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Best of Israel & Jordan Tour

Highly recommend Encounters Travel. Entire tour was conducted without a hiccup, tour guides were amazing - friendly, highly knowledgeable, courteous and nothing was too much trouble to ensure our trip was of a high standard.

Chook31, 23 Oct 2018

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Best of Israel & Jordan OVERVIEW

TOUR SUMMARY

11 days

Tel Aviv to Tel Aviv

From

€2340 (p/p)

Country(ies): Israel , Jordan

Tour type: Shoestring

Group size: Min: 2 | Max: 45

Accommodation: 3 to 4-star hotels

Meals:

Transport: A/C minibus/coach

Highlights: Tel Aviv, Caesarea, Haifa, Acre, Sea of Galilee, Tiberias, Golan Heights, Nazareth, Qumran, Masada fortress, Megiddo, Bethlehem, Dead Sea, old & new Jerusalem, Jerash Roman ruins, Petra tour, Madaba mosaics, Mount Nebo views

This 11-day trip through Israel and the Occupied Palestinian Territories along with Jordan is the perfect tour for faithful travellers and it is also an incredible adventure for travellers who are here for the exploration of these fascinating countries. The tour has time to explore the buzz of the city and beaches of Tel Aviv before visiting Tiberias and touring Jerusalem, Bethlehem and Nazareth and visiting many important religious and historical sites and monuments. The tour also includes a visit to the Dead Sea where you can bob on top of this remarkably salty Sea, the lowest place on Earth. The tour also visits the famous Sea of Galilee and Masada. Leaving Israel behind we cross the border into Jordan where we visit some of Jordan's tourist highlights including the Roman Ruins in Jerash, the 'lost city' of Petra, Biblical Mount Nebo and the famous mosaic map of the Holyland in Madaba.

On this tour you get to see most of the highlights of these amazing countries and relate the important religious sites to the relevant important passages in scripture. Our Classic Israel tour also follows a similar itinerary in Israel and a Jordan extension can be booked seperately on request but has less of a focus on connecting sites to biblical writings and features some more general non-religious sites.

Accommodation is on a 3-4 star basis with upgrades available to deluxe 4-star and 5-star hotels.

ITINERARY

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Day 1 Arrive into Tel Aviv. Transfer to hotel

Upon arrival you'll be met in the airport by one of our representatives who will then transfer you to your hotel. The rest of the day is then free for you to settle in, relax after your flight, and have a look around the area independently before meeting the group and starting the first sightseeing tours tomorrow morning.

OVERNIGHT:

Tel Aviv Hotel

MEALS:

None

EXTRAS:

Extra day in Tel Aviv - pre-tour
Extra day in Jerusalem - pre-tour
Single room supplement (ISSHIE)


Day 2 Caesarea to Megiddo to Haifa to Acre

Following a delicious Israeli buffet breakfast (which you will enjoy each morning prior to departing for your day of touring), depart Tel Aviv. Drive north along the coastal plain to Caesarea (Acts 9.30 Acts 10 24-48), capital of Judea under the Romans. Visit the excavations of this ancient city, the Roman theatre and aqueduct. Continue to Megiddo (1 Kings 4.28, 9,15, 2 Kings 23,29 & Revel. 16.16), identified as the site of Armageddon. Visit the archaeological excavations at Megiddo, including the well-preserved water supply system. Drive to the beautiful port city of Haifa, nestled on the Mediterranean Sea, for a panoramic view of the Bahai gardens and Haifa Bay. From Haifa continue to Acre (Micah 1.10), capital of the Crusaders for more than a century. Visit the ancient city and harbour before continuing eastwards across the plains of the Galilee to Kibbutz hotel Lavi , not far from the Sea Of Galilee for dinner and overnight.

OVERNIGHT:

Galilee Kibbutz

MEALS:

Breakfast, Dinner

EXTRAS:

None


Day 3 Tiberias to Capernaum to Banias

After a short tour of the Kibbutz grounds we take a boat ride across the Sea of Galilee to Capernaum (Matt. 4.13 13.54, 17.24, Luke 7, Mark 1.2, John 4.46-54). Visit the remains of the 2nd century synagogue. Proceed to Tabgha (Matt. 13, Mark .33-45, & John 21), the site of the miracle of fish and loaves, and visit the Church of Multiplication with its 4th century mosaic floor. Continue to the Mount of the Beatitudes (Matt. 5,6,7,8), where Jesus delivered the Sermon on the Mount. Drive to the Banias Spring and Waterfall (Matt. 16.13 and Mark 8.27), where Jesus was recognized as The Messiah by His Disciples. Tour the Golan Heights, with its valleys, grazing land and snow capped mountains. Return to Kibbutz Lavi for dinner and overnight.

OVERNIGHT:

Galilee Kibbutz

MEALS:

Breakfast, Dinner

EXTRAS:

None


Day 4 Nazareth to Beit Shean

Begin the day with a drive to Nazareth (Luke 1.26, 4.16-29, Matthew 2.23) via Cana of Galilee (John 2.1-11). In Nazareth, we shall visit the Church of the Annunciation, St. Joseph’s Workshop and Mary’s Well. Next on our program is the Jordan River and the Baptismal site Yardenit. A baptism or rededication ceremony can be carried out here if you wish (advance booking required). Continue to Beit Shean, one of the ancient Decapolis cities (Mark 5.20, 7.31), and visit the Roman theatre. This is the city where Saul and his son Jonathan were nailed to the walls (1st Samuel 31.10). Judges 1.27 also mentions Beit Shean. Continue south along the shores of the River of Jordan. Passing Jericho, we proceed westward and climb to the Golden City of Jerusalem. Dinner and overnight in Jerusalem.

OVERNIGHT:

Jerusalem Hotel

MEALS:

Breakfast, Dinner

EXTRAS:

None


Day 5 Jerusalem - Old City

Today we visit the Old City of Jerusalem. Our appreciation of this Golden City begins with a panoramic view from the Mount of Olives, overlooking the walls of the old city and the ancient Jewish cemetery. Visit the Church of All Nations. Proceed to Mount Zion to see the tomb of King David and the nearby Room of the Last Supper (Mark 14.13, Luke 22. 10-38, Matt 26 17-29, Acts 1.13 and Acts 2 the Pentecost). Enter the Old City to begin exploring the wonders of Jerusalem. Walk through the Cardo, the main street of Jerusalem 2000 years ago. View the Temple Mount and the Western Wall. Walk along the Via Dolorosa, where Jesus carried His Cross. Continue to the Church of the Holy Sepulchre (Matt. 27. 33-57, 28.10). No visit to Jerusalem is complete without a walk through the colourful Arab bazaar (a chance to test your negotiating skills). Visit the Garden Tomb. Dinner and overnight in Jerusalem.

OVERNIGHT:

Jerusalem hotel

MEALS:

Breakfast, Dinner

EXTRAS:

None


Day 6 Jerusalem - new city and Bethlehem

Today's program is dedicated first  to the new city of Jerusalem. Visit the model of ancient Jerusalem. Continue to Yad Vashem, Israel's memorial to the victims of the Holocaust. Enter the site by walking along the Street of the Righteous Gentiles, dedicated to the non-Jews that risked their lives in order to save their Jewish neighbours. Continue to Ein Karem, birthplace of John the Baptist (Luke 1.39-80). This Spanish style church and Mary's well is where Mother Mary met her cousin Elizabeth. Next we cross into the Occupied Palestinian Territories and proceed to Bethlehem (subject to border restrictions) to visit the Church of the Nativity. Dinner and overnight in Jerusalem.

OVERNIGHT:

Jerusalem Hotel

MEALS:

Breakfast, Dinner

EXTRAS:

None


Day 7 Qumran to Masada to Dead Sea

Drive through the Judean Desert to Qumran, where the Dead Sea Scrolls where found in 1947 by a Bedouin boy. Visit the ancient city of Qumran and drive along the shore of the Dead Sea, the lowest place on earth, to Masada, the last stronghold of the Jews after the destruction of the Second Temple in 70 A.D. Ascend Masada by cable car and visit the food storeroom, water irrigation system and Herod's Palace. Time and weather permitting we will have an opportunity to float on the Dead Sea waters. Return to Jerusalem for dinner and overnight.

OVERNIGHT:

Jerusalem Hotel

MEALS:

Breakfast, Dinner

EXTRAS:

None


Day 8 Enter Jordan and visit Jerash

After breakfast in Israel we head to the border and cross into Jordan where our first visit will be to nearby Jerash, 'the Jewel of the North'. One of the largest and most well-preserved sites of Roman architecture in the world outside Italy, the ancient city of Jerash boasts an unbroken chain of human occupation dating back more than 6,500 years. The city's golden age came under Roman rule and Jerash is now generally acknowledged to be one of the best-preserved Roman provincial towns in the world. Having been hidden for centuries in sand, evacuations restorations over the past 70 years have revealed a fine example of the grand, formal provincial Roman urbanism that is found throughout the Middle East, comprising paved and colonnaded streets, soaring hilltop temples, handsome theatres, spacious public squares and plazas, baths, fountains and city walls pierced by towers and gates. Leaving Jerash behind, we'll head to the capital city Amman where we'll have time for a short city tour.

OVERNIGHT:

Amman Hotel

MEALS:

Breakfast, Dinner

EXTRAS:

None


Day 9 Drive to Petra and tour

After an early breakfast in Amman today, we'll drive to Petra and enjoy the remainder of the day today inside the world famous Nabatean site of Petra. The ancient capital of the Nabataean commercial empire until the Romans finally took over in 106AD, Petra was largely forgotten, except by the local Bedouins, until it was 'discovered' in 1812 by a young Swiss explorer, Johann Ludwig Burckhardt. Petra is situated on the edge of Wadi Aruba., whose canyon walls and surrounding hills make it almost impossble to approach except through a narrow, winding cleft in the rock, called the Siq. The city itself has very few free-standing buildings, as the Nabateans chose to carve their homes, buildings and tombs into the multi-coloured sandstone cliffs. Nowadays, the Jordanian government and local people are well aware of Petra's interest to tourists, and the tourism infrastructure in the adjoining village of Wadi Musa is booming, though, thankfully, once you enter through the Siq, the site is protected, and all the building feels miles away.

This afternoon we tour this fascinating city (guided tour, then free time to explore yourselves). We start by walking through the Siq, which rises to 200m above us, and narrows to just 2m wide in places. The ancient Nabatean water channel can still be seen on one wall, as well as some remnants of the terracotta pipes that brought water into the city. All of a sudden, a now classic view appears around one corner, and one of Petra's most impressive monuments, the Khazneh (Treasury) comes into view. Our guide will explain how this, and the other buildings here, are mainly elaborate facades carved into the rock from the top down, and also discuss the spiritual significance of the building style. From the Khazneh, the valley opens out, with tombs carved into the rock on both sides. We'll see the ruined Roman amphitheatre, and colonnaded street, and during your free time you can walk up a steep and narrow winding gorge past beautifully coloured sandstone cliff walls to the huge and imposing 'Monastery'. The biggest of Petra's carved monuments at 50m high and 45m wide, this is truly spectacular, as are the distant views west across Wadi Aruba and the Jordan valley. Another climb can take you to the High Place of Sacrifice, and Lion Fountain.

All in all, this is a full & tiring, but hugely rewarding day touring one of the world's most famous ancient sites. We spend the evening and night relaxing at our hotel.

OVERNIGHT:

Petra Hotel

MEALS:

Breakfast, Dinner

EXTRAS:

None


Day 10 Return to Tel Aviv via Madaba and Mt Nebo

This morning we'll leave Petra behind and start our journey back into Israel. En-route we stop in Madaba and see the town's main attraction, the Greek Orthodox Church of St. George where we'll see its famous 6th Century Byzantine mosaic map of the Holy Land and other biblical sites. We'll also enjoy great views of the Holy Land from Mt. Nebo, known as the burial place of the propher Moses.

In the afternoon we'll cross the Jordan/Israel border and return to Tel Aviv where we'll be spending our final night.

OVERNIGHT:

Tel Aviv Hotel

MEALS:

Breakfast, Dinner

EXTRAS:

None


Day 11 Departure airport transfer

After breakfast, your time is free until we pick you up from your hotel and transfer you to the airport for your departure.

OVERNIGHT:

N/A

MEALS:

Breakfast

EXTRAS:

Extra day in Tel Aviv - post-tour
Extra day in Jerusalem - post-tour


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Included:
  • All accommodation as stated in the itinerary
  • All transport and transfers
  • 24-hour airport arrival and departure transfer service
  • English speaking guide during touring days
  • All site entry fees
  • Meals as indicated in the itinerary

Excluded:
  • International flights (available on request)
  • Visa fees
  • Border tax & crossing fees (payable locally at approx. $107 per person)
  • Travel insurance (compulsory)
  • Meals not indicated in the itinerary
  • Drinks, snacks, tips and other personal expenses (e.g. laundry)
  • Tips for tour leaders and drivers
  • Any other items not mentioned above

Gallery


Dates and Prices

Israel is extremely busy this year and many hotel allocations are full. Availability is on a request basis so please contact us with your preferred dates and we will check space in the standard and upgraded hotel levels for you.

Start Date
End Date
Price (P/P)
Offer price
Note

27th of Oct 2019

6th of Nov 2019

€2340

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10th of Nov 2019

20th of Nov 2019

€2400

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17th of Nov 2019

27th of Nov 2019

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24th of Nov 2019

4th of Dec 2019

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1st of Dec 2019

11th of Dec 2019

€2375

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8th of Dec 2019

18th of Dec 2019

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15th of Dec 2019

25th of Dec 2019

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22nd of Dec 2019

1st of Jan 2020

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29th of Dec 2019

8th of Jan 2020

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5th of Jan 2020

15th of Jan 2020

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12th of Jan 2020

22nd of Jan 2020

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19th of Jan 2020

29th of Jan 2020

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26th of Jan 2020

5th of Feb 2020

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2nd of Feb 2020

12th of Feb 2020

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9th of Feb 2020

19th of Feb 2020

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23rd of Feb 2020

4th of Mar 2020

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1st of Mar 2020

11th of Mar 2020

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8th of Mar 2020

18th of Mar 2020

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15th of Mar 2020

25th of Mar 2020

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22nd of Mar 2020

1st of Apr 2020

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29th of Mar 2020

8th of Apr 2020

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5th of Apr 2020

15th of Apr 2020

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12th of Apr 2020

22nd of Apr 2020

€2460

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3rd of May 2020

13th of May 2020

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10th of May 2020

20th of May 2020

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17th of May 2020

27th of May 2020

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24th of May 2020

3rd of Jun 2020

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31st of May 2020

10th of Jun 2020

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7th of Jun 2020

17th of Jun 2020

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14th of Jun 2020

24th of Jun 2020

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21st of Jun 2020

1st of Jul 2020

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28th of Jun 2020

8th of Jul 2020

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5th of Jul 2020

15th of Jul 2020

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12th of Jul 2020

22nd of Jul 2020

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19th of Jul 2020

29th of Jul 2020

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26th of Jul 2020

5th of Aug 2020

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2nd of Aug 2020

12th of Aug 2020

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9th of Aug 2020

19th of Aug 2020

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16th of Aug 2020

26th of Aug 2020

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23rd of Aug 2020

2nd of Sep 2020

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30th of Aug 2020

9th of Sep 2020

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6th of Sep 2020

16th of Sep 2020

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13th of Sep 2020

23rd of Sep 2020

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25th of Oct 2020

4th of Nov 2020

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1st of Nov 2020

11th of Nov 2020

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8th of Nov 2020

18th of Nov 2020

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15th of Nov 2020

25th of Nov 2020

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22nd of Nov 2020

2nd of Dec 2020

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29th of Nov 2020

9th of Dec 2020

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6th of Dec 2020

16th of Dec 2020

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13th of Dec 2020

23rd of Dec 2020

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20th of Dec 2020

30th of Dec 2020

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27th of Dec 2020

6th of Jan 2021

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Accommodation

The hotels and accommodations listed below are the ones we most often on this tour. From time to time we may exchange these for similar properties at the same level. In general, specific hotels cannot be guaranteed on our group tours, but you may select your preferred options if you are booking a tailor-made trip.

Grand Beach Hotel

Grand Beach Hotel

Tel Aviv


Located in a prime location, the heart of the bustling city of Tel Aviv, the Grand Beach Hotel offers you spacious rooms, stylish urban design, and the unmatchable sensation of a truly relaxing vacation.

Local rating

Our rating

 Grand Beach Hotel Grand Beach Hotel

Just 3 minutes' walk from the beach, Grand Beach Hotel features 212 well-equipped rooms with free Wi-Fi. It also offers a traditional Israeli buffet breakfast and a rooftop pool with panoramic views of Tel Aviv.

All rooms are modern and have been completely renovated. Each room is air conditioned and comes with an LCD TV, mini fridge and safe.

The hotel's business centre is open 24-hours a day. Drinks and light snacks are sold at the bar.

Hotel Grand Beach is near the most popular beaches and waterfront restaurants. Tel Aviv Marina is 10 minutes' walk away. In the neighbourhood you will find several cafes, shops and parks. Carmel Market and Jaffa Old Town are also nearby.

The 24-hour front desk can help to arrange tours and day excursions.

Kibbutz Lavi

Kibbutz Lavi

Tiberias


Located high on a mountain, this Glatt- Kosher hotel mainly caters for Jewish religious travellers. At this peaceful location, just minutes from Tiberias, there are spectacular views of the surrounding mountains.

Local rating

Our rating

 Kibbutz Lavi Kibbutz Lavi

Located high on a mountain, this Glatt- Kosher hotel mainly caters for Jewish religious travellers. At this peaceful location, just minutes from Tiberias, there are spectacular views of the surrounding mountains.

The hotel has different room types to cater to different tastes and budgets. It offers a full service restaurant, a tennis court, an indoor swimming pool (men and women swim separated), and a children's playground.

The hotel offers free wireless internet.

Larsa Hotel

Larsa Hotel

Amman


Larsa Hotel is characterised by its special location and panoramic view. It is close to the tourism and commercial sites in the Capital Amman. Free WiFi is available throughout the entire property.

Local rating

Our rating

 Larsa Hotel Larsa Hotel

Larsa Hotel is characterised by its special location and panoramic view. It is close to the tourism and commercial sites in the Capital Amman. Free WiFi is available throughout the entire property.

The Hotel provides modern rooms of elegant design in different sizes. Each room contains a built in flat-screen TV with satellite channels, free mineral water and tea/coffee making facilities.

Larsa Hotel provides various catering options, including the original and traditional foods, in addition to the buffet of international cuisine in Sinbad Restaurant. Guests can take Shisha in the terrace of Arab-style Shumu Cafe whenever the weather is warm.

The Hotel provides a taxi services with driver to all tourism sites with attractive prices. The hotel also provides free-of-charge services such as transportation to Mecca Mall, City Mall/Carrefour, and Sweifieh by the newest cars of the Hotel. Guests can enjoy the use of the hotel's health club.

Amra Palace Hotel

Amra Palace Hotel

Petra


Amra Palace Hotel is wonderfully located at the heart of the city, the hotel is minutes away from the main shopping areas and the entrance to the ancient city of Petra.

Local rating

Our rating

 Amra Palace Hotel Amra Palace Hotel

Located in Petra next to the Wadi Musa Souk, this hotel offers panoramic views of the Petra Mountains. It has a spa with indoor heated pool surrounded by loungers. The Hotel is within a walking distance from the Petra Gate.

All rooms at the Amra Palace International Hotel are decorated in warm colours. They offer flat-screen TVs with satellite channels, a minibar and a private bathroom with a hairdryer.

Guests of the Amra Palace can enjoy a relaxing massage at the spa. Guests can enjoy a drink and admire the sunset on the terrace overlooking the hotel's garden.

Each morning a breakfast buffet is served in Hotel Amra’s dining room. In the evening, the à la carte restaurant serves a wide variety of Arabic and international cuisine. In the summertime, the hotel offers an outdoor Bedouin Restaurant, which serves a traditional barbecue.

Prima Park Hotel

Prima Park Hotel

Jerusalem


Hotel Prima Park is strategically located in Jerusalem offering all guests convenience of central location, just a short walk from the Israel Museum and the Knesset parliament. The old city of Jerusalem is also within easy reach.

Local rating

Our rating

 Prima Park Hotel Prima Park Hotel

Hotel Prima Park is strategically located in Jerusalem offering all guests convenience of central location, just a short walk from the Israel Museum and the Knesset parliament. The old city of Jerusalem is also within easy reach. Hotel offers over 200 rooms with free Wi-fi that's available in all the hotel areas. All rooms include LED TV, hair dryer, safe, tea and coffee facilities as well as air-condition for your comfort.

Options

Our tours are designed to include all that you need to enjoy a really special time in the destination you‘re visiting. However, we do also offer some extra options to complement the tour and add some additional sightseeing or activities, or some extra time at either end of the tour.

All accommodation based options (e.g. Single supplements, extra nights, cruise upgrades) should be booked and paid for in advance so that we can make the appropriate arrangements. Other options may either be booked and paid for in advance or while you are on the tour, though we recommend booking in advance to ensure there are no issues with availability.

Many options are priced the same throughout the year, but some may incur single or high season supplements - full details are given on the tour reservation form or on request.

Single room supplement (ISSHIE)

Single room supplement (ISSHIE)

Min numbers: 2 Adults


This option books a single room in all the accommodation throughout the tour. Room shares may be available but the supplement is payable if a room share cannot be arranged.

Price from
€645
per person

This option books a single room in all the accommodation throughout the tour. If you are a single traveller and would be happy to share a room, let us know and we will see if we can pair you up with another single traveller of the same sex. If a room share is not available when you book then we will add the single room supplement to your booking and it will be payable with your balance payment unless we have arranged a room share for you by then. If a room share is arranged after you have paid the supplement then we will refund it to you. Room shares are arranged in order of booking.

Tour Notes

The detailed Tour Notes below have been written to give you some more detailed information about how the tour runs, what to expect, and how to prepare for your holiday. We recommend downloading an up to date copy of these shortly before you travel in case of any changes.

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  1. Accommodation

We use good quality hotels rated at the Israeli 4-star and Jordanian 3-star level on this tour, together with a night in a Kibbutz hotel. Options are available to upgrade the accommodation to a better 4-star, or standard 5-star level. Please contact us for prices to match your dates. The normal hotels we use for these upgrades are shown below, though these may changes to alternate hotels of a similar standard on some dates:

Comfort (good 4-star): Amman - Grand Palace  |  Petra - Nabatean Castle  |  Tel Aviv - Grand Beach  |  Jerusalem - Grand Court  |  Kibbutz Lavi - Superior room
Superior (4/5 star): Amman - Regency Palace  |  Petra - Mariott  |  Tel Aviv - Dan Panorama  |  Jerusalem - Dan Panorama  |  Kibbutz Lavi - Superior room

As different hotel levels are available, this does mean that if some people take up the upgrades there will be more than one hotel pick-up and drop-off each day, though we do aim to plan these to minimise any extra travelling time. 

Accommodation is based on twin or double en-suite rooms with air conditioning. All couples will be given a private double room. Single travellers will need to pay a single room supplement to guarantee themselves a single room throughout the tour. We aim to keep this cost as low as possible. As we may share this tour with other operators, we do not offer a room-share option.


  2. Transfers

This tour includes an arrival airport transfer from Ben Gurion airport in Tel Aviv to your hotel at anytime on Day 1 of the tour, and a transfer back from your hotel to the airport on Day 11. If you would like to add extra time in Israel and arrive before Day 1 of the tour or leave after Day 11, we can provide you with a quotation for your extra nights and airport transfer.

For legal reasons when crossing from Israel into Jordan, it's not possible for us to use the same vehicle so you'll be escorted to the immigration point on the Israel side of the border before taking a shuttle bus to the Jordanian side where our Jordanian team will greet you. Once in Jordan you'll have a Jordanian guide and driver who will continue with you for this part of the tour. You should budget approximately $107.00 for border fees which are not included in the tour price. These fees will be paid locally, in cash, when crossing the border. We have many passengers each year crossing this border and our local team are very experienced - full assistance will be given at each side.


  3. Border Crossings

This tour includes two crossings of the Israel/Jordan border. We ask for your patience when crossing borders, as this process can sometimes take more than an hour. Please be assured that our local team is working daily with the authorities and is doing whatever they can at all times to expedite this. We also suggest that you try to travel as light as possible, as the Israeli security is tight and it can take a while for them to search through and check large cases.

Crossing at Beit Shean (Sheikh Hussein) from Israel to Jordan.
Our border assistant will explain the procedure to you at the entrance to the terminal. First, you enter the terminal and visit the exit tax kiosk and pay your exit tax (100 ILS plus 5 ILS surcharge in USD, EUR or Israeli Shekels). Take your exit tax to the immigration counter and hand it over with your passport. After processing your passport you walk through the duty free and outside across the road there is a waiting area. Here you can wait till called to board your shuttle bus to the Jordan Terminal. Note: Our staff cannot accompany you during this process, so you should follow the instructions of the assistant and border staff to ensure your crossing is smooth.  You pay the shuttle bus fee of JOD 1.6 (approx. $2.3 US or 10 NIS) on arrival at the Jordan terminal and then head to Jordanian immigration to arrange your Jordan visa and enter the country. Once on the Jordanian guide, your guide/assistant (sometimes the same person), will handle the taxes and if appropriate, visa payments.

Returning to Israel from Jordan.
Our assistant team on both sides can take you right up to the border fence and will explain to you the procedure throughout.


  4. International Flights

We want to give you as much flexibility as possible when it comes to booking your holiday with us. So, to take account of people with varying travel plans, we don’t include your international flights in the main tour price. We are however very happy to suggest flights to go with the tour. Please contact us with your preferred dates and departure airport and we’ll give you a selection of airlines, times and fares to choose from.

Your airport arrival & departure transfers are included on the first and last days of the tour.

 All our group tours in Israel start and finish at Ben Gurion airport in Tel Aviv (TLV).

  5. Group Size/Tour Leaders/Guides

On average the group departures on this tour tend to have a minimum of around 10 passengers and an average of 14-18, though we only need 2 passengers to book for a departure to be guaranteed. The maximum capacity of this tour is 45 which is why we class it as a Shoestring level tour, despite the 4-star level of the hotels. To ensure affordability in what is a very expensive country to arrange tours like this, we share this tour with a small number of other operators so you may join with travellers booking with different companies.

At Encounters Travel we aim to only ever use local Israeli and Jordanian guides and reps. We feel this gives you the best experience of the country and the sites you are seeing. A different guide may be used for the Occupied Palestinian Territory sites to the rest of the tour in Israel.

When crossing to Jordan you will be dropped by your guide at the entry to the Israel/Jordan border crossing and met on the Jordanian side by a guide who will accompany you for the Jordanian section of the tour. On your return to Israel you will again pass through the border independently before being met on the Israeli side. Please check the Border Crossings note for information on border crossing fees.


  6. Tipping
Tipping is common practice in Israel, as a sign of appreciation for services provided. You may therefore wish to tip your guide and driver at the end of the tour.  You should not feel obliged to tip any particular amount, and should consider your personal budget. We are often asked to provide a guide however, and can suggest that approx. GBP 5 / USD 8 per person per day would be appropriate.

  7. Health and Vaccinations

You should ensure you are fully insured for medical emergencies including emergency evacuation and repatriation.

Recommended vaccinations and other health protection measures vary according to the country you are visiting and where you are travelling from. We recommend you contact your GP/medical practitioner or a travel clinic for current information on vaccinations needed for your destination.  You should ensure that you are up to date with vaccines and boosters recommended for your normal life at home, including for example, vaccines required for occupational risk of exposure, lifestyle risks and underlying medical conditions.
In addition, additional courses or boosters normally recommended for the countries in this region are:

Egypt: Tetanus, Typhoid, Hepatitis A
Jordan: Tetanus, Hepatitis A
Israel: Hepatitis A, Poliomyelitis
Lebanon: Dipheria, Hepatitis A

Malaria is not generally present unless it has been contracted abroad; you do not need to take malaria prophylactics.

More information is available here: Egypt, Jordan, Israel, Lebanon

Note: We are aware of some places in Egypt using 'black henna' instead of pure brown henna. Black henna contains a chemical dye PPD (paraphenylenediamine) which can result in severe allergic reactions and resultant scarring. To be safe we recommend avoiding any henna tattoos while in Egypt unless you are certain they are using pure brown henna.


  8. Passports and Visas - Jordan

Passports should be valid for at least six months after your departure from the country. Please do not bring an almost full or almost expired passport. Visa arrangements are the responsibility of the traveller, and requirements are subject to change by the local authorities.

To promote tourism to the country, the Jordanian government has designed the Jordan Pass. This provides adults of most nationalities with a free single entry Jordan visa (for stays of 3 nights or more), a discounted package of entrance fees, and free digital brochures for the various sites in Jordan. Please check the Jordan Pass tour note for more information.

Double or multi entry visas for Jordan are no longer available and you will need to arrange two visas if you are doing a combination tour (eg. with Egypt and/or Israel) that visits Jordan more than once. Exceptions may occur if you are crossing to and from Israel via the King Hussein Bridge - please contact us for details.

If you wish to arrange your visa separately in advance, or if your stay will be shorter than four days/3 nights, then a visa fee of 40JD (approx. USD 57) will be due.

Families with children under 12 are recommended not to purchase the Jordan Pass as entrance fees are not charged in Jordan for children under 12. Our Jordan Family tour prices include your entrance fees and we will also arrange a free visa for you on your arrival into Amman airport.

Other nationalities may require a visa prior to arrival and to obtain this in advance, please contact your local Jordanian embassy or consulate or a visa agency for details. In addition, if you plan to enter Jordan via the southern Wadi Araba crossing (Eilat-Aqaba) or the Allenby Bridge/King Hussein border with Israel in the north, you will need to obtain your Jordan visa in advance as these are not available on arrival at the border.


  9. Passports & Visas - Israel & OPT

Passports should be valid for at least six months after your departure from the country. Please do not bring an almost full or almost expired passport. Visa arrangements are the responsibility of the traveller, and requirements are subject to change by the local authorities.

Many nationalities (including UK, European, USA, Canadian, Australian, New Zealand, South African) do not need to obtain a visa to enter Israel as a period as long as your stay is for less than 3 months. Other nationalities should check with their local consulate.

Most of our tours visiting Israel also enter the Occupied Palestinian Territories (OPT). No special visas are required but check points and border posts are operated by the Israeli authorities and access is sometimes limited or restricted.


  10. Time

The time in Egypt, Jordan, Israel and Lebanon is GMT plus 2 hours and in UAE GMT plus 3 hours. Daylight saving adjustments have historically been applied in some years but not others. At present it appears that there will be no daylight saving changes in Egypt 2016 and beyond, though this may change at short notice (with a resulting impact on flight times and schedules). In Jordan and Israel, daylight saving of one hour is generally applied between the end of March and the end of October, making it GMT plus 3 hours. Exact dates vary from year to year and sometimes the changes may be scrapped altogether.


  11. Voltage

Sockets are two round pronged and 220 volts (Type C). Universal adaptors are available in most airport shops if you don't have one already. Standard European adapters will work fine, though sometimes they may feel a little loose in the sockets. All hotel rooms have electrical sockets where you can re-charge cameras, phones etc. Hair dryers are normally available on request from the hotel reception if not in your room already.
If you have US appliances (110 volts) you will need a voltage converter as well as a plug adapter.


  12. Money - Israel

The local currency in Israel and the Occupied Palestinian Territories is the Israeli Shekel (ILS). You do not need to arrange to bring any Shekels with you as exchange facilities are available in the international airports and in most hotels, banks and bureau de changes in major towns. You should try to obtain and keep hold of small denomination notes or coins on you during the tour as these are useful for toilets, tips and small purchases. ATMs are readily available in major towns and many local shops will accept VISA/Mastercard or Amex, but may charge fees of up to 10% - check before you pay. Travellers cheques are not recommended as they can not be changed in many places now, and can incur high fees.

While in Israel and the OPT you will need sufficient funds to cover meals not included in the itinerary, drinks, snacks, souvenirs and personal expenses such as laundry. These should generally all be paid for in local currency, though tips for guides and drivers may be paid in hard currency (GBP, USD, EUR).

It is difficult to recommend a level of personal spending money which will suit everyone as this can differ greatly, but as a guideline, we would suggest allowing USD 25-35 per person per day as a minimum. Allow more if you plan on doing lots of shopping, or buying many alcoholic drinks.


  13. Money - Jordan

The local currency in Jordan is the Jordanian Dinar (JD). You do not need to arrange to bring any Jordanian Dinar with you to Jordan as exchange facilities are available in the international airports and in most hotels, banks and bureau de changes in major towns. You should try to obtain and keep hold of small denomination notes or coins on you during the tour as these are useful for toilets, tips and small purchases. ATMs are readily available in major towns and many local shops will accept VISA/Mastercard or Amex, but may charge fees of up to 10% - check before you pay. Travellers cheques are not recommended as they can not be changed in many places now, and can incur high fees.

While in Jordan you will need sufficient funds to cover meals not included in the itinerary, drinks, snacks, souvenirs and personal expenses such as laundry. These should generally all be paid for in Jordanian Dinar, though tips for guides and drivers may be paid in hard currency (GBP, USD, EUR).

It is difficult to recommend a level of personal spending money which will suit everyone as this can differ greatly, but as a guideline, we would suggest allowing USD 15-25 per person per day as a minimum. Allow more if you plan on doing lots of shopping, or buying many alcoholic drinks.


  14. What to take

Luggage: Suitcases, rucksacks or fabric holdalls are all fine to bring with you to Israel and Jordan. You should also bring a small daypack/bag to take out during the day. Your main luggage will normally be left in the hotel during your sightseeing trips – you will not need to carry it far, and there are nearly always hotel porters to assist.

Luggage limits: There is no luggage limit for this tour. However, most airlines restrict you to between 20kg and 25kg for your hold luggage and between 5kg and 10kg for hand luggage. Please check with your airline before travelling to the airport.

Clothing: The climate in Israel and Jordan varies widely from hot days in the summer to cool and sometimes wet days in the winter months. At night, especially in the deserts, the temperatures can drop quite dramatically. So you must pack for cool conditions. Formal dress (eg. suits & ties) is not required. Modesty rates highly in Jordan (and parts of Israel), especially for women, so to respect the local culture & people, please ensure all clothes are loose fitting and not revealing. Shorts (not hot-pants) are OK in tourist sites, as are T-shirts, but these should not show too much bare flesh (we suggest that your shoulders should remain covered). When visiting any mosques, legs and arms should be covered.

Other items: At the Bedouin camp bedding is provided but we recommend bringing a light sleeping sheet or sleeping bag liner for comfort all year round (even with the best efforts, sand does find its way pretty much everywhere). In the winter months, or if you think you would like to sleep under the stars instead of in your tent, then we recommend you bring a sleeping bag with you as it can get very cold at night. We also recommend you bring a sun hat, sunscreen, sunglasses, a basic first aid kit, toiletries, money belt, small torch, camera & charger.


  15. Booking & Payment

If you would like to book a place on this tour, please complete the online reservation form on our website (via the Dates & Prices tab on the tour page). You may make a deposit or full payment online, or just hold a reservation if you prefer (full payments are due 8 weeks before departure). We will then contact you with more details about how to complete your booking. Payments may be made by debit or credit card (subject to a card processing fee), or by making a bank transfer, or posting us a cheque/bank draft. Full details will be provided in your booking confirmation email. Please contact us if you would like any more information or have any questions before making a booking.


  16. Travel Insurance

Travel insurance is compulsory on all of our tours and needs to cover personal accident & liability, medical expenses and repatriation, travel delay & abandonment. We also strongly recommend that you take out cover against cancellation and lost/stolen baggage. Personal medical insurance does not normally provide sufficient cover and is generally not suitable for travel on our tours. You will not be able to join your tour if you have not provided us with details of your insurance or if you arrive without cover in place (no refunds will be due in this event). More information...

You may arrange your own insurance, or you can take advantage of a comprehensive policy that we can arrange for you through Endsleigh Insurance which has been designed to be suitable for our tours. The policy is available to travellers of all nationalities and you do not need to live in the UK  to take out the policy. For full details of cover provided, prices and to apply for one of our policies, please complete travel insurance application form.
Note: Any country that borders the Mediterranean is considered as 'Europe' for the purposes of travel insurance (including Turkey, Israel, Egypt and Morocco). If you are doing a tour that visits one country in 'Europe' and one that is 'Worldwide' (for example, an Egypt and Jordan tour), then you need a 'Worldwide' policy. When completing the form you should enter your travel dates including any extra days involved in overnight flights or connecting travel between your home and the tour. Our policies are not able to cover any extra time or activities other than your tour and options booked with us and your travel to & from home.

Note - to comply with insurance sales regulations, our travel insurance policies are only available to customers booking directly with us. If you have booked through a travel agent you will need to arrange your own insurance.

If you plan to arrange a hot air balloon flight locally, or do some scuba diving during your tour, you should check the small print in your policy to make sure these are covered (these are covered in our policy). Please also check the maximum altitude that you will be reaching and that full cover including emergency evacuation is provided up to this altitude.

If you are taking expensive camera gear or other electronic equipment with you then please check the coverage and the fine print of your policy to ensure that you have sufficient cover.

IMPORTANT:  We must have your travel insurance details (policy number and type of insurance) before you depart or you may not be allowed to join the tour.  If you haven't told us already, please let us know the details when you can. You should take a paper copy of your insurance policy with you as you may be asked to show this at the start of the tour.


  17. Financial Security

We are a UK registered company and an ABTA Member (Y4447) and you can be confident when booking with us that your money is safe and protected.
Financial failure insurance is also provided through Affirma to protect all customers for the land portion of your tour.
Please see our website or booking conditions for more information.


  18. Responsible Tourism

It is impossible not to have an impact on the local environment, cultures and eco-systems when you travel. However, it is very possible to try and ensure that these impacts are as limited, or positive as possible. We are committed to ensuring that we try to leave our host countries in a better state than we found them and encourage and assist our travellers to help us with this.
The following are a few simple tips that require very little effort on your part but which will help ensure that any effect you have on the locations you visit is positive rather than negative.

  • Don't prejudge: Things in different countries will almost certainly be different. That doesn't make them worse or inferior, just different.
  • Communicate: Don't expect locals to speak your language. Take the trouble to learn a few words or phrases of the local language. Don't worry about sounding silly. Most locals are patient and accommodating and appreciate you making the effort to communicate in their language.
  • Conserve energy: Be careful not to waste valuable resources. Use local resources sparingly. Switch off lights, air-conditioning and fans when you leave the hotel room and don't waste water. Remove superfluous packaging. Many countries have far less efficient waste disposal systems than ours. Remove packaging from newly acquired items before leaving home.
  • Don't litter: No matter how untidy or dirty the country you're travelling in may look to you, avoid littering, as there is no need to add to the environment's stress. Many of the countries we visit have a tough challenge dealing with rubbish and waste. Please consider taking home as much plastic waste as you can (e.g. water bottles).
  • Choose environmentally friendly products: By using environmentally friendly (bio degradable) sun creams, shampoos and detergents you can help reduce pollution.
  • Respect local customs and traditions: As you are a guest in these countries, you should also comply with the local customs. If you are friendly and well mannered, the locals will reciprocate and it will only enhance your experience. It's important to follow dress and behaviour guidelines especially when visiting religious or sacred sites (your tour leader will advise you how best to do this).
  • If a client commits an illegal act the client may be excluded from the tour and Encounters Travel shall cease to have responsibility to/for them. No refund will be given for any unused services.

All porters are employed and equipped following guidelines set by the International Porter Protection Group (IPPG).


  19. Follow Us Online

You can stay in touch with us online by following us on Facebook and Twitter. We post updates on relevant travel news in our destination countries, special offers and discounts and other interesting travel related news and information.
www.facebook.com/encounterstravel
www.twitter.com/encounterstravl (yes, without the 'e')


  20. Before you travel

It is important when considering and preparing to travel anywhere in the world that you have a good understanding of the country you are visiting, its laws and customs, and the possible risks and situations that may occur. This includes specific risks related to your itinerary (eg. does it involve water & can you swim, are you fit enough for the activities included), as well as more general risks such as terrorism and natural disasters.

General details and links to more information about health risks, visa requirements, money, and travel insurance are given in these tour notes. We recommend that you re-read all these before your departure as well as the small print of your travel insurance policy so you know exactly what is covered and what is not.

You should take copies of your important travel documents with you and ideally also store them online securely as a backup. Make sure that you have given us your emergency contact details and told that person where and when you are travelling. Ensure you take enough money with you and that you have access to emergency funds.

Finally, you should read through and stay updated with the current official government travel advice for your destination. We are registered partners with the UK Foreign Office's 'Travel Aware' campaign which provides further useful and invaluable information.

'Travel Aware' campaign

Reviews

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Best of Israel & Jordan & Country Reviews

Product Review


Posted 21st of Nov 2017

Wonderful trip made even more enjoyable by efficient arrangements and a very informative and helpful guide.

Product Review


Posted 4th of Feb 2016

Great tour guide

Product Review


Posted 24th of Oct 2015

We had been with Encounters Travel before to Jordan which was excellent, so our expectations were high. We were not disappointed. The hotels were very good, the guide extremely knowledgeable with excellent English, and food plentiful and excellent. We visited all the places We remembered from the bible at Sunday school, and then some. I would recommend this holiday to anyone. It was fantastic. I shall definitely book another holiday with Encounters Travel.