Near Lachish, 16km southeast of Kiryat Gat.
|As far as we know this information was accurate when it was published (see years in brackets), but may have changed since then.
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|200 B.C.||built by the Jews, as a hiding place from the Romans.|
|1979||discovered by members of Moshav Amatzia headed by the eldest son of the moshav, Amatzia Aboudrahm.|
|1983||excavated by archaeologists Shlomo Godovich and Gideon Avni.|
|2018||declared a national park.|
The Hazan Caves are underground hideouts, built by Jews during the 2nd century A.D. to hide from the Romans. This was the time of the Bar Kochba revolt. The area is rural, coming from the west or north it is the last green area before one reaches the Beer Sheva and Negev deserts. The caves served as halls, kitchens, store rooms, and water cisterns. The people who built the caves lived above farming and producing olive oil. Several rooms show notches carved into the floors, in which clay jugs with olive oil were placed for storage. Between the rows narrow furrows in the floor collect the oil from broken jugs and directed it into a central pit, so that no oil would be wasted.
The caves are often narrow and low, but in most places they are tall enough to walk through them upright. Several chambers are connected by narrow passages, where we visitors have to crouch or even crawl. The small parts are generally a lot of fun for children visiting the caves. The caves are well lit, which makes a visit less strenuous.
There is a short film about the site shown before the visit. The visit is very important, nevertheless claustrophobic visitors should refrain from a visit. Special clothes are not needed, good shoes are still a good idea.