Vacate in a historical piece of paradise
The biblical city of Dor (or Dar, in ancient Hebrew), was located on the coast next to natural bays and a number of Kurkar islands adjacent to the coast, which created an area relatively protected from storms at sea and provided protection and shelter for ships looking for suitable places to dock along the eastern shores of the Mediterranean Sea. This strategic advantage of the city of Dor turned it over time into a major port city and an important center for trade. Dor was even considered the most important port city along the entire coastal stretch from Jaffa to Acre. Dor is mentioned in Egyptian sources from about 4,000 years ago as an important Canaanite city. The first mention of the city of Dor in the Bible appears in the book of Joshua as one of the Canaanite cities conquered by the Israelites, although various historical and archaeological evidences indicate that Dor remained a Phoenician city and remained so even hundreds of years after the time of the conquests of Joshua ben Nun. Due to the strategic location of the city of Dor, the Phoenician residents of Sidon aspired to rule Dor and even emphasized the importance of its agricultural hinterland: the “mighty grain lands” – which existed right here with us – in the Sharon region.
Dor’s decline began when Herod founded Caesarea, a large port city with characteristics of a Roman city, about 15 km south of Dor. Simultaneously with the rise in importance of Caesarea, Dor went down in status as a major port city and was finally abandoned altogether. From the 1980s onwards, additional excavations and research dives began in the seawater around Tel Dor. And so many impressive finds were discovered: sunken ships, ceramic vessels, remains of the glass industry.
In the agricultural context it is worth noting mosaic fragments with descriptions of fruits – pomegranates, grapes, olives, and pine cone. Also, charred olive pits dating back thousands of years were discovered in the excavations, and other pits were discovered in jugs recovered from the seabed. In addition, textile mills that were used for the production of olive oil were also discovered in Tel DOR.
Findings from the Tel Dor excavations are displayed in the “Hamazgaga” museum in the nearby Kibbutz Nachsholim, this museum is housed in an impressive building that was established as a factory for the production of bottles in the late 19th century and was recently restored.
Mount DOR itself was declared a national park and in the future will become a regulated visitor site.