Masada is Israel’s #1 tourism site

The national heritage landmark beats out Jerusalem Biblical Zoo and Ramat Gan Safari

A view of the excavations at Masada (photo credit: Yossi Zamir/Flash90)
A view of the excavations at Masada (photo credit: Yossi Zamir/Flash90)

Masada is Israel’s most popular tourist site for the second year in a row, boasting 786,000 visitors in 2011, an increase of 3 percent from 2010, according to Dun & Bradstreet’s annual rankings of Tourism & Leisure Sites in Israel.

The top three tourist sites in 2011, in terms of the number of visitors, were Masada, the Jerusalem Biblical Zoo, and the Ramat Gan Safari.

National tourism revenues were up by about 4.5% overall despite the 1% decrease in visitors to tourist sites in 2011, bringing annual earnings to about 129 million shekels.

Masada was also the leader in earnings for individual sites, with 35.8 million shekels (an increase of 5.1%), followed closely by the Ramat Gan Safari with 35.2 million.

The Jerusalem Biblical Zoo came in second place for the number of visitors — 746,639 — which was an increase of about 3.7% from the previous year. Revenues at the zoo also increased by 2.8%.

The Ramat Gan Safari enjoyed the largest increase in the number of visitors in 2011 — 744,550 — an increase of 13.3% from the 2010 ranking.


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