From Biblical times to the present, for 3,000-years of Jewish history in Eretz Israel, there has been a common thread that has connected Jewish communities and brought them to settle in the Regional Council of Mateh Yehuda, which is celebrating its 50th anniversary in 2014. Fifty-seven communal towns, moshavim and kibbutzim represent the amazing human mosaic that gathered together in the newly established State of Israel from all corners of the earth.
Mateh Yehuda — the largest regional council in Israel — encompasses an area of 520,000 dunams (52,000 hectares), from Jerusalem and the Judean hills to the Mishor (the plains of Shimshon). Most of the region is covered with forests and some of the most historical roads in the new nation's history run through it. From the days of the Judges and Samson and the era of Israel's Kings, to the famous Burma Road and such famous historical events as the Battle of the 35 during the War of Independence to the settling of the new immigrants after the founding of the State and the establishment of flourishing agriculture. Mateh Yehuda is a green and enchanting landscape entwined in the heritage of the Jewish people and the history of its revival.
Jews from the world over came to settle in Mateh Yehuda, from Cochin and Yemen, Morocco and Kurdistan, Bulgaria, Poland and many other distant lands. They live in harmony with their Arab neighbors from the villages of Ein Rafa and Ein Nekuba, and even together in the joint Jewish Arab village of Neve Shalom, which is an exceptional example of true coexistence between peoples.
The Regional Council Mateh Yehuda has made quality of life its motto, and in this spirit the council promotes rural tourism and furthers the realization of the business potential of the region's agriculture. There has been an amazing resurgence of delightful vineyards, rustic beer microbreweries, artists' workshops and unique businesses which draw domestic and foreign tourists to the region.
In recent years, all have joined to create the Rustic Food Festival, the Wine Festival, the Beer Festival
and other such projects. Together, residents of
the municipality promote values of sustainability and protecting the environment. The wonderful human tapestry and the huge expanse of this region are home to many varied tourist attractions, parks and some of Israel's most beautiful forests and many unique attractions as well as marathon races, trekking, wonderful cycling paths and great picnic areas.
It is our desire to live together in prosperity and friendship, peace and joy and enjoy many more anniversaries together in the years to come.
Head of the Regional Council Mateh Yehuda