To consider the events at Gamla in light of the archaeological discoveries, a brief discussion on the identification of the site is in order, as this question has not yet been fully discussed in English

The passage in War provides the key for the identification of the site, which ‘moved around’ between several sites in the last quarter of the 19th century. The previously accepted identification of Gamla with the site of Tel ed-Dra', in the Rukkad river-bed, now on the border of Israel with Syria, was proposed by Konrad Furrer, in 1889. This identification was based on the presumed preservation of the name Gamla in the name of the nearby village Jamleh, plus two faulty assumptions. One was that Tarichaeae, which is, according to Josephus, ‘across from Gamla — on the far side of the lake’, is at the southern extremity of the Sea of Galilee, at the site of Beth-Yerach. The second was that across from Gamla should mean on the same geographical latitude. Tarichaeae is now identified with certainty at Magdala, on the northwest shore of the lake, and Josephus can hardly be credited with familiarity with geographical latitudes in the first century CE. Gustav Dalman later ‘corroborated’ Furrer’s identification, based on a visit to the site (Dalman 1911).

The present site was first suggested in1968. On older maps it is called es-Salam or es-Sanam (the hump) and it accords well with Josephus’ description:

The site of Tarichaeae is clearly visible from es-Salam (hereafter referred to as Gamla); the ridge at Gamla resembles a reclining camel from certain angles; the approach to the ridge is possible only over a narrow saddle connecting it to the plateau to the east; the ruins are found only on the southern slope of the ridge and a wall separates the ruins from the saddle on the east; there is no other wall around the site. Finds from the Hasmonean period accord with the brief reference to Alexander Jannaeus’ activity at Gamla (War I, IV, 8 (§103–106); Antiquities XIII:394).

The typically Jewish finds attest to the city’s character: a synagogue, four ritual baths (miqwaoth), many hundreds of knife-pared lamps (the so-called Herodian lamps), fragments of limestone cups and thousands of Hasmonean coins, mostly those of Jannaeus. The site of Tel ed-Dra’ on the other hand, has not been surveyed well, and its identity remains a mystery. However, a fragment of a stele or architectural fragment depicting a winged deity — possibly Victory — discovered there (Dalman 1913:50) is inconsistent with the Jewish city Josephus describes, and is certainly later than the first century CE.

Gamla is mentioned in some later Rabbinical sources, evidently in connection with events that took place in the Second Temple period. The excavations proved without a doubt that the site was indeed abandoned in the second half of the first century CE; the latest coins date to 64 CE. The excavations corroborated Josephus’ account on many more points and finally, the archaeological finds relating to the revolt, described below, leave no doubt as to the site’s identification as Gamla.