Our specially designed itinerary isn’t just a collection of sites and tours, but a personal journey through a land in which you are inherently connected.
DAY 1 | Sunday
Take Off for Israel – Nesiya Tova!
Meet-up with your staff and fellow participants at the gateway airport. Check in your luggage and get on board the plane. Spend the night in the sky en route to the Land of Milk & Honey!
DAY 2 | Monday
The Mediterranean Coast & The Beautiful Hills of the Galilee
Welcome to Israel! After landing at Ben Gurion Airport, we will begin our journey at a stunning overlook point with an opening ceremony by the Mediterranean Sea. Spend time meeting new friends and relaxing as we prepare ourselves for the journey ahead.
DAY 3 | Tuesday
Ancient Cities and Winding Alleyways
This morning we will have the opportunity to explore Tzippori, a fascinating ancient site with castles and fortresses. Following a lunch of your choice, we will spend the afternoon in the mystical city of Safed (Tzfat). Wander the alleyways and synagogues, and breathe the mountain air as you explore Jewish mysticism (Kabbalah). Be sure to check out the art-lined streets and buy a souvenir! Afterwards, relax at the Tiberius Hot Springs and Spa. Enjoy dinner at the hotel before an evening out to explore local Israeli nightlight.
DAY 4 | Wednesday
Meeting our Israelis
Today, we meet our Israelis. Travel to Kibbutz Gadot for hiking, fun games, and introductions. Following a lunch of your choice, we will trek through the Nature Reserve at Mount Arbel. From there, we will drive south as we get ready to explore Jerusalem.
DAY 5 | Thursday
Our day will begin with a dazzling overview of the Old City of Jerusalem. Together we will explore this captivating walled city, taking in its archaeological wonders and excavations from the Southern Wall of the original Temple. Learn about the many battles that took place in this complex place both in ancient and in modern times. Eat lunch and shop in Jerusalem’s famous Jewish Quarter. Spend time at the Western Wall (Kotel) and enjoy a moment of personal reflections. Afterwards, we will drive south to begin our desert adventure.
DAY 6 | Friday
Masada & The Dead Sea
Start the day with an early morning hike up Masada – arriving in time to take in the beautiful sunrise. Explore the spectacular mountain refuge overlooking the Dead Sea. Learn about the unbelievable story of the Jews escaping here from the Roman legions after the destruction of Jerusalem in the year 70 of the first century. Following Masada and a lunch of your choice, we will float in the waters of the lowest place on earth, the Dead Sea. Relax and enjoy the healing powers of Dead Sea mud before we head south towards Eilat, the Red Sea paradise of Israel! In Eilat, we welcome Shabbat and hang out together as a group.
DAY 7 | Saturday
Celebrate Shabbat with your new besties at the hotel. Shabbat is a special time for reflection and relaxation. Following an optional breakfast, our Israeli friends will lead us in a fun activity as a community. In the afternoon, we will relax on the beach in Eilat and soak up the desert sun. Towards the evening, we will mark the end of Shabbat before heading out for a night on the town.
DAY 8 | Sunday
Desert Hike, Red Sea Snorkeling & Camel Riding
Our day will begin with a hike in the Red Canyon, followed by swimming and snorkeling in the Red Sea at the Eilat Coral Reef. After a morning of sunshine and swimming, we depart Eilat and drive back through the desert to our next stop – the famous Bedouin tents. In the afternoon, we’ll ride camels and in the evening we’ll enjoy traditional Bedouin hospitality and a festive dinner.
DAY 9 | Monday
Holocaust Memorial and Israel’s National Cemetary
This morning we will drive north to Jerusalem and visit the national military cemetery of Israel – Mount Herzl. We will pay tribute to Israel’s leaders and fallen soldiers from our many wars. After lunch, we’ll visit Israel’s memorial and museum for the Holocaust – Yad Va-Shem. The museum will give a detailed account of the history of the Holocaust. After this moving experience, we say goodbye to our Israeli friends at the Rose Garden before heading to Tel Aviv. Tonight, we have a leisurely evening out exploring the nightlife of Tel Aviv!
DAY 10 | Tuesday
We’ll start our final day together at a dance studio in Tel Aviv, laughing together as we dance our way through Israel’s history. Next, we’ll tour picturesque Old Jaffa. From there, we’ll have the opportunity to explore some of the hippest neighborhoods in Tel Aviv and spend free time shopping and eating lunch. We’ll visit Rabin Square as the afternoon sun shines above, trying to understand some of the more modern and complex history of the state of Israel. Our trip concludes with a final banquet dinner before we head to the airport. L’hitraot – we can’t wait to see you back in Israel again soon!
Itinerary & Site Details
Mifgash Program with Israeli Peers
Each Kesher trip is joined by a group of Israeli peers for 5 days of the trip. These peers are chosen from among those currently serving in Israel’s Defense Forces or students at University. The purpose of the mifgash (which loosely translates as “an encounter”) is for Israelis and North Americans to get to know each other on a personal level and to better understand each side’s world view and identity. This is your chance to really get to know Israel through Israelis your age.
Jerusalem Promenade – Panoramic Intro to an Ancient City
Welcome to Jerusalem! The Haas Promenade of Jerusalem offers a sweeping view of the Old City as it opens up across three converging valleys below. From this magnificent viewpoint, we will be introduced to the story of Jerusalem, its topography, major landmarks, and the arc of its history.
Old City & Jewish Quarter Walking Tour
The Jewish Quarter of the Old City sits at the heart of the ancient and modern Jewish World. History comes alive as we walk along rooftops, alleys and tunnel ways. Our experience in the Old City culminates at the Western Wall, which is a treasured relic of the 2nd Temple that once stood in Jerusalem. The Western Wall is a one-of-a-kind symbol that connects the Jewish people back to their history.
Yad Va-Shem Holocaust Memorial
Yad Va-Shem is Israel’s national Holocaust memorial. Situated in wooded hills of Jerusalem, it is a uniquely solemn complex. After walking through the main museum area, we will walk through central shrine area, the Sculpture Garden, the Forest of the Righteous Gentiles, and the especially powerful Children’s Memorial.
Camel Trek & Traditional Bedouin Hafla Feast
No visit to Israel would be complete without a camel ride. These land cruisers of the desert are famous for their hardiness. We’ll have the chance to mount up and go for a spin in the desert. Camel riding is followed by a traditional hafla feast in a Bedouin tent. The Bedouin are famous for their hospitality and truly delicious food. Relax on floor pillows in the tent as we dine in style the Bedouin way.
Sunrise Ascent to Masada via the Snake Path
Masada is a desert fortress built on the heights of a flat-topped mountain that overlooks the Dead Sea. After climbing to its plateau summit along the Snake Path route, we will tour Masada’s ancient ruins and hear the epic famous story of the breakaway band of Jewish rebels that fled from the Roman army to Masada some two thousand years ago for a final stand.
Floating along the Beaches of the Dead Sea
There is possibly no site in Israel as famous as the Dead Sea. This unique body of water occupies the lowest place on the planet earth and is so salty that everything floats. It’s quite a unique phenomenon. The Dead Sea is also famous for its mineral rich mud along the shores. The mud is said to be excellent for the skin. Smear it on!
The Mystical City & Artist Colony of Tzfat
Located in the hills of the Galilee overlooking the Sea of Galilee to the south, Tzfat has long been a center of Jewish mysticism and intrigue. This ancient city is full of stone alleys, rich history, and very colorful personalities. There’s nothing quite like Tzfat. In more recent times, a unique artist colony has found a home in Tzfat. Well worth a stroll.
Nahalat Binyamin: Tel Aviv’s Street Festival
Located in the Yemenite Quarter, one of Tel Aviv’s earliest neighborhoods, Nachalat Binyamin pedestrian mall is a colorful open-air bazaar of handicrafts, street performances, pantomime and live music. Twice a week, the street becomes full of tourists and Israelis alike who wander among the stands, sit at the fashionable outdoor cafes, and simply share the lively atmosphere that is all around. Nahalat Binyamin is trendy Tel Aviv at its finest.