The city of Caesarea is an ancient and fascinating port city located on the shores of the Mediterranean!
Caesarea has founded in the years 25-13 BC. Old and impressive buildings, which can be admired to this day, were built by King Herod, the ‘Builder King’ who even dedicated the entire city to Emperor(Caesar) Augustus – hence its name – Caesarea. The ancient port that was the pulsating heart of the town, ‘Port of Sebastos’, built by Herod, is also dedicated to the emperor Augustus – Sebastos is the Greek version of his name.
The magnificent construction, along with the movement of the waves and the sea – make any trip in the city stunning and even add a touch of romance and a nostalgic atmosphere! Caesarea’s convenient location on the coastal road, about 50 kilometers north of Tel Aviv and about 40 kilometers south of Haifa, even makes it an accessible, famous, and popular destination.
Caesarea – “Beautiful scenery”
In his book “History of the Jewish War,” Yosef ben Matityahu describes Caesarea’s city. Indeed, even about 2,000 years later, today – it is impossible not to agree with him. To see and experience the glorious city, it is recommended first to visit the ‘Caesarea National Park‘, where many impressive buildings have been amazingly preserved to this day:
The Roman theater built by King Herod stands at the entrance to the national park. In the distant past, the ordinary people and seafarers who visited the city came to watch dramas and comedies – and it certainly provided the need for the leisure culture that was typical of the period. This is an impressive Roman theater built as a classical model, as a semicircle – a threshing floor, blocks of seats, an orchestra, corridors, and more. Today, the renovated theater serves as a coveted performance center for the most generous artists in Israel. They see performing in Caesarea as a significant milestone and an important achievement in their musical careers.
The reef palace, next to the Roman theater, was built on top of a marine reef. Although much of the palace’s remains have sunk into the sea, some of the palace’s remains can still be seen, and the imagination can be activated when it comes to the astonishing splendor of the court in the past. You can see the remains of a swimming pool in the palace, an impressive mosaic floor, and more.
Another ancient Roman site whose purpose was culture, located right in front of the shoreline, is the Hippodrome – built in Herod’s days and used in the past for various city celebrations. Among the events that took place there, athletics competitions, gladiatorial fights, music events, horse races, and more. In recent years the activity has returned to the Hippodrome!
Nature and Parks Authority, which operates the site, holds many activities for children and families on holidays and vacations – and allows everyone an experiential journey, back in real-time!
In addition to everything we mentioned – an ancient toilet building, a bathhouse, the old port, a display of archeological finds, audio-visual exhibits, and more, are just a small part of the variety of activities in the national park!
So a visit to it from start to finish is highly recommended – and never ceases to amaze!
A day of fun in Caesarea!
In addition to the impressive old buildings, Caesarea has a large selection of cafes and restaurants in the atmosphere of antiquity and the Mediterranean coast;
Which is a refreshing and tasty stop during the trip.
The beaches of Caesarea are a great place to spend a lot of time, for travelers in groups, families, couples, or even as a quiet corner to think and relax for those traveling alone.
The ‘Aqueduct Beach’ (arches), also called the ‘Aqueduct Beach‘ to which admission is free, got its name from the ancient and impressive aqueduct, which is right at the beach entrance. Beautiful shells and stones in various colors, coves, and different fun places to swim, will ensure many hours of enjoyment on the stunning beach.
‘Port Beach’ – a short walk from the galleries and attractions of Caesarea Port, with clean sand, rental of chairs, sunbeds, and umbrellas, restaurant, toilets, and wardrobes – also a great place to spend time, enjoy it and swim safely in the calm and shallow water in front of the remaining breakwater, since the time of Herod.
Caesarea’s city is a spectacular combination of sea and antiquities, history, archeology, preservation, and renewal – the unique experience of a trip there is guaranteed!