Akko is a city in Israel’s Northern District, sitting on the coast of the Mediterranean Sea. You may have also seen Akko spelt as Acre, so to halt any confusion, Acre is the English spelling, and Akko is the Hebrew and Arabic spelling.
The city is an old port city with crusader roots dating back to the Ottoman Empire. Akko is a holy city in the Bahá’í Faith and is now a UNESCO World Heritage site.
Must-dos in Akko-
- Citadel- Sits just inside the old city walls and is one of Akko’s main tourist sites. It is now a museum commemorating the Jewish fights who were imprisoned or killed here by the British authorities during the British Mandate era.
- Crusader City- This resides underneath the citadel. The site was once home to the Crusader armies, displaying the Knights Hall and Dining Hall.
- Templars Tunnel- This activity is a little claustrophobic but provides a glimpse into Crusader architecture, and is fun walking through the very short tunnel!
- The Old City Market- Most major cities in Israel tend to have a souk, so it is fitting Akko has one as well. It is right in the centre of the Old City filled with fresh produce, spices, (tacky) souvenirs and cheap eats.
- Hummus Said- If you’re a fan of hummus and pita, and well let’s face it that you probably wouldn’t have come to Israel if you weren’t, you should eat here! Plus it’s one of the cheapest meals you’ll find in Israel at 17 ILS for a big bowl of hummus and unlimited pita, with a side of pickles.
- Acre Marina- This used to be a busy and important port until the medieval period. Now, it is used only for tourist purposes. You can hop on a boat and head out onto the Mediterranean Sea to get great views back over Akko’s Old City.
- Ahmed Al-Jazzar Mosque- This mosque was built in 1781, right in the Old City of Akko.
- St. John’s Church- This church was built in 1737, and is one of Akko’s prettiest tourist spots as its red roof juts out from the old city walls by the water.
Getting to Akko-
From Tel Aviv:
The train ride from Tel Aviv to Akko is about 1 hour and 20 minutes, with beautiful scenic views of the ocean.
Then there is a 15 minute walk from the train station to the Old City.
If you have a Rav-Kav, a round trip will cost you 56 ILS.
The train from Haifa to Akko takes 30 minutes, with the same 15 minute walk from the train station to the Old City.