Nazareth and Sea of Galilee Tour Christian Galilee to Jordan River
Revised and Updated - January 2024
Nazareth to Sea of Galilee
- Embark on an activity-packed day tour through the picturesque landscape of Israel’s northern region. This private Nazareth and Sea of Galilee tour has been designed to take you to the heart of historically significant Christian sites, all set against the breathtaking scenery of the Galilee mountains and valleys. Enjoy magnificent views, explore cities full of history, eat lunch on the shore of the Sea of Galilee and conclude the journey at the Yardenit baptismal site on the Jordan River where Jesus was baptized.
- Keep reading for a suggested customizable itinerary to help you plan the best day tour to Nazareth, the Sea of Galilee, and Jordan River.
The Best Way to Go on a Christian Galilee Tour
- By having a private driver for the whole day you benefit from unparalleled accessibility, full flexibility and the invaluable insights of a local knowledgeable expert who knows the area like the back of his hand. This allows you to travel at your own pace, savor the unique atmosphere and stay at each destination for as long as you wish. This flexibility extends to the ability to reach off-the-beaten-path locations that organized tours often overlook. Feel free to adjust the route during the day, add extra stops as long as time permits, ensuring you check off all the locations on your Nazareth and Galilee tour bucket list. Capture stunning photographs, indulge in local cuisine, and make the most of your day before returning to your hotel.
- Time-efficiency is key on this action-packed day tour of Nazareth, the Galilee, and the north of Israel, given the considerable amount of driving involved and the possible impact of traffic. Additionally, these popular tourist sites attract large crowds year-round, making it essential to factor in waiting times and adhere to opening hours. To optimize your experience on this North of Israel day tour, kickstart your day early, stay ahead of the tourist influx, follow my tips and you will have the best day tour to Nazareth and the Galilee.
A Day Tour to Nazareth From Jerusalem?
- The point of departure for this Nazareth and Galilee day tour can be wherever you request to get picked up from. Departing from Haifa the journey to Nazareth takes approximately 40 minutes, and the drive to the Sea of Galilee is about an hour. If departing from Tel Aviv, allocate 1.5 hours to reach Nazareth and 2 hours to reach the Sea of Galilee. Choosing Jerusalem as your starting point adds an additional 50-60 minutes to the travel times from Tel Aviv.
- The Galilee area is rich in beautiful parks, nature reserves, historical sites, and fascinating diverse culture. The following suggested itinerary highlights the most popular attractions that the vast majority of travelers wish to visit on a day tour to Nazareth and the Galilee. Keep in mind that the suggested route is entirely customizable. You can tailor the route to your interests, skipping or adding sites as you wish, for a personalized and enjoyable day trip. Further down this pages, you will find a list of optional sites and attractions to help you plan the perfect day tour itinerary.
My Suggested Itinerary
- Depart Tel Aviv or Jerusalem as early as possible to minimize delays caused by traffic.
- Head north through the Valley of Armageddon, passing by the archaeological mound of Megiddo, where various battles took place during ancient times over this strategic crossroads. Notably, it is prophesied as the gathering place for armies during a battle at the end of the world.
- Nazareth, the largest Arab city in Israel, is the first stop on this day tour. Visit the Church of the Annunciation marking the spot where angel Gabriel appeared to the Virgin Mary, announcing the birth of Jesus. The Grotto inside the church is believed by many Christians to be the remains of Mary’s original childhood home. Along the courtyard of the church there are impressive mosaics from around the world, depicting Marian devotions in different countries. Nearby, the Church of St. Joseph is located where it is believed that the carpentry of Jesus’s Father once was.
- Mount Precipice, also known as Mount of Precipitation or Mount of the Leap of the Lord is the next stop just outside Nazaret. It is believed to be the place where Jesus escaped from the angry people of Nazareth who rejected him as the Messiah and tried to push him from the mountain. The lookout from Mount Precipice offers wonderful views of the surrounding Galilee area and Mount Tabor to the east.
- Cana of Galilee – On the way east it is possible to stop at The Cana wedding church, where Jesus performed the first miracle of turning water into wine. Then continue to drive east through the picturesque countryside, and enjoy the landscapes of rolling green hills typical to the Galilee region.
- The Sea of Galilee where Jesus walked on water soon comes into view with its mesmerizing crystal blue water and the Golan Heights overlooking the lake from the opposite side. Driving along the western shore, the road passes through Tiberias, considered one of the four holy cities in Judaism alongside Jerusalem, Hebron, and Safed.
- Mount of Beatitudes is traditionally believed to be the site where Jesus delivered his Sermon on the Mount. A Roman Catholic chapel atop of the mount offers magnificent panoramic views of the Sea of Galilee and the surrounding valley.
- Tabgha – The Church of the Loaves and Fish, also called The Church of Multiplication on the northwest shore of the Sea of Galilee is where Jesus performed the miracle of the multiplication of loaves and fish. It is also the site where Jesus appeared for the fourth time after his resurrection.
- Capernaum, a nearby ancient fishing village on the northern shore of the Sea of Galilee, is believed to have been the home of Saint Peter. Explore the impressive archeological excavations revealing ruins of houses, churches, and synagogues from various historic periods. A modern memorial with a glass floor provides direct views of the ruins below.
- Yardenit – The baptismal site where Jesus was baptized by John is located near the southern end of the Sea of Galilee at the point of origin of the Jordan River. Experience this once-in-a-lifetime spiritual journey just like the crowds of pilgrims who visit this site every year as they wish to follow the tradition and undergo baptism in the Jordan River.
- On the return journey, pass by the half-sphere-shaped Mount Tabor and see the Church of Transfiguration on its peak.
Optional Locations and Attractions
- Tiberias hot springs – Recently renovated and reopened, this site in Tiberias offers its visitors mineral-rich water up to 60 C° emerging from 17 hot springs deep underground. Immerse yourself in a variety of indoor and outdoor pools, indulge in dry and wet saunas, undergo spa treatments, and unwind in the comfort of a boutique hotel and restaurant.
- Hamat Gader Hot Springs – Discover these hot springs, a natural wonder near the tripoint of Israel Jordan, and Syria. With open swimming pools and hot mineral springs reaching temperatures of up to 50°C, this site, located 150 meters below sea level, also offers a boutique hotel, a camping site and an alligator farm.
- Bet She’an National Park – This site stands as one of Israel’s most exciting archaeological sites, a must-visit attraction for travelers to the region. Explore the well-preserved Roman city featuring historic ruins, including an ancient bath house, an impressive Roman theater, colonnaded streets, and houses.
- Tzipori National Park – Zippori, once the capital of the Galilee, house of the Sanhedrin and the place where the Mishna was completed. Marvel at archeological ruins like the theater, the Jewish quarter, the Crusader castle, and Dionysus house.
- Sea of Galilee Boat – Also known as the Jesus Boat, is an ancient fishing boat discovered in 1986 on the north-west shore of the Sea of Galilee, dating back to the 1st century AD. It is kept in a special hall at the Yigal Alon Museum in Kibbutz Ginosar.
- Magdala – Once a prosperous fishing town on the western shore of the Sea of Galilee, between Capernaum and Tiberias, it is believed to be the birthplace of Mary Magdalene. Today, it stands as an archaeological park and a Catholic center.
- Sailing on the Sea of Galilee – Experience the spiritual allure of Sailing on the Sea of Galilee, navigating wooden boats where Jesus miraculously walked on water. This attraction provides a spiritual experience for pilgrims, allowing them to connect with the Sea of Galilee’s powerful legacy.
About The Author
Moshe Barak is a highly knowledgeable and reputable private taxi service operator in Israel, renowned for his professional approach, friendly attitude, and attention to details.
With over 20 years of experience and a long list of satisfied customers he is the trusted choice by many international travelers seeking reliable transportation with a personal touch during their trip to Israel.