The best way to explore Bethlehem, famous for being the birthplace of Jesus and King David and celebrated in Christmas carols for centuries. Over one million tourists visit Bethlehem every year.
Bethlehem has great historical and religious value to both Christianity and Judaism, making it one of the top locations for those visiting Israel. Holy sites of mangers, Biblical figures, and angels are just the beginning of what makes this city so special.
Main Sights in Bethlehem
Church of Nativity
The Church of the Nativity, or Basilica of the Nativity, is one of the oldest working churches in existence today. It is located right above the Grotto of the Nativity, which is said to be the birthplace of Jesus.
Filled with cafés, restaurants, and souvenir stores, Manger Square is the center of the action, the hub of modern Bethlehem. The Church of the Nativity is on the eastern side of the square, while the Mosque of Omar is on the western side.
Church of St. Catherine
This 19th-century Roman Catholic Church is the parish church for Bethlehem’s Catholics and is also often used by groups of pilgrims. The midnight Mass beamed from Bethlehem to television viewers worldwide on Christmas Eve is celebrated in this church. And, fun fact: It even shares a wall with the Church of Nativity!
The Shepherds’ Field
Home to breathtaking views and a special 4th century church excavated in 1972, the Shepherds’ Field is widely recognized as the place where the birth of Jesus was announced by the angels.
Our Guided Tour Options
It can be challenging to get to all the must-see sights when you’re a new visitor. Bethlehem tours help you explore the city the way you want to while gaining a deep understanding of what you are seeing. Explore a combination of the sights you want to see without worrying that you are missing out. You are sure to cover all the highlights.
We offer wonderful options for guided Israel tours, but to fully experience Bethlehem, we recommend our tours. Some of our most popular 1-day tours include Bethlehem and Jerusalem and Bethlehem and Jericho. However, we recommend joining our Bethlehem Tour or Midnight Mass in Bethlehem to get the full experience of this special place. Look into the many tour options we provide to see what the best fit is for you.
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Frequently Asked Questions
If you are a Christian, Bethlehem should be one of your top priorities to visit. With historically significant sites such as the Church of Nativity, Manger Square, and Shepherds’ Field, you will be amazed at how much there is to see. Its history and beauty set it apart.
Here at Egged Tours, we provide a large selection of half-day, single day and multiple day guided tours. Major destinations include Bethlehem, Jerusalem, the Dead Sea, Masada tours, Galilee, and the Golan Heights. If you prefer to combine several destinations, we also offer Israel tour packages for your convenience.
April and May are the best months to visit Israel. Spring is the ideal season for a Bethlehem tour because the weather is pleasant and fewer tourists come to visit. October through November are also mild months when crowds are thin.
Yes! Bethlehem and Jericho are both Christian holy sites, making these two locations the perfect combination for a day-trip. Our Bethlehem and Jericho tour highlights two of the world’s most historic and beautiful places with a qualified and licensed tour guide, all on the same day.
Even one day in Bethlehem is enough to see many of the city’s historical sites and to get a taste of the birthplace of Jesus and King David. To get the most of your experience, we recommend our one-day Bethlehem tour.
Guided Bethlehem tours enhance your trip in so many ways:
- They know a lot: Tour guides in Israel are required to have a license from the Ministry of Tourism and must renew it every two years. This means that you are sure to learn from a tour guide who is informed and knowledgeable. There are countless details and historical facts you will miss without the experience of a tour.
- They take care of all the planning: Tour guides plan all the logistics and details of a trip you might not have even thought about. They take care of all the hassle, from checking operating hours and booking tickets to handling any problems that might arise.
- They know the best routes: There is a lot to see and only so much time. Tour guides will plan the trip in the way that makes the most logical sense. Instead of taking circular routes to see all the sites you want to see (and then being disappointed when you miss something), tour guides make sure you see all the places that matter most to you.