Bethlehem Half Day Tour
Visit the biblical sites at Bethlehem with ease from Jerusalem on this half-day tour. Depart from your Jerusalem hotel in an air-conditioned vehicle and make your way to Bethlehem. In the company of a guide, explore the Milk Grotto, Greek and Catholic churches, Manger Square, the Church of the Nativity, and more.
We travel southwards from Jerusalem to reach Bethlehem, the City of David. This was the home town of King David’s father (Samuel I 16:1) and the place where Christ was born to Mary and Joseph.
We cross Manger Square surrounded by the Mosque of Omar, the Palestinian Peace Center and perhaps the oldest functioning church in the world, the Church of the Nativity. The Byzantine church was originally constructed in the 4th century and later expanded during the 6th century. We can still see part of the original mosaic floor through an opening in the present basilica floor. We enter the Basilica of the Nativity through a low doorway the “Door of Humility”. The walls have faint traces of golden mosaics. 30 of the 44 pink limestone columns in the Nave of the church are adorned with decorations from the Crusader period.
Beneath the church is the Grotto of Nativity where Jesus was said to have been born. A silver star in the grotto is engraved with the Latin phrase “Here Jesus Christ was born to the Virgin Mary.” The church also houses the Chapel of the Manger and the Alter of the Adoration of the Magi (the three wise men).
We exit the basilica and pass by the Armenian Chapel of the Kings to reach the adjacent Church of Saint Catherine. From the Church of St. Catherine we descend to grottos which are connected to those beneath the Church of the Nativity. These ancient caves hold several tombs and chapels including the Chapel of the Innocent dedicated to the babies killed under Herod (Matt. 2:16); the Chapel of Joseph and the Tomb of Jerome. There is also the grotto where Jerome worked for many years translating the Hebrew Bible to Latin.
Our final stop is at the Shepherds Field. The Bible mentions this is as the field where an angel appeared to shepherds tending their sheep by night to announce the birth of Christ in nearby Bethlehem. Today a tent-shaped chapel stands here. This chapel was designed by renowned architect Antonio Barluzzi and is decorated with scenes from the life of Christ.
Pickup Places and Prices
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- Hotel pick-up
- A fully qualified and licensed tour guide
- Transport by air-conditioned vehicle
- Entrance fees
- Food and drinks
- Drop off at your hotel
- Tour ends approx. 13:00 at the David Citadel Hotel, Jerusalem. There is no return back to your hotel
- Passport compulsory for visit to Bethlehem
- Due to visitors overload a visit down to Nativity cave is not always possible
- Modest dress is obligatory for visits to holy sites; covered knees and shoulders
- Visit to Bethlehem may require a change of vehicle as well as a local Palestinian guide
- Booking is subject to terms and conditions
- Cancellation fee of 4% charged for notification up to 2 days in advance
- Cancellation fee of 25% charged for notification up to 1 days in advance
- Cancellation fee of 100% charged for notification on the day of the tour
- Non Show – 100% Cancellation fees
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