tel hai 2

‘Tel Hai’ (In Hebrew: ‘Hill of Life’) is one of the most significant sites in the history of the Zionist movement. Jews settled at the site in 1905 after purchasing the land, but in 1920 Arabs from Lebanon attacked and burnt the site. Despite the loss, the battle is etched in Israeli culture as the first heroic attempt to re-settle Jewish homeland and overcome hardship and hostilities.

History of Tel Hai

In 1893, the Jewish baron and philanthropist Edmond the Rothschild purchased the region of Tel Hai. In 1905, six nearby Metullah members established the Tel-Hai agricultural post. At the end of the First World War, Arab armed forces began raiding Jewish colonies, especially in northern Israel. In 1919, they attacked Kfar Giladi, and in early 1920, they raided and burnt the Jewish farm of Hamra, 2 miles northeast of Tel-Hai. Yoseph Trumpledor, a former rewarded officer in the Russian army, joined Tel Hai in an effort to secure it.

On March 1st, 1920, several hundred Arabs marched to Tel Hai, demanding to search it. At the end of a verbal dispute, both sides opened fire. The Attackers killed six Jewish defenders, including the commander, Trumpeldor. In his last breath, he stated: “No matter, it is good to die for our country,” and died. The remaining Jews retreated to Kfar Giladi while the Arabs burned Tel Hai. Although the battle ended with a Jewish defeat, it is marked in Israeli history as a heroic battle of pioneers willing to risk their lives yet fulfill the Zionist Ideal of re-settling homeland. In 1957, Tel Hai became a National park, and in 2007 Israel established a unique and innovative multi-media show in the site’s building. The presentation follows the daily life of the first pioneers of Tel-Hai and a dramatization of the 1920 battle.

Touring Tel-Hai

Tel Hai is a national park whose visits are by reservation only. A “trail of the injured” from Tel-Hai to Kibbutz Kfar Giladi marks the ascent used to clear the Jewish defenders injured in the 1920 battle. Don’t miss a visit to Tel Hai’s historical cemetery. At its entrance stands a stone sculpture of a roaring lion, a memorial of the Jews who died in the 1920 battle of Tel-Hai.

A tour of Tel Hai can be combined with a day tour in the north.

Email or contact us to inquire more about a private tour to Tel Hai:

    Related Tours