Archaeologists have uncovered exciting new Roman features dating back to the 2nd or 3rd century in Caesarea, along with the newly reconstructed Crusader Market and Promenade.
Caesarea was once an important Roman city port on Israel’s Mediterranean coast, and archaeologists have been working through layers of Byzantine, Crusader and Herodian remains to find Roman treasure. The Israel Antiquities Authority recently uncovered a rare colorful mosaic with an inscription in ancient Greek dating back 1,800 years to when Caesarea was the Roman Empire’s administrative center in the Province of Judea. The mosaic is being cleaned and prepared for public viewing from a new promenade that was recently opened in the Caesarea National Park.
New Caesarea Promenade
The Caesarea National Park encloses the preserved Roman theater, built by the Emperor Vespasian, and the remains of King Herod’s magnificent Reef Palace. Thanks to a $42 million investment by the Edmond de Rothschild Foundation, the Park is now being expanded to showcase other important historical finds, connected to one another by a new promenade walkway.
The Crusaders Wall Promenade comprises reconstructed sections of walls built in the 13th Century under orders from King Louis IX of France. The Crusader’s Market from the same era has also been reconstructed and can be explored today. Watch this video about the opening of the new promenade.
Time Travel in Caesarea
Walking through Caesarea National Park is like walking through time, tracing the history of the many civilizations that conquered Israel and left their mark on its landscape. The scale of the buildings – palaces, theaters, hippodromes, aqueducts, fountains and bath-houses – and the high quality of the mosaics that they left behind show how important this country was to them.
Great kings, emperors and governors chose to build in Caesarea because they expected to stay there for many centuries. However, the relentless march of history left each generation’s buildings crumbled beneath the constructions built by the next conquering civilization.
The Israel Antiquities Authority is still peeling off the archaeological layers in Caesarea and finding exciting new discoveries. If world history interests you and you would like to visit Caesarea on your next trip to Israel, contact Shatour and we will include it in your personalized itinerary.