions.

    • Return to Jerusalem to prepare for Gala Banquet
    • Gala Banquet at Binyanei HaUma
    • Overnight: Jerusalem

    Option B: Tel Aviv & Jaffa

    • At a glance

    Departure time: 9:15AM
    Tel Aviv: +/- 5:00PM (approximately)
    Length of tour: +/- 8 hours
    Driving time to first destination: +/- 1 hours
    Walking: Moderate
    Stairs: Yes
    Recommended for: First-timers and return visitors

    • Breakfast

    Full Israeli breakfast at hotel with greetings from a guest speaker.

    • Explore the Old Port of Jaffa - ancient Gateway to the Land of Israel

    Just minutes from our hotel, the Old Port of Jaffa affords a fascinating journey into Jewish History. It is from here that the Prophet Jonah set sail towards Tarshish in order to avoid his divinely ordained mission to reprove the inhabitants of Ninveh. Not long after setting out to sea, the ship was beset by a violent storm that only subdued once Jonah was cast overboard and subsequently swallowed by a large fish. Jaffa was also the entrance-way for centuries for Jews who sought to settle in, or visit the Land of Israel. Its relative proximity to Jerusalem, a mere three-day journey by donkey, made it the obvious landing point for those who wished to fulfill their life-long dream of reaching the holy city.

    • Experience the vibe at the Nachalat Binyamin Promenade

    The very name “Tel-Aviv” symbolizes the synthesis between the Old and the New, the Ancient and the Modern. The word “Tel” refers to an archeological mound replete with artifacts from the past, while “Aviv” is the term for the season of spring, symbolizing rebirth and rejuvenation. We will explore the Nachalat Binyamin Promenade with its popular arts-and-crafts market and get a feel for the modern city with its ancient roots.

    • Lunch on own
    • Showcase some of Israel’s incredible new technologies and promising start-ups

    Meet the business-people and scientists who are developing breakthrough technologies from cyber security and agricultural solutions to world-hunger solutions in Israel's Silicon Wadi. Silicon Wadi (lit: "Silicon Valley") is an area with a high concentration of high-tech industries in the coastal plain in Israel. "Wadi" is the Arabic word for a valley or dry river bed, also commonly used in colloquial Hebrew. Silicon Wadi is a pun based on the Californian region of Silicon Valley.

    At the turn of the new millennium, Israel boasts many high-technology companies in a wide range of fields such as telecommunications equipment, software, semiconductors, biotechnology and medical electronics. The majority of these companies are start-ups, with the most successful becoming world leaders in their respective fields. High technology and technology-rich products account for some 70% of Israeli exports. Multinational corporations have come to recognize Israel's technology abilities: leading global companies like Intel, Motorola, IBM, Microsoft, Alcatel and 3Com all have research and development facilities in Israel. Intel and Motorola also manufacture advanced products in Israel, and many other multinationals have purchased local companies, buying their patents and acquiring their human talent.

    • Discover the incredible story of the Jewish People’s survival at the Diaspora Museum

    The Jewish People have been dispersed throughout the world following the destruction of the Temple. Without question, the story of Jewish survival is unparalleled in the annals of history and is a source of both pride and wonderment. The museum’s exhibits trace the far-flung communities celebrating their diverse traditions as well as recording their fate.

    • Return to Jerusalem to prepare for Gala Banquet
    • Gala Banquet at Binyanei HaUma
    • Overnight: Jerusalem

    Option C: Israel through archeology

    • At a glance

    Departure time: 9:00AM
    Tel Aviv: +/- 5:00PM (approximately)
    Length of tour: +/- 8 hours
    Driving time to first destination: +/- 1.25 hours
    Walking: Plenty
    Stairs: Yes
    Recommended for: Return visitors

    • Optional early-morning visit to Kever Rachel
    • Breakfast

    Full Israeli breakfast at hotel with greetings from a guest speaker.

    • Lookout over the Valley of Elah

    It is here that one of the most famous and compelling battles in recorded history took place. The Israelite army under King Saul was arrayed against the technologically and numerically superior Philistines who had come up from the coast. The Bible relates how each side took up position, with only a valley separated the warring parties. The Philistines sent out their champion, Goliath of Gath, a battle-hardened, giant of a man, armored from head to toe to challenge the Israelites to a one-on-one duel with winner-takes-all. There was no one who was brave enough to answer the challenge until the shepherd boy, David, who had come to visit his older brothers stepped forth, with only a slingshot and five smooth stones. Looking out today over the Valley of Elah, it is easy to visualize the stone sailing through the air, before slaying Goliath and propelling David to greatness.

    • Visit the stunning ruins and caves in Bet Guvrin- Maresha National Park

    The city of Maresha was conquered by the Hasmoneans, and its inhabitants, including the grandfather of future king Herod, forcibly converted. The site encompasses striking Roman Ruins as well as fascinating caves (Bell Caves, Columbarium, Maze Caves, Sidonian Caves and more). These caves were also used during the Bar Kochva Revolt as hideouts from the superior Roman forces.

    • Lunch on own
    • Tour Tel Lachish

    The Book of Kings recounts the terrifying assault of Sennacherib, the Assyrian, on the Kingdom of Judea some 2700 years ago. Murder, pillage and forced exile were the lot of the hapless Jews, and there was seemingly nothing that could stop the formidable war-machine. Indeed the fortified city of Lachish, was breached and conquered. Interestingly, archeologists, discovered in the Palace of Sannecherib in Ninveh, wall engravings depicting the assault on Lachish, as well as a steele, detailing the conquest. Prepare to be amazed as you compare the archeological finds at both sites with the Biblical narrative.

    • Return to Jerusalem to prepare for Gala Banquet
    • Gala Banquet at Binyanei HaUma
    • Overnight: Jerusalem

    Option D: Israel's war of independence

    • At a glance

    Departure time: 9:00AM
    Tel Aviv: +/- 5:00PM (approximately)
    Length of tour: +/- 8 hours
    Driving time to first destination: +/- 1 hours
    Walking: Moderate
    Stairs: Yes
    Recommended for: Return visitors

    • Optional early-morning visit to Kever Rachel
    • Breakfast

    Full Israeli breakfast at hotel with greetings from a guest speaker.

    • Tour the state-of-the-art Palmach Museum and encounter the elite “Striking Force” that formed the backbone of the IDF in 1948

    Unlike a “regular” museum, you will not find any artifacts or documents on exhibition. Instead, you are invited to join a group of young idealists who take up arms to protect the Jews of Palestine. Commonly known by their acronym “Palmach” or “Striking Force”, these fighters served under the British against the Nazis and later formed the backbone of Israel’s defenses during the War of Independence. Some of the more famous members include Yitzchak Rabin and Hannah Senesh. Through use of film and stagecraft, you experience the arduous training undergone by recruits, the close friendships, bloody battles and painful loss of comrades-in-arms.

    • Lunch on own
    • Tour the Underground Bullet Factory at the Ayalon Institute

    Prior to the establishment of the State of Israel in 1948, the country was under the control of the British by mandate of the United Nations. Though beset by enemies from all sides, the Jewish population was not permitted by the British to purchase or maintain arms and ammunition. The leaders of the Haganah (precursor of the Israeli Defense Force) decided to circumvent the embargo by producing their own bullets in a top-secret factory hidden underneath a training kibbutz in the center of the country. Though discovery by the British meant certain death, young men and women risked their lives and health on a daily basis, working long hours underground to produce more than two million rounds of ammunition that helped to ensure the survival and viability of the Jewish State.

    • Lookout over the Valley of Ayalon and hear the dramatic story of the battle for the Latrun Heights

    Looking out over the Valley of Ayalon, where the sun and moon stood still for Joshua is the site of Latrun. In this ancient battleground, the modern Israeli forces fought the Jordanians in 1948 for the strategic heights that controlled vital access to Jerusalem from the coastal plain. Holocaust survivors, many straight off the boat, fell here in defense of the Eternal City Jerusalem. It is here, too, that future prime-minister Ariel Sharon was saved from under enemy fire, an experience that shaped the doctrine of the IDF – never to abandon a soldier in the field. Today Latrun houses the largest tank museum in the Middle East exhibiting small tanks from the War of Independence alongside the newest Israeli-designed and produced Merkava. On display are also tanks captured from the Egyptians, Syrians and Jordanians – relics of Israel’s battle for survival. Especially moving is the Memorial Wall for the fallen soldiers of the Armored Corps

    • Return to Jerusalem to prepare for Gala Banquet
    • Gala Banquet at Binyanei HaUma
    • Overnight: Jerusalem

    Back to Top

    Day Eight – Monday 04 April

    • Optional early-morning visit to Kever Rachel
    • Breakfast

    Full Israeli breakfast at hotel

    • Participants will be able to choose in advance different tour options for the first part of the day as follows:

    Option A: Volunteer at colel chabad pantry packers

    Option B: Yad vashem holocaust museum and children’s

    memorial

    The Holocaust was a period of unspeakable tragedy for the Jewish People on a scale that is often difficult to comprehend. Yad Vashem seeks to memorialize the individuals who were murdered, the communities that were destroyed and the indescribable suffering that took place, as well as the rays of human goodness that managed to shine through the darkness. A tour through the subterranean museum gives insight into a wide range of topics including - Jewish life in Europe prior to the Holocaust, anti-Semitism, the rise of Hitler, the Nuremberg Laws, Nazi ideology, the invasion of Poland, Russia and other countries, Einzatzgruppen, Ghettos, the Final Solution, Death Camps, Allied indifference, Righteous Gentiles, Resistance and Liberation. Much attention is paid to individual stories giving faces and names to the victims.

    Option C: Israel museum

    Among the museums most famous exhibits, are the Shrine of the Book, housing the Dead Sea Scrolls, and the Model of Jerusalem in the Second Temple Period.

    Option D: Knesset

    Visit Israel’s parliament – the Knesset – for a behind the scenes look at how the political system in the country functions.

    Option E: Morning at leisure

    Enjoy some free time in Jerusalem to shop, sightsee, visit family and friends, or simply relax.

    • Lunch

    Enjoy lunch on your own or in a group in one of Jerusalem’s fine eateries.

    All groups meet up

    • Host IDF combat troops for a BBQ at their base

    We will have the opportunity to meet with officers and combat troops to hear first-hand about life in the army, training regimen and their personal stories. We will observe a live-fire exercise with a variety of weapons and firing stances as officers explain how the training prepares the troops for real-life encounters with enemy combatants. Thereafter, we will enjoy a sumptuous BBQ together with the soldiers – expect plenty of food, live music, dancing and true Chabad energy!!!

    • Depart for Ben Gurion Airport
    • Fly to USA
    • NEXT YEAR IN JERUSALEM!!!

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