Caesaria

The ancient Herodian port city of Caesarea on Israel


Ancient ruins sit next to some of Israel’s most impressive modern residences at Caesarea. The ancient Herodian port city of Caesarea, located on Israel’s Mediterranean Coast about half way between Tel Aviv and Haifa has recently been restored to create one of Israel’s most attractive and fascinating archaeological sites. The restored Caesarea amphitheater hosts modern-day concerts during the summer months, whilst the Old City has a range of boutiques and restaurants. The new town of Caesarea is a luxurious neighborhood of villas, whose beach, the Caesarea Aqueduct Beach is one of Israel’s most impressive.

Caesarea National Park is one of, if not Israel’s, most impressive archaeological site. The beautifully restored harbor here was built by King Herod and is a work of engineering marvel. The site is a fascinating place to explore and the museum includes a great multimedia explanation of the history of the port. Within the park is the Caesarea Amphitheater, also restored, which during the summer regularly hosts concerts of both local, and international acts. The Harbor Beach is located within the Park although you can enter separately and is totally unique in its setting, with superb facilities. The Park is also home to a unique museum, the world’s only underwater museum where you are able to dive through the underwater ruins of this ancient city.

Outside the national park, in the modern day neighborhood of Caesarea is the Aqueduct Beach one of the most breathtaking beaches imaginable. With an ancient aqueduct marking the edge of the beach the breathtaking approach is even more stunning up close. There is no lifeguard here so bathing is not strictly allowed although it does get busy on summer weekends, but the site is worlds away from the beaches further south with a more rural surrounding and breathtaking archaeological features.

Caesarea also hosts the Ralli Museum, one of four museums around the world funded by philanthropist Harry Recanti. The two galleries at Caesarea focus on Latin American and Sephardic Jewish artwork. The museum is free to enter and has some fantastic pieces so if you’re in the area, and can't resist the urge to see some art, this is the place to go. Nearby is Caesarea Golf Club which is Israel’s only full size golf course. Recently reconstructed by renowned designer Pete Dye, this course plays host, every four years to the Maccabi Games, the Jewish Olympics.

All this is exploring is likely to get your appetite going, and there are some brilliant restaurants in Caesarea at the Harbor. They vary in price although most are pretty good and serve seafood at an awesome location overlooking the Mediterranean.

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