The Israel Museum Jerusalem
A land of ancient wonders, stunning beaches and mouthwatering delicacies, Israel is one of the most culturally-rich and exotic places to visit in the world. If you’re a connoisseur of literature, art and culture, then Israel is the place for you.
Jerusalem, one of the oldest and holiest cities in the country, has its fair share of art galleries and museums that will delight absolutely any traveller. But one place that stands out amongst the rest for its sheer of wealth of artistic delights, is The Israel Museum.
Five millennia of cultural treasures await you
The custodian of Israel’s religious, artistic and cultural integrity, The Israel Museum is a mammoth building that houses over 500,000 objects – artifacts, books, scrolls, paintings, sculptures & utensils – that have been collected and preserved for over a period of 5000 years.
The museum is very child-friendly and disability-friendly; the perfect place for all types of travellers to visit.
Best things to see inside The Israel Museum
• Dead Sea Scrolls
For starters, there are the Dead Sea Scrolls, one of the oldest Jewish religious texts, which were found in the Qumran Caves of the Judaean Desert. These scrolls have been dated to between 408 BCE to 318 CE and currently, they are housed in the museum’s dome-shaped Shrine of the Book. The largest (and best-preserved) scroll - the Great Isaiah Scroll - always has a throng of visitors around it. So better get to the museum fast and avoid the crowds.
Another book to see when visiting the Shrine of the Book – the Aleppo Codex, the oldest Bible in the world.
• The 3rd Century mosaic floor
If you enjoy miniature paintings and mosaics, then the Archeology wing’s massive 3rd Century mosaic discovered in Nablus and depicting the life & trials of Achilles will surely impress you. The colours are still vivid and the attention to detail is mind-blowing.
Other exhibits in the archaeology section that you have to see before you leave the museum are the Pilate Stone, House of David victory inscription, Hadrian’s Triumph and Mosaic of Reḥob. The life-size statues of military generals and saints are extremely realistic and make for an interesting sight.
• Billy Rose Art garden
The Israel Museum has one of the largest collection of paintings & sculptures in the world. The Billy Rose Art Garden, which is a sprawling, tree-lined estate, filled with massive statues by world-renowned artists like Boudelle, Rodin, Oldenburg and Moore, is a must-visit for all travellers.
Follow the sculptures into the building and make your way to the Jewish art floor, where you’ll find authentic Jewish art pieces like the 19th Century Deller family sukkah and the 18th Century gold-gilt Vittorio Veneto Synagogue. Other artworks by reputed artists like Picasso, Pollock, Modigliani and Yosef Zaritsky are also worth visiting.
Sites to see after your visit
The entire visit to The Israel Museum can take from 3-6 hours, depending on how fast you see the exhibits. But if you’re done early and want to see some of the nearby sites, here are a few places you can visit:
How to get to The Israel Museum?
If you’re already in Jerusalem and want to enjoy the comfort and convenience of an experienced tour operator, contact us. We are an Israeli tour operator and we organize private Jerusalem day trips, inter-city multi-day tour packages and ship-to-shore tours across Israel. Our Jerusalem tour guide prices are extremely budget-friendly.
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