Find the heart of Israel and Jordan on this Intrepid Adventure.

Delve into Israel and Jordan, holy lands rich with history and an oasis of delight and intrigue in the desert. This trip will see you wandering the immense ruins of Petra and exploring a lunar-like landscape at Wadi Rum. Take your time to explore ancient monuments, relics and holy sites of immense significance, visit hilltop fortifications and climb the Mount of Olives for the best view of Old Town Jerusalem. Immerse yourself in this journey across the best of the Middle East and gain a deeper understanding of this enduring land and its people.

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Terms & Conditions

Start
Amman, Jordan
Finish
Tel Aviv, Israel
Destinations
Israel, Jordan
Style
Original
Theme
Explorer
Code
EESRC
Physical rating
Ages
Min 15
Group size
Min 1, Max 12

Why you'll love this trip

  • Explore the best of the Middle East as you discover Jordan and Israel. Explore Wadi Rum, wander the ruins of Petra and indulge in some serious history across Israel and Palestine.

  • Check out the rock cut tombs and the remains of the ancient city of Petra.

  • Learn the stories behind some of the most challenging and poignant works of graffiti that decorate the barrier wall in Bethlehem during a walking tour.

  • Access the glowing blue grottoes of Rosh Hanikra by cable car, then enjoy views over the Mediterranean Coast of Western Galilee.

  • Spend the night trying to count the billions of stars or chat with the locals at our Bedouin camp in Wadi Rum.

Is this trip right for you?

  • This trip can be enjoyed by just about anyone with a reasonable level of fitness.

  • There is a lot of walking around the sights in Jordan, most with out shade, especially in Petra and Wadi Rum, please bring comfortable shoes and a hat to make the most of your time at the sights  

  • The weather can be quite cool in winter, please bring clothing you can layer.

  • Sites can get congested during peak travel periods with coaches of large pilgrim groups. We do our best to plan our visits around these times but sometimes it is unavoidable. There may be delays, queue's and private services that prevent us from entering the site. Your trip leader will manage this as best as they can on the day.

  • As the days get warmer, temperatures can start to soar. From April to October, to avoid the midday heat, some days start very early (eg at 0500). Please be prepared for this: we try to make things as comfortable for you as possible.

  • These are by no means 'cheap' destination and you should budget accordingly. The good news is that you have expert local leaders to help uncover the best deals!

  • Known as 'baksheesh' in the Middle East, tipping is an entrenched feature of the tourism industry. If you are satisfied with the services provided a tip - though not compulsory - is appropriate and always appreciated. While it may not be customary to you, it is of great significance to the people who will take care of you during your travels. Don’t be taken back if this tipping culture is even more apparent in Israel.

Itinerary

This itinerary is valid for departures from 01 Jan 2020 to 31 Dec 2020.
View the 2019 itinerary
Ahlan Wa Sahlan! Welcome to Jordan, cosmopolitan and contemporary, yet steeped in biblical history. Your adventure begins with a Welcome Meeting at 6 pm on Day 1. Please look for a note in the hotel lobby or ask the hotel reception where it will take place. If you can't arrange a flight that will arrive in time, you may wish to arrive a day early so you're able to attend. We'll be happy to book additional accommodation for you (subject to availability). If you're going to be late, please inform the hotel reception. We'll be collecting your insurance details and next of kin information at this meeting, so please have these on hand. As there's not much time spent in Amman on this itinerary, it's worth arriving a day or two early to explore the sights. If you do then the highlights are the citadel with its amazing sweeping views of Amman, the Jordan Museum – home to the Dead Sea Scrolls – or the Roman Theatre, right in the middle of downtown Amman. Either way, this evening get out on to the streets, where you’ll soon hear “Welcome to Jordan” from the locals, and maybe pick up a coffee from one of the cafes and partner it with an ara’yes, a toastie filled with spicy mincemeat.
Accommodation
  • Hotel (1 night)
Optional Activities
  • Amman - King Abullah Mosque - JOD2
  • Amman - Roman Theatre Entrance - JOD2
  • Amman - Citadel - JOD3
  • Madaba - Bethany Baptism site (Al-Maghtas) - JOD12
  • Amman - Jordan Museum - JOD5
Meals Included
There are no meals included on this day.
Special Information
Optional Tours
Amman - Fees quoted are entry only. A city tour can be easily organised which will include all of the Amman sites, transport, entry and guiding.  

Baptism Site -  Operating Hours The Baptism Site is open daily from  Winter Time (Nov.1 – April 1)0830 - 1600 last entry 1500  Summer Time (April 2 – Oct.31) 0830-1800 last entry 1700.  Transport to the site can be easily arranged with the the hotel reception desk; expect to pay up to 20JD including waiting time
Follow in the footsteps of Lawrence of Arabia with a journey to the extraordinary desert scenery of Wadi Rum, a rugged moonscape of huge sandstone mountains (approximately 5 hours). A 4-hour jeep safari will take you through some of the most beautiful and sublime desert scenery on the planet, a true highlight of this trip. Wadi Rum is full of weird and beautiful lunar-like rock formations, and traces of ancient civilisations can be seen in the many carved inscriptions found throughout the area, from pictographs to Thamudic, Nabataean and Arabic texts. The most enduring monuments in Wadi Rum are those carved by nature – the natural rock bridges, towering rose-coloured sand dunes and scattered rocky peaks. Tonight you’ll sleep in a simple desert camp, with the choice of sleeping under a camel hair tent or out under the stars. Enjoy a delicious dinner cooked in an earthen oven by your Bedouin hosts. Conditions are basic at the desert camp, but the hospitality of your hosts is legendary and you'll treasure the memory of sleeping beneath the twinkling desert night sky.

Notes: A mattress and blankets are provided. Please be aware that while the desert may be very hot during the day, it will still be cool at night and warm clothes and a sleeping bag are highly recommended when travelling outside of the summer months. Western-style toilet facilities are available, solar panel showers are available.
Accommodation
  • Desert camp (1 night)
Included Activities
  • Wadi Rum - 4WD jeep safari and desert camp
Meals Included
  • Breakfast
  • Dinner
After waking up in the unique surrounds of the Bedouin camp this morning, you will enjoy a trek around the area (approximately 12 to 15 kilometres), with a stop for tea and a lunch break. You might scale one of the large sand dunes for sensational views of the surrounding area. This is the perfect chance to snap some unbelievable pictures. Wadi Rum is a truly beautiful place, where great gouts of rock on a carpet of bright red sand have been eroded into fantastical gnarled shapes. Explore the distinctive rock formations and soak in the vast silence of this lunar-like landscape. Wadi Rum is probably best known for its connection with the enigmatic British officer T.E. Lawrence, who was based here during the Great Arab Revolt of 1917-18. You’ll get to spend another memorable night in the desert camp with your new Bedouin friends. Meaning ‘Desert Dwellers’ in Arabic, the Bedouins are a semi-nomadic people, and in Jordan up to 40 per cent of the general population is though to have Bedouin ancestry. This might explain the legendary hospitality of the Jordanians – in traditional Bedouin culture, a huge onus is placed on taking in and feeding any visitor, and so you’ll enjoy brilliant hospitality while you’re here in this incredible place.

Notes: Please make sure you have appropriate, sturdy, comfortable footwear for this trek.
Accommodation
  • Desert camp (1 night)
Included Activities
  • Wadi Rum - Guided trek
Meals Included
  • Breakfast
  • Lunch
  • Dinner
Special Information
The duration and length of the trek can vary depending on climatic conditions. If you don’t want to participate in the Trek spending time around the Bedouin Camp is truly memorable
This morning you'll leave your desert camp, taking 4WDs to the main entrance, which is opposite the Seven Pillars of Wisdom, the mountain named after Lawrence of Arabia’s book. The visitor's centre here is also a great spot to buy some jewellery and handicrafts, mostly made by a women's co-operative that is aimed at supporting traditional local industries.

You will then continue your journey to the fabled city of Petra (approximately 2 hours) by private van. The site remained unknown to the Western world until 1812, when it was discovered by Johann Ludwig Burckhardt, a Swiss explorer. It was once described as 'a rose-red city half as old as time' in a sonnet by John William Burgon and UNESCO has described it as 'one of the most precious cultural properties of man's cultural heritage.' In 1985, Petra was designated a World Heritage site. So you know you are in for an amazing experience here.

Spend the afternoon of Day 4 on Guided Tour of Petra. Squeeze through a mile-long narrow path, known as the Siq, through huge towers of rock and get your first glimpse of the iconic Treasury – it’s impossible not to imagine the armies and traders who made their way down here in the ancient times. It’s amazing to think that this awesome, intricate building entrance was hand carved out of the rock.
Accommodation
  • Hotel (1 night)
Included Activities
  • Petra - Guided tour of Petra
Meals Included
  • Breakfast
Special Information
Notes: A two day entrance pass to Petra is included. Please note that when entering Petra as a group, a complimentary horse ride is included in the ticket price from the entrance point down to the Siq. Intrepid doesn't recommend that you take this option due to the safety and insurance liability involved. Please note a lot of walking is required to see all the sites and viewpoints of Petra. A basic level of fitness will enhance your enjoyment of your visit.
Enjoy a free day of self-discovery as you explore Petra on your own. The site is surprisingly big, and you can explore the old Roman road, temples and several old tombs, as well as the rock-hewn amphitheater. For those with the energy, there's the challenging but highly rewarding walk up the steps to the stunning Monastery (approximately 1 hour).
Accommodation
  • Hotel (1 night)
Included Activities
  • Petra - Second day entrance (no guide)
Optional Activities
  • Petra - Petra By Night tour - JOD17
Meals Included
  • Breakfast
Travel the King's Highway to the historic crusader castle of Kerak, which stands on a cliff commandingly overlooking Wadi Karak and the Dead Sea in the distance (approximately 2.5 hours). You’ll have time to explore the evocative ruins and discover the legends of the 12th-century battles between the Crusaders and the Muslim armies led by the Arab hero, Saladin.

Pack your swim gear as next you can wash off the dust from exploring with a dip like no other. Drive to the shores of the Dead Sea, the lowest point on Earth (420 metres below sea level). This isn’t actually a sea but a super-salty lake (dead because of the lack of life in it) where the density of the water means you’ll go for a float, not a swim. Spend some time relaxing here and get some classic floating pictures. The mud here is supposed to have healing properties, so why not cover yourself from head to toe for a nutrient-rich natural mineral mud bath. Towels are available for hire.

Continue to Mt Nebo, the spot where the prophet Moses is said to have seen the ‘promised land’ and where he’s supposedly buried. Explore this sanctuary and view the remarkable mosaics of the 4th-century church. Thirty minutes down the road is the historical town of Madaba, famous for its Ottoman-style houses and beautiful Byzantine-era mosaics, including the famous 6th-century mosaic map of Jerusalem and the Holy Land at St George's Church. Other mosaic masterpieces found within churches and the Archaeological Museum depict a rampant profusion of flora and fauna, as well as scenes from mythology and daily life. Literally hundreds of other mosaics from the 5th to 7th centuries are scattered throughout Madaba’s churches and homes.
Accommodation
  • Hotel (1 night)
Included Activities
  • Kerak - Kerak Castle
  • Mt Nebo - Mt Nebo visit
  • Dead Sea - Dead Sea visit
Meals Included
  • Breakfast
Today you will leave Madaba for a short drive north (approximately 75 minutes) to Jerash, once one of the grandest ancient Roman cities in the world. These are some of the best preserved Greco-Roman ruins around. The city thrived due to its position on the route of the spice and incenses trade, and it reached its zenith as a favourite of the emperor Hadrian around AD 130. The ancient walled town that survives today is a remarkable evocation of life 2000 years ago. It has a striking collection of archways and theatres, baths, public buildings and colonnaded streets, and is a beautiful place to spend a day exploring. Discover Hadrian’s arch, the partially restored hippodrome, ornate public fountains, the south amphitheatre, and see the collection of daily artefacts uncovered during excavations. Grand ionic columns encircle the city's centrepiece, the Oval Plaza, a wonderfully atmospheric place to linger after uncovering Jerash's riches.

After a full day of exploring, maybe gather your travel buddies together and share a celebratory shisha as this Jordan exploration comes to an end.
Accommodation
  • Hotel (1 night)
Included Activities
  • Jerash - Roman ruins
  • Madaba - St Georges Church
Meals Included
  • Breakfast
This morning we farewell Jordan and make the hour journey to the Alenby Bridge Crossing for your onwards journey to Israel and the Palestinian Territories. Your Tour Leader will escort you to the crossing and provide you with instructions for the border officials. Once you have cleared the border there will be a representative to escort you to your hotel in Jerusalem.

Welcome to Israel and Jerusalem, a city steeped in spirituality and legend; a rich tapestry of the many cultures, religions and nationalities that call it home, be they Palestinian Muslims & Christians, Sephardic Jews, Ashkenazi Jews, Armenian Christians, Ethiopian Copts or Greek Orthodox monks.

Your arrival at the hotel should be just in time for lunch and the rest of your day is free to explore Jerusalem. We recommend checking out the range of tours on offer from Urban Adventures.

There will be a meeting this evening at 6.00pm with your Tour Leader and any fellow travelers, please look for this note in reception
Accommodation
  • Hotel (1 night)
Optional Activities
  • Jerusalem - Old City Ramparts - USD5
  • Jerusalem - Israel Museum - USD12
Meals Included
  • Breakfast
Special Information
Please note that the border crossing can be very busy. Your Jordanian representative will explain the crossing process to you. Due to local procedures in regards to meet and greet services on arrival in Israel, if you can not immediately see your transfer representative who will be holding an Intrepid branded sign.

As this is a combination trip, your group leader and the composition of your group will change at this location. There will be a group meeting to discuss the next stage of your itinerary and meet your new fellow travellers
Explore the Old City this morning on foot. Start with the Courtyard of the Dome and the Western Wall, then continue to St Stephen’s Gate, passing the crusader church of St Anne and the Pool of Bethesda. Continue along the ‘Way of the Cross’ (Via Dolorosa) and stop by the Church of the Holy Sepulchre, built where Jesus is believed to have been crucified, buried, and resurrected. Sip tea, sample fresh local bread and then walk through the Christian Quarter up to Jaffa Gate for a lunch break. This afternoon get another perspective during a walking tour of West Jerusalem with a local Israeli guide. Stroll through the historic Yemin Moshe neighbourhood, check out the colourful artists hub Hamiffal (the Factory), the Mamilla Cemetery and Pool, Independence Park and the city centre before finishing at the entrance of the Machane Yehuda Market. This evening enjoy a homecooked meal of chicken maqloubeh (an upside-down layered dish) with a Palestinian family. With a full belly, enjoy a traditional oud performance from a local musician.
Accommodation
  • Hotel (1 night)
Included Activities
  • Jerusalem - Guided tour of Old City
Meals Included
  • Breakfast
  • Dinner
Special Information
The Dome of the Rock/Al-Aqsa Mosque is open from 7.30—10.30 am Sundays through Thursdays, and again for an hour in the afternoon. In order to beat tourist traffic, our guides usually like to go there first thing in the morning.

The Western Wall area is open every day. However please note that on Friday evenings and Saturdays, tourists are not allowed to take any photos.
Start the day off with a panoramic view of the city. Drive out to the Mount of Olives that looks over Jerusalem’s Old City and visit the Garden of Gethsemane, where Jesus is said to have prayed the night before his crucifixion. See the Church of All Nations (also known as the Basilica of the Agony), then drive the short distance out to Bethlehem and take a graffiti walking tour along the barrier wall. Graffiti by many artists has graced the wall over the years, including famous ones like Banksy. Hear the personal stories behind some of the more prominent pieces and walk past a large refugee camp and the sites of previous conflict. Continue to Manger Square and refuel with some of Bethlehem’s famous falafel. Visit the Church of the Nativity, marking the spot of the stable where Mary is said to have given birth to Jesus, then head back to Jerusalem. Visit the holocaust museum Yad Vashem. Later, meet a local rabbi who for a lively and informative discussion about the Israel—Palestine conflict, Jewish tradition and peace processes. After a fascinating day, retire to your Jerusalem hotel.
Accommodation
  • Hotel (1 night)
Included Activities
  • Bethlehem - Church of the Nativity & Shepherds' Field
  • Bethlehem - Grafitti Walking Tour
  • Jerusalem - Yad Yashem Jewish Holocaust Memorial
  • Jerusalem - Mount of Olives
Meals Included
  • Breakfast
This morning drive out to the clifftop fortress of Masada. On the way stop at the sixth century Monastery of St George of Koziba and see the massive church built into the mountains. In Masada, take a cable car to the fortress built by King Herod around 35 BC. This UNESCO site is very important to the Jewish people, a symbol of their exile from the Holy Land and of bravery and self-sacrifice. Spend some time visiting the site, then drive around 30 minutes to the shores of the Dead Sea, where the dense and super-salty water means you’ll go for a float, not a swim. Spend some time relaxing here and soaking in the mud, which is supposed to have healing properties. Tonight you’ll stay at a local eco-lodge, where the accommodation is part of a cooperative that aims to protect the ecology of the Dead Sea and the Jordan City Valley.
Accommodation
  • Eco Lodge (1 night)
Included Activities
  • Dead Sea - Dead Sea visit
  • Masada - Masada visit
Meals Included
  • Breakfast
  • Dinner
Special Information
Accommodation this evening is simple and multi-share. Rooms have private bathrooms.
Travel to the western shores of the Sea of Galilee today and Tiberias – established all the way back in AD 20. Swing by Hisham’s Palace in Jericho on the way. Continue via the Jordan City Valley and visit the ancient fishing village of Capernaum. See the site of two ancient synagogues and a church said to have been the home of St Peter. Pass by Tabgha, where the Bible says Jesus performed the ‘miracle of the multiplication of the loaves and fishes’, then head up to Safed (Tsfat), one of Judaism’s Four Holy Cities. At over 900 metres above sea level, Safed is Israel’s highest city and is known as the centre of Kabbalah, or Jewish mysticism. Spend a little time here before continuing to Nazareth to visit the Church of the Annunciation, where Mary is said to have received the news of the Immaculate Conception. Hit the road again and arrive in Haifa for the evening.
Accommodation
  • Hotel (1 night)
Included Activities
  • Tiberias - Sea of Galilee visit
Meals Included
  • Breakfast
Leave early this morning and drive to the ancient crusader port of Acre (Akko in Hebrew, approximately 45 minutes). Here you’ll visit the vast complex of buildings occupied by the Knights of St John (Knights Hospitaller), excavated to uncover rooms including a large hall, a dungeon, a dining room and the crypt of an ancient Gothic church. Continue on to Rosh Hanikra for a cable car journey up the cliff to view the spectacular grottoes. In the afternoon, visit the Baha’i Gardens, where the elaborate terraces and a golden shrine sit overlooking the city. Enjoy a free night in Haifa.
Accommodation
  • Hotel (1 night)
Included Activities
  • Akko - Templar's Tunnel visit
  • Rosh Hanikra - Cable Car & Grottoes
  • Nazareth - Church of Annuniciation - Mary's Well
Meals Included
  • Breakfast
After breakfast, journey to Tel Aviv via the coast and Caesarea (approximately 1 hour), which served as the capital of Israel during the Roman and Byzantine eras. Built in 25 BC, the city was eventually abandoned and lost under the desert sands. Thanks to archaeological excavations since, its splendour is on show once again. Continue along the coast to Tel Aviv. Take a stroll through the Old City of Jaffa, then drop your luggage at tonight’s accommodation. Head out on an orientation walk with your leader, including Rabin Square. Finish up your walk at the promenade, the perfect place to find a restaurant for dinner this evening.
Included Activities
  • Caesarea - Roman Amphitheatre & Aqueduct
  • Haifa - Baha'i Gardens
Meals Included
  • Breakfast
This trip comes to an end today. There are no activities planned and you are able to depart the accommodation at any time after you check out.
Meals Included
  • Breakfast

Meals

14 breakfasts, 1 lunch, 4 dinners

Transport

Private vehicle, Jeep

Accommodation

Hotel (13 nights)

Included activities

  • Wadi Rum - 4WD jeep safari and desert camp
  • Wadi Rum - Guided trek
  • Petra - Guided tour of Petra
  • Petra - Second day entrance (no guide)
  • Kerak - Kerak Castle
  • Mt Nebo - Mt Nebo visit
  • Dead Sea - Dead Sea visit
  • Jerash - Roman ruins
  • Madaba - St Georges Church
  • Jerusalem - Guided tour of Old City
  • Bethlehem - Church of the Nativity & Shepherds' Field
  • Bethlehem - Grafitti Walking Tour
  • Jerusalem - Yad Yashem Jewish Holocaust Memorial
  • Jerusalem - Mount of Olives
  • Masada - Masada visit
  • Tiberias - Sea of Galilee visit
  • Akko - Templar's Tunnel visit
  • Rosh Hanikra - Cable Car & Grottoes
  • Nazareth - Church of Annuniciation - Mary's Well
  • Caesarea - Roman Amphitheatre & Aqueduct
  • Haifa - Baha'i Gardens

Dates & availability

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Important notes

SINGLE SUPPLEMENT
A single supplement is available if you’d prefer not to share a room on this trip. The single supplement excludes Day 2 and 3 (Wadi Rum) where you will be in shared accommodation, and is subject to availability. Please speak to your booking agent for further information.

ITINERARY
Accommodation in Wadi Rum is in Bedouin tents, bedding is provided, but in the colder months November-March you may want to consider bring a sleeping bag. Bathrooms in Wadi Rum are on a share basis.

WESTBANK
Following recent safety incidents we recommend that you check your government's advice for their latest information on travelling in Israel (particularly within the West Bank) before your departure and ensure that your travel insurance covers you for all areas of your itinerary. We have links to prominent government travel advisories and regular updates on issues affecting this trip on our Travel Alerts page - www.intrepidtravel.com/au/travel-alerts

Essential trip information

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