Sunday, 19 February 2012
The National Maritime Museum, Haifa. Of Ancient ships and pirates.
Haifa has been a port of importance for many years and Israel’s maritime heritage stretches back millennia, so what better place to learn about it than in the National Maritime Museum, on Allenby Street in Haifa?
The building stretches over three floors and shows both the ancient story of ships, artifacts and sailing in the eastern Mediterranean and, interestingly, the growth of the modern Israeli shipping industry. This starts in the Mandate period and has expanded to the current fleet of freight and cruise ships.
The lowest floor has an exhibit on piracy, which has little to do with Israel, but would be interesting for children.
Right next door, but not connected to the museum, is the Clandestine Immigration Musuem, which has even more real boats and should be all of a piece with the Maritime museum. Quite why it isn’t, remains a mystery to me!