Led by Rabbi Noa Kushner

July 19—August 1, 2017


Wednesday, July 19, 2017

Night Departure from the U.S. to Israel


Thursday, July 20, 2017

Arrival ברוכים הבאים

  • Arrive at Ben Gurion International Airport, with assistance by Makor representative and light refreshments.

  • Ascend to Jerusalem.

  • Check into Mt. Zion Hotel with its stunning view of Mt. Zion.

  • Overlooking “Chomot Yerushalayim” (the famous Walls of Jerusalem), standing together at Mishkanot Sha’ananim, participate in a Welcome to Jerusalem Ceremony and for a moment of reflection, with some sharing of thoughts by Rabbi Noa Kushner. 

  • Festive Welcome Dinner on the balcony at Lavan/Cinemateque.  

  • Optional Evening Walk to the Tachana, the refurbished Turkish Train Station.


Overnight: Mt. Zion Hotel, Jerusalem


Friday, July 21, 2017

Digging Deep into the Past

  • Breakfast at the hotel.

  • Go back in time to the origins of Jewish Jerusalem with a guided tour of the City of David, where some of the most extraordinary archaeological finds of recent years have been found, shedding new light on the Bible’s narrative.  Consider the birth of public political morality that is conveyed in the David stories.  Also hear alternative narratives that reveal some of the archaeological and political struggles of our day.

  • Kids’ Track: Wade through Hezekiah’s ancient water tunnel and explore some of Israel’s most ancient archaeological discoveries.

  • Lunch at Abu Shukri in the Muslim Quarter of the Old City.

  • Rabbi Noa Kushner’s Jerusalem—walk with Noa to some of her favorite spots and meet some of her friends, especially the Sinjlawi family in the Muslim Quarter. 

  • Return to the hotel for rest and time to prepare for Shabbat.

  • Kabbalat Shabbat at Kehilat Tzion in Baka, the project of Rabbi Tamar Elad Appelbaum, which has a special partnership with The Kitchen and is making waves all over the Jewish world.

  • Festive Shabbat Dinner at the Hotel.


Overnight: Mt. Zion Hotel, Jerusalem


 Saturday (Shabbat), July 22, 2017

                                                            A Jerusalem Shabbat

  • Breakfast at the hotel.

  • Walk through the Baka neighborhood to Shabbat morning services at Kehilat Tzion.

  • Shabbat Picnic Lunch in one of the nearby parks or lookout peaks.

  • Optional visit to the Israel Museum, Israel’s premier museum, and take in 4,000 years of Jewish culture. 

  • Kids’ Track: Swim Party in the Mt. Zion Hotel Pool.

  • Walk through the Jaffa Gate and the Jewish Quarter to the Kotel (Western Wall).  Rabbi Noa Kushner shares some reflections on the meaning and history of the Kotel and Har Habayit/Harem a Sharif.

  • Havdalah Ceremony honoring the end of Shabbat and celebrating the beginning of the new week.

  • Free evening and dinner on your own in Jerusalem.  Options include: Cruising Ben Yehudah St., dinner on Emek Rephaim or the Tachana (Old Turkish Train Station), partaking in a cultural offering at the Jerusalem Theatre. 


Overnight:  Mt. Zion Hotel, Jerusalem


Sunday, July 23, 2017

                                                    Food for Thought on the 9th of Av

  • Breakfast at the hotel.

  • At the Tayelet, with a view of the Dome of the Rock, the walls of the Old City, the City of David, the Peace Forest, Arab villages, and the mountains of Jordan where Moses is buried, Rabbi Bill Berk will share A Reflection on the 9th of Av—What We Learned and Did Not Learn When the Romans Destroyed the Temple.

  • Heading north, with a stop at Ein Prat and meet Micha Goodman, who will speak about his project creating a new generation of Israeli leaders.

  • Lunch on your own en route.

  • North of Jericho meet Gidon Bromberg of Eco Peace Middle East for an understanding of the struggle to create partners across ideological and national and religious lines who can work together to save planet Earth.  The visit takes place in Auja, which is a Palestinian village.

  • Return to Jerusalem for a “9th of Av Text Walking Tour of the Jewish Quarter” with Hartman scholar Noam Tzion whose theme will be “Kamtza and Bar Kamtza—Who and What Really Caused the Destruction?”

  • Dinner on your own and free night in Jerusalem.


Overnight: Mt. Zion Hotel, Jerusalem


Monday, July 24, 2017

                                                            The Struggle for Justice              

  • Breakfast at the hotel.

  • Guest Teacher: Rabbi Levi Kelman who will teach one of is favorite Torah texts.

  • Tour of East Jerusalem with a representative of “Ir Amim” (“city of peoples”).

  • Kids’ Track: Enjoy the Monster Slide at Rabinovich Park (Monster Park).

  • Lunch on your own at the Tachana, the old Turkish Railroad Station.

  • Drive to Lod’s Rakevet Neighborhood, considered one of the toughest in all of Israel, and meet the Principal of the Arabic High School of Lod, Shirin Natour Hafi, who has transformed this school with a matriculation rate of 9% to 40% in five years!  In her spare time this Muslim Israeli teaches Hebrew literature at Orthodox high schools in Jerusalem!

  • Continue to Tel Aviv/Jaffa for a welcome ceremony at the Jaffa Overlook, with an orientation to one of the oldest cities in the world (Jaffa) and to one of the youngest cities in the world (Tel Aviv).

  • Visit two New Israel Fund grantees in Tel Aviv and learn about the front-line, cutting edge work being done to create an Israel that is fully democratic and honoring of human rights.

  • Kids’ Track: Israel Sports Center for the Disabled in Ramat Gan for a special program with one of Israel’s Paralympic medal winners.

  • Meet scholar Paul Liptz at Kikar Rabin, for a tour of this important landmark and square where Israel’s most important demonstrations take place, on the grounds where Yitzhak Rabin was assassinated.   See the graffiti.  Hear the stories of what has transpired here and the meaning of this place in Israeli life.

  • Check into the Carlton on the Beach Hotel, Tel Aviv.

  • Dinner on your own.

  • Special Guest: Hear the stories shared by one of the soldiers who work for Breaking the Silence.


Overnight: Carlton on the Beach Hotel, Tel Aviv


Tuesday, July 25, 2017

                                               The Old New City, The Old New Country

  • Breakfast at the hotel.

  • Home Hospitality: Tel Aviv as a Jewish City, Tel Aviv as an Israeli City, Tel Aviv as a City of the World, with scholar Rachel Korazim at her home in Jaffa.

  • Kids’ Track: Bike Tel Aviv!  Ride on the Tel Aviv Boardwalk Bike Path from Tel Aviv to Jaffa.

  • Dual Narrative Tour of Jaffa—walk through Jaffa with a Muslim guide and a Jewish guide and hear two different stories about Jaffa, one of the oldest cities in the world..

  • Lunch on your own at a Jaffa chumus joint.

  • Art and Ideas in the Public Sphere—Rothschild Boulevard as the Palate: exploring Rothschild Boulevard with Alma’s Shirel Horowitz, and a chance to glimpse part of the White City, the UNESCO World Heritage Collection of Bauhaus building.

  • Kids’ Track: Scavenger Hunt on Rothschild Boulevard, where Tel Aviv began.

  • Free time to stroll through some of Tel Aviv’s famous markets, Levinsky Market, Shuk HaCarmel and the Nachalat Binyamin Arts and Crafts Outdoor Market.

  • Dinner on your own in the Neve Tzedek neighborhood of Tel Aviv.

  • “View from the Right”: Meet a right wing MK and listen to a different side to many of the issues introduced on this trip.


Overnight: Carlton Hotel on the Beach, Tel Aviv


Wednesday, July 26, 2017

                                              Exploring Tel Aviv and Her Surroundings

  • Breakfast at the hotel.

  • Defining Tel Aviv—Spend the morning visiting either the Suzanne Dellal Center or the Habima Theater for a behind the scenes look at the history and culture of this first Hebrew city.  

  • Lunch on your own en route.

  • Settlers and Palestinians—just a little over half an hour away to another world, meet settlers in Ariel, one of the four large “settlement blocs,” and meet Palestinians in Tayibe or Rawabi.  Hear their stories and listen to their yearning. 

  • Dinner on your own back in Tel Aviv.

  • A Night Out on the Town: in this city famous for its culture and night life, take in one of Tel Aviv’s offerings—music, dance, theater, etc.  If in town the priority would be to experience the Bat Sheva Dance Company at the Suzanne Dellal Center.


Overnight: Carlton Hotel on the Beach, Tel Aviv


Thursday, July 27, 2017


  • Breakfast at the hotel.

  • Encounter Mini-Retreat—spend the entire day in Palestinian controlled Beit Jalla or Bethlehem and meet Palestinians from different sectors of Palestinian society who will, in unfiltered language, tell their stories, share their pain and their dreams, and provide a precious opportunity to go underneath the stereotypes and the stories the media throws out to the world.

  • Return to Jerusalem.

  • Process the experience with Ezra Korman.

  • Dinner on your own and free evening in Jerusalem.


Overnight: Mt. Zion Hotel, Jerusalem


Friday, July 28, 2017

                                                     Jerusalem: Past, Present, and Future

  • Breakfast at the hotel.

  • Meet Rabbi Tamar Appelbaum, visionary of Kehilat Tzion, a new congregation that is making waves all over the Jewish world.

  • Guided visit to the Jewish Quarter of the Old City, including a visit to the Broad Wall from the First Temple, the Batei Machase Square with the Memorial to the War of Independence, and the ancient and newly rebuilt Hurva Synagogue.

  • Kids’ Track: “Photo-Journey Through the Rova.”

  • Lunch at T’mol Shilshom and meet the owner and friend of Noa’s, David Ehrlich.

  • Free time to rest, enjoy Jerusalem and prepare for Shabbat.

  • Kabbalat Shabbat at Kehilat Tzion.

  • Home Hospitality: “Shabbat of a Life-time” at the home of Rabbi Bill and Batya Berk.


Overnight: Mt. Zion Hotel, Jerusalem


Saturday (Shabbat), July 29, 2017

                                                           Another Jerusalem Shabbat

  • Breakfast at the hotel.

  • Free Shabbat morning—choreograph your own adventures or ask Rabbi Noa Kushner for assistance and ideas.  

  • Shabbat lunch at the hotel.

  • Time for rest.

  • The Poetry of Jerusalem—from the Psalms to Yehudah Amichai, while walking through the neighborhood of Yemin Moshe and Abu Tor, to explore  how Jerusalem was viewed by generations of poets, those who never stepped foot in the holy city as well as those for whom it was a lifelong home.

  • Seudat Shlishit in one of Jerusalem’s parks.

  • Jerusalem Night Spectacular—sound and light show on the walls of the Old City at the David Citadel Museum, narrating 3,000+ years of Jerusalem’s history.


Overnight: Mt. Zion Hotel, Jerusalem


Sunday, July 30, 2017

                                                                  Memories for the Future

  • Breakfast at the hotel.

  • Visit Yad Vashem—Israel’s official National Memorial to the six million Jews killed in the Holocaust, including the Avenue of the Righteous, as well as an opportunity for return visitors to visit the Art Museum and Room of Great Questions.  Rachel Korazim joins us and deepens the experience as she offers a distinctly Israeli take on the meaning and implications of the Holocaust through the stories she has lived and taught for a life-time.

  • Kids’ Track: Kids ten and under are invited to Jerusalem’s famous Biblical Zoo.

  • Drive to Ein Kerem, one of the most beautiful neighborhoods in Jerusalem, birthplace of John the Baptist, and visit the Sisters of Zion Convent.  Learn about their life-long dedication to Holocaust education and to Israel. Short walking tour of the alleyways and art galleries of Ein Kerem with Yair Harel of Kehilat Tzion, followed by a short concert.

  • Lunch on your own in Ein Kerem.

  • Meet the young people who have created Ruach Hadasha, a project seeking to fill a cultural void for secular young people in Jerusalem.

  • Walking tour of the Shuk, Macheneh Yehudah, with tastings.

  • Dinner at the Macheneh Yehudah Restaurant, followed by a free evening in Jerusalem.


Overnight: Mt. Zion Hotel, Jerusalem


Monday, July 31, 2017

                                                                  The Hope Narrative

  • Breakfast at the hotel.

  • Meet one of the activists of Tag Meir, a New Israel Fund Grantee, and learn about the light they are bringing to the dark places of Israeli life.

  • Hesed Project—choose a project to bring some hands-on assistance to people in need.  Options include working at one of Jerusalem’s food banks which depend on volunteers, visiting children at Bikur Cholim Hospital, or joining orphans and kids at risk at the Jerusalem Hills Therapeutic Center near Abu Gosh in painting some of the rooms they live in and study in.

  • Lunch on your own at the Jerusalem Theater Restaurant.

  • Visit the Shalom Hartman Institute for a short tour followed by a teaching by the President, Rabbi Dr. Donniel Hartman.

  • Return to the hotel for a meeting with Kids4Peace, a chance to meet Jewish, Christian, and Moslem kids who are part of one of the most inspirational and hopeful peace projects in Israel, as well as the founder of Kids4Peace, Dr. Yakir Englander.

  • Summary Processing Session followed by festive closing dinner.

  • Transfer to Ben Gurion International Airport for the return to the U.S.


Overnight: Flight to the United States


Tuesday, August 1, 2017

                                                         Arrive back in the United States

Please Note: Speakers and special programs are tentative as of January 15, 2017