The Jesus boat in Ginosar

My two days of work projects were done, and it was nice to take off a friday from work and relax and see some places.  I booked into a youth hostel in Tiberias and made friends with a South Africa pastor and got to see a lot special places.

The community of Ginosar is a Kibbutz on the banks of the Kinneret, this concrete exhibition hall has this wonderful piece of history.

In my home city of Portsmouth, a historic ship from the time of Henry the Eighth was pulled out of the harbour in 1982, at the time craning an ancient ship out of the sea without it breaking up, a not so conventional bit of archeology probably not been done before,  and I remember as I child watching it at school on live television as it was shown all over the world.

Just a few years later, this ancient boat found in the Galilee in unusually high tide conditions in 1986, archeologists sprayed it in foam and carefully lifted it out.

Mounted in a metal cradle you can see the boat, it has been treated in wax to stop it rotting.

Its dated from the first century AD, so its quite possible it was owned by someone who may have known Jesus maybe.

There is some nice drawings on the wall of this museum, although it is very small, as well as the video showing how it was carefully excavated and cleaned up, you can see the whole exhibition in less than 10 minutes.

Interestingly enough, the boat is fabricated from 12 different types of wood as the colour coding here shows.


Left: photos of the boat being winched out after being covered in foam, and a model shown.  Right: a model of what the model looked like in its day.

Ginosar also has these nice new bungalows which look very new which look out onto the sea.

There was also a folk music event happening, there were people camped out and bands playing close to the sea.   I asked the man at the car park who was checking tickets where the Jesus boat was, after he spoke to his colleague, I heard him say the word ‘Yeshu’  rather the ‘Yeshua’   this was sad, as the Yeshua is Hebrew for Jesus but Yeshu, spelt similar is a insult sometimes used by critics of Christianity and Messianic Judaism in Israel.

This chap who worked in the gift shop had an interesting tatoo from the Psalms.   He told me he is a Jewish believer in Jesus, so I shook his hand 🙂

Next a ferry around the Kinneret

Check out the official site of the Jesus boat here:

A day in my work in the GalileeThe Jesus boat in GinosarThe Kinneret LakeTiberias evening light showPreaching and miracles of Jesus in CapernaumTiberias city centre and Muriels and Maimonidies

Rosh HaNikra railway line, caves and border crossing

This view shows facing southwards from the most extreme north coastal point of Israel.

This is Rosh Ha Nikra (meaning Head of the Grottos)  a place of natural beauty, containing not only natural caves, but a museum built on the site of a railway line which goes from Israel through Lebanon through to Turkey built by the British in WWII, not running any more of course!

There is a nearby Kibbutz, the white tent you can see in the distance is a banana plantation, apparently British Jewish comedian who created Borat and Bruno characters Sacha Baron Cohen once lived here.

The left field has all the fruit picked.  The right hand one shows the bunches of bananas has blue plastic bags round them to keep out insects and birds, as well plastic sheeting around the whole field.  Means the fruit doesn’t have any chemicals on them instead.

The entrance to the cable cars and visitor centre.

Amusing looking warning signs in the cable car, the journey down was something like two minutes or so I think.

The tunnels, long since blocked off, as its impossible to cross over to Lebanon through the regular borders, carried trains all the way up through the middle east.  These days in holds a cinema screen and some chairs for a presentation showing the history of this railway route.

Ancient grafitti in Hebrew here, not sure of age, not so easy to see unfortunately from this picture, could be good to bring some crayons and paper and make some rubbings if you plan to come here.   On the right, some modern scribbles.

The caves are beautiful.

Traces of copper and iron in the caves, also some tiny fossils of creatures on the rock outside.

There is a very pleasant walk that winds around inside the caves and along the edges of the cliffs.

The border!  Beyond here is a military base, and a demilitarized zone, before you reach Lebanon.

Only 120Kms to Beirut, Lebanon!