An Israel pilgrimage is a once-in-a-lifetime opportunity for many travelers, and vacation packages for visitors wishing to participate in a group pilgrimage to Israel are available in varying lengths to suit every traveler's needs. To see as much as possible of what the country has to offer, pilgrimages generally range from seven to eleven days, with some running longer to include extended visits to areas outside of Israel.
For a multiple day Holy Land pilgrimage through Jerusalem, a vacation package can include round trip airfare to Tel Aviv, departure and transfer fees, portage, accommodations, buffet breakfast and dinner, transportation to and from the airport, and entry fees at designated sites, parks, and attractions.
An Israel pilgrimage typically also includes comfortable, secure transport in air-conditioned motor coaches with an experienced tour guide, interpreter, and an itinerary that ensures travelers are able to visit a number of sacred sites throughout the country.
Accommodations for your pilgrimage to Israel are typically booked through a travel or tour agency and usually include high-quality hotels. Some pilgrimages also offer optional accommodations at Catholic centers, guesthouses, and hospices, which can be helpful for those who are traveler on a relatively smaller budget.
Cities you might visit during a Holy Land pilgrimage include the Old City quarters of Jerusalem, Caesarea, Nazareth, Bethlehem, and Tiberias, as well as trips to archaeological sites like Masada or Megiddo. It can also include historic sites such as the Mount of Beatitudes, where Jesus gave the Sermon on the Mount; the Shrine of the Book; Mount of Olives; and the Wailing Wall.
An Israel pilgrimage can also include visits to the Jordan River Baptismal and the Israel Museum. For those interested in visiting ancient archaeological sites and places of interest in Jerusalem including the Pool of Siloam, Burnt House, and Gihon Spring, special arrangements are possible to include these additional locations in the tour.
There are multiple itineraries for the pilgrimages, and the sites may be visited in any order. For instance, travelers arriving via Ben Gurion International Airport may begin the first day of their Holy Land pilgrimage in Tel Aviv. The pilgrimage continues to Caesarea and Mount Carmel then on through the Jezreel Valley to the city of Megiddo, and you may also visit Nazareth and the Church of the Annunciation before continuing to Capernaum and the Mount of the Beatitudes overlooking the Sea of Galilee. Some itineraries include a cruise along the seashore.
A pilgrimage to Israel can then continue to Jericho and the Mount of Temptation, before heading to the Dead Sea area. A stop at Masada and a cable car ride to the Herod's fortress atop the mountain and on to Ein Gedi and the Qumran Caves site where the Dead Sea Scrolls were discovered.
The journey often ends in Jerusalem where you will visit the Old City, Mount of Olives, Garden of Gethsemane, and the House of Caiaphas. Visits to the Monastery of St. John in the Judean Hills and the Church and Tomb of Lazarus are often part of the pilgrimage to Israel, particularly for visitors interested in the Christian history of the area.
Whether you are interested in a Christian, Jewish, or Muslim Holy Land group tours, each Israel pilgrimage provides an extensive look at the numerous religious sites, ancient ruins, and artifacts that depict the influences of the many cultures and societies that have molded the history of this area.