Dead Sea: Oldest Natural Spa
Spend an absolutely delightful day indulging in the bountiful amenities at a luxurious resort on the Dead Sea, followed by a trip to Madaba to view its amazing 6th-century mosaic map of Jerusalem and the Holy Land.
After disembarking from the ship in Aqaba, you will transfer from the port via the Wadi Arava Road and begin driving north. Although it takes approximately three hours to reach the Dead Sea, the scenery is quite dramatic, and rest stops will be made along the way.
Upon arriving at the Kempinski Ishtar Hotel Dead Sea, you will have the remainder of the day at leisure to enjoy this luxurious resort as you please. The hotel lies 400 meters (1,312 feet) below sea level, at the lowest point on Earth, and the facilities are just as unique. Although check in is at 3:00pm, you will have complete access to the hotel facilities from the moment you arrive. They include infinity swimming pools, exquisite restaurants, and three lovely enclaves set amidst gardens dotted with lagoons, waterfalls and private pools.
The hotel’s luxury Spa by Anantara captures the naturally therapeutic essence of the Dead Sea, a region blessed with oxygen-rich air, low pollution, bright skies with UV-filtered sunlight, and perhaps most famously, its mineral-rich water and sea mud. Indeed, there are few places on earth so conducive to wellness, if you choose to partake of the spa therapies.
The accommodations in the hotel are carved in natural stone and delicately styled with contemporary fittings. All of the rooms boast enchanting sea view balconies, complimentary mini bar and Internet, and luxury Dead Sea-inspired bathroom amenities.
After settling in to the Kempinski Ishtar Hotel Dead Sea and enjoying its immense facilities, you will have dinner in the main restaurant. Later, you will retire for the evening.
Following a buffet breakfast at the hotel, you will enjoy free time until late morning. Then, after checking out of the hotel, you will drive east to Madaba, known as the “City of Mosaics.”
You will behold the most renowned mosaic in the Greek Orthodox Church of St. George. Created in the 6th century from more than two million pieces of vividly colored local stone, the Mosaic Map of Jerusalem and the Holy Land covers much of the church’s ground floor. It is an absolutely magnificent sight, rivaled only by several other ancient mosaics found elsewhere in the church and in many residences in Madaba.
After viewing the mosaic map and further exploring the church, you will drive to the nearby Haret Jedoudna Restaurant for lunch. Then, settle in for the drive back to Aqaba to re-embark the ship.
Land Program Step by Step: The order of sites visited may vary to avoid congestion. The times indicated are approximate, given here only for general reference purposes and subject to change.
8:45am Disembark at the Aqaba port
9:00am Depart for the Dead Sea via Wadi Arava Road
12:30pm Arrive at the Kempinski Ishtar Hotel Dead Sea
3:00pm Check in at the hotel
Remainder of the day is at your leisure
7:30pm Buffet dinner at the hotel. (Includes 2 beers or 2 glasses of local wine or 2 soft drinks and bottled mineral water)
Overnight at the Kempinski Ishtar Hotel Dead Sea (or similar hotel)
6:30- 10:30am Buffet breakfast at the hotel
At leisure until 11:00am
11:00am Check out from the hotel and luggage to be stored in your vehicle
11:15am Drive to Madaba
12:00pm Arrive at Madaba and visit St. George Church
12:45pm Lunch at Haret Jedoudna Restaurant. (Includes 2 beers or 2 glasses of local wine or 2 soft drinks and bottled mineral water)
2:00pm Drive back to Aqaba port via the Desert Highway to rejoin your ship
6:00pm Arrive at the ship
Approximately 28° Celsius or 83° Fahrenheit
What to Bring:
Weather-appropriate clothing such as hats, sunglasses, and flat comfortable walking shoes are recommended.
Also, bring sunscreen, a swimming suit, and a jacket or a sweater, as it may be cooler at night.
Jordanian Dinar (JOD). U.S. dollars are also widely accepted.
The electrical system is based on 220 AC volts, 50 cycles, and requires rounded two-prong wall plugs. Visitors from the United States will need a transformer; most hotels can provide one if you don’t have one.
No limitation on luggage. However, as you will be staying only for one evening and there are no porters at the port, it is recommended that you take only a handbag for the night.
Documents and Visa Requirements:
Valid passport. Certain nationalities require a visa to stay in Jordan. Please consult with your local embassy prior to booking this program.
Kempinski Ishtar Hotel Dead Sea
Dead Sea Road, Dead Sea, 11180 Jordan
Tel.: + 962 – 5 – 356 8888
*We will only substitute hotels in unforeseen situations. If similar hotels are substituted, they will be of equal ratings and standards.
The Dead Sea water is extremely salty, so be careful not to get water in your eyes, as it can be painful. It is also recommended that you not shave 12 hours prior to going in the Dead Sea, as it too can be painful on your skin.
The Dead Sea Kempinski Ishtar Hotel is a very large resort. If you have difficulty walking, advise the Destination Services Staff on the ship prior to your departure, so a golf cart can be requested to take you around the hotel. Also, while at the hotel, you will need to let Reception know to send you a cart when you require one.
• Hotel accommodation at the 5-Star Kempinski Ishtar Hotel Dead Sea or similar hotel (Superior room located in the main building)
• Meals as mentioned in the above itinerary
• Drinks as mentioned in the above itinerary
• Transfer to and from the port in an air-conditioned vehicle
• English-speaking guide throughout the program
• Entrance fees to Madaba
• Mineral water on board the bus
• Porterage at the hotel
• Gratuities for guides, drivers and hotel staff or restaurant staff
• Lunch on Day 1
• Drinks other than those mentioned in the above itinerary
• Any personal expenses or hotel incidentals, including mini bar and spa services
Please note: Land programs that encompass multiple days ashore customarily include extensive and prolonged activity, while those of shorter durations typically have more moderate activity levels. However, each program varies and participants should be prepared to negotiate a mixture of surfaces, which may include inclines, cobblestones, sand, gravel or natural paths. There may also be a need to climb steps or stairs on occasion. Guests who utilize a wheelchair and those with mobility concerns are advised to check with the cruise line in advance to see if any portion of the tour program may not be considered suitable for their individual situation.