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Galilee Lake Museums

The Kinneret region has some wonderful Museums on offer for visitors. There are fascinating historical museums such as the Moshava Kinneret Museum that presents the history of the first Jewish settlement in the area and the scenic Old Gesher Museum with a railway track, ancient inn and British police fortress still intact, allowing visitors to get a taste of life in the early days of the State.
For those interested in ancient history, the Berko Archaeological Park in Tiberias, with remains from the city of Tiberias that was established in the first century CE, a lovely green area, archaeological finds, paths and gardens is a must-see.
The Beit Gabriel Museum serves as a meeting place and center for social life, arts and culture and is located on the shores of the Kinneret with breathtaking views for visitors.
For those interested in the more obscure Museums, the House of Anchors Museum is worth a visit; filled with anchors of all ages, some as many as thousands of years old, the Museum deals with the fishing life that has been associated with the Kinneret for centuries.

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In March 1990 the cornerstone of Beit Gabriel was laid. Beit Gabriel was created with the intention that it serve as a meeting place and center for the social life, arts and culture of the local residents and those from further out.
Beit Gabriel is characterized by it's openness and creativity, making for a very special atmosphere. The location of the museum, on the shores of the Kinneret, only adds to the uniqueness of the place. Thousands of visitors visit this museum each month and the breathtaking promenade that overlook the Kinneret, the garden and the site itself never fail to take their breath away.

During Israel's War of Independence, the first settlement to face an attack by a regular army, the Arab-Jordanian Legion, was Kibbutz Gesher and after Israel's Declaration of Independence, the members of the Kibbutz found themselves faced with an Iraqi invasion. The Kibbutz was besieged, razed and became an outpost, manned by members who fought bravely and withstood the attacks.
Nowadays, Kibbutz Gesher stands slightly to the west of it's original location and in the original location stands what is known as "Old Gesher," ("Gesher" being Hebrew for "bridge") a scenic corner with geopolitical and historical importance, with three bridges, a railway track, an ancient inn and a British police fortress. On the other side of the border is a restored power station, built by Pinchas Ruttenberg, referred to as "the old man from Naharayim," in the Old Gesher Museum. Additionally, the Museum houses a preserved and rehabilitated historic dining room, an audio-visual program and a multimedia presentation that helps bring the past to life for visitors.

The House of Anchors Museum on Kibbutz Ein Gev is proof of how fishing in the Sea of Galilee goes back as far as the ancient settlement in the area. This small, specialized museum is dedicated almost completely to displaying anchors that were found in the Sea of Galilee, some of which are thousands of years old. Stone anchors, iron anchors, large anchors and small anchors all feature here.
Mendel Nun, a member of Kibbutz Ein Gev , researcher of the Sea of Galilee and fisherman in his past , established the museum. Fishing net sinkers also feature in the museum ,as do ritual stones and other related items. The walls of the Anchor Museum are adorned with drawings of the ancient harbors on the shores of  the Sea of Galilee as well as drawings of fish that are characteristic to the Sea of Galilee.

The Berko Archaeological Park in Tiberias contains the ancient remnants of the city of Tiberias from the time the city was established by Herod Antipas in the first century CE until the Fatimid Dynasty in the eleventh century CE. The park is extremely impressive and presents in a fabulous manner the past of the city of Tiberias. The park also contains a green corner with paths, gardens and archaeological finds, including an ancient Roman gate, a theater which had seating capacity of seven-thousand people and a drainage system that is a thousand years old. The park also hosts various music and theater public events. The Berko Archaeological Museum provides a fascinating glimpse into Tiberias of the first century.

Bet HaMotor Museum ("The Motor House Museum") is a building situated at the entrance to Kibbutz Kinneret. The renovated, restored house was built in 1910 and was home to the first pump in the area that drew water from the Jordan River in order to water the Emek grounds. Between the years 1912-1930, a group of Yemenite new immigrants lived in very hard conditions in the area as they tried to grow crops in the area. The pump worked until 1928 when a supply of electricity was brought to the area. The Museum is closed most of the time and visitors need to book in advance.

The Gordon House Museum was established in order to create a house of nature, agriculture and knowledge. Founded in 1935, it is one of the first nature museums of its kind in Israel. The different sections of the museum provide information regarding the Sea of the Galilee area- there are artifacts from prehistoric times up until the beginning of Zionism from the Kinarot Valley, a collection of stuffed local species, films regarding the local nature and settlement of the area, archaeological displays and an area dedicated to A.D. Gordon, a pioneer, ideologue and a role model for many people in the time of the Second Aliyah. The Museum sometimes hosts changing art exhibitions too.

The Museum in the Pioneers' Courtyard is situated in the first dining room of the Deganya Alef Kibbutz. The story of Deganya is presented from the organization of a commune in Hadera up until the establishment of a permanent settlement. The founders of Deganya's memory is perpetuated through the museum, acknowledging the fact that they were the first settlement group to realize the idea of a communal settlement in Israel. Photographs, letters, maps, models and other items are used to bring the period to life for visitors.
One can take part in a guided tour of the authentic pioneer courtyard, a guided tour of the Museum of Deganya, watch a film about Deganya from its very beginning and see a Syrian tank that was courageously halted by members of the Kibbutz in the War of Independence. There are also a number of workshops that take place in the Pioneers Yard; numerology, laughing yoga, yoga, feldenkrais, drumming circles and a shooting range.

On Moshava Kinneret, on the farm of the Belinkov family, one can find the Granary Museum. The Museum is famous due to the fact that many famous Galilean figures slept here, including Berl Katznelson and Joseph Trumpeldor. The granary was used for stashing arms as well as for military training. The exhibits in the Museum include a rare collection of farming utensils and household implements that were used by the pioneers in the early twentieth century.

The Moshava Kinneret Museum is located on Moshava Kinneret ("moshava" means "rural village") in a building that once served as a clinic. This building was where the residents of the village and farm that went by the same name, as well as residents of the surrounding settlements would receive medical care.
The Museum was opened in 1988 by the Kinneret Local Council and presents the history of the first Jewish settlements in the area, in particular Moshava Kinneret. In the courtyard of the museum visitors can take a look at farming implements that date back to the early twentieth century. Inside the museum, the exhibits reflect different aspects of the lives of the pioneers; work, health, education, security and public events. There is also an area devoted to artists from the region, including the poet Rachel.

The Beit Yigal Allon Museum is located on the grounds of Kibbutz Ginnosar, by the Sea of the Galilee. The Museum is named after Yigal Allon (1918-1980), a member of the Kibbutz who was a military and political leader and a believer in coexistence and peace. There are changing exhibits displayed at the museum which feature pieces of art created by both Jews and Arabs. There is a permanent exhibit showcase which presents the history of the Galilee from ancient times until the present day. The Beit Yigal Allon Museum is also responsible for the preservation and display of an ancient boat, known as the Jesus Boat that sailed the Sea of the Galilee in the first century CE, during the time period of Jesus.


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