This small group journey through Jordan, Israel, and the West Bank gives participants exclusive access to the culture, politics, and environment of the region. Led by regional experts, this luxury trip goes beyond borders and takes you off the beaten track to delve into the complex environmental realities in the Middle East.
May 3 – 12, 2020
The cost is $5900 per person and $890 for a single supplement.
Please note, transportation to and from the Middle East is not included in the price of the tour.
- Transportation during the tour is included in the tour price
- Luxury coach buses will be provided for the duration of the trip
- Transport to and from the airport with VIP services
- Transportation to and from the Middle East is not included in the price of the tour; if desired, our travel agent can assist you book your flights
Throughout the journey through Jordan, Israel, and the West Bank, participants will enjoy accommodation in 5-star hotels.
The safety and security of our participants is our primary concern. We consult with Israel’s security services and receive all security alerts posted by the Security Department of Jewish Agency for Israel (JAFI) and its subsidiary company, The Israel Experience.
All cancellations must be received in writing.
- Cancellations received up to January 31 forfeit $150 per person
- Cancellations received between February 1 – March 15 forfeit $500 per person
- Cancellations received after March 15 will not be refunded
Insurance is not included in any tour package. Insurance for baggage, trip cancellation, and/or medical emergency is highly recommended.
This itinerary is subject to detail changes and will be updated with more specifics closer to the trip date.
Sunday, May 3: Arrival in Amman
Upon arrival at the Queen Alia International Airport in Amman, you will be picked up and transported to the deluxe Kempinski Hotel Amman. After settling in, you and your fellow travelers will be joined by Jordanian Arava Institute alumni for a delicious welcome dinner.
Monday, May 4: Sightseeing in Amman
The first full day of the tour will be sightseeing around Amman at the Rabbath Ammon, the Roman Theatre, the Archaeological Museum, and the Citadel, which contains the remains of the massive Temple of Hercules.
Tuesday, May 5: Madaba and the Dead Sea
In the morning, we will be attending meetings with Jordanian officials. In the afternoon, we will wrap up our time in Amman and head out of the city, visiting the Byzantine mosaics at Madaba and stopping at the Dead Sea for an early dinner along the way to our accommodations in Petra.
Wednesday, May 6: Petra and Wadi Rum
We will spend the morning touring and exploring the World Heritage site of Petra, an ancient Nabatean city and archeological site. After lunch, we will head to our Jeep tour of Wadi Rum, a beautiful and otherworldly section of the Arabian Desert that features red sand dunes and towering sandstone mountains.
Thursday, May 7: Aqaba, Crossing into Israel, and Kibbutz Ketura
We will have a morning in the seaside resort town of Aqaba. After lunch, we will then cross the border to Israel and drive to Kibbutz Ketura, the home of the Arava Institute, where we will have dinner and stay overnight in the kibbutz guesthouse.
Friday, May 8: Kibbutz Ketura, Arava Institute, and Shabbat
Our day at the Arava Institute starts with breakfast and a tour of the kibbutz. We will meet with students, interns, and faculty, and see some of the Institute’s achievements, such as the Off-Grid Technology Village and Methuselah, the date tree sprouted from a 2,000-year-old seed found at Masada. Afterwards, there will be time to relax at the kibbutz, optional Shabbat services, and a communal Shabbat dinner.
Saturday, May 9: Kibbutz Ketura and Tel Aviv
This is a free morning on Kibbutz Ketura. There is a lovely pool on the kibbutz, and taxis can be organized for those who wish to tour, go to the beach, or go snorkeling in Eilat for the morning. We will then travel north and spend the afternoon and evening touring Tel Aviv and the old city of Jaffa.
Sunday, May 10: West Bank
The day will begin with a trip to the new Palestinian city of Rawabi, which is the first planned city built for and by Palestinians in the West Bank. We will then travel to Ramallah to meet with representatives from the Palestinian government. Afterwards, we will enjoy a traditional Ramadan iftar dinner in Ramallah, and spend the night at the Waldorf Astoria Hotel in Jerusalem.
Monday, May 11: Jerusalem and West Bank
In the morning, we will go on a tour of Jerusalem’s famed Old City and see some of the holiest sites of Judaism, Islam, and Christianity. We will meet with high-level Israeli officials over lunch, and in the afternoon, we will visit al Auja, a Palestinian village near Jericho, to see the Arava Institute’s greywater and solar projects installed in the community. We will also hear from Auja community members to hear about the cooperative projects and how they have affected the village.
Tuesday, May 12: Free Time and Departures
On the last day of the tour, there is some free time to explore Jerusalem before being transported to Ben Gurion Airport for your flight home.
- Ambassador Daniel Shek, Former Israeli Ambassador to France and Chair of the Public Council for the Arava Institute for Environmental Studies
- Dr. Tareq Abu Hamed, Academic Director and Director of the Center for Renewable Energy & Energy Conservation at the Arava Institute for Environmental Studies
- David Lehrer, Executive Director of the Arava Institute for Environmental Studies
- Miriam May, Chief Executive Officer of the Friends of the Arava Institute
- Dr. Clive Lipchin, Director of the Center for Transboundary Water Management at the Arava Institute for Environmental Studies
- and others!
ABOUT THE ARAVA INSTITUTE
The Arava Institute for Environmental Studies is a leading environmental studies and research program in the Middle East. It houses academic programs in partnership with Ben Gurion University, research centers, and international cooperation initiatives focusing on a range of environmental concerns and challenges.
With a student body comprised of Jordanians, Palestinians, Israelis, and students from around the world, the Arava Institute offers students an exceptional opportunity to learn from leading professionals while forming friendships and developing skills that enable them to lead the region and the world in solving today’s most pressing environmental challenges.