last day in Jerusalem
We ended Jerusalem in the museums starting at the Yad Vashem complex that is a Jewish National Memorial to the six million Jews that perished in the Holocaust which includes the historical museum. This is one of four Holocaust museums that I have been to over the past few years. The others are in Berlin, Washington DC and New York City. The Yad Vashem is amazing. Architecturally the entire complex is beautifully set. Similar to all the other museums there is a historical path that you follow as you walk the museum. The way it is designed you are forced to walk a certain way. The only downside is the place is packed with tour groups and it becomes hard to navigate the crowds. What is always powerful is the candid interviews of people who had lived through the Holocaust and in the camps hearing their own personal tales of what happened to them and their families is overwhelming.
Our next museum stop was at the Herzl Museum. We got there a little early for our booked time and walked the Herzl National Park. Reminded me a bit of the Arlington Cemetery. Soldiers are buried there including major figures from the Israel Government and Herzel himself. Herzl was actually buried in Vienna but they moved him here after Israel became a state. The grounds are beautiful and the place was packed with newbies from the Israeli army. You can tell because their uniforms had not been washed yet.
The museum itself is a one hour presentation that teaches us about Herzl who was the father of the Zionist movement. He spent his entire life savings on trying to get world leaders to create a state of Israel. He did not live to see that happen but his idea was the seed that led to the eventual creation of Israel. I could have done without this museum. A bit of Israeli propaganda. Also it was a really cheesey hour about a producer and Herzl historian trying to teach an actor how to play Herzl in this play they were putting on.
We grabbed some lunch. Nothing to write home about and made our last stop at the Israel Museum. Very cool museum that just reopened this past year after four years of renovations. Under this structure is where the dead sea scrolls are housed.
There is plenty of other historical parts of the museum but we opted for the modern and contemporary art areas. Some fantastic art that I have never seen of such artists as Miro, Christo, Man Ray, etc.
We hit the wall….back to the hotel before dinner.