Tel Akko 2018 Excavation Season: July 1st – 28th, 2018

Tel Akko is currently not in Season.

Tel Akko – Total Archaeology


Located on one of the few safe anchorages along the southern Levantine coast, the ancient port city of Tel Akko served as a major cross-roads and meeting place between east and west throughout its three thousand year history. Five thousand years ago, the earliest inhabitants of Akko settled on a low kurkar hill that overlooked the fertile Akko plain, just north of the Bellus or Na‘aman River mouth as it flows into the Mediterranean Sea. Today the 22 hectare tell, locally known as Napoleon’s hill due to a mistaken urban legend that places Napoleon’s camp on the mound, is a municipal park. From the top of the tell, visitors can view Akko’s picturesque historic harbor and the UNESCO World Heritage site of Crusader and Ottoman period Acre/Akko/Akka. Beginning in 2010, an international team of archaeologists and students from the United States, Israel, Europe and Asia are uncovering Tel Akko’s rich Canaanite and Phoenician history and discovering the world of total archaeology.

Tel Akko
tel Akko juglet


To support the project’s short and long-term research goals, the renewed excavations at Tel Akko use a holistic approach to the past that we have termed “Total Archaeology”, which integrates archaeological survey, systematic excavation, a robust conservation plan, a public outreach program, and the incorporation of the largely unpublished results from earlier expeditions to address a practical research agenda, all of which have necessitated the development of a cutting edge multi-dimensional recording system.


Beginning in 2010, new excavations commenced at Tel Akko, co-directed by Professors Ann E. Killebrew and Michal Artzy. Current sponsoring institutions include the Pennsylvania State University, University of Haifa, a consortium of Claremont colleges including Claremont Graduate University and Claremont McKenna University, the University of Massachusetts at Amherst, Trinity College, Baker University, the Miami University of Ohio, and the University of Warsaw. This project, projected for ten years, has several goals:


  • A diachronic and synchronic analysis of Akko’s role as a major eastern Mediterranean maritime center and commercial crossroads from the third millennium BCE through the Hellenistic periods.


  • An analysis and comparison of the process of reurbanization and state formation during the early first millennium along the Phoenician Levantine coast and the rise of “ethnicized” kingdoms (e.g. Israel, Judah, Aram etc.).


  • An archaeological, geomorphological and geophysical study of the Bay of Akko and its coastline, including questions relating to climatic change and its impact on the location of Akko’s harbors through the age.


  • Development of new 3-D documentation and recording techniques.


  • Publication of previous excavation results



The project is committed to the “Total Archaeology” concept: approaching the science in a holistic manner, as a multi-dimensial tool to examine the past and ensure it remains relevant to the future.  Ann Killebrew says,”New skill sets will be needed for archaeologists of the 21st century – there will be less excavation and more documentation, curation of collections, conservation, and site development. We should start preparing for that now.”

Prof. Ann E. Killebrew, Departments of Classics and Ancient Mediterranean Studies, Jewish Studies and Anthropology, the Pennsylvania State University and Research Fellow at the Leon Recanati Institute for Maritime Studies, University of Haifa
Prof. Ann E. Killebrew, Departments of Classics and Ancient Mediterranean Studies, Jewish Studies and Anthropology, the Pennsylvania State University and Research Fellow at the Leon Recanati Institute for Maritime Studies, University of Haifa
Michal Artzy
Prof. Michal Artzy . Head - Leon Recanati Institute for Maritime Studies and Sir Maurice and Lady Irene Hatter Laboratory for Coastal and Harbour Archaeology . University of Haifa .

Pennsylvania State University - Professor Ann Killebrew

Tel Akko Total Archaeology Field School at Penn State – click for more information

Claremont Graduate University – Professor Tammi Schneider

For further details please click on the link

Baker University – Professor Nick Pumphrey

Dr Nicholaus Pumphrey

Miami University of Ohio – Professor Melissa Rosenzweig

Miami University offers a minor in Archaeology and course credit for students participating in the Tel Akko field school.  Click on the link to follow the Miami University Blogspot and find out what Miami students are doing at Tel Akko.

Binghamton University – Professor Michael Sugerman

This program will take you to a dig site in Akko, Israel for the month of July. You can earn 6 credits and learn about archaeological field methods, and the history, conservation, and heritage of Akko through work on an active dig site in the morning and classroom time in the afternoons.

University of Haifa – Professor Michal Artzy

Professor Michal Artzy

Claremont McKenna University - Professor Gary Gilbert

Click for more details on how to join

Trinity College - Professor Martha Risser

Follow the link for more information.

University of Warsaw – Professor Jolanta Mlynarczyk

Jolanta Mlynarczyk – University of Warsaw, Archaeology Department , Faculty Member.