Timna National Park in Eilat is not only a huge open-air museum, but also a real natural phenomenon, which tourists who come to Israel seek to see. Take a look here and we.
Timna Valley with a stone park located on its territory is located 23 km from the ancient city of Eilat (Israel). It is a large hollow, made in the form of a horseshoe and almost completely surrounded by mountains. Scientists say that life in these parts began to emerge more than 6 thousand years ago. The “fault” was the rich copper deposits, known as the “mines of King Solomon.” Of course, most of them have only memories, but the Israeli valley already has something to be proud of. Nowadays, a beautiful National Park is equipped here, which has gathered several ancient objects on its territory and is famous for its unique natural and plant world.
So, the most common tree in Timna Park in Israel is wavy acacia, the flowers of which look like small yellow balls. The leaves, trunk and branches of this plant are almost the main source of food for animals living in this area.
As for the fauna, its main representatives are gentle mountain goats, able to climb steep slopes no worse than professional climbers, wolves, which due to the intense heat exhibit their activity exceptionally at night, and a mourning stove, a small bird of the order of passerines, whose length reaches 18.5 cm
And Timna’s stone park in Israel became the only place in the world where a semiprecious “Eilat stone” was found, based on 2 natural minerals at once – lapis lazuli and malachite. Under the influence of various external factors, they not only united into a single whole, but also presented their basic properties to the Eilat stone.
What to see in the park
Timna National Park in Israel is known not only for its unusual landscapes, but also for its unique sights, the viewing of which will leave the most vivid impressions. Let’s get acquainted with some of them.
Stone spiral hill can be literally called one of the most visited objects in the park. Formed as a result of erosion, it is the clearest example of how unlimited possibilities nature has. The spiral rock owes its name to a narrow spiral staircase, which surrounds it along the whole diagonal and thereby gives the appearance of a huge screw sticking out of the ground.
No less interesting attraction of Timna Park in Eilat (Israel) is considered a fantastic rock formed as a result of centuries-old leaching of rocks by underground waters. And since the destruction of the lower layers of sandstone proceeded a little faster, a “hat” appeared on top like a big mushroom. Once at the foot of this rock was an ancient settlement of Egyptian miners. You can get acquainted with its history in the visitor center located nearby.
A tour of the stone park cannot do without exploring yet another historical artifact – cave paintings found in one of the local caves. Scientists claim that these petroglyphs depicting the hunt for Egyptian war chariots appeared here no later than the 12-14th century. BC e.
The list of the main natural attractions of Timna Park in Israel is continued by arches created from light sandstone. Most hiking trails pass through these arches and overlook the other side of a large rock. Not everyone can overcome this path, because you will have to climb up the iron brackets, and go down through a narrow crevice with sheer walls.
Next to the sandy arches was discovered another interesting tourist site. We are talking about huge mines in which the Egyptians mined the world’s first copper. These wells-wells cut out manually did not even have stairs! Their role was played by small recesses located on both sides of the descent.
From each such mine several low and narrow passages branched off, which provided the movements of the ancient copper miners. A detailed study of these objects showed that the longest course reaches 200 m, and the deepest mine – 38 m. If you wish, you can safely go down to some of these mines – it is completely safe there.
The next point on the route is the Solomon pillars. Majestic columns, consisting of solid red sandstone and formed under the influence of erosion, are an integral part of stone rock. The name of this typical landscape formation, associated with the name of the legendary king Solomon, causes a lot of controversy. The fact is that scientists could not come to a consensus. If some argue that the extraction and production of copper in these parts was really carried out under the leadership of a third Jewish ruler, then others categorically reject this fact. One way or another, and the Solomon pillars are considered the most visited place in the Timna park in Eilat.
After a short walk, you will come to the Hathor Temple, the ancient Egyptian goddess of love, femininity, beauty and fun. This once very beautiful building was erected during the reign of the pharaoh Seti and rebuilt during the reign of his son Ramses II. On the remains of its walls you can find an engraving depicting a donation to the goddess Hathor by one of the Egyptian rulers.
A tour of the Timna Park in Israel ends with a trip to the lake of the same name, which, unlike other attractions of the park, is man-made. Despite the fact that the water in it is not suitable for drinking and swimming, Lake Timna is very popular. And all thanks to various recreational activities taking place on its shore. Here you can not only sunbathe or sit in a cafe, but also ride a catamaran, take a ride on a rented mountain bike, mint a coin and even make a souvenir in the form of a bottle of colored sand. The area of the lake is about 14 thousand square meters. m., therefore there is enough space for everyone, including animals, who come here daily to a watering place.
Timna National Park, located at Eilat 88000, Israel, is open to visitors all year round. Admission is 49 ILS. Working hours:
- Sunday-Thursday, Saturday: from 08.00 to 16.00;
- Friday: from 08.00 to 15.00;
- Holidays, as well as July and August: from 08.00 to 13.00.
On a note! You can clarify the information on the official website of the Timna Stone Park in Eilat – http://www.parktimna.co.il/RU/Info/.
When deciding to visit Timna Park in Eilat, listen to these helpful tips:
- You can get to the Timna park complex both with a guided tour, and on your own (using your own transport, bus, rented car or camel). Stopping at the last option, you can walk through its territory for an unlimited amount of time (albeit until the close);
- The park has both walking and cycling routes with different levels of difficulty. You can rent a bicycle and buy a card in the information center located at the entrance;
- To get acquainted with the sights of Timna, you should choose the appropriate equipment – comfortable shoes, clothing made from natural fabrics, a hat, glasses. The skin is best treated with sunscreen lotion. And do not forget about the water – it will not hurt here;
- Moving around the park is not easy, so before you go to a particular object you should really assess your strengths and capabilities;
- The complex has a mini-cinema where you can watch a documentary film on the history of this place. True, he is only in Hebrew;
- Sometimes evening and night excursions are held in the park, however, they can be booked only by prior arrangement;
- Tired of long walks, look at the local souvenir shop – you can drink real Bedouin tea in it for free. If you are noticeably hungry, look for a small cafe located by the lake. Of course, you definitely won’t find any meat dishes there, but you will certainly be offered a kosher menu;
- The best time to visit Timna National Park is spring-autumn. But in the summer months, when the temperature in Israel rises to + 40 ° C, it would be better to refuse visits to this zone;
- Do not forget to bring a camera with you. They say that truly fantastic pictures are obtained here – as if from another planet;
- To explore the local beauties it is better to hire a personal guide. If you plan to do it yourself, pay attention to the information plates installed near all natural sites;
- Admiring the colorful landscapes of the desert, do not forget about elementary caution. Among the stones and in the sand there are many spiders and other dangerous reptiles.
Timna Park in Eilat (Israel) is a place in which the stories of bygone times are intertwined with modern entertainment, and the desert landscapes fascinate with their extraordinary beauty.
Video: Tour of the Timna National Park in Israel.