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J² crafts journeys of inspiration, education, and Jewish connections to Israel and worldwide. We are guided by a simple but powerful concept: No two trips are the same; each experience should be personal, meaningful, and backed by superb service. Travel is not just about the places you visit, but the connections you make along the way.
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- Home Hospitality
- Food & Wine
- Art & Culture
- Street Food
- Nature Walks
- Family Friendly
ON THE WAY
Wed. Jun 7, 2023
- Depart the USA.
THE START OF A SPECIAL JOURNEY
Thu. Jun 8, 2023
- Arrival at Ben Gurion International Airport.
- Transfer on own to Jerusalem.
- Welcome to Jerusalem: Enter the vibrant and colorful ancient city of Jerusalem and experience the convergence of the old and the new.
- Check into the hotel.
LAYERS OF JERUSALEM
Fri. Jun 9, 2023
- Breakfast at an Israeli hotel is an experience in itself. Start the day with a bounteous buffet.
- A First Look at the Holy City: Over the centuries, many have been moved and awed by their first sight of Jerusalem. We'll stop at the Haas Promenade for a stunning overview of the city and celebrate our arrival with a special ceremony and the traditional “shehechiyanu” blessing of thanksgiving.
- At the Heart of It All: Explore the City of David, the core of ancient Jerusalem, and learn how the city was administered during the First Temple period. Our visit will include wading through the 2,700-year-old water tunnels (there's an optional dry exit), an architectural wonder of King Hezekiah's.
- No visit to Israel is complete without experiencing the Kotel (Western Wall), widely considered Judaism's holiest site. Each year, over one million notes containing prayers and wishes are placed in the cracks of the wall. We'll discuss the wall's historical and contemporary importance and experience its unique atmosphere.
- “The Best Falafel in the World! Right Here in the Old City”: The competition for the best street food in the Jewish Quarter is tough.
- Take a walking tour through Jerusalem’s Old City and the Jewish Quarter and experience the center of Jewish life, history, and holiness. Among the highlights will be:
- A walk along the rooftops that will provide an extraordinary scene of multi-faith Jerusalem. From this one spot, we will see the domes of three great religious landmarks: The Church of the Holy Sepulchre (marking where Jesus is believed to have been crucified); the Jewish Quarter’s Hurva synagogue and the Temple Mount.
- The Cardo, the main street of Roman-controlled Jerusalem and its spectacular Byzantine-era columns.
- King Hezekiah’s “Broad Wall”, a massive wall built to protect Jerusalem from invasion 2,700 years ago.
- Hurva Square, the center of modern-day life in the Jewish Quarter.
- There will also be time to see the bargains and the bargaining in the Old City Shuk (market) in the Christian Quarter.
- Celebrate Kabbalat Shabbat with Kehillat Bavat Ayin in Rosh Ha'ayin, followed by Shabbat home hospitality dinner with congregants.
Overnight: Jerusalem Meals: Breakfast & Shabbat Dinner
THE DEAD SEA BASIN
Sat. Jun 10, 2023
- Early breakfast and departure.
- Descend towards the Dead Sea basin.
- The Last Stand: Take the cable car to the top of Masada with its extraordinary views and fascinating archaeological remains. This UNESCO World Heritage Site is where Jewish rebels are believed to have made their final attempt to resist Roman invaders (c 74 CE). We'll learn about Masada's importance as a symbol of Jewish defense and discuss its influence on modern Israel.
- The Sea of Salt: Float into happiness at the Dead Sea. Not much can live or swim in what is the saltiest piece of water in the world, nine times saltier than the ocean, but the weightless feeling of floating is great fun.
- Take a short hike to Nahal David, the freshwater spring and waterfalls in the Ein Gedi Nature Reserve, a lush oasis in the Judean Desert overlooking the Dead Sea.
- Return to Jerusalem.
- Three Stars in the Jerusalem Sky: At nightfall, we will mark the end of a special Shabbat with a communal Havdallah ceremony overlooking the Old City.
Overnight: Jerusalem Meals: Breakfast
MEMORY AND RENEWAL
Sun. Jun 11, 2023
- ADULTS AND OLDER YOUTH:
- Visit Yad Vashem, the national memorial to the six million Jewish victims of the Holocaust, an essential emotional and educational experience. Your guided tour will include:
- The Avenue of the Righteous, where trees symbolic of the renewal of life have been planted along with plaques honoring brave non-Jews who saved Jews during the Shoah.
- The Historical Museum, a state-of-the-art interactive display reflecting decades of research and educational expertise. The story of the Holocaust, with an emphasis on individual victims, is told through survivor testimonies, original artifacts, and personal possessions saved from the ghettos and camps.
- The Children’s Memorial, where candles shine like stars in the sky to commemorate the 1.5 million children lost during the Holocaust.
- A memorial service where we will pay tribute to those who were lost.
- YOUNGER YOUTH (accompanied by an adult):
- Two by Two the Animals Went into the Ark: The Biblical Zoo is one of Jerusalem’s loveliest places. It has a great collection of animals with a special focus on creatures mentioned in the Bible. It includes 62 acres of open areas where the animals live, a zoo train if you don’t feel like walking, a petting zoo, and plenty of other activities to keep all ages enthralled.
- But Jerusalem Has No Ocean! Jerusalem may be one of the few great cities without access to the sea, but it does have the recently opened Israel Aquarium. Highlights include the shark tank, feeding the stingray, and an exhibition showcasing the marine life of Israel's “four seas.”
- Diggin' for Roots: Get in touch with the land and history of Israel. Take part in an archaeological dig at the Beit Guvrin Caves. Get your hands dirty uncovering pottery from the Hellenistic period, 2300 years ago, and then crawl through the Maresha Cave Labyrinth (non-crawling options are available) in this UNESCO World Heritage Site.
Overnight: Jerusalem Meals: Breakfast
PASSAGES IN TIME
Mon. Jun 12, 2023
- B'nai Mitzvah Ceremony at Azarat Israel, the pluralistic section of the Kotel (Western Wall). And The Jerusalem Archaeological Park is a large-scale excavation that has uncovered vital parts of ancient Jerusalem.
- Extending Our Hands: together with Keren BeKavod, the Center for Social and Communal Activity of Israel's Reform Movement. This organization assists populations in distress with an emphasis on social empowerment. They help Israelis from all walks of life, regardless of religion, place of origin, or political affiliation. We will lend a hand by packing boxes of food to be sent to residents in need.(pending availability)
- How Fast Can This Thing Go? The patriarch Abraham will welcome us to Genesis Land for a taste of life and travel in biblical times as we take a camel for a test drive and ride into the heart of the desert. Afterward, see how you would have managed living in the wilderness during the time of the patriarchs and matriarchs with some fun, family-friendly activities, including:
- Desert Ways: Experience daily life, biblical style, as we draw water from the well, tend to sheep and goats, and meet pigeons who can always find their way back home.
- Put Another Pita on the Fire: Try your hand at pita baking, like in biblical times.
- Desert Delight: Experience how guests were treated like royalty in biblical times. We'll kick back in a spacious, cool desert tent and enjoy a traditional “hafla” lunch.
- Return to Jerusalem and to the hotel.
Overnight: Jerusalem Meals: Breakfast & Lunch
ARCHEOLOGY, SPIRITUALITY & MORE
Tue. Jun 13, 2023
- Check out of the hotel and depart Jerusalem.
- As we drive north through the Jordan Valley, we’ll discuss the strategic and political situation in this area and consider how Israeli control over it is viewed by some as vital to national security but by others as an impediment to any future agreement with the Palestinians.
- Visit the Beit She’an National Park, one of Israel’s largest archaeological Sites, with its Biblical period archaeological mound and excavated Roman-Byzantine city.
- Perhaps it's the combination of mysticism and art, and maybe it's the mountain air in Israel's highest city; entering Tsfat, there is a sense of something uniquely Jewish but not quite of this world. Here, you'll visit the Ari synagogue and share in the inspiration and innovation that moved Rabbi Isaac Luria (the Holy Ari) and his fellow mystics. In Tsfat they developed the Kabbalah, the esoteric insights of Judaism and created Kabbalat Shabbat, the prayers sung on Friday evenings to welcome the arrival of the Sabbath.
- Continue to the hotel for check-in and dinner.
Overnight: Upper Galilee Meals: Breakfast & Dinner
SERENITY & SECURITY
Wed. Jun 14, 2023
- Paradise Springs is one of the places we’ll visit at the Tel Dan Nature Reserve. We’ll tour the remains of a 5,000- year-old city and find out why water is like gold in the parched Middle East.
- Take a Jeep tour off-road up the Golan Heights in the footsteps of Israeli soldiers and their battles in the Six-Day War. Enjoy the beautiful natural scenery and gain an insight into the strategic complexity of the Golan, since the wars of 1967 & 1973. Explore the geopolitical realities in Syria, as you overlook beyond the border.
- Northern Borders, Northern Battles: We’ll gaze across the Golan and into Syria from the top of Mount Bental and gain powerful insights into Israel’s geopolitical and security situation. Analyze the current challenges Israel faces on its northern border, examine the impact of the tragic civil war in Syria, and hunker down in bunkers from the vital battles that took place here during the 1973 Yom Kippur War.
- Cool Off Down the Jordan River: With the hot weather, it's time to take to the water with rafting or kayaking down the Jordan River. This is the parched Middle East rather than the Rockies, so the current is mainly calm and suitable for ages five and up. Water shoes are recommended.
- Mangal=BBQ=Good Times: It will be an evening of fun, friendship, and barbecue, Israeli-style, as we dine outdoors at the delightful Baba Yona Ranch in the Upper Galilee.
Overnight: Upper Galilee Meals: Breakfast & Dinner
FROM SEA TO SEA
Thu. Jun 15, 2023
- Check out of the hotel.
- Take a moment at the top of Mount Carmel, the setting for many biblical stories and the old stomping ground of the prophet Elijah, to admire the view of Haifa Bay. Haifa’s diversity is also reflected by the fact that it is a world center of the Baha’i religious movement. We’ll see the beautiful Baha’i Gardens and one of their holiest Sites, the gold-domed Shrine of the Bab, and discuss the sometimes tragic history of this community and how a faith that began in Iran ended up being based in Israel.
- The Druze of Israel: Visit a village on Mount Carmel for a glimpse into the lives of Israel’s Druze community. We’ll talk with a member of this minority group which, despite being famed for their contribution to the Israeli Defense Forces, remains largely unknown to many Israelis. We’ll explore their background and beliefs, as we look at their complex but close relationship with the State of Israel. Then we’ll enjoy the tastes of the Druze kitchen with a home hospitality lunch.
- Continue to Tel Aviv, also known as “the city that never sleeps.” A place of sun and fun, its centers of culture and history are complemented by great beaches, stores, and entertainment.
- Beginnings: Modern Tel Aviv grew out of ancient Jaffa. Gaze out over the Mediterranean Sea; learn why Jaffa, mentioned in the biblical story of Jonah and the Whale, is so historically important; and see how its Old City reflects the present as well as the past.
- Check into the hotel.
- The City at Night: Tel Aviv's food scene is on fire with world-class chefs and a huge range of happening restaurants; see and taste for yourself during a free evening. Those who love the nightlife can sample the city's bar, club, and café culture or stroll along the refurbished promenade and port.
Overnight: Tel Aviv Meals: Breakfast & Lunch
THE TAPESTRY OF TEL AVIV
Fri. Jun 16, 2023
- Out of East Africa: Meet African women seeking refuge in Tel Aviv and see how they are working toward a brighter future by creating beautiful crochet products. Kuchinate (meaning crochet in Tigrinya) is a collective that celebrates African art and culture while empowering women asylum-seekers, many of whom suffered great hardships while fleeing to Israel. Here we’ll join with women from East Africa for a traditional coffee-making ceremony and talk with them about their lives in Israel and the struggles they are seeking to overcome through creativity and collective action. Try our hand at creating East African bracelets)during a craft workshop led by the women of Kuchinate.
- Street Food Session: Participate in a falafel cooking workshop at The Cooking Experience. In a unique Ottoman-era manor house with a culinary soul, learn the techniques for making that traditional Israeli favorite, falafel. Work together to create some classic Israeli street food, and then savor the results for lunch.
- Calling Boutique-Loving Hipsters: Browse your way through Nahalat Binyamin, Tel Aviv's arts and crafts market, before we check out the hustle and bustle at the Carmel Market.
- Celebrate Kabbalat Shabbat at the beach.
- Shabbat dinner at the hotel.
Overnight: Tel Aviv Meals: Breakfast & Shabbat Dinner
UNTIL WE MEET AGAIN
Sat. Jun 17, 2023
- Free day to crash the waves and enjoy the beach.
- Afternoon walking tour options:
- A Fallen Leader, A Fallen Soldier: The assassination of Prime Minister Yitzhak Rabin in 1995 was one of the great traumas of Israeli political history, shocking Israel similarly to the way that President Kennedy's death affected America.
- Explore the gentrified Neve Zedek neighborhood. Wander through the Tahana, Tel Aviv's newly renovated old train station, now a center of boutiques and good food, and one of Tel Aviv's blooming hot spots. Walk the Blue Route in Tel Aviv, with its beautiful coastline and Mediterranean atmosphere, from the Jaffa Ridge in the south to Tel Aviv Port in the north, OR take the Green Route, passing through Ganei Yehoshua along the Yarkon River.
- Late check-out from the hotel.
- Festive farewell dinner at Dr. Shakshuka in Jaffa.
- Transfer to Ben Gurion International Airport and check in for your flight.
Meals: Breakfast & Dinner
Sun. Jun 18, 2023
- Departure flight to the US, arriving the same day.
RATES & LODGING
Cost p/p in double room
Cost p/p in single room
Child As 3rd (Reduction)
Cost of accommodations for pre & post nights including breakfast and all taxes:
-Jerusalem: Inbal $415,- per night per double occupancy room, $399,- per night per single occupancy room, $470,- per night per double occupancy room with child as third
-Tel Aviv: Sheraton $490,- per night per double occupancy room, $475,- per night per single occupancy room, $515,- per night per double occupancy room with child as third
*All rates are subject to availability. Registration open
What to expect
- 9 nights' accommodations. Late check out on the day of departure is included.
- 8 days of touring with a tour educator (guide), 8 days of touring in a luxury, air-conditioned bus.
- 1 Group departure transfer & assistance at the airport.
- Daily breakfast, 2 lunches & 5 dinners.
- Water on the bus.
- Porterage at the airport & hotels.
- All site entrance fees & program fees as per your final program.
- Credit card fees.
- Flights to & from Israel.
- Arrival transfer & assistance at the airport.
- COVID related expenses, including tests.
- Evening transportation when dinner is not included.
- Amendments to the program: In the event that any sites, programs or meals etc. are added to the program, an additional fee may be required.
- Personal extras: Items of personal nature such as laundry, wines, mineral water, beverages, coffee, tea, food other than the table d’hotel menu, passport and visa fees, insurance, and foreign port taxes, unless otherwise specified.
- US and foreign airport taxes, Q fuel surcharge and border taxes when applicable.
- Value Added Tax is currently not applicable to tourists visiting Israel. Should the law change, you will be notified accordingly, and VAT will be added to your final invoice.
- Gratuities: Recommend guidelines for tipping are provided in the terms section.
- Please review our terms & conditions (T&C’s) or request that we send you our full T&C’s. Until you do that, here is the small print, and other stuff you may want to know:
- Validity | All prices quoted are based on exchange rates as of the proposal date and are subject to change without notice. Rates are per person and are based on shared twin room occupancy.
- How to Make a Reservation | The quickest way to make a reservation is to register online or contact us by email. We accept VISA, MasterCard, and American Express credit cards. A non-refundable deposit is required in order to complete the registration process.
- For any assistance with this registration process or other trip-related queries, please email Customer Care: [email protected]
- Payments | The balance of your payment is due 90 days before your trip begins, or as specified in your invoice. You will receive an email reminder 2 weeks before this date. Various payment options are available as follows:
- Credit card | We accept Visa, Mastercard and American Express. Please check with your credit card provider regarding international processing fees. We are unable to process payments of over $1,000 over the phone. Please submit payment online via a credit card or by wiring funds via your bank.
- Domestic bank wire transfer | Payment should be wired in the same currency that is listed on your invoice. Please add the name of your group or invoice number as a reference and forward a copy of the transfer receipt by email. The bank transfer should clearly state the beneficiary’s name on the wire transfer.
- Please use the following information: Citizens Bank: 1 Citizens Drive, Riverside, RI 02915 Routing number: 021313103 (Domestic only) ACH: 036076150 SWIFT Code: CTZIUS33 (International only)
- Beneficiary Instructions: For the benefit of J2 Adventures. Account number: 1001858331
- J² Adventures reserves the right to automatically cancel your reservation on that date and it may be subject to reconfirmation should the final payment not be received.
- Cancelation Policy | All cancelations need to be made in writing. The cancelation fee depends on the date when we receive written notification of your request to cancel your booking. Please note that the deposit is non-refundable.
- Cancelation fees | Cancelations made 90 or more days prior to departure incur the loss of the deposit. Cancelations made 89 to 46 days prior to departure incur the loss of 50% of the full trip cost. Cancelations made 45 days or less prior to the departure incur the loss of 100% of the full trip cost.
- Cancelation fees may also include: Hotel or supplier cancelation fees. J² Adventures reserves the right to adjust its terms of payment, including cancelation policies and initial deposits. Please refer to the small print tab on your trip’s webpage or in your proposal for your cancelation policy and fees.
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