Pastor Tenny, Sherry, Gretchen, and I would like to invite you to an unforgettable pilgrimage to the Holy Land from November 7-16, 2023. Together we will walk in the footsteps of Jesus, wade into the Jordan where he was baptized, sail on the Sea of Galilee, touch the spot of his birth, pray at Garden of Gethsemane, mourn at the crucifixion and celebrate communion at the tomb of his resurrection. Pastor Tenny and I will lead daily Bible Studies and talk through this moving experience together.
Having been to the Holy Land before, I can assure you that afterward, the Bible will come alive as you will understand better the geography and picture the scenes whenever you hear the biblical stories again.
This tour is open to people beyond Christ Lutheran. If you have family or friends who would like to join us, please extend the invitation. We would love to share this pilgrimage together.
Pastor Scott and Gretchen Suskovic
Pastor Tenny and Sherry Shifley
Trip departs on November 7, 2023 and returns on November 16, 2023
Departure airport: Charlotte, NC (CLT)
$3,990.00 per person based on double occupancy - space is limited!
Single room supplement - $890.00
Land only (if booking your own flights) - $2,840.00 (airfare credit $1,150.00)
Optional post-trip extension to Jordan (November 16-19, 2023) - $790.00
$300.00 deposit per person with registration to secure space
$1,000.00 of the total amount is due on or before May 20, 2023
Balance due on or before August 20, 2023
Registering online? Click the "BOOK NOW" button and fill out the online form; you can pay by check or with a credit card.
Registering by mail? Please download and complete the registration form (both the personal information page and the terms and conditions page signed at the bottom) with a copy of your passport and a deposit of $300.00 per person made payable to Elias Tours and mail to: 4941 Chalden Ln NE, Marietta, GA 30066
Flight information will be available 3 months before the return date. Please continue to check the itinerary on the website for updated flight information.
* Flight times, flight numbers, equipment, gates, and seats are subject to change. For the most current information check the airline website.
For more information, contact us at firstname.lastname@example.org or (406) 261-7791
What is included in the tour
- Airfare from Charlotte, NC - Other cities available
- 8 nights in 4-star hotels (Double Occupancy)
- Breakfast, Lunch, and Dinner daily
- Entrance fee to all sites
- All ground transportation in a private tour bus
What is NOT included in the tour
- All Personal Expenses
- Passport fees
- Transportation to and from US airports
- Gratuities for guide and driver
- TRAVEL INSURANCE: Travel Insurance is required and not included in the purchase price. For your convenience, we offer travel insurance through Travelex Insurance Services. For questions, quotes, or to purchase travel insurance, visit Travelex Insurance or call (800) 228-9792 and use the code 26-0057 for Elias Tours.
Day 1: Departure from the USA
Depart from Charlotte, NC for your overnight flight to the Holy Land. Meals will be served on board.
Day 2: Arrival – Tel Aviv
We arrive at Ben Gurion airport and depart northward to our hotel for one night in the coastal area near Tel Aviv to start off the journey of visiting the Holy Land. The remainder of the day is free to walk along the Mediterranean, relax, and dine in our hotel in Tel Aviv.
Day 3: Caesarea – Mt. Carmel – Nazareth – Cana – Tiberias
After breakfast, we travel by private motor coach along the coast of the Mediterranean Sea to Caesarea, where the Gentiles first heard the Good News from Peter and were baptized. We see the Roman Amphitheatre and aqueduct. We visit Mount Carmel, Muhraqa (the Place of Fire), and consider the contest between the Prophet Elijah and the false prophets of Baal (I Kings 18), discussing the reasons why the Prophet chose that place for the contest, and the lessons we learn from the story. Afterward, we go to Nazareth where we visit the Basilica of the Annunciation, and the Church of St. Joseph. We end our day with a visit to Cana of Galilee where Jesus performed his first miracle. Drive to Tiberias for dinner and overnight.
Day 4: Caesarea Philippi – Golan Heights – Mt. Arbel – Valley of Doves – Sea of Galilee
We start our day with a visit to Caesarea Philippi, at the source of the river Jordan, where Peter confessed that Jesus is the Messiah. Then we return to the Sea of Galilee via the Golan Heights with a stop overlooking the Road to Damascus. On to Mount Arbel, where we overlook the ancient road from Nazareth to Galilee with a possible hike on part of the Jesus Trail. We then carry on to the Valley of the Doves and travel along the ancient road that leads from Nazareth to the Sea of Galilee along the Via Maris. Dinner and overnight in Tiberias.
Day 5: Sea of Galilee – Magdala – Capernaum – Mount of Beatitudes
We start the day with a boat ride on the Sea of Galilee, followed by a visit to the Ancient Boat Museum that houses a 2,000-year-old fishing boat found buried in mud on the shores of Galilee. The boat provides a good example of what fishing boats looked like during the time of Jesus. Then we visit Magdala, the hometown of Mary Magdalene, and see the 1st-century synagogue, the oldest synagogue discovered on the shores of Galilee, with a stone-carved replica of the Temple and Menorah. We then take a short drive to Capernaum, the biblical village and hometown of Jesus. Capernaum is closely associated with Jesus and His ministry as described in the Synoptic Gospels. There we see the house of the mother-in-law of Peter and an ancient synagogue that dates back to the time of Jesus and where much of His teaching took place. After a lunch of St. Peter’s fish, we drive to Tabgha on the Sea of Galilee where Jesus fed the crowd of 5,000. We then visit the site known as “Peter’s Primacy” where Jesus appeared to His disciples for the third time after His Resurrection. Later we continue to the Mount of Beatitudes, the scene of Jesus’ great Sermon on the Mount. We enjoy the view of the enchanting gardens and reflect on Jesus’ sermon. We also have time for prayer and reflection. Dinner and overnight in Tiberias.
Day 6: Jordan Valley – Jacob’s Well – Shepherds Field – Bethlehem - (ELCJHL)
After breakfast, we drive through the Jordan Valley and on to Nablus, where we visit the ancient city of Shechem saddled between Mt. Ebal and Mt. Gerizim. There, we see ruins dating back to the time of Jacob and Joshua, including the “high place” of the city and the city gates. Nearby, we visit Jacob’s Well where Jesus encountered the Samaritan woman. We drive to Bethlehem to visit Shepherd's Fields, where the angels appeared to the shepherds announcing the birth of Our Lord. These fields are also the setting of the Book of Ruth. After lunch, we travel to the Church of the Nativity and view the place where Our Lord was born. We check in at our hotel, and enjoy dinner and overnight in Bethlehem.
Day 7: Augusta Victoria Hospital – LWF – Mt. of Olives – Mt. Zion - Meet with Bishop Azar (ELCJHL)
We start our day at Augusta Victoria Hospital to witness the work of the Lutheran World Federation in health and education. Later, we enjoy a panoramic view from the top of Mount of Olives, and then we continue to the Church of the Ascension and the Church of the Pater Noster. We continue down to Dominus Flevit and St. Mary Magdalene Church. We pray at the Garden of Gethsemane and visit the Church of All Nations. In the afternoon, we visit St. Peter in Gallicantu, where Jesus was denied by St. Peter. Then we visit the Upper Room, the place of the Last Supper, and King David’s Tomb. Back to our hotel for dinner and overnight in Bethlehem.
Day 8: Wadi Qelt – St. George Monastery – Baptismal Site – Jericho – Qumran – the Dead Sea
This morning we depart Bethlehem, traveling through the Judean wilderness where Jesus fasted for 40 days, and along the ancient road passing the good Samaritan inn. Upon reaching Wadi Qelt, we enjoy a view of St. George’s Monastery nestled in the wilderness. We carry on along the ancient road toward Jericho, passing by Herod’s Winter Palace, where the infamous King died in the year 4 BC, and which was likely the background setting for the parable of the prodigal son. On the way to Jericho, we head to Bet Arabah where John baptized Jesus. The site is also known as the “Place of Crossing” of the Israelites. From Bet Arabah, we drive to the city of Jericho. We see Tel Jericho, the old town of Joshua, to see the excavations of the ancient city and the Mount of Temptation. We then drive to Qumran and visit the caves where the Dead Sea Scrolls were accidentally found, and the buildings that formed the public center of the Essenes. Then we proceed to the Dead Sea where we can enjoy a dip in the relaxing and healing waters. Dinner and overnight in Bethlehem.
Day 9: Temple Mount – Pools of Bethesda – Via Dolorosa – Holy Sepulcher – Jerusalem
This morning after breakfast, we walk the Via Dolorosa, the traditional path that Jesus walked from the Antonia Fortress to the Church of the Holy Sepulcher. There, we visit Golgotha and the Empty Tomb. We then visit the Jewish Quarter and go to the Western Wall, a section of the Western retaining wall of the Temple Mount, Judaism’s holiest site. We then ascend to visit Temple Mount itself, where the Jewish temple stood until its destruction in 70 AD, and see the Dome of the Rock, a possible location of the Holy of Holies. We then visit St Anne’s church and the nearby Pools of Bethesda, where the healing at the pool took place. Dinner and overnight in Bethlehem.
Day 10: Departure from Tel Aviv to the US
Check-out and departure from our hotel for the return home. We arrive on the same day.
OPTIONAL POST-TOUR EXCURSION TO JORDAN
Day 10: Jordan – Mt. Nebo – Petra
After breakfast, we depart to cross the border to Jordan. We visit Mt. Nebo, the place where prophet Mousa (Moses) gazed over the Promised Land before he died. We visit an old monastery and enjoy a view of the Jordan Valley, the Dead Sea, and parts of the Holy Land. Then we continue to drive towards Petra for a traditional Bedouin Dinner & overnight.
Day 11: Full day Petra – Amman
After breakfast, we visit the Site of Petra, the 2,000-year-old Nabatean city featured in the movie “Indiana Jones and the Last Crusade”. We walk through the narrow passageway up to the treasury, a massive royal tomb carved out of solid rock. In the afternoon we transfer to Amman for dinner and overnight.
Day 12: Amman – Jerash
After breakfast at the hotel, we visit Jerash, north of the capital Amman. Inhabited since the Bronze Age, it’s known for the ruins of the walled Greco-Roman settlement of Gerasa (one of the cities of Decapolis). These include the 2nd-century Hadrian’s Arch, the Corinthian columns of the Temple of Artemis, and the huge Forum’s oval colonnade. We then return to Amman for dinner and overnight.
Day 13: Arrive USA
We enjoy breakfast at the hotel, then check out and transfer to the airport for our flight back to the USA.
NOTE: The schedule is subject to change due to various factors and at your Tour Leaders’ and Guide’s discretion.