The Holy Land
Pilgrimage – People and Places
Dr Liz Burroughs and Valerie Martin
2nd – 11th May 2022
Journey through the lands of Palestine and Israel.
Visit sites of historical, cultural and theological importance.
Walk alongside Christians, Muslims and Jews who create this vibrant, challenging and beautiful place we all call ‘holy’.
Immerse yourself in Jerusalem, Bethlehem and the Galilee.
Experience the bustle and energy of the old city of Jerusalem, including the Via Dolorosa and the place of crucifixion, the narrow streets of Bethlehem leading to the birth place of Jesus and the serenity of the hills and the Sea of Galilee, plus other places of interest.
We will meet Palestinian Christians who trace their ancestry back in time and continue to follow the teachings of Jesus; Muslims and Jews who are trying to make sense of living in a region awash with difficulties and begin to understand what it means to be ‘people of the book’ in the harsh realities of the 21st century.
There will be time for worship and reflection.
We will stay in good quality hotels with en suite twin rooms.
We will have the services of a local English speaking guide.
Be a pilgrim in the real sense: be ready to explore, to learn, to challenge yourself, to become new. Engage in an opportunity to meet new people and make them friends; to visit new places and recognise them, and to encounter our faith in the lands of its birthplace and make it even more meaningful to our home communities.
Leaders: Dr Liz Burroughs and Valerie Martin
We both have visited Palestine and Israel on several occasions and previously led pilgrim groups to these very special places. Many of you will know Liz through her Methodist links, and Val may be known to you through her ecumenical network.
We invite you to journey with us on this Pilgrimage of Places and People…
We have chosen to visit Jerusalem, then Bethlehem and finally make our way to the Galilee. This will enable us to visit many of the places of importance and then to have time and space for reflection in the peace and serenity of the Galilee, before returning home.
Liz Burroughs & Val Martin
- Scheduled flights on British Airways from London Heathrow Airport
- All airport departure & passenger taxes (UK & Israel)
- 9 nights accommodation at selected hotels and guest house
- All entrance fees and local government taxes
- All touring in modern air-conditioned tourist coaches
- Single room price per person £2890
- Travel insurance
- Any items of a personal nature (laundry & drinks etc)
Day 1, Monday, 2 May
Journey to the Holy Land
We meet at London Heathrow Airport to join our afternoon flight to Tel Aviv. On arrival in Israel we will be met by our guide and then driven to our hotel, in Bethlehem. The Sunrise hotel is situated around 300 metres from Manger Square. We will be in Bethlehem for three nights.
Day 2, Tuesday, 3 May
In and around Bethlehem
After breakfast, we will walk to the Church of the Nativity, returning to the hotel for breakfast. We will spend the rest of the day in and around Bethlehem. We will visit the nearby Shepherds’ Fields, the Arab Women’s Union Museum and shop and the LAYLAC Centre, the Palestinian Youth Action Center for Community Development in the Dheisheh Refuge Camp where we will hear about some of the work being done to help create a positive context for children and young people living in the camp. Dinner and overnight stay in Bethlehem.
Day 3, Wednesday 4 May
Jericho & the Dead Sea
We will drive to Jericho via the hills of the Judean wilderness and stop in Wadi Qelt for a wonderful view of St George’s Monastery, which clings precariously to the cliff face of the valley. We’ll view the Mount of Temptations before lunch in the oasis of Jericho, ‘the city of palms’. Jericho is believed to be one of the oldest continuously inhabited cities in the world. In the afternoon we’ll have the opportunity for a dip in the Dead Sea [bring bathing costumes for that iconic photo]. Late afternoon we leave the Dead Sea and return West up through the hills of the Judean desert to Bethlehem.
Day 4, Thursday 5 May
Bethlehem, the Tent of Nations and Jerusalem
After an opportunity for shopping in Bethlehem, we’ll drive to the Tent of Nations to learn about what life is like under occupation and stop there for lunch. We will then drive up to Jerusalem. We will take in the breath-taking view of the old city of Jerusalem from the Mount of Olives. We will visit the church of Pater Noster, where plaques can be seen bearing the Lord’s Prayer in well over 100 different languages and dialects. We will walk down the Mount of Olives, stopping at the church of Dominus Flevit, where Jesus wept over the city. We’ll continue down the hill to the garden of Gethsemane and the Church of All Nations where we can pause for reflection. We will drive to the Dung Gate of the old city and check into our Jerusalem hotel where we’ll stay for three nights.
Day 5, Friday 6 May
Yad Vashem, The Princess Basma Centre and The Garden Tomb
After breakfast we’ll drive to the Yad Vashem Holocaust Museum and Park. We’ll drive to the Princess Basma Centre to learn about the services and facilities provided there for Palestinian children with disabilities. After lunch our final visit of the day will be the Garden Tomb, returning in good time to our hotel for dinner and overnight stay.
Day 6, Saturday 7 May
St Peter in Gallicantu and the Via Dolorosa
After an early breakfast we drive to Mount Zion to visit St Peter in Gallicantu, built at the top of an ancient set of steps which leads up from the City of David to what is believed to have been the residence of the High Priest. Many believe that Jesus himself was led up these steps to his trial by the authorities after his arrest. Here we recall not only Jesus’ incarceration over the last night of his life, but also Peter’s faithless threefold denial of Jesus. After a break for lunch we drive around to St Stephen’s Gate and to St Anne’s Church [the mother of Mary], famous for its wonderful acoustics and the nearby pools of Bethesda. Then we will start the profound pilgrim walk of the Via Dolorosa (including the Lithostrotos). We will follow closely the route Jesus carried his cross to the traditional place of crucifixion in what is now the Church of the Holy Sepulchre. After time for reflection we make our way back to our hotel for dinner. We have an option of revisiting the Western Wall after the Jewish Sabbath. Overnight stay in Jerusalem.
Day 7, Sunday 8 May
Sunday Worship and travelling an Ancient Route
We will drive to Ramallah to worship with Quaker Friends in their Meeting House. Over lunch there will be opportunity to hear some of their stories of life in the West Bank. We will then travel north through the heart of the West Bank, noting as we drive some of the ‘facts on the ground’ about the Occupation, as we come to the remains of the ancient city of Sebaste on the outskirts of Nablus. Sebastia was destroyed by Alexander the Great. Pompey rebuilt it and Augustus bestowed it upon Herod the Great in 27BC. It was here too that his decapitated body was buried. After visiting the Roman and Byzantine ruins we will visit Jacob’s Well where the Fourth Gospel tells us of Jesus’ encounter with the woman drawing water. We finally make our way to the Sea of Galilee and the Pilgerhaus guest house situated on the shores of the lake. We will stay at the Pilgerhaus for our final three nights.
Day 8, Monday 9 May
Nazareth, Acre and Magdala
In Nazareth we will visit the Basilica of the Annunciation, the spring where Mary the mother of Jesus might have drawn water and if possible, the Synagogue church. . Late morning we drive over to the Mediterranean coast to visit the Roman and Crusader fortress city of Acre. We will spend the rest of the morning exploring this magnificent complex with its fortified walls and grand halls. After a break for lunch we return to the shores of the Sea of Galilee to visit the recently excavated site of Magdala, the home town of Mary Magdalene, Return to our guest house in good time for dinner and overnight stay.
Day 9, Tuesday 10 May
Jesus’ Lakeside Ministry
Today will be devoted to a leisurely exploration of the area that was the base for Jesus’ ministry by the northern shore of the Sea of Galilee. We will visit sites associated with the call of the first disciples, the multiplication of the loaves and fishes, the teaching of the Sermon on the Mount and the villages of Capernaum. We will also sail on a modern-day version of the boat used for fishing at the time of Jesus and also see the remains of a similar boat which dates back to the early First Century. Farewell dinner and overnight stay by the Sea of Galilee.
Day 10, Wednesday 11 May
Caesarea Maritima - Our journey home
We leave Galilee after an early breakfast and drive west across the Jezreel Valley and the plains of Armageddon to Caesarea Maritima, where we will visit the Roman aqueduct and the amphitheatre. If time allows, we will visit some of the other archaeological sites in the town before continuing to Tel Aviv’s Ben Gurion Airport to check-in for our afternoon return flight to London. Depending on the time of our flight we will lunch either in Caesarea Maritima or somewhere nearer to the airport. We plan to arrive back at Heathrow at around 20:30.