Gordon Tours Israel Blog

Culture, Tech and everything in between; Israel’s best museums

Icon February 12, 2020
Icon By Shai Navon
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Israel is famous for many things. Besides being a Mediterranean seaside oasis and a trove of religious pilgrimage sites, the country offers world-class museums that will appeal to any type of interest. Whether science or art is your thing, or you’d rather spend the afternoon immersed in the history of one of the world’s most inarguably historic regions – the museums of Israel have something to offer you. We’ve highlighted a few of our favorites here:

Israel Museum

This iconic museum houses some of the world’s greatest artifacts. Its holdings feature the most comprehensive archaeological trove from the Holy Land, as well as outstanding collections related to Jewish history and art. One building in the museum complex, known as the Shrine of the Book, houses the Dead Sea Scrolls, which date from 300 BC and 100 AD. The Israel Museum also holds artifacts from the Jewish fortress of Masada.

Israel Museum

Tel Aviv Museum of Art

For the art lover, the Tel Aviv Museum of Art offers a world-class collection of paintings and sculptures. Established in 1932 in the former home of Tel Aviv’s first mayor, Meir Dizengoff, the museum eventually expanded and moved to its current home, which houses multiple wings and a sculpture garden. This museum features pieces by Picasso, Klimt, and Jackson Pollock, among others. Renowned pop artist Roy Liechtenstein created a piece specifically for the Tel Aviv Museum of Art, which is currently displayed in the entrance foyer.

Tel Aviv Museum of Art

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Yad Vashem

Yad Vashem, also known as the World Holocaust Remembrance Center, is a solemn reminder of the Holocaust and a tribute to the victims of the Nazi genocide. Located on Mount Herzl and overlooking Jerusalem, the museum is shaped like a prism penetrating the mountain. Though a sad and sobering reminder of tragedy and atrocity, the experience of visiting the Holocaust memorial in the homeland of the Jewish people is an unforgettable and powerful experience. Visiting Yad Vashem is free of charge.

Yad Vashem

Madatech – Israel National Museum of Science, Technology, and Space

The only museum on the list located in Haifa, the Madatech is also the best museum on this list to experience with the whole family. A remarkably kid-friendly museum, Madatech encourages touch and play as a way of learning about scientific concepts and technological developments. As the “Startup Nation,” science and technology hold a special place in Israeli society, and that importance comes through at the Madatech, which also features an exhibit devoted to Ilan Ramon, Israel’s first astronaut.

Madatech

Museum on the Seam

Certainly the most controversial museum on this list, the Museum on the Seam bills itself as a “socio-political contemporary art museum.” Located in a former Israeli Defense Force military outpost on the border between Jerusalem and East Jerusalem, the scars of bullets and mortars are still visible on this old Arab house. This museum has been lauded by the New York Times as “one of the global cultural destinations to see before you die”. Like any contemporary art museum, there’s no telling what you’ll find, but prepare to be challenged and inspired by whatever is currently exhibited in this utterly singular museum.

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