- Title: Gamla 001
Gamla or Gamala was an ancient Jewish city on the Golan Heights, believed to have been founded as a Seleucid fort during the Syrian Wars. The site of a Roman siege during the Great Revolt of the 1st century CE, Gamla is a symbol of heroism for the modern state of Israel and an important historical and archaeological site. It lies within the current Gamla nature reserve and is a prominent tourist attraction.
Situated at the southern part of the Golan, overlooking the Sea of Galilee, Gamla was built on a steep hill shaped like a camel's hump, from which it derives its name (Gamla meaning 'the camel' in Aramaic). Although the site was inhabited since the Early Bronze Age, the city appears to have been founded as a Seleucid fort during the Syrian Wars (3rd century BCE) which later became a civilian settlement. Jews inhabited it from the last quarter of the 2nd century BCE, and it was annexed to the Hasmonean state under king Alexander Jannaeus in c. 81 BCE.
Today Gamla is an archaeological site and a nature reserve. It is also home to a large nesting population of Griffon vultures. The nature reserve also contains some 700 Neolithic Dolmens, several of which can be viewed from the entry road.
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- Keywords: Gamla
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