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Masada - An Archaeologist’s Dream

Today we left Jerusalem and were able to go to Masada which was blocked the other day because of sinkholes in the highway. No traveller coming to Israel should leave without coming to this Ancient mountain fortress. It has special meaning in Jewish history.

Masada was a fortress built by Roman King Herod in 37 B.C.E. as a retreat from perceived threats in the land of Judea. How they managed to build this complex on a rocky outcrop 400 metres above the Dead Sea is mind boggling.

The Romans had conquered the Jewish empire of Judea and upon Herod’s death, the Jews revolted and ultimately fled to Masada. They resisted the Roman legions for three years before they ultimately realized what their demise would be. Rather than be assaulted by the Romans, 972 of these Jewish zealots committed suicide.

The large archaeological site has palaces, storage rooms, baths, cisterns, churches and synagogues, and also present are mosaic floors and walls. There is quite a line at the site while waiting to enter the cable car, but if you feel fit, you can take a path which takes about 40 minutes. Whichever way you go, the views from the top of the surrounding countryside are dramatic.

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Posted by PassionRetirees 12:47 Archived in Israel

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