>  Places to visit in Shephelah   >  Ashdod Philistine Museum

Ashdod-philistine-musuem2The Museum of Philistine Culture in Ashdod is the only museum in the world dedicated solely to the Philistine culture. It has a permanent exhibition of rare archaeological finds, presented with digital tools.

The Museum also invites visitors to dress as a Philistine, try out their type of weapons, and have a Philistine feast.

Who Were Really the Philistines?

The main historical source about the Philistine is the Bible, yet, written from a Jewish perspective, it presents them as oppressive, aggressive, and cruel. In modern English Philistine is a derogatory term, for a strong yet unclever caricature (a barbarian). On the other hand, the archaeological evidence presents the contrary. The Philistines were sea-faring people from the Aegean sea  who settled in the Holy Land in five main cities (the Philistine Pentapolis). Excavations at some of their sites (namely Tel QasileGath and Ekron) uncovered a wealth finds attesting to quite a sophisticated culture, clearly superior to their contemporary Israelites.

Another wing of the museum is devoted to temporary exhibitions of various topics.

The Museum is open every day of the week.

A tour to the Museum of Philistine Culture in Ashdod can be combined in a guided day tour in the Judean Foothills (the Shephelah).

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