Caesarea is a highly popular destination in Israel. Situated on the Mediterranean’s shore, you'll find it halfway between Tel Aviv and Haifa. Caesarea offers no small number of attractions and activities for couples, children and even options for people on their own. The jewel in the Caesarea’s crown is the ancient Roman port built by King Herod in the Caesarea National Park. Find out more about it on our Caesarea National Park page, as well as numerous other activities worth your time in Caesarea.
What to do in Caesarea
Caesarea is a city in its own right, with a lot of interest factors, but without a doubt the highlight is the National Park and its antiques, which give visitors a unique view of the world of luxury enjoyed by ancient Romans. It’s not that Israel of today lacks luxurious places but guests often choose Caesarea as a place to relax and enjoy the classy indulgence offered by the region. The same was true of the ancient world: people would come from the world over to enjoy the city which, in the opinion of many, was the peak of Roman prestige and luxury in Israel at the time.
If you'd like to get to know cancerous better, and the important roles it played in the ancient world, first get to know King Herod, the man who renovated the city. At the time it held a tiny seaport, gifted to Herod by the Roman Caesar.
Herod was a cruel king, and mentioned as such in historical records, but he was also a visionary builder. Many of his structural projects stand to this day in modern Israel, rousing appreciation and wonder.
Among the castles, fortresses and other structures he built, Caesarea is a unique wonder: a luxurious port city, known throughout the ancient world because of its beauty, its cultural events, it resplendent Roman architecture and artworks, and the advanced services enjoyed by the locals. In Caesarea, as in other locations, Herod showed that with suitable resources, stunning architectural works can be achieved even when they don’t correlate with the site’s natural conditions. So don’t miss out on these when you visit the National Park:
The Reef Palace
The reef palace is noteworthy for its sweet-water pool, the pillared court facing the sea, and other areas typical of Roman castles at the time. Currently you can see the remains of the pool’s perimeter, some of the mosaic works, and the palace’s overall layout.
One of the favorite entertainment options among nobles in ancient Rome was watching the horse and chariot races, as well as the occasional creative killings carried out. As befits a king fully invested in showing off, Herod built a magnificent hippodrome on the shore, half of which can be seen to this day. Take a seat and look into the area where these races were held. In fact, once in a while equestrian shows are still held there.
Even if you’ve been at a Caesarea performance its worth spending some time visiting the National Park to take a closer look at the Roman theater and appreciating its size and beauty. The theater served the ancient city’s residents and guests as one of its main entertainment hotspots.
CAESAREA: A SIGN OF PRESTIGE TO THIS DAY
When you discover Caesarea’s attractions and their history, it’s little wonder that the city and its surrounds have become a mark of wealth and prestige, with luxury homes and quality entertainment spots. Caesarea of today offers gourmet restaurants, art galleries, and wonderful vacation options.
Among them are the Dan Caesarea Resort, built around a unique concept geared to ensuring guests enjoy a truly pleasant vacation without ever needing to leave the hotel or Caesarea. Our luxury resort offers services that speak “the good life” such as the billiard table in the center of the main pool, the gym outfitted with top quality latest equipment, a spacious stylized spa offering an array of wellness treatments for body and mind, expansive outdoor areas that encourage relaxation and resting as couples, families or just reading a good book alone. Our outdoor spaces also contain wooden booths for children and people who love the concept.
And what about the rest of the city? Resort guests can enjoy free of charge luxury jeep transportation to the old city, to the beach, to the ancient port, and so on. The service operates up to the evening.
Where to eat in and around Caesarea?
Aresto is a kosher café in Caesarea port offering outstanding pizza, pasta dishes, focaccia, and salads. Reach it by walking through the city’s archeological excavations and perhaps coming across some bridal parties taking their wedding photos in the area. The café has an outdoor area that opens to sea views. Ever since the area’s closure to vehicles, even little kids can safely play nearby without bothering diners.
In Zichron Yaakov’s upper main street a short drive from Caesarea, you'll find the Tishbi Winery café which offers delicious chocolate desserts. Don’t miss their array of tasty dishes which alters on a daily basis. You'll always find something great to eat there.
For a meat based meal, it’s worth heading to Koya in Caesarea. Choose from steaks, hamburgers and special sandwiches. The menu includes children’s meals and a rich alcohol menu.
Sushi? You'll enjoy the Agenda Café and Sushi Bar in Caesarea. The menu includes regular breakfast options such as eggs, sandwiches, salads and toast, and a wide array of evening choices that include pizza, pasta and fish.
Beaches, Antiquities and Nature: Attractions for Parents and Children
Caesarea combines a rich history, fascinating culture and abundant family-friendly activities - from walking tours, to shared culinary experiences and opportunities to learn about ancient periods. It is also very attractively located, with convenient and easy access to nearby cities. For these myriad reasons many choose Caesarea as their next trip destination with the children, and if you’re looking for children’s attractions – you can choose from among the following activities.
Embark on a journey in time at Caesarea National Park
Caesarea National Park invites children to an unusual experience, bringing history to life while wandering among the ruins of the ancient city streets and seeing them up close - from the watchtowers through the amphitheater to the hippodrome where many chariot races were held. In this expansive park visitors can avoid the crowds even on busy days, while choosing a walking trail suited to their preferences and children’s age. On holidays and special occasions the park hosts equestrian performances simulating past races, in addition to varied art activities.
Learn about King Herod interactively
After spending time at Caesarea National Park, don’t miss the Visitors Center and the harbor vaults on its premises. The center is accessible with convenient entrance access, and is recommended for children age 8 years of age and up. The Visitors Center offers fascinating displays of rare archaeological findings and a unique visual presentation where young visitors can learn about Herod and the building of Caesarea.
Collect seashells on the seashore
Caesarea has several beaches where you can enjoy a relaxing stroll and dip your feet in the ocean. On a family vacation during the warm months you will definitely want to take some time to rest and relax, and of course to collect seashells. Caesarea Aqueduct Beach and Caesarea Port Beach are the popular beaches.
Sit down for a family meal in the port
For many visitors Caesarea Port is the highlight of their visit. Children will love to walk around and watch the boats, and at the end of the visit you can sit down together at one of the restaurants in the port area for an enjoyable meal and a spectacular view.
Join a bicycle trip or a Segway tour
Families who enjoy sportive activities will be happy to spend quality time riding or cycling together. Various companies offer bicycle and Segway rental services, as well as guided tours where you can learn about Caesarea while bicycling or segwaying through some of its most beautiful sites.
Schedule some time to go boating accompanied by a skipper while enjoying coastal views from a completely different angle.
Staying at the Dan Caesarea Resort?
We also want our young guests to enjoy the perfect vacation experience. This is why the resort offers abundant activities for children, including a large main pool, a kids pool, retro games throughout the lobby, treehouses across the lawns, biddy basketball, futsal and a whole host of other attractions. One activity which young guests really like is a visit to Danyland, the specially designed, advanced and engaging kids club with its myriad surprises. And if you need a break for rest and relaxation, we invite you to take advantage of the babysitting service.
The Port City that Doesn’t Stop: Caesarea Attractions Open on Saturdays
Caesarea is one of the most spectacular and fascinating cities in Israel, offering visitors both a vast history and abundant attractions throughout the week. Many of the leading attractions in what was a bustling port city are also open on Saturdays. So if you’re in Caesarea for a weekend vacation and wondering what it has to offer on a Saturday – enrich your stay with a wide range of possibilities tailored for families, couples and those on their own.
Visit the Aqueduct Beach – this central beach near Caesarea is the perfect place to spend some relaxing beach time on a sunny day, enjoy the seasonal blossoming of nature, and of course learn about the aqueducts (“the arches”) that carried water from the springs and the dam. Bring along some snacks, a hat and a good book, and spend a few hours for that much-needed recharging of your batteries
Take a tour along the wall promenade – Caesarea port and the old city are fascinating sites for a close-up view of the unique history and impressive ruins of the Roman Empire . Some of the tourist sites in Caesarea are only open on weekdays, however a walking tour on Saturdays also showcases the beauty of this unique area.
Visit the Ralli Museum – a visit to the museum is enjoyable in any weather and on any day of the week. The Ralli Museum, which presents permanent exhibitions and changing collections of contemporary Latin-American art, is open on Saturdays. A highly recommended activity for visitors who want to spend the weekend immersed in an enriching cultural experience. Entrance is free of charge.
Stop to enjoy the pleasant breeze at a café in the port – the ancient Caesarea port undoubtedly shapes the current character of the area, which is why there is no better place to take in its unique atmosphere. Some cafés and restaurants around Caesarea port are also open on Saturdays, so choose a place to enjoy a morning coffee or a light lunch surrounded by the amazing ambience and landscape.
Play golf – the Caesarea Golf Club offers golf players at all levels a golf course where they can enjoy one of the most challenging and fun sports.
Go for a dive to explore the Caesarea below – the Old Caesarea Diving Center caters not only to experienced divers but also to those who want a one-time acquaintance dive. In a guided snorkeling tour you will enjoy detailed explanations about the history of the port during the Herodian period and tour the archaeological remains at the Underwater Archeological Park in the enclosed anchorage. It is recommended to schedule a dive in advance.
At Dan Caesarea Resort abundant activities also await you on the hotel premises throughout the week, including Saturdays - from the high-tech fitness center and the pampering spa to the pools and a relaxing stroll through the landscaped gardens. With the luxury transport service our guests can enjoy both the hotel attractions and the numerous Caesarea sites – offered free of charge this service will take you quickly and conveniently to the port, the beach and to other leading attractions.