Judaean Desert, West Bank: Our most recommended tours and activities

From Tel Aviv: Masada & Dead Sea Full Day Tour with Pick Up

1. From Tel Aviv: Masada & Dead Sea Full Day Tour with Pick Up

Embark on a full-day guided tour from Tel Aviv to the Judean Hills and the shores of the Dead Sea by bus. Visit the ancient palace of Masada, ride a cable car, and admire the Qumran caves on your drive back. Perched on a high plateau, the ancient fortified palace of Masada became a refuge for Zealots who took a stand against the Romans, until the mass suicide of the zealots in 73 AD. The ruins sit precariously on a plateau some 1,300 feet above sea level and measure 2,000-foot long by 1,000-foot wide. They boast extraordinary views of the Dead Sea and the Judean Desert. It is an exhausting climb, but we will ascend by cable car to make life easier. Explore the fortress built by King Herod in around 37 BC. Visit the remains of the palaces and see mosaic floors, Roman baths, and other findings. Masada was also home to the oldest synagogue in Israel, but one of the most remarkable features is the 12 water cisterns, each with a capacity of up to 140,000 cubic feet. Following the tour of Masada, you will drive to the Dead Sea Mineral Beach located in the Jordan Rift Valley, between Jordan and the West Bank. It is the lowest place on earth and its high density of salt makes for a unique experience as you float on the beautiful aquamarine surface. Take a mud bath and benefit from the therapeutic qualities of the natural Dead Sea mud. You will then drive back to Tel Aviv, with an on-route view of the Qumran cave, where the Dead Sea Scrolls were found.

Tel Aviv/Jerusalem: Christmas in Bethlehem and Jerusalem

2. Tel Aviv/Jerusalem: Christmas in Bethlehem and Jerusalem

Following your pickup, you will begin with great views from the Mount of Olives. It is a high summit which connects the old city of Jerusalem to the east, separating it from the Judaean Desert. Due to its proximity to the city and its soft and comfortable rock quarrying, this place was used for burial in the Canaanite days. From there you will be able to tour Jerusalem, the “City of David”. The most striking structure that emerges from the observation is the rock dome structure built by Abd al-Malek in 691 A.D. Entering the Old City, you will pass through the Old Market until you arrive to the Church of the Holy Sepulcher. The Church of the Holy Sepulcher in the heart of the Christian Quarter is considered the most sacred place in the world for most Christians. You will pass through Via Dolorosa on the way back to the bus, before then heading to Bethlehem if time permits. Entering Bethlehem you will feel the Christmas spirit with the entire city decorated with banners, bells, and lights. You will continue on to Manger Square where the decorated Christmas tree is located, before enjoying a holiday dinner near Manager Square while waiting for Midnight Mass. It may be possible to enter the Church of Nativity for Mass, but if not, you will watch Midnight Mass in Manger Square on one of the large outdoor screens. Following the Mass, you will be dropped off to your starting point (Tel Aviv or Jerusalem).

Bethlehem Old City and Jericho City Guided Tour / from TLV

3. Bethlehem Old City and Jericho City Guided Tour / from TLV

After pick up from meeting points in Tel Aviv, you will start your guided tour in Bethlehem at 08:30 AM (more or less) where you will spend around 20 minutes viewing the Bansky Art on the "Wall" that separates Israel from Bethlehem. Then, you will have a guided tour in the in the Manger Square and the Nativity Church (the holy place where Jesus Christ was born). If it is not crowded, you will be visiting the Chapel of the Milk Grotto (most of times it is not easy to get into the Grotto which means that we have to make an overview, in order to save time for your next station, as entering the Grotto may take long time waiting. Also, you will enjoy visiting one of the best "Olive Wood" Factories to see how olive wood is manufactured; too many families in this city depend on this industry for living. Then you will visit the Chapel of the Shepherd's Field in Beit Sahour City, the place where angels first announced the birth of Christ. Finally, you will move to the last station in Bethlehem which is the Souvenir Shop, and continue through the Judean Desert to Jericho the oldest City in the World dating back 11,000 years. On the way to Jericho you will stop at the Sea Level for few minutes to have some photos for memory. Arriving Jericho, you will have 30 minutes break then you will be visiting the most important Biblical sites such as Mount of Temptation Sight, Sycamore Tree and Elisha Spring; Finally, you will have some free time before returning to the 1st meeting point.

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Judaean Desert, West Bank

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What people are saying about Judaean Desert, West Bank

Overall rating

4.4 / 5

based on 1,309 reviews

These are really nice tours this company has brand new buses beautiful bus and the guide is very informative and very nice they do not rush you they even stop for party break coffee break if they see something interesting beside the road they pull over and stop it's very interesting there's a lot more added than what they actually say on the itinerary they're very good people I like them since I did that tour I have booked two more with them to go to Golden Heights and Jerusalem well worth the money pick up and drop off is a big advantage. Side Chief Warrant Officer Ian M Garland First Texas Medical battalion rla airborne

Pick up was on time and the whole bus transfer was done very professionally. Tour guide, Avi, was excellently and very informative. Time allocated for each major stop was adequate and the tour guide stayed with us for the Masada trip with the cable car. He highlighted the main areas and explained everything which saved us time from having to read all the displays and notices. Our guide also explained other aspects of Israeli life which is important to get an overall feel and understanding of the country and its neighbours. Tour bus was excellent with a good driver which made the overall experience very enjoyable

The trip was very well organized. Dapha's (the guide) enthusiasm and professionalism made the day memorable. I would have liked to spend more time at the Dead Sea.

much better than over tours.. spent plenty of times in both sites and the lunch wasn't bad eaither.

It was just amazing, specially our guide Haya, she was wonderful person, amazing atmosphere!!