Following is a sampling of plans that target popular reasons for
visiting the Holy Land. Prices are per person, double occupancy,
and include daily Israeli buffet breakfast plus some other meals.
Israel's first five decades became the theme of a new tour by Isram
World of Travel, based in New York.
Israel's Jubilee Celebration is an 11-day trip that includes nine
nights in deluxe hotels, air on El Al, traditional Sabbath meals, a
spa stay, a seaside dinner in Tiberias and the usual
Added to this, however, are sites connected with Israel's pioneer
These include Tel Aviv's Independence Hall; the detention camp at
Atlit, where British Mandate authorities detained Holocaust
survivors who wanted to migrate to the Holy Land before Israel was
born, and a Jeep ride along the "Burma Road," a rough bypass
created in the heat of battle to liberate Jerusalem during the 1948
War of Independence.
Price: Starts at $3,242.
Departures: Remaining departures this year are on July 23, Aug. 6
and Oct. 15.
Coming-of-age celebrations for Jewish teens are a specialty of the
Israel Tour Connection in Livingston, N.J.
The ceremony -- known as a bar (for a boy age 13) or bat (for a
girl age 12 or 13) mitzvah -- is an occasion for families to
Scheduling the observance in Israel calls for arranging religious
ceremonies, travel, lodgings and tours for extended-family
Activities are added to suit the interests of younger travelers
that might include wind-surfing in Eilat, tubing or kayaking on the
Jordan River, exploring army tanks or investigating caves. Large
family groups are offered FIT arrangements, and small groups will
be combined according to the ages of other family members.
There are 11- and 15-day trips. Both feature deluxe accommodations.
The 15-day trip includes overnight stays in Eilat and at the Dead
New this year is an option for first-class, rather than deluxe
accommodations for cost-conscious travelers, that saves an average
of $600 per person.
A $275 fee is charged for the religious ceremony (which can be held
at a variety of sites) and the services of a Conservative
The celebrant travels and stays free.
Price: Starts at $2,190, land only or $3,166 with air on El Al for
11 days and $2,859 and $3,675 respectively, for the 15-day
Departures: 17 scheduled departures throughout the year; 11-day
trip departs on Thursdays.
A specialist in Christian or Jewish tours in either English or
Spanish travel since 1978, Tuchman Meditours in Miami added a
bargain trip, an eight-day Budget Journey to the Holy Land, with
first class accommodations and air on El Al, among its new
offerings for '98/'99.
Price: Starts at $1,399.
Departures: Dec. 9 and Jan. 13.
The firm's policy on pilgrimages is that one person travels free
for every five full-paying passengers, a benefit to clergymen who
Ariel Tours in Brooklyn, N.Y., which specializes in land-only FIT
arrangements to Israel and has hosted several entertainment and
political luminaries, was very successful this year with its winter
air-and-land package and is updating it for the summer.
In the meantime, its land-only tour of the month will take
advantage of jubilee events that occur within the appropriate
The firm, which deals only with agents, has updated its Web site,
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Average temperature at the beach along the