Two of the photographers and a policeman who tried to break up the fight were injured, said police spokesperson Liat Pearl.
"Two security guards were detained for questioning by the Tel Aviv police department," Pearl said.
The pop diva has been in Israel since Wednesday, along with 2,000 other students of Kabbalah (search), or Jewish mysticism.
Madonna's visit to the country has sparked a media frenzy with the local newspapers devoting pages detailing her luxury hotel suite and even her menu for the Jewish New Year celebrations, but journalists have been kept at a distance during the visit.
The scuffle broke out Friday evening as the photographers trailed Madonna from a restaurant to her hotel.
The Israeli bodyguards knocked one of the photographers to the ground and kicked him in the face before attacking a second one who tried to intervene, according to a cameraman on assignment for Associated Press Television News.
Madonna had already entered her hotel when the fight broke out.
Madonna was raised a Roman Catholic, but she has taken an interest in Jewish mysticism in recent years.
She has adopted the Hebrew name Esther, wears a red thread on her wrist to ward off the evil eye, and reportedly refuses to perform on the Jewish Sabbath.
Designer Donna Karan and Marla Maples, an ex-wife of Donald Trump, were among those traveling with Madonna, according to the Los Angelese based Kabbalah Center, sponsor of the trip.