Jonah Hill is situated in the northwest of Ashdod, facing Nachal Lachish and the Ashdod Port to the north, the Mediterranean Sea to the west, and on a clear day providing a vista all the way to Ashkelon to the south. Towering 53 meters above sea level, it is the highest point in Israel’s sixth-largest city and offers spectacular views of its surroundings. The panorama of the Ashdod Harbor as seen from Givat Yonah is nothing less than magnificent. It is very relaxing to sit on the strategically placed benches at the highest elevation of the city and watch the enchanting, azure blue sea. At sunset the sight is glorious. Many large ocean liners can be seen as they approach Israel’s busiest cargo port during the week, its tall cranes silentlyn doing their job. On Shabbos the serenity is even more spectacular, as there is no activity on the wharf on the holy day; the Ashdod Harbor keeps Shabbos.
At the summit of the hill is a lighthouse (Migdalor Ashdod) that faces the port, and its light beam shines 27
During the British Mandate of Palestine, the British used this hill to prevent new immigrants from entering the country.
According to the Madaba Mosaic Map, Yonah Hill is the burial place of Yonah Hanavi. The 6th century
There are an unusually large number of castor-oil plants with large, palm-shaped leaves along the banks of the Lachish River, which is below Givat Yonah. Perhaps this is the kikayon tree mentioned in sefer Yonah, under which the Navi enjoyed its shade until Hashem made the tree wilt.
Published in HAMODIA 27 NISAN, 5772 APRIL 19,