DETAILED TRIP NOTES
Are you wondering if this is the right trip for you? We want you to enjoy your trip with us so please consider the following points carefully before booking your trip.
It can get very hot in in this region of the world. From around April to September be prepared for a few early starts on your trip, we do this to try an avoid the midday sun, mainly if we are going to an area that we know doesn’t have much shade.
Some of the sites we visit can and do get very busy. While we always try to plan our visits around peak times we can’t guarantee that you won’t experience queues or delays, with so much to see and the popularity of sites we visit queues and potential delays are inevitable at some point. Your Luna and local guide will manage it best they can.
Walking conditions may not always be great, some sites may require you to walk on rocky and uneven surfaces. We recommend you bring a good pair of walking shoes with you, preferably already broken in to avoid unwanted blisters.
Sometimes being in or walking in the sun for prolonged periods is unavoidable, we recommend that you bring a hat with you and enough sun cream to last you for the duration of your stay.
Israel is not a cheap destination, it’s important that you budget accordingly taking into account any meals not provided as part of the trip and your spending habits.
Physical rating 2 out of 5.
The Embassy Hotel, is a comfortable 3 star hotel ideally situated in the centre of Tel Aviv.
All rooms have air conditioning and are fully equipped with modern facilities.
Embassy Hotel Tel Aviv,
5 Shalom Aleichem St. (Corner of. 74 HaYarkon St.),
Tel-Aviv, 6343231, Israel,
We will be welcoming all guests at the Embassy Hotel, Tel Aviv. Please let us know your flight information so we know what time to expect you. The meeting point will be at the main reception, if you are unable to locate us please ask the reception staff who will point us out.
The hotel is only a short drive from Ben Gurion Airport, approximately 13 miles which should take 30 minutes by taxi costing between £30 to £35. Please always agree a fee with the driver before getting into the car. This website will help you determine the price. Taxi fair calculator
Embassy Hotel Tel Aviv,
5 Shalom Aleichem St. (Corner of. 74 HaYarkon St.),
Tel-Aviv, 6343231, Israel,
We will do everything we can to offer you the most enjoyable holiday experience possible, however we recognise that due to the locations we visit and the sometimes unpredictable nature of travel that there are times when things can go wrong.
If any issues occur during your trip your local representative or group leader will do everything they can to resolve the problem and ensure that any negative impact on the remainder of the trip is mitigated.
If your group leader or our local partner is unable to resolve the problem to your full satisfaction then you should ask them to discuss the issue with their manager. If you experience a genuine emergency or crisis then you can call our team by telephone on: +441942 202124
ONCE YOU RETURN HOME:
Within thirty days of your trip being completed you may provide us with online feedback. We welcome all feedback but would remind you that it is difficult for practical assistance to be offered after the conclusion of any trip.
For general enquiries and comments you may contact us via the following page: http://www.lunatravel.co.uk/contact-us/
Upon your arrival at our hotel “Embassy Hotel, Tel Aviv” we will get you checked in and settled into your room before we meet up as a group for the first time. We choose to hold our welcome meetings in a relaxed environment over some delicious local food, it’s a great way to break the ice and for you to get to know us and your fellow travellers.
Embassy Hotel, Tel Aviv 3*- Breakfast
Explore Tel Aviv, Israel’s second largest city founded at the start of the 20th century on the on the outskirts of Jaffa an old port city. Wonder around the UNESCO-listed White City home to thousands of Bauhaus-style buildings from the 1930s, taking in the city’s many highlights including artsy Neve Tzedek. Visit the ancient port city of Jaffa one of the oldest ports in the world, walk the narrow cobbled streets taking in the city’s ancient past. We will continue to Caesarea were we will explore the ancient ruins of Caesarea National Park, highlights being the Harbour Ruins and the restored Romania Amphitheatre. Next, travel to the ancient walled city of Akko (also known as Acre) a city bursting with history from the crusader-era. One the many areas of interest we will visit in Akko is the impressive Knights Hall, a large fortification that was constructed to protect the area. Hotel Galilee
King Solomon Hotel, Tiberias 3* – Breakfast
Day 3: Visit biblical Tabgha & Capernaum, highlights inc Mount of Beatitudes & Pilgrimage Church of St. Peter.
Today we will explore two important Christian sites, Tabgha and Capernaum. Enjoy a morning tour of Tabgha the location of one the most significant events from the New Testament the feeding of the 5000. Visit the Church of the Multiplication of the Loves as well as the Church of the Primacy of St. Peter finishing off with a visit to the Mount of Beatitudes, the site Christ gave his Sermon on the Mount. This biblical site is now home to a Byzantine church which features beautiful stained glass depictions of the eight beatitudes, a tranquil garden with amazing views of the area. Continuing our journey to Capernaum which was home to apostles Andrew, James, John, Peter and Simon, it is also said to be the place Jesus first began his ministry. Visit the Pilgrimage Church of St. Peter which is built over the top of St. Peters old house.
King Solomon Hotel, Tiberias 3* – Breakfast
This morning we leave Galilee en route to the Holy Land of Jerusalem visiting Nazareth on the way and the Church of Annunciation & Mary’s Well where it is believed that the archangel Gabriel visited a young Mary and told her she would become the mother to the Son of God. Nazareth is also the childhood home of Jesus. Next we visit Beit She’an one of the most extensive archaeological sites in Israel with its beautifully preserved ancient ruins from spectacular Roman and Byzantine to the seventh century Mosaic of Rehob. According to the Bible, Beit She’an was the site the Philistines defeated the first king of Israel King Saul and his army, killing the king and his three sons. Continuing our journey we will finish the day in Jerusalem which will be our home for the remainder of the trip.
Hotel New Imperial Hotel, Jerusalem 2* – Breakfast
Day 5: To Bethlehem, visit the Church of the Nativity, Jerusalem tour inc Yad Vashem Holocaust Museum.
An early start today as we6 travel to Bethlehem visiting the breathtaking Church of the Nativity which is believed by Christian tradition to be the birthplace of Jesus. A church has been on the site since 339AD, marvel at the elaborate floor mosaics while walking through the churches sacred hallways on your way into to the grotto and supposed spot Jesus was born.
Further explore Bethlehem with time for a sport of shopping.
Enjoy a city tour exploring Jerusalem’s ancient and more recent past. Visit the Yad Vashem Holocaust Museum where you will learn about the terrible atrocities the Jewish people suffered during the second World War at the hands of Nazi Germany. The museum has nine galleries which display documents, films, letters, photographs and personal items from the camps and ghettos of Nazi Germany. It’s an incredibly moving experience.
Hotel New Imperial Hotel, Jerusalem 2* – Breakfast
Jerusalem truly is the Holy Land, an important spiritual site for three major religions Christianity, Islam and Judaism. Jerusalem is a place that churches, mosques and synagogues stand side by side. Today we visit two of Christianity’s holiest sites, the site of Jesus’s crucifixion and his resurrection. Journey down the Via Dolorosa following in the footsteps of Jesus as he walked the narrow winding street on the way to his crucifixion. The street leads you to the Church of the Holy Sepulchre and access to the site Jesus’s crucifixion and the tomb of his burial and resurrection.
Next we visit one of the most important Islamic sites in the world, the Dome of the Rock, a truly beautiful Islamic shrine which it’s believed the Prophet Muhammad’s Night Journey to heaven began from the foundation stone at the centre of the building. We will spend an hour or so exploring the Temple Mount site before making our way to the Wailing Wall which is a holy site to the Jewish faith due to its connection to Temple Mount.
Before heading back to our hotel we will pay a visit to the Antonia Fortress which is said to be the place where Pontius Pilate tried Jesus for his crimes.
Hotel New Imperial Hotel, Jerusalem 2* – Breakfast
Day 7: Enjoy a free day to further explore Jerusalem, optional excursion, Israel Museum & Mount Zion.
Today you can explore Jerusalem at your own pace on this free day. Your Luna guide will present you with an information sheet listing many of the city’s wonderful sights along with the location and distance from our hotel.
OPTIONAL EXCURSION (At additional cost)
Today’s optional excursion starts with a visit the Israel Museum which is ranked as one of the best museums in the world with a huge collection of objects and artefacts numbering around 500,000. Enter the Shrine of Book and marvel at the Dead Sea Scrolls, these ancient Jewish religious manuscripts discovered between 1947 and 1956 are one of the greatest discoveries in history. See the incredible 1,000 square meter model of Jerusalem which recreates the city of 66AD before the Great Revolt and destruction of Jerusalem by the Romans.
Later we will make our way to Mount Zion, a biblical location steeped in history, and the site of some the most significant events in Christianity. Exploring Mount Zion we will visit:
The Tomb of King David, from a humble shepherd David would go on to slay the giant Goliath and become the second King of Judah. David who died age 70 of natural causes would go on to be known as an “ideal king” due to his great qualities.
The Cenacle Room or the “Upper Room” is a room in the tomb compound of King David and is said to be the Room of the Last Supper where Jesus shared his final meal with his Apostles the night before his crucifixion.
Visit the Church of the Dormition which was built on what Christian tradition identifies as the place where the Blessed Virgin Mary “fell asleep” without suffering.
Our final visit of the day, the Church of St Peter in Gallicantu, perched high on the steep hill side this beautiful church was the site of Jesus’s appearance with Caiaphas, the high priest of the Jews. It is also the site where Peter would go on to deny Jesus three times.
Hotel New Imperial Hotel, Jerusalem 2* – Breakfast
New Imperial Hotel, Jerusalem
Jaffa Gate, Old City,
East Jerusalem, 91140, Israel
The hotel is only 25 miles from Ben Gurion Airport, we will be able to help organise a taxi for you should you wish.
We do everything we can to ensure that the information published in our brochures is accurate but it is sometimes necessary to update an itinerary during the year to include new information gained from our research, or the comments of past travellers. This possibility means that the final itinerary may vary slightly from your brochure. To avoid any inconvenience please review and print out the latest copy of your ‘Essential Trip Information’ a few days before you travel.
We operate trips to the region throughout the year, and seasonal changes to timetables or inclement weather may result in alterations to advertised transport routes and the timing of events included at each location, so please be prepared for the possibility of modifications to your itinerary.
If you discover any changes that raise queries please get in touch. We want to ensure that you enjoy the best possible travel experience with us.
On some trips, alongside the day-to-day itinerary we have made available a variety of optional activities. The list of available activities isn’t exhaustive and is intended as a guide of what may be available in each location. The quoted prices are the approximate entrance fee to each site and do not include the costs of transport or a local guide unless this is specifically mentioned.
All listed activities are subject to availability and given the limited time available at each location it may not be possible to include every activity.
Some of the activities listed may be classed as medium or high risk activities. For these activities we have carefully assessed the credentials and safety protocols of those with whom we partner. It may be possible for you to find the same activity available at a lower price from an alternative operator at the destination, however, we are unable to vouch for the quality or safety of any operator other than those listed in our promotional material. If an activity is not listed above it has not been assessed by us and our team will be unable to help you to book the activity. If you choose to engage in any activity not listed above you do so on your own discretion and at your own risk.
We would love to hear your feedback on how we did delivering your holiday. Your feedback is very important to us, we read every single submission carefully. Your feedback give us a better understanding of things we did well on your trip, equally any aspects of the trip you think we could improve on, we can address.
The trip starts on the 20th January 2019 in Tel Aviv and finishes on the morning of the 27 in Jerusalem.
We have a limited number of single rooms available. The single room supplement fee for this trip is £200. You can add the single room when booking or you can simply give us a call.
Many of the sites we visit require that both men and women be dressed conservatively. Ideal dress for women in this region is long skirts, dresses and pants, keeping the chest and shoulders areas covered with loose fitting items. Men should avoid shorts in favour of full-length pants. Your Luna and Local guide will go into more detail on the subject when you join the trip.
Safety is always a priority, it’s recommend that you check your governments travel advice website for up to date safety information when travelling to Israel (especially in the West Bank). Please also make sure that your insurance covers you for all areas we are visiting on the trip.
Travel advice from the UK government https://www.gov.uk/foreign-travel-advice/israel
As a general rule when traveling, passports should be valid with a minimum of 6 months remaining at the time of your scheduled return date
Individual travellers are responsible for obtaining a valid visa for their trip. National entry requirements are subject to change at any time, so it is recommended that you check the appropriate consular website for your destination to ensure that you are aware of the relevant visa information for your nationality. If you are unfamiliar with the process of obtaining a visa your consultant will be able to point you in the correct direction to obtain the visa you need.
Processing a visa application may take several weeks so it is important that you determine whether a visa is required and what the requirements are as soon as your trip is booked, so your visa application will be processed in good time for you to travel.
UK Nationals do not require a visa to enter the Israel. Other nationalities should consult with their local embassy for upto date travel requirements.
Before travelling you should speak to a medical professional for the latest medical travel information and to determine whether any anti-malarial precautions or other vaccinations are required. We recommend that all travellers should bring with them any medical equipment they will require for the duration of the trip, including spare glasses if needed, and a first aid kit for any minor injuries, as it may not always be possible to find these things at the destination.
To participate fully in the trip all travellers will need to be in good physical health. Before selecting a trip please read the itinerary thoroughly and determine whether you will be able to cope with all the activities and methods of travel described there.
Please be aware that if, in the opinion of our designated local guide or group leader a traveller is not able to finish the itinerary without risking injury to themselves or others, we reserve the right to exclude that traveller from part or all of the trip without issuing a refund.
NOTE: Our leaders are unable for legal reasons to administer any drugs, including paracetamol.
During your trip with us you will have an opportunity to experience some of the exciting food choices available at your destination. Some basic breakfasts have been included on this trip. These may include pastries or toast/bread, butter and jam, tea/coffee or juice. However, to allow you the flexibility to select the menu, location, and dining companions most appealing to you not all meals have been included in the price of the trip. While our groups do tend to choose to eat together the majority of the time there is no obligation for you to do so if you prefer to eat elsewhere. If you would like some direction on the most suitable eating places your group leader will be able to suggest some restaurants you may want to try.
SPECIAL DIETARY NEEDS:
Wherever it is possible to do so we will cater for special dietary needs, but there may be occasions when those with special requirements need to cater for their own needs.
Please contact us to let us know of any special dietary requirements you have. While we will do everything we can to help you and your dietary requirements it’s important that you understand you are personally responsible for what foods you eat on the trip.
HOTEL (7 NIGHTS)
The type of accommodation listed in your day-to-day itinerary is intended to act as a guide. There may be rare occasions when alternative accommodation is used due to a shortage of available rooms at our normal accommodation. We will try to select alternative accommodation of a comparable standard if this situation arises.
TWIN SHARE BASIS
Unless indicated in the itinerary all your accommodation is provided on a twin share basis. From time-to-time there may be occasions when facilities will need to be shared rather than being provided en-suite.
We always request that our hotels have our booked rooms prepared in advance of our arrival, but there may be times when this isn’t possible, especially if we are arriving before the usual check-in time. If we are unable to check-in immediately upon arrival we will be able to store our baggage before exploring the destination.
PRE/POST TRIP ACCOMMODATION
If you have purchased accommodation for use either before or after the group trip you may be asked to change rooms for these additional dates.
Hotels in Israel may not provide refrigerators or kettles in the rooms. The accommodation with which you are provided may not always include air-conditioning or private en-suite facilities.
Privat coach, Bus, Metro
The Israeli Shekel (ILS) is the official currency of the Israel.
Israel is by no means a cheap country, below we have listed a few examples of what you can expect to pay during your trip.
A meal in an inexpensive restaurant will cost around £12. In a midrange restaurant, a three course meal for two will cost around £44. A meal at McDonalds around £10.50.
A local beer costs around £5.80, with an imported bottle of beer costing around £5.70. A bottle of wine will cost around £8.50.
A cappuccino costs around £2.50. A can of Pepsi £1.77 and £1.45 for a bottle of water.
ATM’s are readily available in most cities and are seen as a reliable way to access funds. It is advisable to talk to your bank in advance of your trip and ensure you are aware of any fees that will be incurred if you use your card overseas. Credit cards are not always accepted in restaurants and stores so you will need to carry sufficient cash to cover your meal costs and other small purchases. Local currency can usually be withdrawn at population centres and amenities such as; major train stations, airports, and city centres. It is advisable to carry emergency cash with you in a major currency in case you discover upon arrival that no working ATM is available. Don’t leave home without memorising your PIN, and make a note of the telephone number you will need to call in case your card is lost or stolen.
CONCERNING YOUR BUDGET:
No two travellers have identical spending habits. Read through your trip itinerary carefully so you know which costs are included and which aren’t and then have a think about your spending habits. You will need to decide a sensible budget for meals, laundry, snacks, shopping, and all the optional activities not included in the price of your trip. It is always a sensible idea to bring slightly more money than you expect to use. You will need to budget for all the meals that are not included in price of the trip, as well as your additional expenses. Based on feedback from past travellers we recommend a total of £500 for these additional meals & drinks but you may choose to spend as little or as much as you wish.
Providing a tip for good service is usually appropriate. It may not be your usual custom but it is valuable for the people with whom you will interact during your trip. Tipping inspires great service and is an established feature of the tourist industry. We suggest the following amounts per person based on established local considerations and feedback from previous travellers. In most cases a tip equivalent to 5% of the total bill will be appropriate. For the duration of your trip there may be times when a local guide is employed in addition to your tour leader, a tip of £2-£3 per day would be appreciated for such a guide. If a local driver is employed for your trip then £1-£2 per day would be appropriate, perhaps more if they are more involved with your group, although you are of course, free to tip more or less, or not to tip at all if you prefer. As a guide we would suggest a budget of between £5-£6 per day to cover tips during your trip.
We always try to plan for every possibility but there will always be situations that we can’t control. We ask that you ensure that you have access to an additional £500 to cover any emergency situations that could arise. Extreme weather, natural disasters, civil unrest or similar occurrences may result in itinerary alterations at short notice. Airport closures, transport strikes or service cancellations can cause changes at the last minute and unavoidably involve additional expenses to allow the trip to go ahead.
Your packing should be determined by the nature of your chosen trip, the time you travel, and the countries you will be visiting. As a general rule you should avoid bringing more than absolutely necessary. On most trips you will need to carry your own bags, and while you won’t need to transport them for long distances it will be easier for you if your bags are smaller and lighter.
Travellers often choose to store their luggage in a rucksack or backpack to make transportation easier. A wheeled suitcase can be helpful although you should ensure that it is fitted with carry straps in addition to wheels as not all surfaces will be suitable for wheeling.
In addition to your main luggage you will also need a bag for carrying items you need during the day, such as a camera and a water bottle.
SECURE YOUR BAGS FOR LOCAL TRANSPORT:
When we travel on local transport your luggage may sometimes be stored in an unattended area or stowed separately from the travelling party so it is essential that your luggage can be locked to secure your belongings.
DON’T FORGET TO BRING A WATER BOTTLE:
Staying properly hydrated is vital to maintaining your health during the trip. If you are concerned about the quality of the water available while travelling then please consider using iodine, micropur or similar water purification techniques rather than purchasing bottled water. You can also bring a water bottle with you and use the water dispensers provided at our accommodation to refill the bottle instead of purchasing multiple bottles during your journey. The global sale of bottled water creates a significant environmental problem with each 1 litre bottle consuming 200ml of oil and 2000ml of water just to manufacture the bottle. Once emptied much of the waste material is consigned to landfill or left to pollute the natural environment.
During the summer months it can get very warm in Israel. If you are not used to the heat you may find these temperatures uncomfortable. Equaly winters do get very cold often with snow. Please consider your physical suitability to the seasonal conditions when deciding what time of year you would like to travel.
Before you leave home you should check that your travel insurance policy will cover you for all of the areas you will be visiting and familiarise yourself with any recently updated advice or safety concerns relating to international travel which have been produced by your national government. You may also want to browse our website safety page for links to any significant travel advisories that may impact upon your trip.
We will work hard to keep you safe during your trip but there are also many things you can do to make life more difficult for potential thieves.
To keep your cash, passport, and essential documents safe we suggest that you consider a money belt or neck wallet for use while travelling. Rather than carry expensive jewellery around with you it is best to leave it at home or to keep it securely in the hotel safe. Providing a lock for your luggage is encouraged to prevent easy access for thieves during those times when your bag is stored out of your sight.
For all designated activities that form part of your agreed itinerary you will be accompanied by your group leader. During your trip there will be periods of free time with opportunities for you to explore the area at your leisure. Your leader may be able to assist you in discovering what is available at a particular location but if you decide to take on any additional activities these do not form part of your agreed itinerary and you must use your own judgement as to the safety and suitability of each activity and the safety standards of the operator.
To learn more about the safety standards you should expect during your trip please take a look at the operational safety policy displayed on our website. We always welcome feedback on how this policy is implemented in the field.
Fire safety standards vary around the world. The local laws which apply to tourist facilities at your destination will be different to those in your home country and not all the accommodation we will use may be equipped with smoke alarms, fire extinguishers, or a designated fire exit.
Not all countries have the same traffic laws. You may find that traffic in your destination country travels on the opposite side of the road to what you have been used to. Please remember to look both ways before attempting to cross any road. You should also consider that the prevailing traffic conditions may be slightly more chaotic than usual. While travelling on the roads you may be required to use transport that does not provide seatbelts, as fitting seatbelts is not always a local requirement.
Travelling always brings with it the risk of petty theft and being targeted by pickpockets especially in areas that receive large numbers of tourists. While thieves are always a concern there are plenty of things you can do to avoid becoming a victim. If you are walking outside after dark it is advisable to stay in well lit areas and to remain as part of a group as much as possible.
While travelling on the metro or other public transport you should exercise care with your belongings. Try to carry any bags in front of you so that they remain clearly visible at all times. You can also decrease the likelihood of any valuables being lost by keeping them in a money belt and out of public sight.
Everyone taking part in one of our trips has the right to feel safe throughout the entire journey. We work on the principle of respect towards each other and everyone we will meet on the journey. Violence, either physical or verbal is always unacceptable, as is any sexual harassment between passengers, local operators, or our leaders.
In some parts of the world use of opium or marijuana is culturally acceptable but it is not permitted by any travellers on our trips. No illegal drug use will be tolerated on any of our trips. Not only does having drugs in your possession break the law it also places the rest of your travelling group at risk. Discovery of illegal drugs in the possession of any group member will result in them being permanently removed from the trip.
Any form of sexual misconduct, including the use of prostitutes will lead to your removal from the trip. No sexual relationships, whether or not consensual, between a passenger and a group leader will be permitted. If you ever have cause to feel that inappropriate behaviour is taking place on your trip please do not hesitate to contact us using our emergency phone number.
Travelling as part of a group will expose you to both the pleasures and possible frustrations of spending time with others. Your travelling party is likely to be comprised of a cross-section of people from different cultures and different age groups. We request that you show consideration to the different preferences and needs of the various members of your travelling party and extend patience when their needs must be accommodated.
When travelling with a group please remember your own responsibilities towards others. Try to arrive at any agreed meeting point punctually to avoid keeping the rest of the group waiting. In our experience the trips that work best are those where the inter-group dynamics function well – achieving the right group dynamic requires just a small amount of effort from you.
Note: To maintain the privacy of our travellers we cannot share any personal information or contact details relating to anyone else booked on your trip before departure.
A single supplement is available on this trip
For your own protection we insist that travel insurance is purchased before embarking on any of our trips. You will not be able to join your travelling group until your group leader has seen evidence of your insurance policy and has had sight of your insurance company’s emergency contact details.
Your minimum level of cover must include medical costs including emergency repatriation if required. We would also encourage you to obtain a policy that covers cancellation, curtailment, personal liability, and lost or damaged baggage and personal effects.
Should you choose to take out credit card insurance you will need to provide your group leader with details of the insurer or underwriter, the policy number, and the coverage level, along with the emergency contact number. You should obtain this information from your bank before departing for your trip.