- Type: Museums
- Time to Spend: 2 hours to Half Day
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Founded in 1965, the Israel Museum is the country's largest cultural institution and one of the world's leading art and archeology museums. Sprawling across 20 acres, the Israel Museum houses roughly 500,000 artifacts, from contemporary sculpture to ancient artifacts. Most visitors come for the legendary Dead Sea Scrolls, a collection of 972 texts, which are believed to have been written between 150 and 70 B.C. The scrolls are displayed—along with other historic texts—in the Shrine of the Book, which sits underground and is covered by a white, domelike structure.
Many travelers say that a trip to Jerusalem without seeing the Dead Sea Scrolls is a wasted one, but don't forget the rest of the museum's galleries. As one TripAdvisor user puts it: "Everyone goes here for The Dead Sea Scrolls, but it has an impressive art collection and incredible antiquities." Thanks to a massive renovation completed in 2010, the collections now have a sleek new home.
You'll find the Israel Museum along Ruppin Boulevard in West Jerusalem, just a short walk north of the Old City's Jaffa Gate. The museum's hours vary widely; you can find the most up-to-date schedule on the Israel Museum's website. Admission costs 50 ILS for adults (roughly $13 USD) for adults and 25 ILS (around $6.50 USD) for children.