Step back in time and discover countries with the most amazing ancient and religious histories. The highlights are plentiful, from standing at the viewpoint atop Mount Nebo, where Moses is said to have looked down over the promised land, exploring stunning rose-red Petra; sitting under the stars in Wadi Rum; to the cave where the Dead Sea Scrolls were found. We float in that same sea, and take a cable car up to the Monastery of Temptation in Jericho. In Jerusalem we explore wonderful holy sites, and spend a day in Bethlehem, the birth place of Jesus. The trip ends in the vibrant seaside resort of Tel Aviv.
All breakfasts are included and two dinners at the Wadi Rum camp and the Dead Sea resort in Jordan. Whilst staying in hotels we usually eat in local restaurants and the leader can arrange group bookings if people want to dine together. Mezze (Arabic) or salatim (Hebrew) style meals are very popular as they provide a range of small shared dishes to try along with a main of BBQ chicken/meats or a vegetarian dish. These allow fast service with a variety of good quality food for the group. In Jordan meals usually cost around 10-15 JOD ( GBP £11-17, USD $14-21, CAN $18-28). Palestine and Israel can be more expensive so it is advisable to allow around 60 - 80 Shekel per person ( GBP £14-19, USD $17-23, CAN $22- 30). If you are vegetarian, please note that main meals are limited in choice; however, mezze is almost always available in restaurants and is a good, filling choice. There is also a good choice of seafood available at the Red Sea and in Tel Aviv. While camping in Wadi Rum we enjoy a wonderful traditional meal called Zarb which is cooked underground. This consists of rice with a selection including chicken, lamb and vegetables. Vegetables will be cooked separate to the meat for vegetarians.
Trip starts at the hotel in Amman on Day 1 of the itinerary. *Comfortable hotel*
After an early breakfast we head to the Citadel for breathtaking views of Amman and a short tour of this site. There is a small but very interesting museum to explore. From this viewpoint we can see the remains of the Roman Theatre in the old city area. Leaving Amman we join the King's Highway which takes us up and down huge 'wadis' (valleys). We stop en route at Madaba, known as the city of the mosaics, and beautiful Mt Nebo where Moses saw the promised land just before he died. Further south we reach the magnificent city of Petra; Jordan's premier historic site and one of the world's most outstanding ancient cities. This is a full day with great sites and stunning natural landscapes. *Standard Hotel*
This morning we have an early start to make the most of our day exploring the UNESCO World Heritage site of Petra. Petra was hidden for centuries until the Swiss explorer Burckhardt made his great discovery in 1812. It was founded by the Nabateans, an Arab tribe that arrived here in the 6th century BC. Building at Petra began in the third century BC and continued through the Roman period, financed by taxes levied on the desert caravans. Two features of Petra are unique: firstly, it is a city made defensible by being built down a series of chasms, rather than on a hilltop. Secondly, it is built directly into the rock - beautiful red and yellow sandstone carved into the most impressive facades which glow in the brilliant sunlight. To enter Petra we must begin by walking down a narrow chasm, known as the Siq, surrounded by high cliffs on either side. Unveiled at the end of the Siq is El Khazneh, the Treasury. This is just the first breathtaking sight of a remarkable day. Continuing to the centre of the city, we pass the houses and tombs of the rich citizens and the remarkable scale of the site begins to unveil itself. A optional walk can then be done up 850 steps to El Deir, the monastery, with its superb facade topped by a huge urn. *Standard Hotel*
Explore Little Petra with its well preserved ruins which are hidden away in the mountains, before continuing to the spectacular Wadi Rum desert. This is where Lawrence of Arabia and Prince Faisal assembled the Arab tribes for the attack on Aqaba in the First World War, and also where sections of many famous films have been shot including 'Lawrence of Arabia, 'Star Wars' and 'The Martian' were shot. Its Mars like landscape is truly breathtaking. We take a four-wheel drive safari throughout the area stopping at a an outcrop of rocks for sunset before returning to our Exodus permanent tented camp for a star filled night. *Full-service Camping*
Today we head back up North to the amazing Dead Sea for a float and relaxing evening. On the way we stop at Al Karak (or Kerak) Castle for a guided tour of this imposing Crusader stronghold. This is a place of legend in the battles between the Crusaders and the Islamic armies of Saladin (Salah-ad-Din). A guided tour through the well preserved ruins opens up another aspect of the history of Jordan. We continue on to the Dead Sea in time for float in its incredible saline waters and to watch the sunset over Israel on the opposite bank. *Comfortable Hotel*
After breakfast we take a short drive to the Allenby Bridge for the crossing to the West Bank. Your tour leader will explain in detail what happens at the border and how the crossing works. It is sadly time to say farewell to the Jordanian Leader and driver. On arrival on the West Bank the leader who will accompany the group for the rest of the trip will be waiting. First stop is Jericho in Palestine, claimed to be the oldest city in the world, it is rich with Biblical associations. We take a 2km (1 mile) cable ride to the Greek Orthodox Monastery of Temptation with wonderful views of the Judaean Desert below. The monastery dates back to the 12th century and is supposedly built around the grotto where the Devil appeared to tempt Jesus. From Jericho we head to Qumran where the Dead Sea Scrolls were found by a Bedouin Shepherd boy. Although the caves cannot be entered there is a centre where a short film is viewed and then a trail takes us through the cliffs where the various caves are located. After this visit we continue on to Jerusalem. *Standard Hotel*
Today we step back in history with a guided walking tour of the old city of Jerusalem. This includes the Temple Mount, Dome of the Rock, the Wailing Wall and the Church of the Sepulchre. The city is perfect to explore on foot as it is compact and there are plenty of sites to see and places to sit and rest. Jerusalem's history stretches back more than 3,000 years and a guided tour of this labyrinthine is sure to be on the top of the list of memorable experiences of this trip. *Standard Hotel *
Today is free for personal exploration of Jerusalem. The leader will provide suggestions for more places to visit and information on how to get to each one. You may want to return to the old city and take a leisurely stroll through the streets or head to the Mount of Olives, best known as the scene of Christ's agony and the Garden of Gethsemane. Another option is the Yad Vashem or Holocost museum and memorial. *Standard Hotel*
Today we have a local guide in Bethlehem who will reveal its Biblical traditions. Perched on a hill at the edge of the Judaean Desert it was the childhood home of David and the birth place of Jesus. It has been a major site of pilgrimage since the construction of the Church of the Nativity in the 4th Century AD. It is located on the spot which is generally believed to be the likeliest site of the nativity. It is also one of the world's oldest churches. The tour will include Manger Square, St Catherine's Church and the Milk Grotto. *Standard Hotel*
Today we head to vibrant Tel Aviv the modern face of the Jewish state. This Mediterranean resort has a long sandy beach and palm-filled avenues lined with elegant buildings in the Bauhaus style. First stop is Old Jaffa where according to the Bible a settlement was founded by Noah's son Japheth in the wake of the great flood. Remains dating back to 2000 BC found here have established Jaffa as one of the world's oldest ports. The House of Simon the Tanner is traditionally held to be where the apostle Peter once stayed and the compact old town is now an attractive centre of local arts and crafts. From here we continue on to Tel Aviv where a city tour includes the colourful Carmel Market. Tonight there are plenty of great restaurants where the group can head for dinner to share the wonderful memories this trip has created. *Standard Hotel*
Trip ends after breakfast in Tel Aviv. For those with onward flights our sales team can arrange a private transfer to the Ben Gurion airport at extra cost or you can arrange a taxi through the hotel reception. Please see transfer section for more details.
You will have the option to book your own flights independently with the operator.
With over 45 years’ experience of taking people on amazing adventure holidays, Exodus can help you reach some of the most incredible destinations on 500 itineraries across more than 90 countries around the world. All staff at Exodus have a passion for travel and adventure, and some team members have been professional archaeologists, wildlife guides, overland drivers, mountain leaders, diving and ski specialists and mountain bike gurus. But that’s not all. This reputable company is a Which? recommended escorted tour provider and has won many prestigious awards, including Best Activity and Sports Holiday Company at the 2018 British Travel Awards.
Exodus is all about adventure and helping others to achieve their travel dreams by offering a fantastic range of guided group holidays, self-guided trips, tailor-made getaways and escorted tours. So, if you’re looking to discover different countries, cultures, environments, cities, mountain ranges, deserts, coasts or even jungles, the expert team at Exodus can help you plan an unforgettable solo, group or family adventure.
Each tour and adventure has been created to give you maximum value for money, often including authentic activities, as well as flights, accommodation and a tour guide. And as the team has developed one of the very best and most exciting collections of guided-group tours and self-guided holidays, you’re guaranteed the adventure holiday of a lifetime, no matter which one you pick. Trips include everything from family adventure holidays and walking and cycling tours to mixed-activity tours and seasonal getaways. You can also ask Exodus to plan a tailored itinerary from scratch or tweak an existing one, which means you can book a bespoke holiday that is designed just for you.
Need some inspiration? You can enjoy varied walks in the stunning Spanish mountains, experience the magic of Italy in Tuscany or explore the rich Sri Lankan history and culture by bike. Try a host of different activities in glorious Turkish surroundings, ski through the magnificent Norwegian wilderness or embark on a journey through India’s tropical south. Visit Iceland and East Greenland, see the spectacular marine wildlife in the Maldives or cruise along the mighty Amazon River in Peru – the options are endless!
When it comes to travelling together as a family with Exodus, all family holidays are specifically designed to offer a mix of education and exploration, with plenty of downtime. Each adventure and tour has been created with one of three age ranges in mind, but children outside of the 5-8, 9-12 and 13-16 age bracket are welcome to travel too. Plus, the price for children up to the age of 16 is 25% lower than the adult cost for Exodus guided holidays to help make your trip more affordable. From canoeing and cycling in the Dordogne to safari tours in Africa and dolphin watching in Costa Rica, Exodus offer family adventures all over the world.
Something that makes this adventure holiday and escorted tour operator unique is the loyalty scheme, the Exodus Collective. When you book your second trip, you’ll join the Collective and be given access to exclusive discounts, sales previews and special travel benefits. The more you travel with Exodus the more you’ll be entitled to, and your membership also grants you special access to exclusive travel content.
At Exodus, they make sure that everyone travels respectfully and courteously in a small group to minimise their impact and to ensure each holiday is a beneficial experience for all those involved. Where possible, they believe in putting money directly into the communities they visit by eating locally produced food and using locally owned and run accommodation. They also strive to provide as much flexibility and choice as possible to make it simple for you to experience a memorable holiday, your way.