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General information
Ashkelon
Ashkelon dates back approximately 5000 years and is considered to be one of the world’s most ancient cities.
Excavations carried out by a British archeological team in 1921 uncovered the remains of Herod’s summer senate house and the site known as The Roman Sepulcher was discovered adjacent to the seashore.
In 1191 the King of England, Richard the Lion Heart conquered Ashkelon and fortified its walls and towers. In 1270 the Muslims defeated the Crusaders and stormed the walls of Ashkelon and destroyed the city totally.
The old section of Ashkelon has remained in ruins to this day and no new settlement has been erected on the site. 

Some of the main Sites to visit:

Migdal, the Old City of Majdal
- east of the City, was until the establishment of the State of Israel an Arab town. The main attraction is the beautiful pedestrian mall, with stores, restaurants and cafes. The mall also hosts cultural shows and exhibitions.



The Ashkelon Khan and Museum
- is the home of Ashkelon’s history museum. Archaeological finds cover the city’s 5,000-year history. There is a replica of Ashkelon’s famous Cana’anite silver calf, which when first discovered made the front page of the New York Times. 





The Khan’s Art Gallery includes displays by local artists as well as new immigrants.
There is an audio-visual show on the history of Ashkelon available in English, French and Hebrew.
Also located in the Khan is a café and fish restaurant.
Entrance is Free-location; Hatzmaut Square, Migdal.

The Outdoor Museum - is where two Roman Burial coffins made of marble are to be found and are among the finest ever found in Israel. The coffins depict battle and hunting scenes as well as famous mythological scenes.
Other ancient artifacts are on display including sculptures, columns and inscriptions.
Entrance is Free and is near the Municipal Cultural Center.


The National Park
- is a scenic site where beautifully landscaped areas with trees and picnic grounds are intermingled with the remains of ancient Ashkelon. Roman and Greek statues, a 12th century Crusader wall, Byzantine churches, water wells and other monuments are near to the park.
Close to the entrance to the Park are the massive ramparts that protected the city throughout biblical times. 





The Byzantine Church
- is located in the Barnea Quarter. This Basilica type church was built during the 4th Century and destroyed following the Arab conquest in the 7th Century. The church floor was paved with marble slabs and the walls decorated with a mosaic made of glass.
Entrance is Free. 




Muslim Sheikh’s Tomb - is a square domed structure on the top of a small hill overlooking Ashkelon’s northern beaches. The chamber is supported by eight stone arches and contains the Sheikh’s tomb. The building was constructed in the 13th Century when parts of the Holy Land were in the hands of the Crusaders.
Entrance is Free. 




Roman Burial Tomb - Located near the marina 2km north of Ashkelon Park, was a major find in 1937. There are two burial tombs, a painted Hellenistic cave and a Roman cave. The Hellenistic cave is covered in paintings of nymphs, water scenes, mythological figures and animals.

Ashkelon Marina - is located between two beaches, Delila and Bar Kochba on the golden sands of Ashkelon at the base of the cliff in the heart of the tourist area and is well known for its yachting community where International rallies and regattas are held.
The Marina offers a shipyard and repair services. 






Ashkeluna Water
- is located on the sands of Ashkelon, this family attraction features two large pools and an array of water slides, rides and activities for all ages. 





Kibbutz Yad Mordechai - is 10km south of Ashkelon and was founded in 1943 and named after Mordechai Anilewicz the leader of the Warsaw Ghetto Uprising. A giant statute of him overlooks the Kibbutz. There is a museum dedicated to the ghetto fighters. It also has its own history as it was on the frontline during the War of Independence in 1948 and was captured and destroyed by the Egyptians. The kibbutz was eventually recaptured and rebuilt. The kibbutz has reconstructed a scene from that war with life size cut outs of soldiers with rifles and helmets.
Also at the kibbutz is Israel’s largest beehive compound. Visitors can hear an explanation about the production of honey, see the bees at work and taste the honey.
Visitors must pre-arrange visits to Beehive Compound. For more information call 08-6720559.

Beit Guvrin - is located 24 miles east of Ashkelon. The city was at the center of the largest region in Palestine during the Roman occupation. It was conquered by the Crusaders who built a citadel, but was subsequently destroyed.
Close to the ruins are a series of enormous limestone caves dating back to Hellenistic times. The caves were used as water cisterns and burial sites and more recently as one of the sets for the film Rambo 3. A few of the caves were used as churches and you can still see crosses carved on the walls. Close to the entrance of Kibbutz Beit Guvrin a Roman amphitheater has been discovered.

Emergency Phone Numbers:
Police
- 100
Magen David - First Aid 101
Fire Department - 102
Electric Company Hotline - 103