On the summit of a large cliff in the pointing west from the northern Golan Heights lie the ruins of an ancient Nimrod fortress.
The Arabs called it, for obvious reasons, Qala’at al-Subeiba, The Fortress on the Cliff. Later on, it received the name Qala’at Namrod, the Fortress of Nimrod, as the biblical hero Nimrod is believed to be buried nearby.
The fortress defends the ascent of the Golan Heights from any enemy coming from the west. It is believed that it was originally built by Al-Aziz Uthman, the son of Saladdin, to deny the crusaders access to the heights and from there to Damascus. The Mongols briefly captured the fortress in 1260, but the region fell under Mamluk rule and Sultan Bibars strengthened the fortifications and added towers.
At the end of the 13th century, following the Muslim conquest of the port city of Acre (Akko) and the end of Crusader rule in the Holy Land, the fortress lost its strategic value and fell into disrepair.
Nevertheless, the ruins of this fortress are still magnificent including the original inscription, dated 1275, honoring the Sultan Bibars. The views from the fortress are breathtaking.
Did you know? Ancient Arab legend tells that the original fortress was built by Nimrod, the biblical hero who sat in his fortress and stretched his hand to dip it in the Banias River, a mere 6 km away. This was seen as an act of vanity so Nimrod was imprisoned in his own fort.
Nimrod fortress national park
nimrod fortress national park is located on the sloaps of Mt Hermon and its
Nimrod fortress opening hours
Summer hours: Sunday–Thursday and Saturday: 17:00 – 08:00
Friday and holiday eves: 16:00 – 08:00
Winter hours: Sunday–Thursday and Saturday: 16:00 – 08:00
Friday and holiday eves: 15:00 – 08:00 Holiday eves: 13:00 – 08:00