Iowa Annual Conference Bible Land Exploration 2018

10 days
The Holy Land
Starting from $3296

I invite you to join me for this unique Bible Land Exploration that will bring the Bible and this sacred land alive for you. This ten-day pilgrimage will be from January 9-18 with Des Moines as our primary departure city. We are especially excited to travel with some of our newly serving clergy. However, everyone is welcome to join us, clergy or laity, including family members, friends in Iowa and beyond! A special feature of this trip is the opportunity to learn more about modern Israel and have dinner with a Palestinian family.  Traveling to the Holy Land has been among the most transformative experience of my life.  Please consider this brochure to be my personal invitation to join me and my husband Gary in this life- changing journey.

- Bishop Laurie Haller

What’s Included

  • All Inclusive Pricing
  • Breakfast and Dinner Daily
  • Deluxe A/C Motor Coaches
  • Entrance and Program Fees
  • First Class Hotels
  • Fuel Surcharges and Gov't Taxes
  • Gratuities
  • Guided Tours
  • Learning Opportunities
  • Live Audio Headsets
  • Study Guide
  • International Airfare

* Additional Baggage & Optional fees may apply.

Daily Itinerary

Day 1 Depart the USA

Your spiritual pilgrimage begins as you depart the USA on an overnight flight.

Day 2 Arrive and Transfer to Netanya

You will be welcomed at the Tel Aviv airport by our representative before you transfer to your hotel in Netanya to enjoy dinner and overnight.

Day 3 Caesarea by the Sea, Mount Carmel, Megiddo & Nazareth

Visit the Roman Aqueduct and Theatre at Caesarea, a center of early Christianity (Acts 10) and where Paul was imprisoned for two years (Acts 23: 22). View Mount Carmel and recall Elijah'’s dramatic victory over the prophets of Baal (I Kings 18). Follow an ancient caravan route through the Jezreel Valley to Tel Megiddo, an exciting archeological dig with layers of twenty different cities, all built on top of each other. Conclude your day in Nazareth, Jesus'’ boyhood home (Luke 26).

Day 4 Sea of Galilee

Pass through the Valley of the Doves and see Mount Arbel (Isaiah 9:2) on your way towards the Sea of Galilee. This was a major pathway in the time of Christ. He and his disciples passed through this valley as they walked through the Galilee. In Magdala, once home to Mary Magdalene (Luke 8:1-3), visit a recently discovered first-century synagogue. Enjoy lunch together before crossing the waters of the Sea of Galilee on a very special boat ride, complete with an onboard worship service. Visit Capernaum, the center of Jesus’ ministry in the Galilee, and visit the synagogue built on the site where Jesus taught (Matt. 4:13, 23). On the Mount of Beatitudes, contemplate the text of the Sermon on the Mount that Jesus preached there (Matt. 5-7). Explore the Church of the Fish and the Loaves at Tabgha, traditional site of the feeding of the 5,000 (Luke 9:10). At Kibbutz Nof Ginosar, see the 2,000-year-old “Ancient Boat,” a rare example of the kind of boat in which Jesus might have sailed.

Day 5 Tel Dan, Caesarea Philippi, Golan Heights, Bethsaida & Jordan River

At the ruins of Tel Dan, see the altar built by King Jeroboam I (I Kings 12:25-30) and learn about where the “House of David” fragment from the Firt Temple Period was discovered. Continue on to Caesarea Philippi, where Peter told the Lord, "You are the Messiah, the Son of the Living God!” (Matt.16: 16). A scenic drive along the Golan Heights will give you some beautiful views of Syria and Jordan, as well as, Israel. Remember your baptism at the Yardenit Baptismal site, where the Jordan River exits the Sea of Galilee on its journey southward (Matt. 3).

Day 6 Jericho, Qumran, Masada & the Dead Sea

Head to Jericho to visit the ruins of the ancient city Joshua conquered (Josh. 6:20). Off in the distance, you can see the traditional site of the Temptation of Jesus (Matt. 4:1). Stop in Qumran, where the Dead Sea Scrolls were discovered in 1947 by a Bedouin shepherd. Enjoy a visit to Masada, the spectacular mountaintop fortress built by Herod that later became the final tragic stronghold of the Jewish rebellion against the Romans. Ride the cable car to the top to explore the fortress and look down upon the remains of the Roman camps and siege ramp below. On the way to Jerusalem, stop at the shores of the Dead Sea, the lowest spot on earth, for an opportunity to take a quick dip in the mineral-laden waters.

Day 7 Bethlehem, Ein Karem, Yad Vashem & Israel Museum

In Bethlehem, gaze out over Shepherds' Field and visit the cave revered as Jesus’ birthplace (Matt. 1: 18-25). Visit the Church of the Nativity, built above the cave and considered the world’s oldest functioning church (Matt. 1: 18-25). Travel to Ein Karem, birthplace of John the Baptist and where Mary visited Elisabeth (Luke 1: 26-40). In Jerusalem, visit Yad Vashem, Israel’s Holocaust Memorial, with its poignant exhibits honoring the lives lost during the Holocaust. Explore the Israel Museum and its First Century Model of the City of Jerusalem. Another highlight is the museum’s Shrine of the Book exhibit showcasing the Dead Sea Scroll book of Isaiah.

Day 8 Jerusalem

Stand on the Mount of Olives for a remarkable view of Jerusalem (the Golden City); Jesus stood here before ascending into heaven forty days after His resurrection (Acts 1:9-12). In the Kidron Valley across from the walls of Jerusalem, pray as Jesus did in the Garden of Gethsemane (Matt. 26:36). Continue to Mount Zion to visit the House of the High Priest Caiaphas, where Jesus was questioned the night of His betrayal (Matt. 26:57). Recall the events of the Last Supper as you visit the traditional location of the Upper Room (Mark 14:12). Spend time in prayer at the Western Wall (the only remnant of the Second Temple of Jerusalem) and sit on the Teaching Steps where Jesus taught.

Day 9 Jerusalem

Walk the Temple Mount (conditions permitting), once the site of the Temple of Solomon (II Chronicles 3) and home to the Dome of the Rock. See where Jesus healed on the Sabbath at the Pool of Bethesda (John 5: 1-31), Walk the Via Dolorosa ("the Way of the Cross") to the Church of the Holy Sepulchre (John 19), built over the traditional sites of the crucifixion and burial of Jesus. At the Garden Tomb, share communion together and experience the reality of the Resurrection (John 20).

Day 10 Return to USA

Return to the USA or enjoy an extension.

Enhance Your Journey

Cairo & the Route of the Exodus $848

Day 10 - Ancient Caravan Route to Mount Sinai for dinner & overnight.

Day 11 - Monastery of Saint Catherine; continue to Sharm el Sheik for overnight.

Day 12 - Wadi Feiran, Elim, Marah by the Red Sea, dinner & overnight in Cairo.

Day 13 - Memphis, Saqqara, Step Pyramid, Great Pyramids of Giza, Sphinx, dinner & overnight in Cairo.

Day 14 - King Tut's Treasure, Egyptian Museum, Citadel of Old Cairo, Coptic Church; sail on the Nile River aboard an authentic Egyptian Felucca; dinner & overnight in Cairo.

Day 15 - Depart Egypt & arrive in the USA.

Nile Cruise $1698

Day 10 ‐ 12 - Same as Cairo & the Route of the Exodus.

Day 13 - Fly to Luxor. Board your Nile Cruise boat. Visits to Luxor & Karnak temples.

Day 14 - Visit the Necropolis of Thebes, Valley of the Kings & Queens, Temple of Hatshepsut, Colossi of Memnon. Sail to Esna & cross the locks. Continue to Edfu for overnight.

Day 15 - Temple of Horus in Edfu. Sail to Kom Ombo to visit the Temple shared by the gods Sobek & Haroeris. Sail to Aswan & overnight.

Day 16 - Disembark. Visit the High Dam of Aswan, Granite Quarry, Unfinished Obelisk, & Temple of Philae. Fly to Cairo for dinner & overnight.

Day 17 - Egyptian Museum, Saqqara, Great Pyramids of Giza, Sphinx.

Day 18 - Depart Egypt & arrive in the USA.

Jerusalem Extended Stay $298

Day 11 ‐13 - Extend your stay for 3 days in the heart of Jerusalem. You are on your own to enjoy sightseeing, meditation, reflection & renewal. Hotel, buffet breakfast & dinner are included.

Departure Dates

  1. January 9, 2018
    From $3296 Register Now!