On the 4th of June 2009, the Museum of the Good Samaritan opened to the public. This is the only mosaic museum in Israel, displaying mosaics and other finds discovered in Judea, Samaria and the Gaza Strip.
The site, located on the main road between Jerusalem and Jericho,
is identified with the biblical Ma'ale Adumim, which was located at the
junction between the lands of the tribes of Benjamin and of Judah
(Josh. 15:7; 18:17). In the Byzantine period it was identified with the
inn mentioned in the Parable of the Good Samaritan (Luke 10:25–37). This
parable includes men of three different faiths: Jesus, the founder of
Christianity, Jews, and a Samaritan who performs a merciful deed.
Accordingly, the museum exhibits mosaics and artifacts from both Jewish
and Samaritan synagogues, as well as from churches.
mosaics are divided into two groups: those on open-air display and
those inside the museum building. In addition, various artifacts from
different places are on exhibit.
The museum is situated within the Inn
of the Good Samaritan site, which includes Second Temple-period remains
such as dwelling caves, cisterns from different periods, and the
reconstructed Good Samaritan Byzantine church. These remains serve to
underline the importance of the site for Christians through the ages.
site was developed and restored by the Civil Administration's Staff
Officer of Archeology and Antiquities and the Israel Antiquities
Authority, financed by the Tourism Ministry with a total investment of
10 million shekel.
The Inn of the Good Samaritan is conveniently situated on the route frequently traveled by pilgrims and tourists traveling from Jerusalem to the holy sites in the Galilee.
Other sites of particular interest to Christian tourists in the area
include the baptism site of Qasr el Yahud on the Jordan river which is
in the final stages of a major renovation program, and the archeological
site of Qumran.