Central Holidays

Transfer from Amman airport to your hotel in Petra. After check in, spend the balance of the day at leisure. In the evening, partake in an optional Turkish bath experience or the Petra by Night tour.

Once an important intersection for trade routes that linked East and West, Petra was founded in 200 BC by the Nabataean, an ancient people responsible for the valley's most arresting monument-- Al- Khazneh (Treasury). Chose to enter Petra, called the Rose City, by horseback and being your full day tour at Al-Khazneh, the massive facade carved out of pink-hued rocks that face Siq, a narrow gorge at the entrance to the city. Admire hundreds of Petra's carved structures, soaring temples, elaborate royal tombs, Roman theater, and burial chambers. Then climb to the monastery above the mountains for a wonderful view over Wadi Araba.In the late afternoon, return to Amman. (B)

Begin your tour of Amman, the capital of Jordan. This city geographically straddles seven hills and has seen the events of many centuries. Its modern buildings blend with the remnants of ancient civilizations. From Amman, journey to Madaba, the home to the Church of St. George. Stand on Mt. Nebo, the site where Moses was to have seen the Promised Land and his believed burial place. Soak in the expansive views over Jordan valley - on a clear day you can see as far as Jericho and Jerusalem. (B)

After breakfast, drive to Jerash to visit spectacular Roman ruins that will transport you back two thousand years to the time of the Roman Empire. The city's many splendid monuments still stand and retain the atmosphere of the once thriving metropolis that was famous in its own time for magnificent temples, amphitheaters, and plazas. End your journey through Jordan at Sheikh Hussein Bridge, a border crossing into neighboring Israel, and start this new leg of your adventure. Arrive in Jerusalem for the evening. (B)

Begin your tour of Jerusalem at Mount of Olives for a stunning panorama of the city. On nearby Mount Zion, see King David's Tomb, draped in azure and gold, and tour the vaulted Room of the Last Supper and the Dormition Abbey. Enter the old city and walk through the ethnic quarters to the recently excavated and restored cardo, the main north/south thoroughfare built by Romans. See the sacred Western Wall before entering the Christian quarter and pacing Via Dolorosa on the way to Christianity's most scared pilgrimage site-the Church of the Holy Sepulchre. Continue to Bethlehem* for an overview of Shepherds' Field where an angel of the Lord appeared to the shepherds and spoke of Jesus's birth. Finally, walk through Manger Square and the Church of the Nativity - which is said to hold the manger that Jesus was placed in after his birth. Return to Jerusalem for the evening. (B)

Leave Jerusalem behind and drive through the Judean Desert, tufted with palms and rough grass, to the Dead Sea area, the lowest point on Earth, for some shopping. Drive along the shores of this ultra-saline lake and see Massada rising before you on a plateau. Ascend by cable car to the ancient fortress where the Jewish zealots made their last stand against the invading Romans in 73 AD. Visit the remains of the walls, palaces, synagogue, water cisterns, mosaic floors, Roman baths and other findings. Upon descent, take a dip in the Dead Sea. Float along and enjoy the mineral-rich benefits that are bottled by the beauty industry. Stop at Qumran to visit the cave where the Dead Sea Scrolls were uncovered en route back to Jerusalem. (B)

Spend this full day at leisure to explore Jerusalem on your own. (B)

Depart via the coastal road through the Lower Galilee region en route to Nazareth, the town where Jesus spent his childhood. Here you will tour the Basilica of Annunciation and the Church of St. Joseph. Then travel east to Kafr Kanna, an Arab settlement associated with the biblical village of Cana. Continue to Tiberias, a modern resort town and once the epicenter of Jewish learning. Drive along the blue Sea of Galilee to visit Capernaum and the ruins of the 2nd century synagogue. Then in Tabgha, at the foot of the Golan Heights, see the site of the Miracle of the Loaves and Fishes. Proceed to Yardenit, the celebrated baptismal site where the Jordan River exits the Sea of Galilee towards the Dead Sea. Return to Jerusalem for the evening. (B)

Transfer to the airport for your departure. (B)

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