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Join the Jewish Community of Santa Clarita's Exploring Israel Adventure Led by Rabbi Ronald Hauss October 20 – November 4, 2020 | Israel Tour
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Israel Tour / Join the Jewish Community of Santa Clarita’s Exploring Israel Adventure Led by Rabbi Ronald Hauss October 20 – November 4, 2020

Join the Jewish Community of Santa Clarita’s Exploring Israel Adventure Led by Rabbi Ronald Hauss October 20 – November 4, 2020

per person

A Few Tour Highlights: Join Rabbi Hauss on this special Israel trip where you will become part of the daily life in Jerusalem and Tel Aviv. Walking tour of the historic Neve Tzeddek neighborhood that 25 years after its founding would give birth to the “first Hebrew city in 2,000 years”,
Visit the new Israel Innovation Center, located in the Tel Aviv Stock Exchange to learn though its interactive exhibit about Israeli Start-Ups,


Tuesday, October 20

Depart USA

Wednesday, 21 October – Going up into the Land

  • Arrive in Israel to be met and assisted by your ITC representative (today’s program depends on arrival time)
  • Tour Old Jaffa, the ancient port city once known as Zion Gate from which Jonah tried to flee and where Solomon brought the Cedars of Lebanon on the way to Jerusalem. Today paintings and sculptures have been installed in its ancient alleys.
  • Shehekhiyanu/Welcome ceremony on top of Tel Jaffa overlooking modern Tel Aviv
  • Check-in to the Sheraton Hotel on Tel Aviv's Mediterranean Coast
  • Welcome dinner and orientation at Maganda Restaurant in Tel Aviv old Yemenite Quarter
  • Overnight: Sheraton Hotel, Tel Aviv

Thursday, October 22 – The Hebrew City and the Jewish State

  • Walking tour of the historic Neve Tzeddek neighborhood that 25 years after its founding would give birth to the "first Hebrew city in 2,000 years"
  • ITC Touch: Discover City of Sand and Sea, a mosaic fountain created by artist and writer Nachum Gutman portraying scenes from the history of Jaffa and Tel Aviv.
  • Continue exploring Little Tel Aviv outside of Independence Hall (currently closed for major renovations), where our first Prime Minister declared the new State of Israel
  • Hear about the establishment of Tel Aviv at the Founders' Monument then stroll down Rothschild Boulevard to see the Bauhaus architecture for which central Tel Aviv's "White City" was declared a UNESCO World Heritage Site
  • Visit the new Israel Innovation Center, located in the Tel Aviv Stock Exchange, to learn though its interactive exhibit about Israeli Start-Ups in fields such as science, technology, medicine, security, aero-space and more
  • Tasting tour of the colorful Levinsky Market to add some spice to the day
  • Lunch on own, if hungry
  • See Tel Aviv's remarkable street art on a graffiti tour of the hip Florentine neighborhood – The Soho of Israel
  • Free time to swim in the Mediterranean Sea and enjoy the beachside Promenade
  • Free evening. Dinner on own.
  • Overnight: Sheraton Hotel, Tel Aviv

Friday, October 23 – Tel Aviv Museums and Markets

Please choose one of the following four Tel Aviv museum options (all four museums are near each other, but some require reservations. Please inform ITC office of your choice):
  • Travel through 2,000 years of Jewish history at Beit Hatfutzot – The recently renovated Museum of the Diaspora on the campus of Tel Aviv University
  • Visit the Palmach Museum for a multimedia presentation about the elite underground organization that played a critical role in founding the State of Israel
  • Visit the Israeli Museum at the Yitzhak Rabin Center for a critical look at Israeli history and society
  • Learn about Israel’s geography and material culture at the Eretz Israel Museum, which includes an archaeological tel on its grounds
  • Lunch on your own
  • Guided tour of the Rubin Museum to learn about the pioneering Israeli artist Reuven Rubin. Then look at neighboring Bialik House (exterior), home of the late poet Chaim Nahman Bialik to see its unique etrog shaped dome.
  • Free time to relax and get ready for Shabbat • Friday/Shabbat evening services: To be determined with Rabbi Hauss
  • Festive Shabbat Dinner at hotel • Overnight: Sheraton Hotel, Tel Aviv

Shabbat/Saturday, October 24 – And on the Seventh Day...in Tel Aviv

Shabbat morning services – To be determined with Rabbi Hauss. Please note: Some Shabbat touring options may change as per hotel choice.
  • Visit the "Aliyah Bet" Memorial in London Square to hear the story of the illegal immigration operations which rescued Jewish refugees before the founding of the State of Israel
  • Shabbat Lunch at hotel
  • Walking tour to Tel Aviv Port, stop along the way at the Chaim Arlozorov Memorial, to learn about a forgotten, but visionary Zionist leader who once considered only second to Ben Gurion. Then hear about the brave pilots who saved Tel Aviv during the War of Independence.
  • OR: Visit Ben Gurion House, the former home of Israel’s first prime minister and his wife Paula, now a museum
  • Free time to swim, walk along beachside Promenade and watch the people of Tel Aviv stroll, folkdance, play racquetball and enjoy Shabbat afternoon by the s
  • Havdallah with Rabbi Hauss
  • Free evening. Dinner on own
  • Overnight: Sheraton Hotel, Tel Aviv

Sunday, October 25 – Jews, Romans, Pioneers, Immigrants and Artists

Depart for northern Israel
  • Visit the ruins of Caesarea, including its Roman Theater, Amphitheater, Hippodrome and Promontory Palace • ITC Touch: Ponder a rabbinic debate over Jews attending gladiator games
  • Browse the pedestrian mall and lunch on own in Zichron Yaakov, an early Zionist pioneering community
  • Guided tour of the former Atlit Illegal Immigrant Detention Camp where the British held Holocaust refugees, who tried to enter the country "illegally". Then board an “illegal immigration ship" to watch a multimedia presentation about the heroic pre-State immigration.
  • Guided tour of the Ein Hod Artists Colony’s led by a local artist
  • Check-in to Dan Panorama Hotel in Haifa • Free evening. Dinner on own.
  • Overnight: Dan Panorama Hotel, Haifa

Monday, October 26 – Haifa and the Galilee Coast

  • Look out from the top of the Bahai Gardens on Mt. Carmel
  • Walking tour of Wadi Nisnas to see art work that has been installed on the walls and streets of this picturesque Arab neighborhood, which symbolizes coexistence in multi-ethnic Haifa
  • Lunch on own
  • Tour of the Old City of Acco: Visit the Underground Prisoners Museum in Acco Prison, where the British held and even executed Jewish underground fighters. A daring escape from this prison is featured in the film Exodus. Then venture beneath the streets of Old Acco to explore the Crusader Knights Halls. Walk through Acco’s marketplaces to its picturesque port and look across Haifa Bay from its high walls which withstood Napoleon.
  • Travel to Rosh Hanikra in the northwest corner of Israel
  • Descend by cable car to explore the Grottos of Rosh Hanikra – Beautiful sea caves formed by the forces of wind and water
  • Free evening. Dinner on own.
  • Overnight: Dan Panorama Hotel, Haifa

Tuesday, October 27 – Cradles of Jewish Life in the Galilee

  • Explore the Catacombs of Beit Shearim to discover a fascinating chapter in Jewish figurative art. Learn about Beit Shearim's illustrious favorite son Rabbi Judah Hanasi, who committed the Oral Law into writing and sealed the Mishna.
  • Lunch own
  • Explore the ruins of Tzippori, the city where Rabbi Judah Hanasi sealed the Mishna. Discover Tzippori's lavish ancient mosaic pavements, including Mona Lisa of the Galilee, Nile Flood Festival and Orpheus, who looks like King David? Then ponder why an ancient synagogue floor features a wheel of the zodiac.
  • Late afternoon boat ride on the Sea of Galilee, followed by a lakeside dinner at Decks Restaurant
  • Check in to the Kibbutz Lavi Hotel on Kibbutz Lavi in the Galilee
  • Overnight: Lavi

Wednesday, October 28 – Off the Beaten Track in the Golan Heights

  • Ascend to the Golan Heights and look down at Israeli communities along the Sea of Galilee Coast
  • Look out at the ruins of Gamla in the southern Golan Heights, Masada of the north, to appreciate its topography, as we hear Josephus' description of a 1st century battle there between Romans and Jewish rebels and learn about the corresponding archaeological finds. While there, hopefully, see rare griffon vultures soaring overhead.
  • Visit the ancient synagogue of Um El Kanatir in the Golan Heights, where sophisticated digital technology to restore the ancient building
  • Lunch on own Tour and wine tasting at the Golan Heights Winery in Katzrin
  • Look out at the Syrian border from strategic Mt. Bental to appreciate Israel’s complex geopolitics
  • Barbeque dinner with young Israeli soldiers who are giving some of the best years of their lives to the defense of Israel
  • Overnight: Lavi

Thursday, October 29

  • Tour mystical Tzfat's old synagogues and picturesque alleyways. Tzfat was the cradle of Kabbalah (Jewish mysticism) in the 16th century. Judaism's Friday night Kabbalat Shabbat service and the hymn Lecha Dodi originated in Tzfat a that time.
  • Tour of historic Rosh Pina, a First Aliyah Zionist pioneering community (Moshava), including its Old School House, Pioneers' Synagogue and Professor Gideon Mer House
  • Lunch on own
  • Walk in the lush Tel Dan Nature Reserve, one of the sources of the Jordan River, where you'll discover biblical intrigue and one of the oldest arches in the world
  • Tour Agamon Hahuleh by golfcart to 'explore a paradise for birds and people' and see thousands of migrating birds coming to roost for the night
  • Free evening. Dinner on own.
  • Overnight: Lavi

Friday, October 30 – Across Israel: A Multicultural Jewish Society

  • Visit the Kinneret Cemetery, final of resting place of early Zionist pioneers, poets and ideologues to discover their stories and the poetry of Naomi Shemer and Rachel the poetess
  • Tour the Roman ruins of Beit Shean – A splendid city of the Decapolis. Hear how the rabbis of the Mishna related to the Roman theater and bathhouse
  • Lunch on own
  • Travel south through the Jordan Valley to Jerusalem
  • Shekhehiyanu ceremony on Mt. Scopus overlooking the Old City of Jerusalem and Temple Mount Check in to Leonardo Plaza Hotel in Jerusalem
  • Free time to relax and prepare for Shabbat
Friday/Shabbat evening options:
  • Attend join the new egalitarian Kabbalat Shabbat minyan at the Masorti Kotel, where men and women can pray together
  • OR: Attend Friday night services at a local Jerusalem synagogue
  • Festive Shabbat Dinner at hotel
  • Overnight: Leonardo Plaza Hotel, Jerusalem

Shabbat/Saturday, October 31 – And on the Seventh Day....in Jerusalem

  • Shabbat morning services – To be determined with Rabbi Hauss
  • Traditional Shabbat Lunch at hotel
  • Late afternoon walking tour to the historic Montefiore Windmill to discover the first neighborhood built outside the walls of the Old City
  • Havdalah with Rabbi Hauss
  • Dinner on own in Jerusalem's Mamilla Quarter • Watch the Night Spectacular – Sound and light show at the Tower of David
  • Overnight: Leonardo Plaza Hotel, Jerusalem

Sunday, November 1 – The Old City of Jerusalem: An Ancient Jewish Legacy

  • Discover the archaeological story of the Western Wall and episodes of Jewish life in Jerusalem 2,000 years ago at Robinson's Arch and the Southern Wall Excavations
  • Lunch on own in the Jewish Quarter
  • Tour of the Jewish Quarter including the Cardo, Broad Wall and Rooftops followed by free time to shop and explore on own

2nd Timers Options:
  • Synagogues of the Jewish Quarter,
  • Tour includes visits to the Four Sephardic Synagogues, the restored Hurva Synagogue, the Karaite Museum. Then hear about the remarkable discoveries under the ruins of the Tiferet Yisrael Synagogue

  • Visit the Western Wall to connect to an ancient Jewish legacy
  • Discover underground Jerusalem touring the Western Wall Tunnels
  • Free evening. Dinner on own. Recommendation for the evening: Visit the First Station Compound, Jerusalem's restored Ottoman railway station turned restaurant – cafe area
  • Overnight: Leonardo Plaza Hotel, Jerusalem

Monday, November 2 – Masada and the Dead Sea: Freedom Fighters or Fanatics?

  • Tour the ruins of Qumran, where the Dead Sea Scrolls were discovered and hear about the ascetic Jewish sect that lived there 2,000 years ago
  • Ascend Masada by cable car to tour the ruins of Herod's palace and the last outpost of Jewish independence. Discussion: Which Jewish Legacy – Masada or Yavne?
  • Swim in the Dead Sea, the lowest place on earth, at a local resort. The resort also has a fresh water pool and spa facilities. Massage and spa treatments available by prior reservation at own expense.
  • Lunch at Dead Sea resort
  • Time permitting: Walk in Ein Gedi Nature Reserve opportunity to bathe in waterfalls and hear how David hid there from King Saul. • Stop off at "Abraham's Tent" for a Camel ride and biblical hospitality before returning to Jerusalem
  • 2nd Timers Option:
    • Explore the David City, using the Bible and archaeology to make Jerusalem's stones tell the story of the city's ancient past, including its ancient water systems without getting wet
    • Lunch on own
    • Multimedia tour of the Menachem Begin
    • Museum to see its presentation on the history of Israel as seen through the life of Menachem Begin
    Visit Ketef Hinom – A First Temple Period burial site on the grounds of the • Begin Center where archaeologists discovered the oldest biblical text ever found • Walking tour of the quaint Nachalaot neighborhoods to discover a world of history, folklore and ethnicity just blocks from downtown Jerusalem • Please note: This option is offered at additional cost and may be dependent on a mininum number of participants. • Free evening. Dinner on own. • Overnight: Leonardo Plaza Hotel, Jerusalem

Tuesday, November 3 – Holocaust, Remembrance and Continuity

  • Guided tour of Yad Vashem – Israel's national Holocaust memorial and museum, including the Historical Museum and Children’s Memorial
  • Lunch on own
  • Meaningful visit to Mt Herzl Cemetery to discover chapters in the history of Israel while visiting the graves of Yitzhak Rabin, Golda Meir, Theordore Herzl and Hannah Senesch

2nd Timers Options:
Tour to the Israel Museum to see the Dead Sea Scrolls in the Shrine of the Book and the na in the first century. Followed by free time to explore additional exhibitions on own – Recommendations: Modern Israeli art, Synagogue interiors in the Judaica section and the Archaeology Wing.
  • Remainder of afternoon free to explore on own and get in last minute shopping.
  • Late check-out
  • Farewell Dinner at Olive and Fish Restaurant Transfer to Ben Gurion Airport – See you again soon!

Wednesday, November 4 – Arrive in USA

Begin planning your next Israel trip with Rabbi Hauss and ITC Tours!

$4995 Land Only Package (Discounted rate for payment by check)
$6695 Land and *Air Package (Estimated discounted rate for payment by check)
$1695 Single Room Supplement (Discounted rate payment by check)
$5195 Land Only Package (Full cost for credit card payment)
$6963 Land and *Air Package (Estimated full cost for credit card payment)
$1763 Single Room Supplement (Full cost for credit card payment)
Adult 3rd in room – $710

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