Legends of the Middle East Tour

 

 

 

 

 

 

Jordan-Syria-Lebanon Tour

Jordan - a unique and blessed land, mentioned in the Old and New Testaments, and witness to many civilizations, the birthplace and resting place of the great prophets. Landscapes, biblical sites, Wonder of the World - Petra, the unique seaside resorts - all this is Jordan!

Syria - the real cradle of civilization, with its rocky desert, the booming valleys of the Euphrates and the amazing gardens with picturesque mountains. The Crusader's fortress and the relics from medieval times; bazaars of Damascus. This unique blend of ruins of ancient cities and beaches of the sunny shores of the Mediterranean is only in Syria.

Lebanon - a country with myriad treasures of world culture and history. From the ancient Phoenician port to the Roman temples in Baalbek; from the grand castle of the crusaders in Tripoli and the Mameluke mosques - all reminiscent of the grand and eventful past of this fertile region.

Our program - is a great opportunity to learn of the wealth and culture of these three ancient states.

Tour 11 Days /10 nights - valid until 31/12/2010

  • DAY 1 
    Meet and assist our guests (by Amira Tour representative) with visa procedures upon arrival at Queen Alia International Airport; a bus or car awaits us to transfer to Amman city; check in at the hotel and overnight.
  • DAY 2 (Amman - Madaba tour - Mount Nebo - Amman) 
    Breakfast at the hotel's main restaurant; we start the day with the Amman city tour. Amman, the capital of Jordan, is a fascinating city of contrasts - a unique blend of old and new. Our tour will include the downtown area with one of its historical sites, the restored Roman Theatre, which dates back to the 2nd century AD, and is built into three sides of the hillside and seats approximately 6000 people. It is still used for performances today. We will also visit the Citadel, the temple of Hercules, Archaeological Museum and the Roman amphitheater, and will then continue our tour to the new city of Amman or the "white Amman," referring to the white rocks used for the buildings. The driver will take us to the south of Amman where proudly stands the "City of Mosaics," Madaba, perched on an archaeological site with more than 4000 years of history buried beneath it. The quality and quantity of mosaic flooring has made Madaba one of the most prominent cities in the world for mosaics. St. George's Church houses the world famous mosaic floor depicting a large mosaic map of Palestine. A short visit to Mount Nebo follows. Mount Nebo is the mountain where Moses was allowed to see the Holy Land. Transfer back to Amman hotel for overnight.
  • DAY 3 (Amman - Bethany - Dead Sea - Amman)
    Breakfast at the main hotel restaurant. Less than 2km east of the Jordan River is an important place associated with the lives of Jesus and John the Baptist, the settlement of Bethany, where John lived and baptized. Just fifteen minutes driving from Bethany is the Dead Sea. The Dead Sea is 400 meter's below sea level; it is infinite in what it has to offer. Ever since the days of Herod the Great, people have flocked to the Dead Sea in search of its curative secrets… Due to high annual temperatures, low humidity and high atmospheric pressure, the air is extremely oxygenated, and the high content of oxygen and magnesium in the air make breathing a lot easier. We will have some free time relaxing and swimming in the waters, with their high concentrations of minerals and salts. Transfer back to Amman hotel and overnight.
  • DAY 4 (Amman - Petra - Amman) 
    After Breakfast at the hotel's main restaurant, we will drive to the ancient city of Petra, built from 800 BC to 100 AD by the Nabataean Arabs. In this era, Petra was a fortress, carved out of craggy rocks in an area which was virtually inaccessible. In the first and second century, after the Romans took over, the city reached the peak of its fame. Petra covers an area of about 100 square km, where over 800 monuments can be found. When shipping slowly displaced caravan routes, the city's importance gradually dwindled; it fell into disuse and was lost to the world until 1812, when it was rediscovered by the Swiss explorer, Johann Ludwig Burckhardt. Nowadays, Petra is Jordan's number one tourist attraction, and one of the globe's wonders, known as the "rose-red city half as old as time." The Khazneh (the Treasury) was the backdrop for Indiana Jones and the Last Crusaders… We will spend a full day exploring this amazing city. Transfer back to Amman hotel and over night.
  • DAY 5 (Amman - Bosra - Damascus) 
    Breakfast at the hotel's main restaurant, then transfer to Jerash city in Jordan; we will have a short excursion tour for Jerash city to explore these old Roman ruins before heading to Syria's border, cross the borders, and meet the guide for the Syria tour. We will start the tour directly and transfer to Bosra. Bosra is a major archaeological site, containing ruins from Roman, Byzantine, and Muslim times, its main feature being the well preserved Roman theatre. Every year there is a national music festival hosted in the main theater. After this excursion tour, we will drive to Damascus hotel for overnight.
  • DAY 6 (Damascus) 
    Breakfast at the hotel's main restaurant, and then on to a city tout of Damascus. Carbon-14 dating at Tell Ramad, on the outskirts of Damascus, suggests that the site may have been occupied since the second half of the seventh millennium BC, possibly around 6300 BC. However, evidence of settlement in the wider Barada basin dating back to 9000 BC exists, although no large-scale settlement was present within Damascus' walls until the second millennium BC. The city is considered by historians to be the oldest continuously inhabited city in the world. The tour will include: National Museum of Damascus. This museum contains a world-class archaeological and historical collection. There are two wings to this Museum, the east wing and the west wing. The west wing contains pre-classical and Arab Islamic collections, and the east wing contains Classical and Byzantine collections. The façade of this museum is fragments of the twin-towered gateway of Qasr al Heir. The Al-Takieh-Suleimanieh is another place that cannot be missed. It is an historic building that was built by Sultan Suleiman al-Qanouni in the year 1854. There are two minarets which are the main attractions of this elegant structure. The Christian architecture of St. Paul's church should also be on the tour itinerary when visiting the country. The Omayyad mosque is a beautiful mosque which stands at the heart of the old city and was constructed in a very efficient manner by the architect. The mosque is built up very beautifully with polychromatic stones and marbles. Azem Palace is an excellent example of a Damascene traditional house; we will visit Saladin, a Religious Leader memorial, and Ananias Chapel which represents the simplicity of the initial Christians, and is one of the earliest churches still standing where services continue to be held to this day. We will end the tour with visit to Damascus Bazaar before we transfer back to hotel and overnight. 
  • DAY 7 (Palmyra - The castle Krak des Chevaliers - Homs) 
    Breakfast at the hotel's main restaurant, and then transfer to Palmyra city or Tadmur, an ancient Arab city. The most striking building in Palmyra is the huge temple of Ba'al, considered "the most important religious building of the first century AD in the Middle East." The second most noteworthy remain in Palmyra is the theater, today having 9 rows of seating, but most likely having had up to 12 with the addition of wooden structures. The castle Krak des Chevaliers - the fortress was described as "perhaps the best preserved and most wholly admirable castle in the world." Excursion to the castle Krak des Chevaliers - the castle is an unsurpassed and well-preserved medieval fortification. Accommodation at the hotel. Overnight in Homs.
  • DAY 8 (Homes - Baalbek - Anzhar - Ksara - Beirut) 
    Across the Syrian border to meet the Lebanese guide. Tour in the largest Roman treasure in Lebanon, a place that was considered as one of the wonders in the ancient world. Baalbek is known for its temples of Jupiter, Bacchus and Venus, a remarkable building. We also visit the ancient city Anzhar. Next, we will visit the famous winery of Lebanon - Ksara, A fascinating tour of the natural caves, cellars, winery and wine tasting. Moving to the city of Beirut. Accommodation at the hotel. Overnight in Beirut.
  • DAY 9 (Beirut - Harissa -  Jetta Grotto - Byblos)
    Breakfast. We visit Jetta cave - the beautiful miracle of nature, the largest cave of stalactites and stalagmites in the Middle East. You go up the cableway to the caves, which are composed of two parts: the lower and upper galleries. The lower cave you can visit by boat, and the upper, on foot. Enjoy fabulous views, cool temperatures and swirling sounds of water. Next, we take the path along the coast - in Junia, here, we will go to Harissa by cable to a statue of Our Lady of Lebanon with arms outstretched above the beautiful bay. Venture into to one of the oldest cities in the world - the city of Byblos. Walking through the old streets and old fishing harbor of a small town with great history. Visit the Church of St. John the Baptist. Return to the hotel. Overnight in Beirut..
  • DAY 10 (Beirut - Tyre - Sidon - Beirut)
    Breakfast. Visit the Phoenician city - the Persians divided Phoenicia into four vassal kingdoms: Sidon, Tyre, Arwad, and Byblos.. The city Tyre is located 83 km from Beirut and was declared a World Heritage treasure. Next, visit to the city of Sidon, another important city of Phoenicia, with its sea castle and ancient bazaars. Return to the hotel. Overnight in Beirut.
  • DAY 11 (Beirut - Amman) 
    Breakfast, transfer to the airport, flight from Beirut.

Tour includes: 

  • Meet and assist at the airport upon arrival. 
  • All transfers according to the program. 
  • All tours and sightseeing according to the program. 
  • All entrance fees. 
  • Guides for the tours. 
  • Syrian visa (passport details must be submitted one week before arrival); 
  • Accommodation will be on BB basis in Standard rooms. 

Tour excludes: 

  • Flights; 
  • Jordanian visa, $15 per person upon arrival at the airport; 
  • Lebanese visa - $18; 
  • Jordan departure Tax - $8 (5 Jordanian dinars); 
  • Syria departure Tax-$12  (500 Syrian liras); 
  • Lebanon departure Tax -$12 ; 
  • Tips for guides and drivers. 
  • Personal expenses.

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To Book...

To book, or for more information, call Cecelia or Lindy at the Egypt & Beyond office on tel: 011 678 6165/4777 or fax: 011 678 5789 or e-mail: cecelia@egyptandbeyond.co.za  / info@egyptandbeyond.co.za  / lindy@egyptandbeyond.co.za 

 

 
Panoramic view of Amman

Madaba

Magnificent Petra



Wadi Rum

Wadi Rum

Colonnaded walkway in Jerash

Jerash

Sunset over the Dead Sea

Aljoun

Petra

Kerak Castle

Mount Nebo

Mount Nebo