The Qumran scrolls are one of the major archeological discoveries in Israel. The relics of the Qumran antiquities site, located in the caves area, were discovered in the first half of the 20th century. Many researchers agree that a direct link exists between the caves and the findings discovered in them and the relics of the constructions on the site. Until this day, scholars have not reached an agreement as to the purpose and function of the site. Some believe (mostly due to the large amount of water brought to the site) that it served as an agricultural farm for growing and manufacturing date honey or persimmon oil, along with other crops. The common opinion, however, is that the site was an Essene settlement which served as a Christian center for working, writing of scrolls and extreme purification rituals. Hence it is considered the first monastery in the world.
Creating a multi-stage master plan for the site in order to conserve it for visits by tourist and pilgrims. The early surveys we conducted lead us to the understanding that the planning should aim to increase the volume of visitors on the site. “The water course” was chosen as the course leading the visit to the site, since it enables guides to better demonstrate the essence of the site and its function during the first century BC. The water course was chosen as the first step in implementing the master plan. While planning it faced the great challenge of letting visitors into the site’s most sensitive area, along with facilitating access for impaired visitors.
The first stage was completed in 2000
Work ordered by:
The Israel Nature and National Parks Protection Authority;
The Israel Government Tourist Corporation;
Office supervisor: Engineer Yonatan Hai