Explore northern Israel on a 2-day guided tour of the Golan Heights, Nazareth and the Sea of Galilee from Jerusalem. Visit the most popular Golan Heights sites, like the Hammat Gader hot springs, the village of Katzrin, plus Mount Bental, one of Golan’s dormant volcanos. Enjoy an overnight stay, then travel to Nazareth, the childhood home of Jesus, and the Sea of Galilee, where he performed many miracles. Also, consider being baptized where Jesus was, in the Jordan River. Overnight accommodations and transportation included.
Spend time at the historical Sea of Galilee
Discover the treasures of northern Israel on this 2-day tour of Golan Heights and the Sea of Galilee from Jerusalem. This experience includes stops at top Golan Heights attractions, including the Talmudic village of Katzrin, the Hammat Gader border and Mount Bental, a dormant volcano. You'll stay overnight in a traditional Israeli kibbutz (family-run guesthouse), head south to the Sea of Galilee, enjoying a tour of Nazareth plus visits to the ancient fishing village of Capernaum, Yardenit baptismal site and more. See Itinerary below for details of each day.
Day 1: Jerusalem – Golan Heights
Leave your Jerusalem hotel and travel north to Golan Heights, the gorgeous mountainous region in northern Israel. Golan Heights lies some 118 miles (190 km) away from Jerusalem, so two photo stops are worked into the route to break up your journey.
Ogle the views from the vantage point of Megiddo, where successive ancient settlements were built on top of each other, and then stretch your legs at Yardenit on the banks of the Jordan River.
On reaching the national park, your first stop is Hammat Gader, a hot springs on the edge of the Syrian and Jordanian borders. Stop for photos, and then continue to Katzrin for a walking tour. Considered as the capital of Golan Heights, Katzrin is actually a Talmudic (ancient Jewish) village with incredible ruins scattered all around. Visit Katzrin’s synagogue, and admire the remains of the 6th-century building that still features original decorative details and inscriptions.
After a break for lunch (own expense), travel to the top of Mount Bental, one of Golan Height’s dormant volcanoes. Towering above the Golan plateau, the mountain lends itself to breathtaking views over Syria’s Quneitra Valley. Stop for photos set against a former Syrian fortification in the valley, and then travel to your kibbutz for your overnight stay.
Overnight: Nof Tavor kibbutz in the Golan Heights region
Day 2: Golan Heights – Nazareth – Sea of Galilee – Jerusalem (B)
Leave Golan Heights after breakfast, and then travel south to Nazareth. Nestled into the Galilean Hills, the city is home to a revered Christian shrine – the Church of the Annunciation – where the Angel Gabriel is said to have appeared to the Virgin Mary.
Head inside the basilica, and learn of its significance as a Christian pilgrimage site while admiring the architecture. Another sacred site – St Joseph’s Church – is nearby, so stroll over to it next with your guide. Built on the spot where Joseph of Nazareth’s carpentry workshop is said to have stood, the church is fascinating to explore with a network of crypts beneath its main hall.
After walking around the church with your guide, leave Nazareth and continue through the village of Cafa for a photo stop at the Church of the Multiplication on the Sea of Galilee. It was here that one of the New Testament’s parables – the feeding of the 5,000 – took place.
Continue around the foot of Mount Beatitudes to the ancient fishing village of Capernaum, and see the ruins of Jesus’ much-celebrated synagogue on a walk with your guide. Stop for lunch (own expense) and then travel toward the Jordan River.
Stop at Yardenit to walk along its sacred river banks and learn about the baptismal rituals that take place at the water’s edge. If you would like to get baptized, speak to your guide to see if it can be arranged. Enjoy the tranquil ambiance, return to your coach, and then return to Jerusalem.