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  • Writer's pictureRaz Tsafrir

Acre, the 2nd Crusader capital

Updated: Apr 5, 2020

Old Acre (Akko) was an ancient Canaanite town back in the 18th century BC, then conquered by the Phoenician. Its importance is in the fact that it is locate don the north shores of Israel, and has a natural port. In the 12th century AD it was conquered by the Crusaders who turned it into their capital of their 2nd kingdom. Since the Cursaders were pushed out of Jerusalem, each of the 3 Crusader orders: The Knight Templars, the Knight Hospitallers and Teutonic Knights built their fortresses and secret tunnels in the city of Acre. 

in 1291, following the departure of the last Crusader from the holy land, Acre fell to the Manluk, who ruled the region for more than 2 centuries, until in 1516 the Ottomans took over, and Acre became the capital of the Acre Sanjak ruled by Daher el Omar and Al Jazzar, who built many monuments that are still seen today.

In 1799 Napoleon failed to conquer it as his ships were sunk bu the British navy, and in 1840 a British shell hit an ammunition deport and destroyed half the city. In 1918 the British occupied Acre and built their main prison above the crusaders halls, where 11 Jewish underground prisoners were hanged. There is so much to see in Acre:

The Templar tunnel

Al Jazzar mosque

The Crusaders halls. The Knight Hospitaller built this monumental fortress in the 13th century and it became the capital of the 2nd Crusader kingdom after several failed attempts to conquer Jerusalem by Richard Lion-Heat, king of England.

The fish market

Underground Prisoners museum

The Acre walls and the lighthouse and much more. Today the old city is known for its fresh fish restaurants, lovely hotels and its relaxed atmosphere. Drinking a cold beer on one of the rooftops is a great way to end the day.

We visit all these marvelous sites in our 7 and 14 day tours.

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