Along the way:
After a morning pick up from the port you’ll drive south, along Israel’s Central Coast Plane, along side Mt Carmel ridge, to Caesarea. on the way back port you’ll ascend up the top of Mt of Mt Carmel, via Stela Maris Rd to the breathtaking vista over the Baha’i Gardens, the city, the bay and beyond to the Galilee Mountains and the border with Lebanon.
What you see:
♦ Caesarea Maritima: Originally built by Herods the Great about 25–13 BCE as the port city Caesarea Maritima. It served as an administrative center of Judaea Province of the Roman Empire, and later the capital of the Byzantine Palaestina Prima province during the classic period and named after Augustus Caesar, the city is also known as being the location of the Roman victory celebration after the fall of Jerusalem, as well as the place where Rabbi Akiva and his disciples were executed following the suppression of the Bar Kochba revolt.
A center for Christian learning during the 3rd century, Caesarea is considered an important site in Christian history. It is here that Pontius Pilate governed during the time of Jesus, where Simon Peter converted Cornelius and where Paul was imprisoned for 2 years. Destroyed at the end of the 13th century, this marvelous ancient city boasts an impressive Roman amphitheater where performances are still held today, an impressive Byzantine street, aqueduct and restored Crusader fortifications along with other artifacts. The once grand city, whose remnants are still regally poised on the edge of the brilliant blue waters of the Mediterranean, will no doubt leave you with many lasting memories.
Now a day this is a National Park and you’ll will visit the ruins and have the chance to be impress of the massive remains of this city’s past:
- The Theater: Herod the Great constructed this theater with a seating capacity of 3,500. According to Josephus, this is where the death of Herod Agrippa occurred, as recounted in Acts 12. The theater was covered with a skin covering (vellum), and visitors probably brought cushions with them to soften the stone seats.
- Herods’ Palace: Josephus called this a “most magnificent palace” that Herod the Great built on a promontory jutting out into the waters of Caesarea. The pool in the center was nearly Olympic in size, and was filled with fresh water.
- The Bath House: This bath house, located in the center of Byzantine Caesarea, is a small but impressive one, built in the traditional Roman way, including the tree main parts of this facility: the Frigidarium (cold rooms), the Tipidarium (warm rooms) and the Caldarium (hot rooms).
- The Crusaders City: In the year 1,101 started the Crusaders era of Caesarea. This was a small city compering to its glory during the Roman-Byzantine period. A small port was built over the ruins of the old one and in year 1251 it was Louis IX of France that fortified the city, ordering the construction of high walls (parts of which are still standing) and a deep moat. However, strong walls could not keep out the sultan Baybars, who ordered his troops to scale the walls in several places simultaneously, enabling them to penetrate the city.
- The Water Aqueduct: This amazing water supplying system, first built by Herods, brought the water, using the High Aqueduct, more than 20km away from the city from the other side of Mt Carmel. Later on in the late Roman period a second High Aqueduct was built by the Roman Legions, as the city grew, and a third one was built during the Byzantine Period known as the Low Aqueduct.
♦ Mt Carmel: Probably the most outstanding viewpoint in Israel. Your day will end with driving up to the mountain top, via Stela Maris Rd, to Lui Promenade right above the Baha’i Gardens, for a breathtaking vista of the city, the bay and far beyond to the Galilee mountain and all the way to Lebanon just before getting back to the port.
- To fully participate may require periods of walking over even and uneven surfaces. There are steps, inclines, cobblestone surfaces, and periods of standing.
- The price include guiding and transportation only.
- The price does not include admissions and meals.
- Extra cost expected for admissions – 40/24₪ per Adl/Chl