The Classic Route

The Classic Route

 

The Hospitaller Fortress (Knights' Halls)
This spacious building was already uncovered in the1930s, during the British Mandate Period. Since then, archeological excavations were held there in the 60s and over the past two decades, the archeological excavations, conservation efforts and tourist development at the site have led to the declaration of Old Acre as a World Heritage Cultural Site. The fortress served as the Hospitaller Order's main headquarters in 13th century Acre. This order was an international military order that wielded property, power and a great deal of influence in the Land of Israel during the Crusader Period. The structure consists of two to three floors surrounding an inner courtyard. The fortress was home to the Head of the Order and Supreme Court officials (10 to 15 knights who were commanders of the Order). The building also housed warehouses, dining rooms and assembly rooms that served all of the Order's knights in Acre on a daily basis. St. John's Church, the Order's main church, was located south of the fortress and it is now the site for a municipal community center in the Ottoman Saraya House.
 
 
Hamam al-Basha (The Turkish Bath)
This elegant hamam dating back to the Ottoman Period was built by al-Jazzar, who was Governor of Acre in 1781-2. The hamam was destroyed in an earthquake and rebuilt in the early 19th century. It served the citizens of the Moslem city. There is another public bath in the city adjacent to the port and a private Jewish bath in the Jewish quarter next to the synagogue in the Old City. The hamam is equipped with an underground heating room that warmed up a large water basin where the steam was produced for the hamam's hot room and treatment rooms.
 
 
The Okashi Museum
The Okashi Museum of Art is located in Old Acre, in an ancient building with cruciform domes dating back to the Ottoman Period. The Museum features rotating exhibitions of Israeli art alongside a permanent exhibit of the works of the late artist, Avshalom Okashi, who was one of Israel's most prominent painters. He spent most of his life in Acre, where he set up his painting workshop, which became the Okashi Museum posthumously.
 
 
The Market 
This winding shop-filled street runs from north to south of the city. This vibrant municipal market is now the core of the city's commercial life offering a colorful array of fish, butcher shops, spices, vegetables, perfumeries and souvenir shops.
 
The Ramchal Synagogue
Italian sage Rabbi Moshe Haim Luzatto settled in Acre with his family in 1743. He is best known for his moral guide, "Mesilat Yesharim" (Path of the Just). He died at the tender age of 36 of a plague that ravaged Acre. Luzatto most probably settled in the city's Jewish quarter among a small community of merchants. They even built a synagogue, which was confiscated by Dahar el-Omar (1750-1775) when he took over the city. The Jews were given an alternative building that served as a synagogue and it is still standing to this very day.
 
The Templars Tunnel
The Templars were a military-monastic order who watched over the pilgrims coming from Europe to visit the holy sites of the Land of Israel. The main fortress of the Templar order was built at the western edge of the tunnel. The 350-meter long tunnel – whose lower part is carved in the natural rock and whose upper part is made of hewn stones – extends from the Templar Fortress to the port. The tunnel served as a strategic underground passageway that connected the fortress to the port.
 

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