Acre, Israel

Acre (/ˈɑːkər, ˈkər/), known locally as Akko (Hebrew: עַכּוֹ, ʻAkkō) or Akka (Arabic: عكّا, ʻAkkā), is a city in the coastal plain region of the Northern District of Israel.

  • עַכּוֹ
  • عكّا
Hebrew transcription(s)
  ISO 259ʕakko
Coordinates: 32°55′40″N 35°04′54″E
Grid position156/258 PAL
Country Israel
Founded3000 BC (Bronze Age settlement)
1550 BC (Canaanite settlement)
1104 (Crusader rule)
1291 (Mamluk rule)
1948 (Israeli city)
  MayorShimon Lankri
  Total13,533 dunams (13.533 km2 or 5.225 sq mi)
  Density3,600/km2 (9,500/sq mi)
Official nameOld City of Acre
CriteriaCultural: ii, iii, v
Inscription2001 (25th Session)
Area63.3 ha
Buffer zone22.99 ha

The city occupies an important location, sitting in a natural harbour at the extremity of Haifa Bay on the coast of the Mediterranean's Levantine Sea.[2] Aside from coastal trading, it was also an important waypoint on the region's coastal road and the road cutting inland along the Jezreel Valley. The first settlement during the Early Bronze Age was abandoned after a few centuries but a large town was established during the Middle Bronze Age.[3] Continuously inhabited since then, it is among the oldest continuously-inhabited settlements on Earth.[4] It has, however, been subject to conquest and destruction several times and survived as little more than a large village for centuries at a time. Acre was an important city during the Crusades, and was the site of several battles. It was the last city held by the Crusaders in the Levant before it was captured in 1291.

In present-day Israel, the population was 49,380 in 2019,[1] made up of Jews, Muslims, Christians, Druze, and Baháʼís.[5] In particular, Acre is the holiest city of the Baháʼí Faith in Israel and receives many pilgrims of that faith every year. Thirty-two per cent of the city's population is Arab. The mayor is Shimon Lankri, re-elected in 2018 with 85% of the vote.