Caesarea is located on the Mediteranean Coast of Israel between Tel Aviv and Haifa. Archeological excavations have occured here to uncover remains from many time periods, in particular the fortifications of the Crusader City and the Roman theater.
Caesarea was built as part of Herod the Great’s ambitious plan to “Hellenise” the Holy Land in the 1st century BCE. He chose the site of a small Phoenician port called Stratton’s Tower and laid out a classical Greek city, complete with amphitheatre and stadium. Herod also constructed an artificial harbor by making use of concrete piling under water – the first ever such use of concrete.
During Roman rule Caesarea was the capital of Palestine. It was here where Cornelius, the Roman centurion, was converted by Peter; Paul was imprisoned before being taken to Rome; and where the leaders of the Bar Kochba revolt were tried and executed, including Akiva.
Caesarea is well-known as an archaeological site preserving the original theater built by Herod, replica of the Pontius Pilot inscription, Byzantine Archive Buildings, Cardo Maximus as well as bath-houses, ware houses, an amphitheatre and the harbor. The visit to Caesarea is recommended for non-liturgical groups.
– The Israel Ministry of Tourism