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Only 4 days in Jerusalem with 3 side trips

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Austin, TX
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Only 4 days in Jerusalem with 3 side trips

There is so much informaion on this site that I am a little, no very, overwhelmed.

My Husband and I are traveling to Jerusalem in 3 weeks. We want to take day trips to Petra, The Dead Sea and get baptized in the Jordan.

My first question is: Can we get baptized and if so, who do we contact to make that happen?

Second question: Is it better to stay in Jerusalem and take day trips to these places or backpack it and stay at each destination.

Third question: How do we find a guide to get to Petra, Dead Sea and the Jordan river? We have tried to contact some of the postings suggestions but have not yet received a response from our inquiries. Thanks for any information you are able to give.

Jerusalem, Israel
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1. Re: Only 4 days in Jerusalem with 3 side trips

Firstly, welcome to the Forum !

OK, now to answer your question - although Israel is a small country, it isn't THAT small. Technically, you can do all 4 places (Petra, Dead Sea, Jerusalem and the Jordan river) in just 4 days, but personally, I would really really not do it - you will be spending most of your time on the road, and will not have enough time to enjoy yourselves.

I would suggest leaving Petra out of the itinerary, and basing yourself in Jerusalem. From there you can take 2 side trips, one to the Dead Sea and the other to the Jordan river.

However, in order to give you a fuller answer, I need to know whether you are going to be just 4 days in Israel, or more than 4 days in Israel, out of which 4 in Jerusalem. Also, where are you entering and leaving Israel from - Ben Gurion airport, or Jordan (and if Jordan, then where)?

Israel
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2. Re: Only 4 days in Jerusalem with 3 side trips

I don't know whom to contact re" Jordan River baptism, but March is still a bit cold for dunking yourself in a river...

If you cut out Petra, as suggested, then you can simplify things greatly by basing yourself in Jerusalem and taking daytips. Unless you don't mind packing/unpacking/schlepping your stuff around with you.

Washington State
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3. Re: Only 4 days in Jerusalem with 3 side trips

>My first question is: Can we get baptized and if so, who do we contact to make that happen?

>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>

This may not be as easy as you might think.

Most of the water of the Jordan river is impounded in the Sea of Galilee, so there isn’t always a lot of water south towards the Dead Sea. But even more to the point, much of that area was a “no man’s land” between Israel and Jordan after the War of ’67. While Israel and Jordan are now in a very secure peace, very little of that area was been converted to public access.

So, unless your ready to bungi jump off the Allenby bridge, you need to go to the very south end of the Sea of Galilee to a place the Israelis have set up for baptism – Yardenit. Here is a good web site on the location: http://www.biblewalks.com/Sites/yardenit.html . Ignore the suggestion on the web site that this might be where Jesus was baptized by John. No reputable scholar would suggest this.

The site rents white gowns and has dressing rooms and lockers. The water is not the most pristine and you sometimes have these really big catfish swimming around (if I was it get baptized in the Jordan, I’d head to Banias).

The biggest problem is that –as far as I know – they do not provide anyone to do baptisms for “walk-ins”. Most people go there with a pastor as a part of a tour. Roman Catholics and Eastern Orthodox don’t really baptize like this, so it’s hard to find a local pastor. You could just go there hope to find a group that was there and ask if their pastor could baptize you along with their group. I can certainly think of pastors for whom that might be problem, but I think most understand the symbolism of the act and are a little flexible in places like that.

Alternately, if you do go to Jordan, you might be able to stop at a place that was very likely a place that John the Baptist could have dunked Jesus:

http://www.baptismsite.com/

www.tourism.jo/Baptism_Site/Baptism_Site.asp

Austin, TX
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4. Re: Only 4 days in Jerusalem with 3 side trips

Yes, we are in Israel (flying into TLV) for 5 days but we leave TLV at 1:00am on the 5th day. I will check out the websites suggested on the Jordan River. Again, how do we get a guide and how much does a guide charge?

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5. Re: Only 4 days in Jerusalem with 3 side trips

Well, truly you should leave more time for Jerusalem itself. Can't you stay a bit longer than 5 days altogether?

Cincinnati, Ohio
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6. Re: Only 4 days in Jerusalem with 3 side trips

For a guide, if you search this forum, you will find a number of recommendations. Guides tend to run about $150-160 USD for a half-day (4-5 hours), $250 or so for a full day, and if the guide drives you, about $350 USD per day, plus meals and overnight accommodations if needed.

Douglas Duckett

7. Re: Only 4 days in Jerusalem with 3 side trips

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Cincinnati, Ohio
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8. Re: Only 4 days in Jerusalem with 3 side trips

Our questions are answered -- this is a self-promoting advertisement of a commercial nature, and is thus strictly prohibited by the sites's guidelines. I'm reporting it accordingly.

Douglas Duckett

Israel
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9. Re: Only 4 days in Jerusalem with 3 side trips

Thank, Douglas, for acting so fast.

10. Re: Only 4 days in Jerusalem with 3 side trips

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