The Byzantine City - Beit Shean

Region: North, Trail Duration: 2 Hours, Starting Point: Beit Shean National Park, Ending Point: Beit Shean National Park, Trail Type: Walking
Source: Israel Nature and Parks Authority
Region: North
URL

Bet She'an National Park houses the spectacular ruins of the glory that was the Roman and Byzantine city of Bet She'an. Rising above them is the high mound on which Biblical Bet She'an stood.

How to get here: The national park is in the town of Bet She'an, and there are signs directing visitors to the site at the entrances to town.

Bus 412 from Jerusalem to Afula – details from Egged Information 

Main points of interest

  • She'an Nights - a breathtaking audiovisual display taking place after sunset.
  • The entrance plaza - model of the Roman-Byzantine city and view of the site.
  • Roman theater - the spectacular remains and reconstruction of the 2nd century CE theater.
  • Western bathhouse - the ruins of the large bathhouse of Bet She'an, in use during the Byzantine period. The remains of the bathhouse offer an opportunity to get to know this aspect of life at that time.
  • The reconstructed cardo (Palladius Street) - a street paved with basalt stone slabs, approximately 150 m in length. Along the length of the street are the remains of columns and impressive buildings.
  • The Sigma and the Tyche mosaic - a semicircular plaza that was the site of commerce and entertainment. In one of the rooms around the plaza is a mosaic depicting the figure of Tyche, goddess of the city's fortune.
  • The Roman temple - the ruins of a large temple. The four huge columns of the facade collapsed in the 749 earthquake, and since then have remained lying on the ground as they fell.
  • The propyleum (monumental gateway) - the remains of a gateway with three entrances.Processions would apparently enter through this gateway on their way to the temple that stood atop the tel.
  • The nymphaeum - the remains of a splendid, decorated public fountain.
  • The central monument - the remains of the building that stood at the intersection of the main streets of the city of Bet She'an during the Roman and Byzantine periods.
  • The decumanus (Sylvanus Street) - a basalt-paved street. On either side of the street are the ruins of shops and a large pool.
  • The Basilica (agora) - the remains of the open market of the Byzantine period.
  • Valley street – the street is paved with basalt slabs and leads to the "truncated bridge" extending over Harod Stream.
  • The Truncated Bridge – the remains of an impressive Roman-era bridge that led to the northern gate of Bet She'an during the Byzantine and Roman periods.
  • Tel Bet She'an – the remains of the Biblical tel. From the top of the tel is a spectacular view of Bet She'an and the Valley of Springs (Emek Hama'ayanot).
  • The eastern bathhouse – a large bathhouse that has been partially uncovered, between Sylvanus Street and the theater.
  • Public latrine – a building and colonnaded courtyard. 57 toilet seats are set in the walls of the courtyard.
  • Ritual compound – a religious complex with a temple, altars, and nymphaeum fountain.

 

Lookout points

  • The entrance – looking over the Roman-Byzantine city
    • Bet She'an Tel - a spectacular view of the center of the Roman-Byzantine city, Harod Stream flowing at the foot of the tel, the truncated bridge, and the Jordan River and surrounding area
    • The rest area - looking out at the decumanus 
Products specifications
Region North
City Beit Shean
Trail Type Walking
Starting Point Beit Shean National Park
Ending Point Beit Shean National Park
Trip Type A circular route at an archaeological site
Suitable for Children Yes
Trail Length 1.5 Km
Trail Duration 2 Hours
Phone +972-4-6587189
URL http://www.parks.org.il/sites/English/parksandreserves/betshean/Pages/default.aspx
Accessibility Yes
Trail Outline Circular
Best season Summer
Best season Winter
Best season Autumn
Best season Spring
Suitable for Picnics Yes
Drinking water Available
Parking Yes
Bathing Waters No
Special Equipment Hat, Shoes
Precautions It is forbidden to climb ancient buildings

Bet She'an National Park houses the spectacular ruins of the glory that was the Roman and Byzantine city of Bet She'an. Rising above them is the high mound on which Biblical Bet She'an stood.

How to get here: The national park is in the town of Bet She'an, and there are signs directing visitors to the site at the entrances to town.

Bus 412 from Jerusalem to Afula – details from Egged Information 

Main points of interest

  • She'an Nights - a breathtaking audiovisual display taking place after sunset.
  • The entrance plaza - model of the Roman-Byzantine city and view of the site.
  • Roman theater - the spectacular remains and reconstruction of the 2nd century CE theater.
  • Western bathhouse - the ruins of the large bathhouse of Bet She'an, in use during the Byzantine period. The remains of the bathhouse offer an opportunity to get to know this aspect of life at that time.
  • The reconstructed cardo (Palladius Street) - a street paved with basalt stone slabs, approximately 150 m in length. Along the length of the street are the remains of columns and impressive buildings.
  • The Sigma and the Tyche mosaic - a semicircular plaza that was the site of commerce and entertainment. In one of the rooms around the plaza is a mosaic depicting the figure of Tyche, goddess of the city's fortune.
  • The Roman temple - the ruins of a large temple. The four huge columns of the facade collapsed in the 749 earthquake, and since then have remained lying on the ground as they fell.
  • The propyleum (monumental gateway) - the remains of a gateway with three entrances.Processions would apparently enter through this gateway on their way to the temple that stood atop the tel.
  • The nymphaeum - the remains of a splendid, decorated public fountain.
  • The central monument - the remains of the building that stood at the intersection of the main streets of the city of Bet She'an during the Roman and Byzantine periods.
  • The decumanus (Sylvanus Street) - a basalt-paved street. On either side of the street are the ruins of shops and a large pool.
  • The Basilica (agora) - the remains of the open market of the Byzantine period.
  • Valley street – the street is paved with basalt slabs and leads to the "truncated bridge" extending over Harod Stream.
  • The Truncated Bridge – the remains of an impressive Roman-era bridge that led to the northern gate of Bet She'an during the Byzantine and Roman periods.
  • Tel Bet She'an – the remains of the Biblical tel. From the top of the tel is a spectacular view of Bet She'an and the Valley of Springs (Emek Hama'ayanot).
  • The eastern bathhouse – a large bathhouse that has been partially uncovered, between Sylvanus Street and the theater.
  • Public latrine – a building and colonnaded courtyard. 57 toilet seats are set in the walls of the courtyard.
  • Ritual compound – a religious complex with a temple, altars, and nymphaeum fountain.

 

Lookout points

  • The entrance – looking over the Roman-Byzantine city
    • Bet She'an Tel - a spectacular view of the center of the Roman-Byzantine city, Harod Stream flowing at the foot of the tel, the truncated bridge, and the Jordan River and surrounding area
    • The rest area - looking out at the decumanus 
Products specifications
Region North
City Beit Shean
Trail Type Walking
Starting Point Beit Shean National Park
Ending Point Beit Shean National Park
Trip Type A circular route at an archaeological site
Suitable for Children Yes
Trail Length 1.5 Km
Trail Duration 2 Hours
Phone +972-4-6587189
URL http://www.parks.org.il/sites/English/parksandreserves/betshean/Pages/default.aspx
Accessibility Yes
Trail Outline Circular
Best season Summer
Best season Winter
Best season Autumn
Best season Spring
Suitable for Picnics Yes
Drinking water Available
Parking Yes
Bathing Waters No
Special Equipment Hat, Shoes
Precautions It is forbidden to climb ancient buildings