Week 1: Arrival, evening of Sunday, August 6th
              Departure, after lunch Friday, August 11th
Week 2: Arrival, evening of Sunday, August 13th
              Departure, after lunch Friday, August 18th
Week 3: Arrival, evening of Sunday, August 20th
              Departure, after lunch Friday, August 25th
Week 4: Arrival, evening of Sunday, August 27th
              Departure, after lunch Friday, September 1st

If you are staying from week to week, your room will still be your room on the Saturday(s) of the relevant weekend(s). So for example, if you are registered for Weeks 1, 2 and 3, you will arrive late in the day on Sunday the 6th and depart after lunch on Friday the 25th. If you have questions about your specific circumstances, email Margaret,

Rooms must be vacated on the final day of the Team Member’s stay. We regret that Team Members are not permitted to remain in the monastery after the close of the Expedition. The accommodations are booked, and must be readied for the next occupants.If you have paid your fees but unexpectedly have to change your plans, refunds for dig participation and/or course withdrawal can be granted prior to April 15, 2017. Refunds for course withdrawal or cancellation of dig participation after April 15, 2017 cannot be guaranteed and are at the discretion of the excavation directors.



Transportation to the site will be provided at the start of the season. The bus will depart Ben Gurion at 18:00 for The Monastery of the Ark of the Covenant, our base during the excavation. Dinner and Orientation will take place at 19:30.


Transportation from the site will be provided also at the end of the season. The bus will depart from The Monastery of the Ark of the Covenant at 14:00 for Ben Gurion Airport.

The dig will provide transportation from the airport to the Monastery and from the Monastery to the airport at the beginning and end of each dig week. 

*signup for the dig bus, is available only after you’ve completed all registration for the season.

Work Week

We dig Monday to Friday! Team members enjoy free weekends from Friday after lunch to Sunday evenings (we provide dinner on Sunday nights, but weekend meals are NOT provided). Note that your Expedition fee includes your room on the monastery for the weekends, but meals are NOT provided by the dig. See “Expectations” for information on eating over the weekend if you choose to stay on the monastery. 

The work starts early! Luckily, we don’t have far to go to get to the excavation areas which are only steps outside the guest house! Everyone will report to their designated areas and will work under the direction of their Area Supervisor. Work will begin at 05:00 in the morning!

Supervisors will assign excavation tasks depending on the goals of the area and the needs of the day. Team Members almost always remain in their assigned area for the duration of their stay. This allows everyone to become accustomed to the work and to witness progress over time.  Scheduled tours of all the areas of excavation will allow you to learn about the other work going on at the site.

Activity on the tel can be taxing, but is balanced between heavy excavation and lighter work with small tools. Assignments range from loosening soil with pickaxes or hauling buckets or wheelbarrows of dirt, to trimming the sides of baulks with trowels, sifting for small objects or sweeping the ground to prepare for photography.

You will clean a lot of dirt! We work under large shades and you will be reminded to drink lots of water. Bathroom facilities are available!  Daytime temperatures range from 

82-95° F. (28-35 C.). 

Bring a hat and sun block, and a container for water which you can refill as necessary. Sturdy boots to protect feet and ankles are best. Some folks make due with sneakers that are in good shape. Sandals or any sort of open shoe are NOT permitted in the excavation areas (Check out our blog for all the tips on packing). 

In our “dig camp” at the Monastery, Team Members will process the material they have excavated during Afternoon Work. This will consist primarily of washing pottery and bones, but may also include assisting with other registration tasks as necessary. Afternoon work is done outside in shaded areas of the monastery and all team members will participate.

Digs can be fantastic experiences if you come prepared for the outdoor conditions.  Please think seriously about your ability to do manual labor under a hot sun.

After all that work, everyone needs some Quiet Time. Many people rest during the free time roughly between 2:00-4:00pm and we expect the area in and around our dorm building to be quiet during this time. Also, many people go to bed quite early to be rested for the next day’s work, so Quiet Time is also in affect beginning at 9:30PM. That means no loud noise, music or conversations, in person or on the phone, in the outdoor areas around our rooms. We will point out areas on the campus of the monastery to which anyone wishing to hold lively conversations, hang out, play music, etc. after 9:30PM may go. Everyone gets up very early—please respect those who wish to go to sleep early too!

Twice a week (Tuesday and Thursday) we will have access to the pool in the nearby hotel. It’s an 8 minute bus drive from the monastery. The bus will leave at 14:15 and return at 15:45. So don’t forget to bring a bathing suit and a pool towel.   


Daily Dig Schedule

 04:30 Suggested Wake-Up Time: You are responsible for getting yourself up in time
 05:00-08:30 Work on site!
 08:30-09:00 Buffet breakfast
 09:00-11:00 Work on site!
 11:00-11:15 Break
 11:15-13:00 Work on site!
 13:15 Lunch
 After Lunch Free Time! Rest, Use the Wi-Fi, shop at Abu Gosh.
 16:00-18:00 Afternoon Work
 18:00-19:00 Lecture Program (TBA)
 19:00 Dinner
 20:00-21:00 Lecture Program (TBA)
 21:00 End of the Day!