On top of Kibbutz Hill in the town of Rehovot stands the Ayalon Institute, which tells one of the most fascinating and mysterious stories in the history of the struggle for the establishment of the State of Israel. Here, beneath the ground, and right under the nose of the British, a factory was created for the production of 9mm bullets for the Sten submachine gun, the personal weapon of the Palmach. The factory lies eight meters below the ground and is the size of a tennis court. 45 brave young men and women worked in secret at the factory from its opening in 1945 until its closing in 1948. In this three year period, more than four million bullets were produced for the War of Independence. Today, the underground factory and historic “kibbutz”, preserved by the Society for Preservation of Israel Heritage Sites, with great support from Jewish National Fund-USA, serves as a museum telling the story of this important chapter in Israeli history.
For the general public: Guided tours with an emphasis on Zionism, courage and sacrifice. An exciting tour of the underground factory, which includes: locating the factory’s secret entrance; exploring the underground factory; learning about the different machines that the factory workers used and that still function today thanks to SPIHS’s team of engineers; and listening to the amazing stories of this secret place. All tours must be booked in advance.
For children: An audiovisual show and a tour of the factory’s secret openings, which includes descending the spiral staircase into the underground factory. A great combination of history, learning and adventure. All tours must be booked in advance