Israel / Cities and Towns
City in northern Israel with 265,000 inhabitants (2008 estimate); the metropolitan area is listed with 535,000 inhabitants.
Haifa is situated between the Bay of Haifa, which is part of the Mediterranean Sea, and Mount Carmel. The slopes of Mount Carmel are part of the city. Haifa is divided into 4 centres: The lower city near the port, containing private residences and commercial establishments. The bay area is devoted to industry. Hadar Hacarmel on the slopes of Mount Carmel is the shopping and cultural zone, and the fourth centre is Mt. Carmel itself, a residential area.
Haifa is the main port of Israel, and the country's industrial centre as well. Among its most important industries are: Oil refineries, food processing, shipbuilding, cement, chemicals, electrical equipment, glass, steel and textiles.
Haifa serves as the world headquarters for the Baha'i religion, and the city is dominated by the Persian gardens and the shrine of Baha'ullah (picture).
638: Captured by Muslim Arab troops.
1100: Conquered by European Christian crusaders, who name the city Caiphas.
1291: Destroyed by the Mamluk rulers of Egypt.
1517: Captured by the Turks.
1750: Fortified by the initiative of Shaykh Dahiri l-Amr.
1799: Captured by Napoleon.
1839: Captured by the Egyptian general Ibrahim Pasha.
1840: Turkey gets control over Haifa, with the help of European fleets.
1918: Occupied by British forces.
1922: Becomes part of the British mandate of Palestine.
1924: Technion, now known as Israel Institute of Technology, is opened.
1933: A deepwater port, built under supervision of British authorities, is opened.
1948 April 22: The Jewish forces, the Haganah, win their battles against Arab troops to control Haifa. This results in an exodus that strips Haifa of around 50,000 Arab inhabitants.
1959: Israel's only subway opens in Haifa.
1964: University of Haifa opens.