Tour of Israel & Rome

Join the New York School of the Bible and Calvary Baptist Church as they embark on a trip of a lifetime to Israel, with an optional trip extension to Rome.

  • December 27, 2019 - January 6, 2020
  • $4,581 from JFK International Airport, NYC
  • Cost includes airfare, accommodations, meals, sightseeing, and tips
  • Optional trip extension to Rome, an additional $590, return date January 9, 2020
  • Co-hosted by Michael Luciano, Executive Director Calvary Baptist Church, Tour leader/Bible teacher and Billy W. Nelson, Registrar of New York School of the Bible, Tour coordinator 

Tour Schedule

DAY 1 – Friday, December 27: Depart from New York on our flight to Tel Aviv. Meals and overnight on board. After dinner, relax and enjoy the on-
board entertainment.

DAY 2 – Saturday, December 28: Arrive at Tel Aviv’s Ben Gurion Airport and meet our guide who will welcome us to the Land of the Bible and escort us throughout our stay in Israel. Israeli guides are legendary for their knowledge and dedication. Ours will instruct us on the many sites we will visit and their relationship to the religion, history, archaeology, culture, and modern life in Israel. Our first site will be Old Jaffa, the traditional home of Simon the Tanner, where Peter received the vision and instruction from the Lord to take the Gospel to Cornelius, and from where Jonah sailed. Dinner and overnight in Tel Aviv.

DAY 3 – Sunday, December 29: Depart for the Dead Sea. We will stop at Beer Sheva, famous for being the birthplace of Isaac and Jacob. Proceed, if time permits, to Arad to see the partially reconstructed 5,000-year-old Canaanite town. Arrive at our hotel next to the Dead Sea and enjoy a mud bath, spa treatments (cost is extra), or take a swim (rather a “float”) in the Dead Sea. Dinner and overnight at the Dead Sea.

DAY 4 – Monday, December 30: Depart for Masada, overlooking the Dead Sea, where we ascend by cable car to visit the remnants of Herod’s Palace and where from A.D. 70 to 73 the Zealots made their last stand against the Roman Legions. Proceed to Ein Gedi, fabled Spring of David, and then on to Qumran where the Dead Sea Scrolls were found in 1947. Overlooking the Jordan Valley and Jericho at “Genesis Land”, enjoy a unique experience--camel ride. Later we go up to Jerusalem. Dinner and overnight in Jerusalem.

DAY 5 – Tuesday, December 31: This morning we begin with a view of the Old City from the top of the Mount of Olives. Walk to the Garden of Gethsemane, the Church of All Nations, and drive across the Kidron Valley. Enter the Old City through Flower Gate to the Moslem Quarter, visit the beautiful Church of St. Anne and the Pool of Bethesda, Pilate’s Judgment Hall, and the Ecce Homo Arch (ecce homo is Latin for “Behold the man”). Then we visit the archaeological park in the City of David. Continue our visit to Warren’s Shaft before heading to the Gihon Spring and the Pool of Siloam located where the Valley of Hinnom runs into the Kidron Valley. Return to our hotel for dinner and overnight—with perhaps a rousing chorus of Auld Lang Syne.

DAY 6 – Wednesday, January 1: We begin the day with a visit to the Israel Museum and continue on to the miniature model of Jerusalem as it was in the 2nd Temple period (circa A.D. 68). Visit the reconstructed Jewish Quarter, walk through the Cardo, the original Roman street, and see the amazing Israelite wall. Proceed to view the Burnt House, remaining from the fire in A.D. 70 which destroyed Jerusalem. See the important excavations taking place at the Western Wall and the Southern Temple Staircase.

DAY 7 – Thursday, January 2: Today we will visit the Temple Mount. Walk along the Via Dolorosa, into the Christian Quarter. Proceed to the Church of the Holy Sepulcher, possible site of Calvary and the tomb. End the afternoon at Golgotha (Gordon’s Calvary) and the Garden’s Empty Tomb. Special time is planned for worship, communion, meditation, and inspiration. Dinner and overnight in Jerusalem.

DAY 8 – Friday, January 3: Drive along the Jordan Valley to Beit She’an to see the expansive excavations taking place at this ancient Roman city. It’s on to Megiddo, the inspiration for James Michener’s “The Source”, and prophesied site of Armageddon. Archaeological digs reveal 20 layers of civilization, including fortifications of King Solomon and the water tunnel of King Ahab. Megiddo provides a magnificent view of the fertile Jezreel Valley, at the crossroads of the ancient Via Maris. Continue through the rolling hills of the Galilee to Nazareth and visit a 1st-century village reconstructed at Nazareth Village. We arrive in Tiberias for dinner and overnight at our hotel overlooking the Sea of Galilee.

DAY 9 – Saturday, January 4: We begin the day with a visit to the site of Magdala to see the newly recovered remains of the synagogue where Jesus would have visited and taught. Next, we visit the site of the Sermon on the Mount, the Mount of Beatitudes. Proceed up north to Caesarea Phillip (Banias Spring) where Peter confessed Jesus is the Christ and where Jesus decided to return to Jerusalem. Next, we visit Tel Dan, a Canaanite town where Joshua led the Israelites over 3,000 years ago. Today the tel is part of the Tel Dan Nature Reserve. Many springs form the Dan River, one of the three principal sources of the Jordan River. Proceed to the Jordon River for a baptismal service for those who wish at Yardenit. Dinner and overnight in Tiberias.

DAY 10 – Sunday, January 5: This day is worth the trip! We are now literally walking in the footsteps of Jesus. We will take a most memorable boat ride on the Sea of Galilee, in a replica of ancient wooden boats used in Jesus’ day. We will see the remains of a 1st-century boat on display at Nof Ginosar. We walk into old Capernaum with the ancient synagogue and then on to Tabgha where Peter is restored for his earlier three denials. Then we travel to Mount Carmel where Elijah triumphed over the prophets of Baal. We end our visit at Caesarea Maritima where the Gospel first comes to the Gentiles, when Peter brings the Good News to the Roman centurion, Cornelius. From this port city, Paul sailed in and out for his missionary tours. Here Paul appealed to Caesar. We will see the Roman theater, Herod’s palace, and the aqueduct. We end the day and complete our Israel tour at a deluxe hotel in Tel Aviv with a farewell dinner. Each tour participant will receive a Certificate of Pilgrimage. Those going back to the USA after Israel will head to the airport with assistance to check in for the flight arriving back at JFK January 6. Those venturing on to Rome spend the night at the Tel Aviv hotel.

Day 11 – Monday, January 6: Transfer to the airport for the flight to Rome, non-stop, arriving early afternoon. Meet your deluxe coach and escort for the trip to your 4-star hotel, The Victoria, a Calvary/NYSB favorite, for three nights. After checking in, your tour hosts will assist you in getting oriented to the pleasant hotel neighborhood, where you will be able to find dinner on your own at a local restaurant. Breakfast is included each day at the hotel.

Day 12 – Tuesday, January 7: After breakfast, today’s morning excursion explores Ancient Rome with the highlights a guided tour of the Imperial Forum and the great Coliseum. The afternoon explores the palaces, piazzas, and fountains of Baroque Rome, named after the richly-ornamented 17th-century architectural style of many of Rome’s most spectacular buildings, plazas, and fountains--such as Piazza Navona, Trevi Fountain (famous for the “Three Coins” song and tradition of a coin in the fountain to guarantee a return visit) and the Spanish Steps. Also, while not baroque, see the Pantheon, ancient Roman temple to the gods, now a Christian marvel with open-air dome (and great ice cream nearby).

Day 13 – Wednesday, January 8: Morning guided tour of The Vatican Museum, with its acres of archaeological and artistic wonders, concluding with the Sistine Chapel with Michelangelo’s famous ceiling. Then to St Peter’s Cathedral, built over the grave of St. Peter, highlighted by Michelangelo’s Pieta sculpture of Mary holding the temporarily lifeless body of her son the crucified Jesus and Bernini’s Altar. Afternoon free for your own exploration of Rome, with the tour hosts assisting those who want to visit catacombs.

Day 14 – Thursday, January 9: Mid-morning flight back to JFK, arriving early afternoon the same day . . . with hearts and minds filled with a swirl of impressions and memories of Israel, the Holy Land, and the city of Rome. 

To register, print and complete this Registration Form, and include a $400 (per-person) check to “Escorted Travel Concepts”, and a photocopy of the name and photo pages of your passport,  and mail to: New York School of the Bible, ATTN: Billy Nelson, 123 W 57th Street,  New York, NY, 10019

For more information, contact Billy Nelson at 212-975-0170 x123 or