Early Sunday morning, 1 of January the 3 of us headed up to Susita- an excavation site on the top of a mountain close by. We drove past a UN truck and along some more danger landmine signs all the way there.
The city of Hippos, also known well as Susita, was founded on this hill overlooking the eastern shore of the Sea of Galilee during the Hellenistic period in the second century BCE. The first residents of the city were pagans who later converted to Christianity. At their side lived a small Jewish community as well. Most of the ruins visible today date to the Roman and Byzantine periods.
The city was apparently destroyed by an earthquake in 749 CE and was never resettled. During Israel’s war of independence in 1948, members of Kibuts En-Gev, located at the foot of the hill, took control of Susita. It served as a front-line military command post until the six day war in 1967.
We sat and looked out over the whole Sea of Galilee from the top of the mountain, just amazing!
We had a lovely coffee in Ein Gedi right next to the waterfront for lunch.