After being picked up by your personal guide at Ashdod port, journey through the extraordinary wildness that is the Judean desert, passing by the Inn of the Good Samaritan and Jericho, the world’s oldest city and a veritable oasis in the desert. Stop at the sign proclaiming “You are now below sea level” and enjoy a photo opportunity. Journey onto the impressive fortress that it is Masada, built by King Herod over 2,000 years ago, and the spot at which Jewish Zealots barricaded themselves in against advancing Roman troops, before committing suicide en masse rather than surrendering. Masada, today, is a UNESCO World Heritage Site and, perched on a hilltop, cannot fail to take your breath away.
Take a cable car to the top, staring out at the long, impressive Snake Path below (winding 400 metres up the hill) and enjoying astonishing views of the surrounding area. Atop the fortress, explore the ancient synagogue and bathhouse and gaze at the remains of a church, circa the Byzantine era, used by monks from as far back as the 1st century. Also, feel free to explore the museum there, full of archaeological treasures. Travel onto the Dead Sea, famed for its salty waters, black mud (rich in mineral and perfect for smearing all over your body) and sulphur pools. Truly one of the world’s most unique places. float in the sea. Relax in an environment that is guaranteed to leave your feeling re-energized, whilst enjoying the peace and quiet of the surrounding Negev Desert. Return with your personal guide to Ashdod, enjoying views of the Ein Gedi Oasis and ancient Qumran Caves (where the Dead Sea Scrolls were discovered by a shepherd boy) along the way. Drop off back at your hotel.