Afula is a city in the North District of Israel, often known as the "Capital of the Valley" due to its strategic location in the Jezreel Valley. In 2014 the city had a population of 43,831. The ancient mound of Afula, known as Tel 'Afula, is close to the city center, west of Route 60 and south of Ussishkin Street. Very little of the initial six-acre tell remains due to construction work done in this area since the British Mandate period. From the 1990s, several small excavations unearthed an uninterrupted sequence of settlement remains from the Chalcolithic until the Late Byzantine periods as well as remains from the Mamluk period. Within the town of Afula, on the ancient mound or tell known as Tel 'Afula, remains of a fortress from the Crusader and Mamluk periods have been discovered. Afula has a city park which has bike paths, work out equipment, 8 km of marked walking trails, and an amphitheater with 3,000 seats. The city’s Sports Center hosts a swimming pool, soccer fields and basketball and tennis courts.