Temple Israel of Memphis
Experience the Land and People of Israel

Led by Rabbi Micah Greenstein

Oct 8, 2023 - Oct 19, 2023

  • DESTINATION Israel
  • Who’s Going Adults Only
  • Trip Type Congregational
  • Duration 12 DAYS
  • Group Size 30+
  • Price From $5,980
Program is tentative and subject to change. Connect with our Customer Care Team by calling: (888) 230-6008 Mon.-Thur. from 8:00 a.m. to 12:00 p.m. Eastern Time (ET).

YOUR journey

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.

  •   Home Hospitality
  •   Food & Wine
  •   Archaeology
  •   Heritage
  •   Active
  •   Art & Culture

Program Itinerary

DAY 1
DEPARTURE
Sun. Oct 8, 2023
  • Depart the USA.
DAY 2
BEN GURION’S DREAM
Mon. Oct 9, 2023
  • Group arrival at Ben Gurion International Airport. Our representative will be on hand to assist with all formalities and ensure your journey has the smoothest of starts.
  • Meet your tour educator who will accompany you on this journey of education and inspiration.
  • The Old Man and the Desert: Drive south and stop to visit the grave of Israel's “founding father”, David Ben-Gurion at Midreshet Sde Boker. We’ll discuss why Ben-Gurion, the “grand old man” of Israel’s public life and the country’s first Prime Minister, abandoned the political scene for life in an isolated kibbutz in the Negev Desert.
  • Continue to the hotel for check-in, followed by dinner.
Overnight: Mitzpeh Ramon Meals: Dinner
DAY 3
FROM CRATER TO CREATIVITY
Tue. Oct 10, 2023
  • Breakfast at an Israeli hotel is an experience in itself. Start the day with a bounteous buffet.
  • The Heart of the Negev: Makhtesh Ramon (Ramon Crater) is the world's largest erosion crater, nearly 25 miles long and between 1-6 miles wide, shaped like an elongated heart.
  • Marvel at the striking red and yellow layers and unique geologic formations. Explore this geomorphic wonder with:
    • A two-hour Jeep tour, where we'll start at the edge of the crater for an overview before descending to Wadi Ramon. Learn about the Maktesh and its formation before continuing our trek to the summit of Mount Gvanim for a stunning view of the entire Maktesh. Our journey will continue along Wadi Gvanim, stopping in the shade of an acacia tree to point out the flora and fauna of the region before we return to Mitzpe Ramon.
    • A walk to the unique natural phenomenon known as HaMinsara (The Carpentry Shop), which looks like a pile of wooden blocks, but are actually black basalt rocks. Along the way, explore the rock formations that were created by thousands of years of erosion.
  • Wisdom in the Wilderness: Explore the harsh beauty of the desert and the insights of the people who make their home there. Desert experts from local Bedouin clans will accompany us on a camel ride into the astonishing Ramon Crater and reveal some of the secrets of traditional desert life.
  • Travel to the hotel for dinner.
  • Stargazing on the edge of the Maktesh. With its lack of light pollution and vast darkness, this is one of the best places in Israel for viewing the night sky. Enjoy the solitude as we identify some of our favorite constellations and perhaps spot a shooting star or two.
Overnight: Mitzpeh Ramon Meals: Dinner
DAY 4
THE NEW HEBREW CITY
Wed. Oct 11, 2023
  • Check out of the hotel.
  • As we drive north on the Trans-Israel Highway, there will be plenty of opportunities to see the Security Barrier which runs along the seam zone between Israel and the Palestinian Territories, and to learn about the barrier’s effects on Israeli security and Palestinian communities.
  • 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.
  • Walk through Jaffa's famous flea market – Shuk Hapishpeshim.
  • Walk along the newly-opened Independence Trail in Tel Aviv and embark on a remarkable journey that begins with the founding of Tel Aviv in 1909 and ends with the establishment of Israel in 1948.
  • Continue to the hotel for check-in, followed by dinner.
Overnight: Upper Galilee Meals: Dinner
DAY 5
NORTHERN EXPOSURE
Thu. Oct 12, 2023
  • Israel's Security Challenges on the Northern Borders: At the Misgav Am lookout point hear from a research expert from the Alma Research and Education Center about some of the challenges facing Israel on its northern border. Some topics that will be discussed include: How has the civil war in Syria changed the IDF's security doctrine on the border? How is Hezbollah preparing for the next conflict with Israel? What are the solutions and how is the US involved?
  • Explore Tsfat, a center of Jewish mysticism for hundreds of years and a contemporary artists’ colony, including:
    • Guided visit to the Ari, Caro or Abuhav Synagogues, each with its great stories and mystical messages.
    • A stroll through the quaint Artists’ Colony, shop in the galleries and crafts shops and engage in dialogues with local artisans inspired by the messages of Kabbalah.
  • From Little Things, Great Things Grow: Visit the Tel Shifon Winery at Kibbutz Ortal in the northern Golan Heights for a tour and wine tasting.
  • Cooking a Love Story: Join Liz and Shai in their home on the Merom Golan kibbutz for a meal and an occasion to savor. As we feast on Shai's "enchanted soup", smoked entrecote and fabulous vegetarian options, Liz, an actress and raconteur, will explain how this couple's love story came to include providing great food and the warmest of hospitality.
Overnight: Upper Galilee Meals: Dinner
DAY 6
SPIRTUALITY AND MORE
Fri. Oct 13, 2023
  • Check out of the hotel.
  • Drive south past Tiberias, an ancient/modern city located on the shores of Lake Kinneret (Sea of Galilee). One of Israel’s four holy Jewish cities, this is where the “Jerusalem” Talmud was codified and where Maimonides is buried.
  • 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.
  • Drive to Jerusalem.
  • Welcome to Jerusalem: Enter the vibrant and colorful ancient city of Jerusalem and experience the convergence of the old and the new.
  • 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.
  • Check into the hotel, and get ready for Shabbat.
  • Kabbalat Shabbat services at Ezrat Israel, the pluralistic section of the Kotel (Western Wall).
  • Friday night dinner is the traditional highlight of the Jewish week. It’s also a favorite time for the Jewish stomach! During this cummunal dinner, we’ll share in the rituals, the recipes, and the relaxation of Shabbat at the hotel, we will meet the commune of the "Shnat -Gap year" with the reform movement.
Overnight: Jerusalem Meals: Dinner
DAY 7
SHABBAT IN JERUSALEM
Sat. Oct 14, 2023
  • Yemin Moshe and Mishkenot Sha'ananim: Get to know the great banker and philanthropist Sir Moses Montefiore as you explore the pastoral neighborhoods, famous windmill and the artists’ colony that he developed and which transformed Jerusalem in the nineteenth century. En route, view two of modern Jerusalem’s most storied and important landmarks: the King David Hotel and the YMCA building.
  • Ascend the Old City Ramparts for a walk along the ancient walls of the city. 
  • Explore the Israel Museum, housing more than 5,000 years of cultural treasures.
  • Drive through the Israeli “Capitol Hill”: along the Knesset – Israel’s Parliament and its famous Menorah, the Supreme Court building, the Prime Minister’s Office, the Israeli National Bank, and the future Site of the Israel National Library.
  • Travel to Shoham.
  • Three Stars in the Sky: At nightfall, we will mark the end of a special Shabbat with a communal Havdallah ceremony with Kehillat “V’ahavta"- The Reform Community in Shoham.
Overnight: Jerusalem
DAY 8
LAYERS COME TO LIFE
Sun. Oct 15, 2023
  • Visit Yad LaKashish (Lifeline for the Elderly), an organization providing work opportunities, and invaluable support services to hundreds of needy elderly around Jerusalem.
  • Discover the archaeological treasures and other highlights of the Jewish Quarter:
    • Climb to the rooftops to see and discuss the ties and tensions between the different faith groups and communities of the Old City. From this one spot, we’ll look out over the Church of the Holy Sepulchre, venerated by Christian groups as the burial place of Jesus; the golden Dome of the Rock, which is sacred to Islam; and the Jewish Quarter’s famous Hurva Synagogue.
    •    Walk through the Cardo, the main street of Roman-controlled Jerusalem and its spectacular Byzantine-era columns.
    •   Stop next to King Hezekiah's “Broad Wall”, a massive wall built to protect Jerusalem from invasion 2,700 years ago.
    •   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. Continue Southern Wall steps used by Jewish pilgrims to enter the Temple, 2,000 years ago. But there is much else to see, including Robinson’s Arch, and the remains of a major Second Temple-period street.
    • Enter the Tower of David Museum of the History of Jerusalem, for a walk through the city’s history – with observation points, an animated film and visual and audio-visual aids – from the time of Abraham to the end of the British Mandate over Palestine. 
    Overnight: Jerusalem
DAY 9
THE POWER OF MEMORY
Mon. Oct 16, 2023
  • Together at the Wall: Celebrate Rosh Chodesh with a prayer service at the Kotel (Western Wall). We’ll join Women of the Wall, leaders in the struggle for religious freedom in Israel, in welcoming the arrival of the new month with a service of joy and togetherness.
  • 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, commemorating the 1.5 million children lost during the Holocaust.
    • A memorial service where we will pay tribute to those who were lost. It will include the opportunity to talk about family members and loved ones who died during the Shoah.
  • Take a multi-cultural tasting journey through the hustle and bustle of Jerusalem’s Mahane Yehuda open-air market: Enjoy the sights, smells, tastes, and sounds of this vibrant area where Jerusalemites shop. This doubles as a delicious as a meal.
  • High Times in the Holy City: Jerusalem at night provides a very different vision of the Holy City. Check out how the locals let their hair down during a free evening and explore Jerusalem nightlife.
Overnight: Jerusalem
DAY 10
THE DEAD SEA BASIN
Tue. Oct 17, 2023
  • Enjoy an early breakfast at the hotel before setting out to explore the Dead Sea region.
  • As Low as It Goes: We'll drive to the Dead Sea Basin, 1412 feet below sea level and the lowest place on earth. The desert, the landscape, and the views are breathtaking.
  • 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.
  • We'll drive by Qumran, where a separatist Jewish sect from the Second Temple period created an isolated community and where the Dead Sea Scrolls, some of the most ancient and important religious manuscripts in existence, were discovered.
  • Return to Jerusalem and to the hotel.
Overnight: Jerusalem
DAY 11
QUESTION OF SOVEREIGNTY
Wed. Oct 18, 2023
  • Meet with Scott Copeland J² educational director for J² Salon Talk: Israel society and politics in the year 2023. A Small Country With Big Questions. Geographically, Israel is one of the smallest countries in the world. However, few landscapes have played such a formative role in human civilization. What are the foundational elements that make up the story of Israel, and what key questions does Israel contends with as it continues to evolve in a shifting regional and international reality?
  • Salon Talk: Frame the political
  • Is Religion the Way Forward or an Obstacle to Peace? We’ll go beyond the Green Line to meet with Shorashim (Roots), a program bringing West Bank Palestinians and their Jewish neighbors together despite their fears and suspicions.
  • Leave a Mark in Israel, plant trees at the Jerusalem Bird Observatory and enjoy free time at the New Jerusalem Deer Valley Park.
  • Late check out from the hotel.
  • Farewell dinner at a local restaurant.
  • Group transfer to Ben Gurion International Airport for your departure flight.
Meals: Lunch & Dinner
DAY 12
UNTIL WE MEET AGAIN
Thu. Oct 19, 2023
  • Return to the USA.

RATES & LODGING

participants
30+
Cost p/p in double room
$5,980
Cost p/p in single room
$8,478

Mitzpe Ramon: Beresheet

Upper Galilee: Pastoral Kfar Blum Hotel

David Citadel Jerusalem

Jerusalem: David Citadel

  • Nights: 5+LCO
  • Room Category: Superior New City View
  • Hotel Website

What to expect

  • 9 nights' accommodations. Late check out on the day of departure is included.
  • 10 days of touring with a tour educator (guide), in a luxury, air-conditioned bus.
  • 1 Group arrival transfer & assistance at the airport.
  • 1 Group departure transfer & assistance at the airport.
  • Daily breakfast, 1 lunch & 6 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.
  • 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.
  • 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 before July 9th 2023 incur the loss of the deposit. Cancelations made from July 10th 2023 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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A family vacation to Israel. An adventure of a lifetime traveling with friends to Morocco. A  trip to Poland or Portugal with your community. What do these trips have in common? No matter where you go, you will come back with a fresh perspective and appreciation of the place you visited as well as a heightened awareness of your identity as part of the global Jewish community. 

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