Kinneret Courtyard

Project Profile

Permanent Exhibition at the Khan


חצר כינרתBackground:

The Kinneret Courtyard celebrated its Jubilee anniversary in 2008. The land was purchased by ICA ’s representative in Galilee , Kalvarisky Margaliot.

The farm that was established in 1908 in accordance with Arthur Ruppin’s instructions, served as an agricultural experimental station. The Kinneret courtyard was a sort of greenhouse for evaluating novel ideas proposed by the second Aliya newcomers:  Kibbutz, Moshav, Tnuva, Hamashbir, Hashomer, and the Second Aliya women’s Feminist Movement. Kibbutz Kinneret was founded in 1913 and the farm served as a base for founding additional kibbutzim.

Keys figures of the Labour Zionist Movement and of the Second Aliya visited the farm and attended ideological and political discussions that shaped the Jewish society during the 1904-1918 period.

Following the establishment of the State of Israel, the Courtyard served as an IDF Nahal Brigade command station. In 1973, after the army left, it was then taken over by a non-profit organization including Kibbutz Kinneret, Moshava Kinneret, and the Jordan Valley regional council with the purpose to restore and preserve the historical site. Due to arguments between the parties, nothing was done until the Society for Preservation of Israel Heritage Sites (SPIHS) started its activities on the site some 4 years’ ago.

The SPIHS will operate the site during the first 5 years, with an option for an additional 5 years. Today the site is economically balanced.

Since then a number of buildings at the courtyard were restored and rehabilitated. In 2007 guiding activities began. The guides are Youth Movement graduates from “Mahanot Haolim”, from kibbutzim “Naaran”, “ Upper Nazareth ” and “Migdal Haemeq”. This year 20,000 visitors are expected.

Various groups also hold workshops and seminars there, including the Youth Moment Graduates, Mahanot Olim, Hashomer Hatzair and others.

Today the Courtyard has neither shower nor lodging facilities for the seminar participants. The Development Program will include the necessary infrastructure required for the seminar participants.

The “Khan” building was the first one that was there when the farm was purchased. The rest of the buildings that are still here today were constructed around the Khan.

The “Khan” has been restored and it is now being prepared to house a permanent exhibition with the purpose to convey to the visitors the doubts and messages of the Second Aliya members, as they experienced in those days.


The main objective of the project is to establish the permanent exhibition at the “Khan” in the Kinneret Courtyard. The intention is to complete the permanent exhibition and inaugurate the Khan building in 2010.

Omri Shalmon

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