Non Stop Culture: Museums
As befits a modern Israeli city with an ancient past, Tel Aviv boasts a number of fine museums dedicated to various aspects of Jewish and/or local culture and history.
Visiting the Nahum Goldman Museum of the Jewish Diaspora (Beth Hatefutsoth), located on the campus of Tel Aviv University, is a unique experience. The museum relates the story of the Jewish people from the time of their expulsion from the Land of Israel 2500 years ago, to the present. History, tradition and the heritage of Jewish life in all parts of the world are brought here to life in murals, reconstructions, dioramas, audio-visual displays, documentary films and interactive multi-media presentations. In the Douglas E. Goldman Jewish Genealogy Center visitors can search a computerized database containing genealogies of Jewish families from all over the world and can register their own family trees.
Nearby, the Eretz Israel Museum, situated on the 12th-century B.C. Tel Qasile archeological site, features a variety of pavilions, each of which deals with a different archeological, anthropological or historical facet of the history of the Land of Israel: glass; ceramics; copper; numismatics; post & philately, ethnography & folklore, and more. Another attraction at this museum is the Lasky Planetarium, offering modern and interesting inter-active "space rides" and space exhibitions. The latest section of the facility to be opened is "Land of the Baron," a new permanent exhibit and a "museum within a museum," dedicated to the Rothschild family, one of the great benefactors these past few hundred years, to the Jewish people and later to the Jewish State.

In the area around Tel Aviv University, a couple of newer museums have been opened in recent years - or are in the process of opening - transforming this pleasant part of the city into Tel Aviv's new "Museum Mile." The Palmach Museum is an experiential museum, covering the legacy of the Palmach (the acronym for "Plugoth Mahatz," Hebrew for "Striking Force") through the stories of individuals and groups associated with it, from the time it was established in 1941 to aid the British war effort in defense of the Land of Israel, until its disbanding and integration into the Israel Defense Forces. There are no displays or documents, but rather an account of a fascinating personal story accompanied by three-dimensional decor, films and various effects incorporating documentary materials.

The tour - for groups only and subject to prior reservations - commences and ends in the commemorative hall for the Palmach fighters who died during the struggle for the establishment of the State of Israel.
Another new facility, situated between the Eretz Israel and Palmach museums, is the Yitzhak Rabin Center, designed by world-renowned Israeli-born architect Moshe Safdie, which includes a museum dedicated to the life of Israel's former Prime Minister and Nobel Peace Prize Laureate, who was assassinated in 1995.
Closer to the city center, the Tel Aviv Museum of Art, along with its collection of works that includes just about every well-known Israeli artist of the 20th century, has on permanent exhibit European and American paintings, including those of international acclaim ranging from the Dutch old masters to the Impressionists to modern art of world acclaim. The museum also serves as a venue for performing arts and cinema.


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