The Israel Railway Museum in Haifa is a lovely family attraction. But it has drawbacks.
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The Israel Railway Museum is situated in Haifa, near the port. It has two entrances. If you are using public transport, you can enter from Derekh Khativat Golani 3. And if you are reaching by car, you can enter from Hiram Street 1, Haifa.
Interactive map of the area:
- Hotels, hostels, and apartments in this area:
The guard will ask for your ID at the car entrance (Hiram Street). And then you can then drive into the compound and park by the museum (for free).
The Israel Railway Museum is open at:
Sunday – Thursday: 8:00 – 15:30 (last entry at 14:30).
Adult – 30 NIS
Child (above five years old) – 15 NIS
Note: opening hours and ticket prices were updated in December 2022. In any case, recheck the official site before visiting.
The museum has two buildings. You can find a ticket office and old trains in the main building. Also, outside the main building, you can find various trains, and behind it, you can find restrooms.
Note: There is no air conditioning because the main building contains trains. But, over the years, we visited it several times (always during the summer vacation), and it was not that hot.
The secondary building presents different old items related to trains. There are stamps, old train timetables, semaphores, and more. The secondary structure is smaller, and it has air conditioning.
You must use the bridge above the railways to move between the buildings.
The bridge and the cranes of the port:
Note: the railway museum is accessible.
And on the opposite side of the bridge, you can see the Sail Tower:
Trains by the Main Building
After purchasing tickets, you can visit the museum in any order. But if you are worried about the heat, you can start by visiting the trains outside the main building.
Here are several photos from this area:
Children can climb many trains. And my daughters do not miss the opportunity.
Here is a 25-ton steam-powered breakdown crane. It was built in 1918 by Cowans Sheldon in England. It was built for the British Army and served the Israel Railways until the 1970s.
Though almost 100 years have passed, the label looks new.
You can find an armored fighting truck at the main building entrance.
It was built in 1936 in Lod and used by the British Army for an armored escort to Jerusalem. And since I mentioned Jerusalem, the first train in Israel was constructed in 1892 between Jaffa and Jerusalem. The initiative for the construction belongs to Yosef Navon. For his effort, Navon was awarded the Légion d’honneur by the French government and the Medjidie by the Turkish government.
Today Jaffa and Jerusalem’s first train stations were reconstructed and serve as shopping and entertainment areas.
Main Building in the Israel Railway Museum
The tickets are purchased at the entrance to the main building. See the prices at the beginning of this post.
Not sure if it is related to summer vacation (all our visits were in the summer), but there was a guide on site. On the most recent visit, the guide gave us a five-minute overview of the museum, and then we started to explore by ourselves.
Our first stop was this luxury train car:
It was made in England and used by VIPs. In Israel, a similar luxury train car was used by David Ben-Gurion.
You can see the saloon, bathroom, kitchen, and bedroom as you go through it — all with high-end finishing.
Ambulance Railroad Car
Another train car we saw was this one:
It is the oldest railroad car in the Railway Museum. It is more than a century old and was used as a hospital.
Though our guide did not mention it, I noticed that the following locomotive had Arabic numbers.
I later learned the museum has a locomotive from the famous Hedjaz Railway. Hedjaz Railway carried Muslim pilgrims on their way to make the Haj pilgrimage to the holy cities of Medina and Mecca in Saudi Arabia. It was then possible to travel by narrow gauge steam train from Haifa to Damascus in Syria and Amman in Jordan.
There are additional trains, and you can see them in the video.
If you are interested in trains and Jezreel Valley Railway, see Alroi Spring and Valley Railway Station.
Secondary Building in the Israel Railway Museum
Passing the bridge on our way to the secondary building:
There are clear and prominent signs on site with arrows to the buildings, so the chance of getting lost is low.
The secondary building is much smaller. There are no trains there but rather complementary items. Like old train tickets:
The Israel Railway Museum is a lovely attraction for families, especially kids, and people who love trains. But they could do much more and move this museum to the current century. The existing museum is not large, and a typical visit will take 1-3 hours. Another problem with this museum is the limited opening hours.
This area has many attractions. You can explore them using the interactive map above.
See Alroi Spring and Valley Railway Station if you want a free alternative.
Have you ever been to the Israel Railway Museum at Haifa? Tell us about your experience in the comments below.
That’s all for today, and I’ll see you in future travels!
For additional attractions nearby, see Haifa.
Additional ResourcesHere are several resources that I created to help travelers:
- Israel Trip Planner is the page that will help you to create your perfect travel route.
- National Parks And Nature Reserves page lists and put all national parks on the map. There is also a top list, information about ticket types and campsites.
- If you are looking for things to do, here are the pages for Jerusalem, Tel Aviv, Haifa, Sea Of Galilee, and Makhtesh Ramon.
- Wondering what events are there in Israel? Here is the Events And Festivals By Season guide.