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JEWISH Caesarea

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Caesarea is without a doubt one of the more picturesque locations in Israel. The city’s roots go back to the 1st century BCE and till today most of the archaeological remains are a standard part of the everyday lives of residents. When you need a break from the stunning beaches head into town for some of the best rated hummus in Israel or perhaps a tour of the Ralli Museum. stone bridge on the beach of Caesarea The History of Caesarea Caesarea has a very old illustrious history. The city was commissioned by King Herod the Great to be a distinct port city and capital for the Romans. Judea was at the time a Roman province and Herod was the king who would take the architecture of Judea to the next level. He built the Second Temple in Jerusalem and at the time it was the most impressive architectural feat of the ancient world. Many of Israel’s most famous structures were constructed under the term of Herod. Herod was not only a wonderful developer of the urban scene he was also a very savvy politician. He understood that the Romans would have felt politically and culturally inferior to the substantial structure of the temple, and so he constructed for the conquerors their own equally impressive port city. This he named in honor of Caesar, hence the name Caesarea.  ancient Caesarea colosseum with arches Walking around the city one would think they were in ancient Rome as it contained all the major architectural points of a Roman city. These include a coliseum, an impressive aqueduct system, and even a race track where chariot games would be conducted annually. There was an additional full scale Roman bath and imported goods from across the empire. Today concerts are still held in the Caesarea colosseum, a testament to the impressive legacy of King Herod. Today, Caesarea is known for having some of the most gorgeous and least populated stretches of beach along the blue Mediterranean. In the city harbor you can find some delicious restaurants like Pelogi, a family owned business that combines Israeli and Italian cuisine. Neighborhoods of villas have sprung up along the coast, impressive real estate in an even more impressive pastoral location.     The Top Sites to Visit in Caesarea Speaking of impressive locations, one of the best sites that captures the ancient grace and luxury of Caesarea is the Maritime Museum. This museum houses the largest collection of artifacts from the city’s long history including Byzantine and Crusader artifacts. While many of these artifacts were uncovered in archaeological excavations some were unearthed by accident. Farmers tilling their soil would happen upon columns, coins, pediments etc. all acquired and exhibited by the museum both indoors and outdoors. Many of the artifacts have been placed back in their original location among the ancient sites in Caesarea. Museum visitors can book walking tours of the grounds and the surrounding city.  Speaking of archaeological remains in their original context, be sure to pay a visit to the Underwater Archaeological Park. The Caesarea diving society has all sorts of tours available for divers with little or tons of diving experience. Some of the things you will see resting at the bottom of the Mediterranean include ancient anchors and portions of the old port. The beauty and history of Caesarea has since captured the attention of the world. Its charm made it the chosen location for one of Israel’s most respected and internationally renowned museums, the Ralli Museum. The complex houses a very large collection of contemporary Latin American art. There are five Ralli Museums around the world and two of them are located in Israel. The second museum pays homage to the history and art of Spanish Jews.  The city of Caesarea is without a doubt one of the crown jewels in ancient and modern Israeli history. Herod’s original construction plans still amazes seasoned modern architects. This is a testament to the king's commitment to create a city that would never be forgotten throughout the ages of the world. Today Caesarea is adding to its regal worldly nature with new and luxurious housing, innovative restaurants, and a highly developed arts scene.            

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SITES TO SEE

Sites

Ralli Museum

The Ralli Museums in Caesarea are part of five Ralli Museums in the world, an institution founded by Harry Recanati. The main aim of the museums is to disseminate contemporary Latin American art. When appreciating Latin American surrealism, the folkloric motifs and the figurative emphasis, one can grasp the importance of these great works of contemporary art. The museums were dedicated to the memory of the Jews expelled from Spain and Portugal during the Inquisition and of the Jewish community of Thessaloniki, which was almost completely exterminated in the Holocaust. Ralli 1 The first Ralli Museum in Caesarea was built in a Spanish colonial style that perfectly fits the pastoral landscape of Caesarea. The size of the museum is about 9000 square meters, and the building is located in the center of a 40-hectare sculpture garden with palm trees, carob trees, citrus and olive trees. The museum has five exhibit halls as well as several octagonal patios with a central fountain. The floor is made of red terracotta tiles and frames consisting of strips of wood and white tiles with a motif of blue clover leaves. These beautiful tiles were especially designed in Uruguay for the Ralli Museums. The museum was conceived taking into account the light and weather conditions of the country. Natural light comes from large windows opening onto the courtyards. The upper level has one large sculpture square overlooking the sea, and through the arches one can appreciate the arches of the Roman aqueduct on the horizon. The square features sculptures in bronze, marble and acrylic by famous European artists such as Dali and Rodin, as well as Latin-American sculptors. Ralli 2 The second museum commemorates the great golden age of Spanish Jewry. The architectural style is Spanish (Moorish) and in the center of the large central courtyard stands a fountain with 12 lions, as in the Alhambra Palace in Granada, Spain. According to historians, this motif originated in the palace of King David in Jerusalem. The fountain is surrounded by marble statues of Maimonides, Ibn Gabirol, Yehuda Halevi and Spinoza. The building has four stories, and the exhibits consist of paintings with Biblical themes created by European artists in the 16th to 18th centuries. Both museums effectively integrate the visual arts: architecture, sculpture and painting.

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TOURS OF Caesarea

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Jewish Style Restaurants

Restaurants

Yosef Hummus

Yosef Hummus was born in Pardes Hanna as a tiny hummus shop at the entrance to Yosef's family's spice store; it had just three tables but lots of love! About a decade ago, the hummus restaurant moved to the new location where it is to this day. Our chickpeas are served hot and ground fresh in front of customers, served with a variety of toppings, special salads, and original home-made dishes born from crowd requests. Yosef's menu also has vegans and gluten-free options. Cooking has always been Yosef's greatest pleasure, but his greatest love was making hummus. Cooking and entertaining accompanied him all his life and even as a young child, at his parents' house, the door was always open to anyone who just wanted to come. In the kitchen, which was everyone's meeting place, the smells were amazing, as special dishes were always prepared, and around the small table, friends and guests gathered daily, enjoying every bite and the special atmosphere. After the army Yosef studied engineering, industry and management at the Ruppin Academic Center. He financed his studies from his job as a cook, but upon graduation he quit his job in the kitchen and began working as an employee in the sales field for several years. One day, when he returned from a routine visit to one of his clients, Yosef had a not-so-simple car accident, which sidelined him for six months. Yoseph fought and went through a long rehabilitation process, and at the end he felt it was time to do what he really loved. So he decided to leave the sales field and return to work as a full-time cook. Soon, thanks to the perseverance, determination and managerial authority he demonstrated, Yosef progressed to the managerial role as chef of several restaurants in Caesarea, while enriching his knowledge and culinary experience. After a few years a number of investors, who were very attached to Yosef's tastes and creativity, approached him with an offer to open restaurants overseas. After a short time abroad, Yosef returned to Israel, as the option to move with his family overseas was not possible. Therefore, upon his return, Yosef decided to take the opportunity and embark on an independent journey. He opened a small hummus shop in front of his family's spice shop in Pardes Hanna. The concept of the little hummus spot was that all the food is made in front of the customer's eyes, meaning what you see is what you eat, and the food is served hot and fresh. The rumor about the delicious chickpeas and homemade dishes spread by word of mouth, and many people, even from far areas, flocked to the place. With the success, came a demand to open more branches and additional shops were opened in cities such as Caesarea, Ramat Aviv, Givatayim, and Holon.

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CITY GUIDES

Guides

Slava Bazarsky

The best way to see Israel is with a professional Israeli private tour guide. However, with thousands of guides to choose from, making the right decision can be difficult. This page will explain why you made the right choice! My name is Slava, I'm a Private Tour Guide in Israel. I was born in Ukraine and moved to Israel with my family on the 1988 "Aliya." We were on our way to the United States, but God had other plans for us, so we ended up in Israel. I served in the Israeli military in one of the top intelligence units, which was unquestionably one of the best experiences of my life in terms of maturing and acquiring various "tools" for the future. I'm married with two beautiful daughters. I graduated from the University of Tel Aviv with a BA in International Relations, and my next step was the Israel Ministry of Tourism academy, where I gained 2.5 years of valuable experience and a depth of knowledge about my beloved home, Israel. I adore my incredible country, and after completing my military service, I work as a licensed private tour guide in Israel, specializing in cultures, religions, gastronomy, architecture, and archeology. I crossed Israel back and forth and flipped every stone to tell you everything there is to know about my country. I have been working as a private tour guide in Israel since 2006, and I am currently ranked in the top 10 best Israeli tour companies and among the best Israeli tour guides. I was also nominated by TripAdvisor as one of the best private tour guides in Israel in 2019 and won second place! I am fluent in five languages (English, Russian, Hebrew, Arabic, and Ukrainian), and my services have been used by some of the world's largest corporations and their guests.

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World Jewish Travel Official May 23, 2022

Caesarea, Israel: The Jewel of Roman Judea

Caesarea is without a doubt one of the more picturesque locations in Israel. The city’s roots go back to the 1st century BCE and till today most of the archaeological remains are a standard part of the everyday lives of residents. When you need a break from the stunning beaches head into town for some of the best rated hummus in Israel or perhaps a tour of the Ralli Museum. The History of Caesarea Caesarea has a very old illustrious history. The city was commissioned by King Herod the Great to be a distinct port city and capital for the Romans. Judea was at the time a Roman province and Herod was the king who would take the architecture of Judea to the next level. He built the Second Temple in Jerusalem and at the time it was the most impressive architectural feat of the ancient world. Many of Israel’s most famous structures were constructed under the term of Herod. Herod was not only a wonderful developer of the urban scene he was also a very savvy politician. He understood that the Romans would have felt politically and culturally inferior to the substantial structure of the temple, and so he constructed for the conquerors their own equally impressive port city. This he named in honor of Caesar, hence the name Caesarea.  Walking around the city one would think they were in ancient Rome as it contained all the major architectural points of a Roman city. These include a coliseum, an impressive aqueduct system, and even a race track where chariot games would be conducted annually. There was an additional full scale Roman bath and imported goods from across the empire. Today concerts are still held in the Caesarea colosseum, a testament to the impressive legacy of King Herod. Today, Caesarea is known for having some of the most gorgeous and least populated stretches of beach along the blue Mediterranean. In the city harbor you can find some delicious restaurants like Pelogi, a family owned business that combines Israeli and Italian cuisine. Neighborhoods of villas have sprung up along the coast, impressive real estate in an even more impressive pastoral location.     The Top Sites to Visit in Caesarea Speaking of impressive locations, one of the best sites that captures the ancient grace and luxury of Caesarea is the Maritime Museum. This museum houses the largest collection of artifacts from the city’s long history including Byzantine and Crusader artifacts. While many of these artifacts were uncovered in archaeological excavations some were unearthed by accident. Farmers tilling their soil would happen upon columns, coins, pediments etc. all acquired and exhibited by the museum both indoors and outdoors. Many of the artifacts have been placed back in their original location among the ancient sites in Caesarea. Museum visitors can book walking tours of the grounds and the surrounding city.  Speaking of archaeological remains in their original context, be sure to pay a visit to the Underwater Archaeological Park. The Caesarea diving society has all sorts of tours available for divers with little or tons of diving experience. Some of the things you will see resting at the bottom of the Mediterranean include ancient anchors and portions of the old port. The beauty and history of Caesarea has since captured the attention of the world. Its charm made it the chosen location for one of Israel’s most respected and internationally renowned museums, the Ralli Museum. The complex houses a very large collection of contemporary Latin American art. There are five Ralli Museums around the world and two of them are located in Israel. The second museum pays homage to the history and art of Spanish Jews.  The city of Caesarea is without a doubt one of the crown jewels in ancient and modern Israeli history. Herod’s original construction plans still amazes seasoned modern architects. This is a testament to the king's commitment to create a city that would never be forgotten throughout the ages of the world. Today Caesarea is adding to its regal worldly nature with new and luxurious housing, innovative restaurants, and a highly developed arts scene.            

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HOTELS IN Caesarea

Hotels

Villa Rouge

Villa Rouge in Caesarea is the perfect place to stay while having a vacation in the holy land. A direct train will take you from the international BG (Ben Gurion) airport to Binyamina station located 5 minutes from Villa Rouge. In less than an hour drive you will get from the villa to holy places including lake Gallie, Bethlehem, Nazareth. To the famous mount Carmel, you can walk by foot. To Tel Aviv you can get by train (30 minutes) to Jerusalem it is recommended to go by car (90 minutes). Even if you will choose to visit the dead sea and Mount Masada you will still be able to come back on the same day. Villa Rouge, a luxurious villa with a swimming pool located on the ancient sea route, at the foot of the ancient aqueduct built by Emperor Herod. In the fascinating historic location, where goods were moved from Antioch in Minor Asia (Anatolia) to Alexandria in Egypt. The caravans loaded with grain, gold and all merchandise, were looking for shelter from thieves and robbers. The caravans took an overnight sleep in a Khan-shaped buildings. Sites surrounding the villa Villa Rouge designed as a Khan building. The villa is located a few meters beneath the ancient Roman aqueduct which is standing there for over 2,000 years. You can stop and admire the beauty of the ancient Roman aqueduct which led the water from mount Carmel to ancient Caesarea and climb it. A short drive from the villa, you will discover the most beautiful beaches of Israel – Arches Beach in Caesarea, the picturesque fishing village of Jisr a Zarqa, including Jasr a Zarqa Beach. A tour in Reserved Dor Beach is recommended throughout the year, including winter. Surfing is recommended at the surfing club at Sdot Yam Beach where you can share the waves with world Olympic surfing champions.

Hotels

Dan Caesarea Resort

The iconic Dan Caesarea Hotel, built by Baron Rothschild for the benefit of the jet-setters of the 1960's, has been transformed. Welcome to the new Dan Caesarea Resort! What was, until recently, a classic hotel etched in the memories of an entire generation, is now a phenomenal resort that has embraced a new approach to the old hotel. From a hotel that offered pleasant rooms for guests, a unique resort has been created that affords a complete and ultimate experience of relaxation and happiness. All the areas of the resort have been refurbished and upgraded to assure each guest a fresh, up-to-date and memorable experience. The public areas and the revamped rooms were designed to make every guest happy and to escape the humdrum routine of daily life. All the design choices were made with this in mind - from the highest quality materials to the most indulgent delights. Contemporary works of art are on display throughout the complex and include familiar works alongside the revolving art exhibitions of the Gordon Gallery. The new design language creates a happy connection between nature and the location of Caesarea, the hotel’s luxurious past and the tranquil atmosphere of the resort. Instead of the lobby, an entirely new experience has been created for you. At the ‘SALON BOCCA,’ enjoy a choice cocktail and new novel, appetizing menu. Beside the pool, be surprised by Imperial Palms, the refreshing bar with a full menu of summer drinks. Take a well-stocked picnic hamper from the new cafeteria with you to enjoy wherever you wish on the extensive lawns of the resort, down to the nearby beach or even next door for a round of golf. Did we say anything about feeling happy? The brand new resort offers the ultimate combination of an active vacation and relaxing time, standing proudly alongside the most beautiful resorts in the world. At Dan Caesarea, an exciting variety of activities await the whole family, in a soothing and indulgent atmosphere. Sixty-two acres of landscaped gardens surrounding the huge central pool, fully equipped hi-tech fitness center, a swanky spa, all-absorbing, unique activities for children, and innovative culinary treats. Did we mention feeling happy? There are 116 spacious bedrooms and suites to choose from, all with balconies overlooking Caesarea and the Mediterranean. Just imagine your best vacation possible, now try a little harder!

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