Start the day with a drive through the Judean Hills, an area known for its Biblical cities, and thousands of caves. We reach the Stalactite Cave Nature Reserve that is home to Israel’s largest stalactite cave, also known as Avshalom Cave or Soreq Cave. Walk into the cave to see stunning stalactites hanging from the ceiling and stalagmites rising from the cave floor. The Stalactite Cave has been lit to highlight the different rock formations in the cavernous space.
The tour continues to Beit Guvrin. On route, we see the remains of a Roman road that once stretched from Gaza to Jerusalem. We drive through Elah Valley, known for its many archaeological sites and fields of wildflowers in the spring. We reach Beit Guvrin National Park that encompasses an archaeological mound identified as the Biblical city of Maresha. See the impressive remains of the Maresha caves including columbarium caves, underground cisterns, and cavernous bell caves. Take a look at the remains of a Roman amphitheater before we continue to our next stop.
Tel Azekah is an archaeological mound identified as the site of a Biblical settlement, named in Joshua 15:35. The settlement would have been encircled by a defensive wall, with a fortress, and water cisterns. From the Tel Azekah observation point, we can look out over Elah Valley, and see where David is believed to have fought Goliath (Samuel I 17). The last stop on this private tour is at a winery in Israel’s Lowlands between the Judean Hills and the coastal plain. End the day in this idyllic setting surrounded by vineyards and rolling green hills, before being returned to your hotel.
Additional Options in the Area:
1. Park Canada
2. Beit Jamal Monastery (Monastery of the Silent)
3. Abu Ghosh
4. Mitzpe Massua Lookout Point Park Britannia
5. Walking wildflower trail in the area, January to April