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Ancient & Holy Lands

  • Overview
  • Itinerary
  • Fares
  • Accommodation

A journey overview

  • Petra
  • Wadi Rum
  • The Dead Sea
  • Jerusalem
  • Bethlehem
  • Nazareth
  • The Sea Of Galilee
  • Tel Aviv

14 Days Explorations
  • Departing:
  • 9 Oct 2020

Ancient history is brought to life on a journey through Jordan, Israel and Cyprus, reserved for just 24 guests.

Map

As our feet touch down on Middle Eastern lands, we’re whisked to the Lost City. Cherish two nights at the Mövenpick Resort Petra, where the magnificent metropolis lies just moments away. As if created by a bolt of lightening, the Siq’s dramatic walls provoke anticipation. Mere footsteps away, the Treasury, Petra’s famous facade, awaits. Further within these ancient walls, see the Street of Facades, Royal Tombs, Pharaoh’s Castle and the Monastery.

On a Jeep expedition, see carvings of human figures and Nabataean rock inscriptions. After lunch at a desert camp, the Kempinski Hotel Ishtar Dead Sea in the Jordan Valley awaits for a two-night stay. Set on the banks of the Dead Sea, we’re afforded private access to the hallowed waters. Explore the ancient Roman remains of Jerash, see the mosaics of Madaba and pay a visit to Mt Nebo, or simply float in the Dead Sea on a Your World experience.

We enjoy five nights at the iconic King David Hotel. During our time here, we visit the Temple Mount, Mt Zion and the room of the Last Supper, the Avenue of the Righteous and the Children’s Memorial at Yad Vashem. At the Israel Museum, discover the Dead Sea Scrolls. Become immersed in history and spirituality of Bethlehem as we explore the sites of Manger Square and the Church of the Nativity, as well as the monasteries of the Shepherds’ Fields.

In the Great Rift Valley, we ride a cable car to the desert fortress of Masada and as dusk falls, enjoy dinner overlooking the Dead Sea. Israel’s more recent past comes to light at the main museum, the Avenue of the Righteous, the Children’s Memorial and the Israel Museum, where we see the Dead Sea Scrolls. In Bethlehem, explore Manger Square and the Church of the Nativity, as well as the monasteries of the Shepherds’ Fields.

Together we walk the path of pharaohs, kings and caliphs in Beth Shean. Israel’s Middle Eastern charm is on display in Nazareth. While here, perhaps submerge yourself in the Jordan River at Yardenit, where it is believed that Jesus was baptised. We sail upon the Sea of Galilee before making our way to the Spa Hotel Mizpe Hayamim. We pause at Golan Heights, born from volcanic eruptions, continuing east to Banias Nature Reserve.

In Tel Aviv, a cable car ride takes us past beautiful grottos and caves of Rosh Hanikra. Our journey continues to Akko and the Bahai Gardens, before a tour of ancient Caesarea. An Israeli archaeologist shares insight into the Holy Land before we retire at the Hilton Tel Aviv. Our time here is occupied by a visit to Independence Hall and the Palmach Museum, as well as a sampling dinner at Market Kitchen.

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Touching down in Larnaca, we are taken to lively Limassol, and the independently owned Four Seasons Hotel. Over the coming five nights, this residence, ideally situated for our plans, will serve as the perfect base for discovery.

This morning we are at liberty to explore the island’s capital of Nicosia before travelling further north. Divided since Turkish forces invaded the north in 1974, a green line still exists as a border between the north and south. We consider ourselves lucky to cross over to the harbour town of Kyrenia en route to the beautiful 12th-century Bellapais Abbey. Nestled at the foot of the Besparmak Mountains, this monastic masterpiece will charm you with Italian frescos and coastline views.

Explore the old market and medieval castle where it is said that Richard the Lionheart married Berengaria of Navarre before crowning her the Queen of England in 1191. Visit the site of Kourion and visit the theatre and House of Eustolious. At the Omodhos village, visit the Monastery of the Holy Cross. It is here the skull of Apostle Philip and the remains of 26 saints are said to reside.

Stroll along the palm-lined promenade of Larnaca to the Byzantine Church of St Lazarus. At Famagusta, we learn about the 12th-century Kingdom of Salamis while wandering amid crumbling colonnades. Pass by the ghost city of Varosha. Abandoned by man and reclaimed by nature, Varosha stands as an eerie reminder of Cyprus’ past.

The Roman mosaics found within Paphos’ House of Dionysus are truly remarkable – depictions of pantherdrawn chariots and eagles carrying the weight of the moon decorate our vision. Travelling onwards to the St Neophytos Monastery and Tomb of the Kings, distinguished cultural masterpieces await. We also touch on Paphos’ harbour.

Return to the sunshine of Limassol, and take the morning slowly with a stroll in the sun or enjoy the fine amenities of our hotel. Later, we are whisked to Larnaca International Airport.

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