The tour begins at the parking lot adjacent to the Visitors Center. Before entering, visit the Jezzar Pasha Mosque across the road.
Jezzar Pasha Mosque
The Jezzar Pasha Mosque is the largest and most elaborate of the eight mosques of Old Acre. The mosque is named after Ahmed al-Jezzar, who ordered its construction in 1781 and was buried, along with his heir, Suleiman Pasha, in the courtyard. The mosque was built atop the remains of a church, which in itself was constructed over the remains of the ancient sixth-day mosque.
Entrance to the Knights' Halls is through the Visitors Center.
The Knights' Halls:
A vast, striking complex of 11th and 12th-Century crusader halls has been unearthed beneath the Citadel and Acre Prison. This grand complex, built by the Knights Hospitaller, is one of the most spectacular pieces of architecture in Israel. It comprises six enormous halls, a dungeon, a great hall supported by 18 massive pillars, and the smaller "Beautiful Hall." A crypt, a dining hall accessed by a tunnel and the remains of a Gothic church form the rest of the structure. In the 17th and 18th Centuries the palaces and offices of the Ottoman authorities were built above the Halls. The British later transformed them into a prison.
The Drainage Tunnel
This tunnel connected the Citadel with the city's sewage system. Visitors can enter the tunnel and follow it up to the Posta, where the mail coach horses were stabled.
This Turkish bath was built by Ahmed al-Jezzar in 1795 on the remains of a crusader bathhouse. Following renovations it served as the municipal museum from 1954 to the 1990s. The building now features an impressive- light and sound exhibition of the city's history. The rooms at the hamam are set around a marble fountain, and their walls are lined with marble benches. The octagonal hot bath lies adjacent to the heating furnace and boiler. All rooms are adorned with domes. The marble-floored structure is decorated with granite pillars and colorful ceramic tiles brought from Damascus and Anatolia.
Turn left outside the hamam and walk down Crusaders’ Street until you reach a triangular square.
This square is mostly the work of the crusaders. The structure with the blue windows is Abud House, a Baha’i holy site named after one of its owners. It was given to Bahá'u'lláh, the founder of the Baha’i faith, and his family. Another building overlooking the square is the pink house, also called the Arts Center Point. Visitors can enter the center and appreciate the stucco ceiling.
Leave the square through Abud Street, walk past Abud House, and continue west until you reach the street parallel to the Sea Wall.
The Sea Wall:
The Sea Wall is often misattributed to the crusaders; the wall, which took 90 years to build, was constructed only in 1750, many years after the Ottoman conquest. In 1799 it withstood a siege laid by Napoleon. Al-Jezzar and his successors continued to strengthen the walls even after the siege, so as to strengthen them to withstand heavy artillery. Four gates allowed access through the walls.
Continue southward along the walls, and turn left at the Lighthouse parking lot into the Templars’ Tunnel.
The Templars’ Tunnel:
Another military order to establish presence at Acre was that of the Knights Templar. The knights withdrew from Jerusalem at the close of the 12th Century following its occupation by Saladin. They arrived at Acre, where they tunneled right below the streets of the old city. Dug to serve as a strategic escape route, the tunnel led from the Templar Fortress in the west to the harbor in the east, running an overall distance of 1,150 feet. The tunnel was inadvertently discovered in 1994 when the residents of one of the local houses were fixing a blocked sewer.
The exit from the Templars’ Tunnel is located at Khan a-Shuna. From the khan walk to Pisa Square. Cross the square and enter Khan al-Umdan.
Located near the harbor, this khan (caravanserai) is the largest in Israel. Constructed in 1784, it consists of a large courtyard surrounded by two portico elevations, which are supported by dozens of pillars. The clock tower above the portal was erected to commemorate the silver jubilee of Sultan Abd al-Hamid II.
Exit the khan and continue south toward the Acre Harbor and Marina:
The harbor was made a marina in 1982. Findings indicate that the Na'aman stream estuary served as the original location of the ancient harbor. In the 5th Century B.C. the harbor was moved to its present location, where it flourished throughout the Hellenic and Roman periods, going strong well into the times of the crusaders a thousand years later. One of its icons is the tower of the Philistine god Beelzebub, a small, fortified structure built on a sandbar at the entrance to the harbor.
Venice (Fishermen’s) Square:
After concluding your visit to the harbor walk north until you reach Venice Square, commanded by the impressive bell tower. The square was built by Venetians who had returned to the city following the Muslim occupation of the 13th Century.
From Venice Square turn north to Khan al-Faranj
The khan was built in the 16th Century by French merchants on the location of the central courtyard of the crusader-age Venetian quarter. It is the oldest surviving khan in Acre. In the 18th Century the Governors of Acre resided here so as to keep an eye on the foreign merchants. Today one of its wings houses a school.
Turn right at the exit from Khan al-Faranj, and immediately turn right again until you reach the Ramhal Synagogue.
The Tree of Life Synagogue
This elaborate small structure, named after the renowned Jewish sage, was given to the Jewish congregation by Bedouin ruler Daher el-Omar, who had confiscated it from its owner. The building dates back to the Ottoman and crusader periods. Tradition holds that the Ramhal, who lived in Acre in the mid 1700s, worshipped here.
Continue up Benjamin of Tudela Street until you reach the parking lot.
The Land Wall and Great Guns
Before leaving the city you should cross the road, walk through Saladin Market, and visit the Ottoman Land Wall. Up until the 20th Century the gate passing through these walls was the only means of entry into the city. Along the walls stand 18th-Century guns, once the mightiest in the country. Here visitors can also observe the wide moat and fortifications.
The tower was built in 1801 by Ahmed al-Jezzar, and is regarded as the country’s foremost fortified tower. Built to defend the city’s eastern wall, it measures 200 feet across, and contains a barrack, stores, and numerous arrow slits. Beneath the tower is a 200 feet-long secret passage leading to the moat.
Follow Weizmann Street to the parking lot.