Masada is a renowned ancient fortification that attracts millions of tourists from many nations in the world. The fortress, located in Israel near the Dead Sea, was the place where King Herod built his empire, including monumental buildings and palaces between 75 B.C and 4 B.C. Herod ruled Judea under the massive influence of the Roman Empire. The Jews revolted against the Romans between 66 A.D and 73 A.D. It was a perfect refuge for the Jews, which helped them flee from the harsh Roman army. Therefore, Masada acted as a vital stronghold for the rebels, who were not happy about the harsh ruling conditions of the Romans. The Jews defenders protected the walls of this site from the Roman soldiers.
The mountaintop fortress is also referred as Metzada, which is Hebrew phrase that means a mountain castle or stronghold. It includes old barracks, an armory, cisterns, palace, and large storehouses. All these structures indicate that the place could hold out and protect the Jews for a long time when a siege happened. Masada is one of the biggest and most popular Israel’s tourists’ attractions. It may also be considered as an important symbol of the historical Israel kingdom.
The Romans destroyed part of the place and killed hundreds of people when they invaded the site with several thousands of soldiers to fight and stop the rebels. When the ruthless Romans invaded the place, the defenders of the site decided to commit mass suicide. Instead of being slaves of their oppressors, Jewish men decided to kill all their women and children. Later on, they killed one another mercilessly. Flavius Josephus was the historian who described all these events that happened during the invasion. Below are the top crucial facts about Masada that everyone should know.
1. Masada Abandoned for Centuries
Masada remained an abandoned site for many years. Even the local Israelites ignored the rocky place. They did not realize the potential and significance of the ancient fortress. However, a Hebrew poet played a significant role in bringing it to the limelight again in the 1920s. The poet introduced a renowned epic entitled Masada. Therefore, many people, including the Israel government started to think about the site. Masada gained the attention of many individuals in the entire world. That is the reason why it is an excellent tourist attraction in Israel today.
2. Masada Location
The Fortress is situated in an isolated region on the rocks near the Dead Sea in the Judean Desert. The area is unlikely to be an inhabitant for human beings. Therefore, it is hard for many people, local and foreigners, to believe that Masada was a vital stronghold for the Jewish army and rebels during the Roman rule. Masada is at the rock edges of the mountain. All the recruits of the Israel soldiers held ceremonies when swearing their oaths at this place.
3. Naturally Fortified of Masada
The plateau is a naturally fortified area. The rocky zone acts as a perfect place for refuge. Deep gorges and huge protective rocks surround the region. Therefore, Masada was an excellent area for the Jewish rebels to hide. The Roman army could not reach them easily without breaking the strong walls. The great natural plateau attracts thousands of local and foreign tourists every year. The process enables Israel to get more foreign income to sustain the economy of the country.
4. Modern Israel Soldiers take Oaths at the Masada Site
Despite Masada’s location, all the members of the Israel army gather at the place to take the oaths. They swear that the nation will not fall again. The process is a fantastic indication of the commitment of these soldiers to protect the country from both the internal and external attacks.
5. Masada – An Historic Symbol
Masada is a historical symbol respected by the Jews and Christians in the entire world. It signifies how the Jews faced oppression from the Roman authoritarians. Thousands of Christians visit the place to view the historic site. Additionally, Masada is a symbol of unity for the locals. It shows how the Jewish rebels united to fight the Roman Empire, which enables the country to stay strong against external oppressors in the modern society.
6. Masada Is An UNESCO World Heritage Site
Masada is one of the world heritage sites recognized by UNESCO, which is a global organization. Its recognition boosts its popularity in the entire world. UNESCO started counting it as their site since 2001. The promulgation took place in 2002. Therefore, it receives maintenance and protection against detractors.
7. Masada Excavation Commenced in the 1960s
After the rediscovering of the area, in the 19th century, experienced Israeli archaeologists began the excavation process. Electric cable cars were constructed to ensure that the tourists accessed the site with ease.
8. No Trekking at Day Time during Summer Periods
During summers, the top area is hot and unbearable to visit. Therefore, tourists are restricted from climbing the mountain during day time. However, they can climb during wee morning hours. Travelers should carry hats and several bottles of drinking water while trekking at the site during summer periods.
9. Preservative Museum
The museum, opened in 2007, preserves the historical objects and interesting artifacts used by the ancient Jews. Tourists can view the detailed history of the area. The Museum is highly educative to people in the entire world. Additionally, Masada reminds the Jews the struggles their ancestors underwent under the Roman Empire.
10. Synagogue and Two Mikvahs
Until today, the Mikvahs and Synagogue are standing buildings that make the site highly attractive. The synagogue showcases awesome architectural designs that were used by the ancient Jews. Additionally, the features act as highly respected symbols by the people of modern Jewish community and other Christians. Ancient Jews used to gather and worship in the synagogue. Tourists from different countries in the world visit the place to see these amazing things.
Conclusively, Masada is an important place you need to visit. If tourists want to see the Roman-style bathhouse, which was built using mosaic floors, they should visit the site in Israel. They will also get a chance to view the King Herod’s Palace and other exciting historical scenes.