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I am Joining Congregation Beth El's Family Israel Adventure Led by Rabbi Rachel M. Safman June 21-July 2, 2020 | Israel Tour
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Israel Tour / I am Joining Congregation Beth El’s Family Israel Adventure Led by Rabbi Rachel M. Safman June 21-July 2, 2020

I am Joining Congregation Beth El’s Family Israel Adventure Led by Rabbi Rachel M. Safman June 21-July 2, 2020

per person

Shehekhiyanu / Welcome ceremony over looking the Old City of Jerusalem and the Temple Mount. Walk through the the Western Wall Tunnels to discover underground Jerusalem. Tour of Jewish Quarter, the Karaite Museum, Cardo, Broad Wall and Rooftops followed by free time to shop. Cross the Judean Desert, tour Masada and the ruins of Herod’s palace the last outpost of Jewish independence


Sunday, 21 June

Depart USA

Monday, 22 June – Going up into the Land

  • Arrive in Israel to be met and assisted by your ITC representative (today’s program depends on arrival time).
  • Travel to Jerusalem through the biblical Ayalon Valley.
  • Shehekhiyanu/Welcome ceremony over looking the Old City and Temple Mount.
  • 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.
  • Visit the Western Wall's traditional prayer area.
  • Walk through the the Western Wall Tunnels to discover underground Jerusalem.
  • Check-in to the Prima Kings Hotel in Jerusalem.
  • Welcome dinner and orientation at hotel.
  • Overnight:  Prima Kings Hotel, Jerusalem

Tuesday, 23 June – The Old City of Jerusalem: An Ancient Jewish Legacy

  • Explore the City of David using the Bible and archaeology to make Jerusalem's stones tell the story of the city's ancient past.  Wade through Hezekiah's Tunnel – A still flowing ancient water system that saved the city of Jerusalem 2,700 years ago (dry option available).
  • Lunch on own in Jewish Quarter.
  • Guided tour of Jewish Quarter including the Karaite Museum, Cardo, Broad Wall and Rooftops followed by free time to shop and explore on own.
  • Crossing the lineTour and discussion about the Haredi society and the Haredi/non-Haredi divide, which includes secular Jews and non- Haredi religious Jews, with Motti Bar Lev, who was born in Jerusalem's ultra-Orthodox Meah Shearim neighborhood and left the Haredi world.
  • 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: Prima Kings Hotel, Jerusalem

Wednesday, 24 June – Masada and the Dead Sea: Freedom Fighters or Fanatics?

  • Set out across the Judean Desert and 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? Who were our ancesters? What decision did they make?
  • 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 bath in waterfalls and hear how David hid there from King Saul.
  • Stop off at "Abraham's Tent" for a Camel ride and biblical dinner.
  • Free evening.
Overnight: Prima Kings Hotel, Jerusalem

Thursday, 25 June – Holocaust, Remembrance and Continuity

  • Guided tour of the Knesset to learn about Israel's lively democratic system.
  • Meeting with a representative of Knesset Watch, the Masorti (Conservative) Movement's parliamentary advocacy wing to hear about religious pluralism in Israel with an emphasis on legislative activity.
  • Optional visit to Yad Vashem Israel's national Holocaust memorial and museum, including the Holocaust History Museum and Children’s Memorial. (Children under age 10 are not permitted in Yad Vashem's historical museum).
  • Alternate for younger children: Visit Jerusalem's Biblical Zoo, where you'll see animals which lived in Israel during biblical times. (Children must be accompanied by an adult.  Zoo visit not included in the tour price).
  • Explore the bustling Machane Yehuda Market and take in a slice of local life as you see Jerusalemites prepare for Shabbat.  On the way, see the nearby picturesque Nachalaot neighborhoods.
  • Travel to Tel Aviv
  • 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.  Look out from the top of ancient Tel Jaffa at modern Tel Aviv.
  • Check in to the Tal Hotel near Tel Aviv's Mediterranean Coast.
  • Dinner on own
Overnight:  Tal Hotel, Tel Aviv

Friday, 26 June – The Hebrew City and the Jewish State

  • Walking tour of historic "Little Tel Aviv" - Discover the quaint Neve Tzeddek neighbourhood that gave 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.
  • Hear about the establishment of Tel Aviv standing at the Founders' Monument on Rothschild Boulevard.  Then see the Bauhaus architecture for which central Tel Aviv 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 new advancements by Israeli Start-Ups in fields such as science, technology, medicine, , aero-space and more.
  • Lunch on your own and free time to explore the Nachalat Binyamin crafts fair. While there checkout the nearby Carmel Market and bohemian Sheinkin Street All Three of these Tel Aviv icons meet at the "Magen David Junction".Lunch on own and free time to explore the Nachalat Binyamin Crafts Fair. While there checkout the nearby Carmel Market and bohemian Sheinkin Street All three of these Tel Aviv icons meet at the "Magen David Junction".
  • Travel to Rehovot for a guided tour of the Ayalon Institute – An underground bullet factory used by Jewish forces before the founding of the State of Israel.
  • Free time to swim in the Mediterranean Sea and enjoy beach side Promenade.
  • Free time to get ready for Shabbat.
  • Shabbat Candle Lighting
  • Friday evening servicesIsraeli Kabbalat Shabbat by the sea in Tel Aviv Port.
  • Festive Shabbat Dinner at hotel.
  • Overnight: Tal Hotel, Tel Aviv

Saturday, 27 June – And on the Seventh Day… in Jerusalem

  • Shabbat morning services – To be determined with Rabbi Safman.
  • 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.
  • 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 sea.
  • Russia-Connecticut-Tel Aviv: An encounter with a Russian born new immigrant, who grew up in Ukraine and then Connecticut, after her family immigrated to the U.S. from the former Soviet Union and then made Aliyah (immigrated to Israel) five years ago.
  • Havdalah with Rabbi Safman
  • Free evening.
  • Dinner on own.
Overnight: Tal Hotel, Tel Aviv

Sunday, 28 June –Diversity, Coexistence and Partnership

  • Travel north across the Sharon Plain.
  • 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.  The tour will be led by Beit Hagefen Arab-Jewish Cultural Center, which works to promote shared society and multiculturalism in Haifa.
  • Lunch and Druze hospitality in the village of Dalyat El Carmel or Usafiya on Mt. Carmel and hear a local resident speak about their community.
  • Meaningful encounter in Afula-Gilboa the Jewish Federation of Eastern Connecticut's P2K Partnership region in Israel (program TBD by Rabbi Safman and Partnership staff).
  • Check–in to the Kibbutz Lavi Hotel in the Galilee.
  • Dinner at hotel
  • Overnight:  Lavi

Monday, 29 June – Ancient and Modern Geopolitics and Israel's Finest

  • 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.
  • Raft or Kayak down the Jordan River – Great way to cool off on a hot day.
  • Lunch on own
  • Tour the Golan Heights for a perspective on Israel's complex geopolitics as we visit bunkers where the Syrian army "looked down" at Israel. Then look out at the border region from strategic Bental.
Please choose one of the following two "touring and tasting" options.  Both located on nearby Kibbutz Ein Zivan (Possibility of splitting the group):
  • Chocolate making workshop at the De Karina Chocolate Factory.
  • OR:  Guided tour of the boutique Bahat Winery including wine tasting.
  • Barbeque dinner with young Israeli soldiers who are giving some of the best years of their lives to the defense of Israel.
  • Overnight: Lavi

Tuesday, 30 June – Cradles of Jewish Civilization in the Galilee

  • 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.
  • Lunch own
  • 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.
  • Dinner at hotel
Overnight:  Lavi

Wednesday, 1 July – Lasting Memories and Departure

  • Learn about kibbutz life on walking tour of Lavi led by a local kibbutznik.
  • Plant a tree in Israel in honor or in memory of a loved one.
  • 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.
  • Lunch on own
  • Visit the ruins of Caesarea, including its Roman Theater, Amphitheater, Hippodrome and Promontory Palace. Hear the story of Hanna Senesh and her poem Walking to Caesarea, better known as the song Eli, Eli.
  • ITC Touch: Ponder a rabbinic debate over Jews attending gladiator games.
  • Farewell dinner at Bistro 56 in Herzliya.
  • Transfer to Ben Gurion Airport – See you again soon!

Thursday, 2 July – Arrive in U.S.A.

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

Land Only Package – $3575 per person in a double room Discounted for Check Payment
Land and Air Package – *$4974 per person in a double room: Discounted Check Payment
Single Room Supplement – $874 Discounted Check Payment
Land Only Package – $3718 per person in a double room: Full cost Credit Card Payment
Land and Air Package – *$5175 per person in a double room: Full cost Credit Card Payment
Single Room Supplement – $910 Full cost Credit Card Payment
Third Adult in a Room: -$175
Child, ages 2-12, as 3rd in room: -$280
Bar/Bat Mitzvah child 3rd in room: -$350
3rd and 4th child sharing room: -$100 (in a quad)

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