Several thousand years of history – presented in a modern way
The city of Tel Aviv is one of the most important cultural metropolises in the State of Israel. The seat of government, the “Tel Aviv University” and numerous museums are located here. So if you go on a trip to Israel (pilgrimage, study trip or beach vacation), you should plan at least one or two days for a city trip to Tel Aviv. A stroll through the Diaspora Museum (Hebrew “Beit Hatfutsot”; it is also known as the “Nahum Goldmann Diaspora Museum”) is highly recommended. A four-story building on the university campus in the Ramat Aviv district houses this fascinating museum, which deals with the history of Judaism in exile.
On the history of the museum
According to topschoolsintheusa, Nahum Goldmann (1895 – 1982), long-time President of the World Jewish Congress, had the idea for the museum back in 1959, and it was finally inaugurated on a historic day, namely on May 15, 1978, the 30th birthday of the State of Israel. In front of the museum building there is a memorial column that commemorates the persecuted Jews. The conception of the museum is extraordinarily modern: no exhibits are shown, instead the visitor embarks on a multimedia journey into history!
The permanent exhibition
The permanent exhibition on the history of the Jews since the Babylonian captivity is made up of six large thematic areas, all of which are audiovisual. Family life, Jewish communities, their religion, culture, the countries of exile and finally the founding of the State of Israel are discussed. During their tour of the museum, visitors can also sit in front of computer screens and watch documentaries on the subject. And finally you enter a special room, the so-called “Chronosphere”. This room – undoubtedly the highlight of the museum! – is designed like a planetarium. With the help of light reflections on a world map, the viewer gets an overview of the spatial and temporal dimensions of the Jewish diaspora.
The museum shop
In the museum shop, visitors can get souvenirs: jewelery, books, toys and CDs with Jewish music are available.
The Diaspora Museum is open every day, except on Saturdays and public holidays, on Sundays, Mondays and Tuesdays from 10 a.m. to 4 p.m., Wednesdays and Thursdays from 10 a.m. to 7 p.m. and Fridays from 9 a.m. to 1 p.m.
Nothern Ramparts Walk
A new hiking trail offers the opportunity to see Jerusalem from a special perspective. The “Northern Ramparts Walk” leads over a newly built wall promenade from which Jerusalem’s old town can be admired.
Historic hiking trail close to the old town
The new path leads from the Jaffa Gate to the Lion Gate. Over a distance of approx. 3 kilometers, special insights into Christian and Muslim quarters, the Hurva Synagogue and the Temple Mount are offered from the height of the Wall Trail. The historical and cultural heritage of the Ottoman Empire, the Roman Empire, and Christian, Muslim, and Jewish institutions can be experienced in a new way. The Northern Ramparts Walk usually ends at the Lion Gate but can be extended to the Damascus Gate.
History of the Northern Ramparts Walk
The walls that surround the old city of Jerusalem were built as protective walls in the 16th century by order of the Ottoman Empire. They stretched between the gates and watchtowers. These paths have been converted into a promenade in the last five years and now allow a hike in a relaxed atmosphere that leads around the old town.
Pack suitable clothing
As everywhere in Jerusalem, appropriate clothing should be packed for the Northern Ramparts Walk if a museum or a holy place is to be visited. Access is only granted to those who are dressed discreetly enough. For men this means long trousers and no sleeveless tops. Women, on the other hand, are not allowed to wear pants. Instead, a wide skirt is required that goes at least below the knee. Tops should be closed and also have long sleeves. But hiking boots and enough drinking water for the tour should not be forgotten either.
The Dead Sea on the east coast of Israel has long been more than an insider tip for vacationers. If you are traveling here, you should not miss the former Jewish fortress Masada on the south-west side of the Dead Sea. Above all, adventurers and those interested in history from all over the world get their money’s worth on the Masada, which is visible as a large table mountain.
UNESCO world cultural heritage
The impressive remains of the former fortress, which was built in the first century BC. BC was built by the Jewish King Herod, is now one of the most popular tourist destinations in the entire region. The total area of 276 hectares is part of a large national park that extends on the west side of the Jordan Rift. The desert fortress Masada has been a UNESCO World Heritage Site since 2001. The impressive sight is now one of the most exciting archaeological sites in the country. On the summit of Masada there is a 300 x 600 meter plateau in the shape of a diamond, which can be reached via several well-developed hiking trails. From here you have a perfect overview of the entire region. This platform can also be reached via a modern cable car.