The weather of Israel is similar to Southern California. The Sea of Galilee area will be around 80 degrees the days we are there. Jerusalem will also be around 80 and the dead sea area, Masada, Qumran, and the En Gedi will be around 90 degrees. We can check the long-range weather reports to see if rain is expected to know if umbrellas will be necessary but I doubt it!
Pack clothes that you are happy to wear all day! Comfortable, not dressy, easy to pack clothes. An assortment of pants, jeans, shorts, T-Shirts, shirts, blouses, light sweaters and jackets, and a bathing suit should be all you need for the 12 days. The hotels have laundry service but no washers and dryers. If you have things that hand wash easily – and you like them – pack those!
Shoes that feel good ALL DAY! Whatever that means to you – sturdy sandals, tennis shoes, walking shoes with low heels, and even flip flops if you are used to wearing those. We will be walking over stones, hiking on paths and walking in churches and through cobblestone streets.
You don’t have to dress up for dinner or breakfast at the hotels, you will NEVER need to feel dressed up unless you just like to do that.
If you like wearing a hat, pack one for walking around archaeological sites like Megiddo, Masada, Bet Shen and Qumran as they don’t have much shade.
What to wear when….
When we visit churches, the Temple Mount and other sacred sites, everyone (men and women) will need to have their knees and shoulders covered – so no shorts or tank tops on those days. Plan to wear long pants or capris, and if you are wearing a sleeveless shirt, plan to wear a light jacket or sweater to cover your shoulders while we are at sacred or church sites. FYI – the buses are air conditioned so you might appreciate a light sweater or jacket anyway! Shorts and sleeveless tops are OK for all other sites, Tel Dan, Bet She’an, Qumran, Masada, En Gedi, and Hezekiah’s Tunnel.
For baptism during our Galilee stay, you can bring a bathing suit to change into at the Yardenit Baptism site or just wear something you don’t mind getting wet! They require that a white robe be worn during baptisms, a towel and changing areas are available for a fee of $10 which includes the white robe.
When we raft down the Jordan River, first – it is NOT white water rafting, it is a nice easy ride down the river in kayaks and rafts – you will probably want to wear either a bathing suit or clothes you don’t mind getting wet, plus water shoes, sandals or flip flops (ask Rich what he will wear!) The same for Hezekiah’s Tunnel, we may be wading through water as high as our knees in some areas, but mainly the water will be ankle deep. So shorts and water type shoes are recommended. If you have a flashlight or headgear with a light – that would be fun to bring, as it is dark in that tunnel!