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Price range
From $4,930 per person
Upcoming Date
15 Nov 2024 - 23 Nov 2024
Tour Time
9 Days (Inc. Arv./Dpt.)

Highlights

Culinary experiences such as market tours, home hospitality and chef private meal
Celebrate Shabbat with Kehilat Zion in Jerusalem
Visits to special farms in the desert
Dead Sea boat ride
Spa, pool and relaxing time
Single supplement: US $1750

Itinerary

1 - Friday ( November 15 ) : Shalom and welcome

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Activities:

  • Arrival at Ben Gurion airport - Your group VIP agent will be waiting to greet you at the sleeve of the plane. After assisting with arrival procedures and collecting your baggage, you will be taken to meet your driver.

  • Private group transfer to Jerusalem & check-in to your hotel - Please note: check-in time is from 3:00 PM.

  • Kabbalat Shabbat and services at Kehilat Zion and meet with Rabbi Tamar Elad-Appelbaum

  • Friday night Shabbat dinner at the hotel - Alternatives: local restaurant or with local families from Kehilat Zion - TBC. (Meal is included)

  • Jerusalem - The Theatron Hotel

Overnight: Jerusalem - The Theatron Hotel
Meal Plan: dinner

2 - Saturday ( November 16 ) : Shabbat Shalom

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Activities:

  • Breakfast at your hotel

  • Shabbat at leisure and time to meet your relatives

  • Jerusalem through poetry walking tour - Magical and mysterious Jerusalem has always attracted writers, poets, and intellectuals, who in their words made it Jerusalem on Gold. Walking tour of Yemin Moshe, Mishkenot Sha'ananim and Abu Tor neighborhoods through the eyes and poetry of Yehuda Amichai and others.

  • Havdallah

  • Machane Yehuda Market at Night - In the heart of Jerusalem Machane Yehuda is a bustling multi-ethnic market bursting with life but at night it tells a different story. Artist Solomon Souza turned the closed 'shuk' into a gallery of famous faces. Tour and learn 'who's who' in this unique venue. Enjoy the hustle and bustle of the hottest nightlife scene in the city.

  • Jerusalem - The Theatron Hotel

Overnight: Jerusalem - The Theatron Hotel
Meal Plan: breakfast

3 - Sunday ( November 17 ) : Heavenly and Earthly Jerusalem

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Activities:

  • Breakfast at your hotel

  • Begin your day at the Jerusalem Bird Observatory - A true refuge for local and migrating birds. In 1993, two young birdwatchers discovered a banded migrant bird from Sweden and so started the Nili and David Jerusalem Bird Observatory, a center of education, science, and community located next to the Knesset. Over 50,000 visitors, from around the world and all sectors of society, flock to visit the JBO. You’ll be joining them to experience an unforgettable up-close bird banding activity and learn about Israel’s vital importance to global bird migration.

  • Multicultural tour and tastings in the Old City - Tour Jerusalem’s Old City and meet the people and places that make this place so unique. In the Christian Quarter, visit the Church of the Holy Sepulcher, and visit one of the holiest Muslim sites, Haram Al Sharif, and where the Jewish Temples stood on the Temple Mount (if conditions permit). Browse in the famous Arab shuk (market) in the Muslim Quarter. Enjoy tastings along the tour, with excellent hummus and sweets, the many stalls selling spices, pastries, Armenian pottery, embroidered clothes, and so much more. Meet store owners whose stores have been in their family for generations. Throughout the tour explore the complexity of a city that is holy to Judaism, Christianity, and Islam.

  • Exit the New Gate and tour Musrara Neighborhood - A hidden gem off the beaten path in Jerusalem's center, near the Old City. The serene nineteenth century homes and prevalence of art galleries and artists belie the turbulent history of the neighborhood, which was once located "on the seam" between Israeli and Jordanian-occupied Jerusalem. It was here where, in the 1970s, the Black Panthers roared for social justice. In the 1980s renewal, gentrification, and ultra-orthodoxy began and now, Musrara is in high demand.

  • Taste from the Pantry at Metzilot Mazon - The Jerusalem Food Rescuers aims to create a more just and sustainable urban food system with less waste. Working with the wholesale market, they divert surplus produce that would have otherwise gone to waste and support communities that don’t have equitable access to food. Learn about food preservation techniques in different traditions throughout history, and explore the roll of preservation as a necessary tool. Taste a variety of treats from the pantry.

  • Jerusalem - The Theatron Hotel

Overnight: Jerusalem - The Theatron Hotel
Meal Plan: breakfast, Old City Tasting Tour, tastings from the pantry

4 - Monday ( November 18 ) : The Lowest Place on Earth

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Activities:

  • Breakfast at your hotel & check-out

  • Unforgettable boat ride - Embark on an exclusive boat ride on the Dead Sea and sail to see a captivating 'salt-chimneys forest'. During this unique experience you will enjoy the wondrous muds, salt pearls, salt diamonds, water springs streaming to the sea and sink holes filled with sweet water. Learn about the ecosystem and the environmental issues connected to the Dead Sea.

  • Stop for coffee and snack on route - (not included)

  • JoJo Gallery - meet the artist - Nullpersonal meeting with the artist Jojo, Yosef Ohayon, at his studio and gallery in Moshav Ein Tamar, located in the enchanted desert. He will share his personal story, his decision to be a full-time artist and leave his job a farmer. The art works draw inspiration from a variety of origins, while combining Ethnical design approaches with contemporary Western ones.

  • The Culinary Queens of Yerucham - The Culinary Queens host in their homes while telling guests about their culture and background and educating through recipes. Many of Yerucham's settlers come from Morocco and Yemen and tasting their traditional dishes combined with their stories is quite a treat!

  • Travel to the hotel & check-in

  • Dinner at the hotel's lobby restaurant - À la carte (meal not included)

  • Sde Boker - Kedma Hotel

Overnight: Sde Boker - Kedma Hotel
Meal Plan: breakfast, meal and home hospitality

5 - Tuesday ( November 19 ) : Desert in bloom

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Activities:

  • Breakfast at your hotel

  • Half day at leisure - enjoy the hotel spa facilities - (spa treatments and use of the hammam are not included in price)

  • Carmey Avdat Farm - tour and wine tastings - This modern-day vineyard is planted on the remains of the ancient terraces, taking care to preserve the archeological remains of the former vineyard. When it rains the vineyard is irrigated by the floodwaters – exactly as it was in ancient times. The tour will include local wine tastings.

  • Orlyya Farm - Orliyaa Farm is named after the Goddess of love, Aphrodite, who represents feminine power and wisdom. Located a short drive from the ancient Nabbatean settlement of Avdat, Orlyya focuses on agriculture, particularly cultivating oil from the Argan tree – a great flavor enhancer in countless dishes and a wonderful ingredient for cosmetic.

  • Magical night at the desert - With a private chef meal under the stars. Optional & not included: add a star gazing guided experience with an expert OR an intimate Arabic folk style live music.

  • Sde Boker - Kedma Hotel

Overnight: Sde Boker - Kedma Hotel
Meal Plan: breakfast, private chef meal

6 - Wednesday ( November 20 ) : Flourishing roots

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Activities:

  • Breakfast at your hotel & check-out

  • Budo for Peace - Is an educational non-profit which uses traditional martial arts to connect and bring together children and youth from diverse social, economic and cultural backgrounds in Israel. The innovative tri-lingual educational program, developed by pedagogical educators and martial arts teachers, fosters unity, leadership & promotes and instills core values.

  • Ethiopian meal and personal story - The Beta Israel Village Project is a unique social-educational center on the outskirts of Kiryat Gat, which combines agricultural and educational activities with the intent of preserving Jewish-Ethiopian heritage and establishing it as a sustainable national asset. Eat traditional food and meet with one of the staff to hear their family personal Aliya story - the journey to Israel, and hear about the beautiful unique traditions as well as the challenges in acclimating to the new country.

  • Tour the ancient site of Tel Gezer - This is a less-visited site but an important and impressive archeological site. Visit the Canaanite impressive water system and fortified tower. Enjoy a lovely walk with great views of the area, hear about King Solomon and its international relations back in the days. Get your Tanakh ready to tour with it in your hands.

  • Travel to Tel Aviv and check-in o your hotel

  • Free evening and dinner on your own - (meal and transfers are not included)

  • Tel Aviv - The Royal Beach Hotel

Overnight: Tel Aviv - The Royal Beach Hotel
Meal Plan: breakfast, lunch

7 - Thursday ( November 21 ) : A look to the Past with hope to the future

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Activities:

  • Breakfast at your hotel

  • Tour of Peres Center for Peace and Innovation - A leading non-profit and non-governmental organization focused on developing and implementing unique and cutting-edge programs. The center presents the incredible story of Israel, the "innovation nation", and showcases the diverse fields and people behind Israeli innovation.

  • Culinary tour of Levinsky Market - The Levinsky Market specializes in spices and Mediterranean delicacies. It is, in many ways, the best market in Tel Aviv, known for its variety, freshness, and special atmosphere. Whether you are looking for a rare Indian spice or some good quality saffron - this is the place. Shops offer a cornucopia of excellent cheeses, smoked fish, wines, and other delicacies. Tour the market and have "tastings" throughout.

  • Stop at Cafe Levinsky for a surprising Gazoz drink - Benny Briga the legendary Gazoz master and author of the Gazoz book with Adeena Sussman. Briga has reimagined the Turkish tradition and given it a creative twist that results in delicious and beautifully bubbly beverage.

  • KitePride visit and workshop - An Israeli, Tel Aviv based fashion social enterprise. They create functional, one-of-a-kind BAGS from upcycled kitesurfing kites, sails, parachutes, and wetsuits in order to provide jobs to survivors of human trafficking and prostitution. Through each bag sold, continuous jobs are created and fabric is saved from landfill.

  • Free evening and dinner on own - Time to meet relatives in Tel Aviv. (meal and transfers aren't included)

  • Tel Aviv - The Royal Beach Hotel

Overnight: Tel Aviv - The Royal Beach Hotel
Meal Plan: breakfast, Levinsky Market Tasting Tour

8 - Friday ( November 22 ) : Our Story

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Activities:

  • Breakfast at your hotel

  • A concluding tour at the ANU Museum of the Jewish People - You’re invited to join a fascinating journey that portrays the story of the Jewish people through the generations and up to the present time. In June 2021, after ten years of planning and construction, this museum, the largest Jewish museum in the world, opened its doors. It represents all parts of the Jewish people and highlights the creative works and cultural riches of a variety of communities throughout different periods of history. This story is about all of us and each and every one of us is part of it.

  • Time to browse through Nahalat Binyamin Arts and Crafts Market - An open-air market that has become synonymous with quality Israeli crafts and folk art. The market is comprised of over 100 stands representing specialty crafts and folk art in virtually every medium imaginable.

  • Lunch break on own at the Carmel Market - (meal not included)

  • Giborot - From the early days of the establishment of Tel Aviv as the first Hebrew city, women have played a key role in building the foundation. Learn about Golda Meir, Rachel the Poet, Tzina Dizingoff, Ahuva Ozeri and others who were the movers and shakers that were part of making this city so great.

  • Optional: join a local community for Kabbalat Shabbat and Friday night services

  • Shabbat Friday night dinner at the hotel - Alternatively: EatWith style private home hospitality meal. (might be different in price)

  • Tel Aviv - The Royal Beach Hotel

Overnight: Tel Aviv - The Royal Beach Hotel
Meal Plan: breakfast, dinner

9 - Saturday ( November 23 ) : Shabbat Shalom and farewell

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Activities:

  • Breakfast at your hotel

  • No guide and driver

  • Intimate conversation with author Ayelet Tsabari - Language, Longing, and Belonging - Ayelet Tsabari, author of the award-winning The Best Place on Earth and The Art of Leaving. Tsabari will speak of growing up Mizrahi in Israel, about re-finding and reclaiming that identity through writing and through extensive research into Yemeni culture and traditions. Tsabari will share some of the unique challenges she has faced as an immigrant author writing about Israel in English, her second language. This lecture will explore the many ways in which a writer's cultural background, mother tongue, and origins influence and inform her writing, in terms of both content and style.

  • Relaxed day - Time for a walk on the beach promenade, meet relatives, and enjoy the hotel facilities

  • Check-out time is at noon - Late check-out is pending on availability, not included in the price.

  • Private group transfer to Ben Gurion Airport - VIP fast-track assistance isn't included and can be arranged upon request.

  • We look forward to hosting you again in our beautiful country

Meal Plan: breakfast

FAQ

General guide for tipping

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Tips are not included in the cost of a tour and are always at your discretion. Having said that, in Israel, it is customary to add a gratuity of 15-20% at a restaurant and to tip your guide and driver. For all groups ranging from 2-6 people, it is suggested that you tip the tour guide $70 -$100 (from the group) per day. For groups larger than 8, it is recommended to tip $8-$12 per person, per day + 50% for your bus driver. Please note! Unless stated otherwise, on our group tours, the hotels, restaurants with meals included and serving staff is being generously tips by our staff - on your behalf. If you are not sure, check with your guide or operator for further details.

What is the best season to visit Israel?

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May and October are considered the best times to visit Israel. These months offer fewer crowds, pleasant weather, and less unpredictability compared to summer and winter. Weekly weather forecast

Is there someone who can assist with booking flights?

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If you are interested in assistance with flight booking, please refer to our travel partner, Riverdale Travel, for direct bookings. Flights for Experience Israel 2023 will be available to reserve beginning June 1, 2022. If you have any questions or would like to book your flight, please contact Kathy at kathy@riverdaletravel.com. You may also purchase travel insurance by clicking here. **Flight costs for Experience Israel 2023 are not included in the trip costs, and are paid for separately and directly to the airline or travel agent at the time of booking.

Terms of Payment

Deposit is due immediately to secure the booking.

Balance for the trip is due no later than 60 days prior to the first day of trip. An invoice will be sent 90 days before the trip.

Please refer to our full Terms and Conditions here.

Please note: 

  • The itinerary is subject to change as a result of unforeseen changes from suppliers, weather, etc.
  • This proposal is valid for 1 week for private clients, and 10 days for groups. 

 

Cancellation Policy

Bookings can be cancelled within 48 hours AFTER REGISTRATION, with a full refund.

For cancellations made:

·         Up to 60 days prior to departure, any payments above the deposit towards the trip will be refunded. The deposit is non-refundable.

·         60-30 days prior to departure, 50% of the total tour cost per person will be refunded.

·         29-0 days prior to departure, the client will incur 100% of the cost of the tour.

All cancellation requests must be made in writing.

 

What’s Included
Group VIP Airport Services upon arrival & departure, based on 1 flight v
Hotel accommodation for 8 nights, including breakfast v
Private driver and minibus for 6 days to all programmed activities, including night out on Day 2 v
A private, licensed, English speaking tour guide v
Group transfers to & from the airport v
Meals as listed in the meal plan at the end of each day v
Fees for sites and activities listed v
Bottles of water, as needed, and snacks v
Transportation in the evening for dinners and time on own v
Tips for tour guides and drivers v
Optional and suggested activities v
Airfare v
Travel Insurance (recommended) v
Testimonials
“Best Vacation Ever! My wife and I just returned from our first trip to Israel. We've traveled domestically and overseas many times. This was absolutely the best trip we've ever taken. I know many people who have gone to Israel and made lots of recommendations to go here, go there, etc... Ros and the crew at Via Sabra were absolutely fantastic. From shaping the trip to meet our schedule, finances, desires, etc... Via Sabra hit the mark on the nose. They made the trip easy from the gitgo with VIP service to and from Israel; no long lines to wait in and an expert on both ends of the trip to help us navigate the airport, customs, passport control, VAT refunds, baggage and our transport to and from the airport. We had a magnificent guide, Mark Kedem, who was made the trip even more enjoyable; beyond our expectations. Mark has an uncanny knowledge of all aspects of Israel including the geography, history, architecture, food, how all the religions interact, etc. It was like a great history class in-country with great food. Mark also steered us to off the beaten path places and restaurants that were truly memorable and unique. We plan to go back to Israel soon (hopefully next year) and will definitely use Via Sabra and Mark again. They're worth every penny!!!!”
Joe M
2019
“This was our third trip with via sabra and it was outstanding. We went with Aliza Green who is a cook and cookbook writer who provided us with lots of insights. Orit Levi our tour guide (third time) was excellent. Via Sabra makes every trip different so we did not feel as if we were repeating anything. We took our seven year old grandson who was well received and loved the trip. Via Sabra is caring and strives to accommodate any requests. We cannot recommend Via Sabra enough and we are looking forward to our next trip.”
Naomi S
2016, 2018, 2020

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Early bird special - $200 off per person.

Available only between October 1-10, 2021!!

Registration for the trip will open on October 1. Fill out this form to be notified when registration for the trip opens, so you can take advantage of early bird special pricing!

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