Ever since the Russian President Medvedev opened the Russian Museum and Park Complex in 2011, I wanted to go visit and explore this new attraction in Jericho. Even though I go to Jericho very often, I finally went there yesterday. I really enjoyed the visit and will definitely go back again for a closer look.
The museum contains archeological artifacts dug up from the site itself with items going back as far as fifth century after Christ. A byzantine building with a mosaic center piece was uncovered and other rooms from subsequent eras. Excavations are still ongoing and will hopefully fill up the beautiful museum cabinets with more interesting artifacts. The other main part of the museum collection are photographs uncovered in the sheds on the same estate which were used by Russian Pilgrims around the year 1900. The photos were from the same period and showed Russian Pilgrims on their visits to Nazareth, Jerusalem, Hebron, and Jericho. Some of the photographs have been enlarged and occupy a good part of the museum.
The guides were so helpful and explained in detail about every piece of history on display there. I even got to meet the museum director and chat for some time while a lovely guide took my kids on a tour of the park outside. I encourage you to make it a stop of your next visit to Jericho!
Here are some photos from the visit:
Museum from outside and inside under the main dome. In 3rd photo you can see the reconstruction of the mosaic floor discovered along with what remains from the original piece.
Russian pilgrims at land around the Oak of Abraham near Hebron. Nowadays it is the location for Russian Orthodox convent and pretty much the only place with Christians in Hebron.
Russian Church and convent in Mt. of Olives in Jerusalem.
Russian pilgrims in Nablus near Jacob’s well.
In Jerusalem in front of the Dome of the Rock.
Amazing photo of pilgrims before Saturday of the dead all carry flowers before visiting graves.
More of the museum collection.
My kids at the museum.
Gifts brought from Russia for the opening.
And finally, a fragment of the mosaic center piece uncovered on the site:
— Jack Rabah