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For anyone interested in Israel’s history, or in wonderful scenic views, then Nimrod’s Fortress, Israel’s largest crusade-era castle, is an excellent place to start.

Run by the Israel Nature and Parks Authority, the medieval fortress is located in the northern Golan Heights, on a ridge rising about 800 meters above sea level, with views of much of the Golan, including Mount Hermon.

The fortress, which was used in the Israeli film Beaufort , was built around 1229 to pre-empt an attack on Damascus by the Sixth Crusade, and strengthened over the following years.

It fell into disrepair at the end of the 13th century but was used as a luxury prison for Ottoman nobles in the 16th century. An earthquake in the 18th century destroyed it.

Today, visitors are welcome to explore the excavated and restored portions of the fortress. There are even secret corridors leading to winding staircases and underground water cisterns where some of the original plaster is still visible.

Below the fortress is the lush and beautiful Banias with forests, rivers, and waterfalls.

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