In a specially constructed area within the compound overlooking the Mushroom, a smaller man-sized replica of this rock formation has been created. Apart from its decorative qualities, this artifact is intended to help blind and partially-sighted guests get an idea of what the real thing is like by running their hands over the rock to experience the feel of the sandstone and quartz.
The ancient copper-production process is re-enacted for the benefit of visitors with the help of a soot-streaked stone furnace and a large bellows. A partially-surfaced dirt road leads from one site to the next, and visitors pass by Slaves Hill where the miners walled themselves in for protection against local thieves and desert brigands. Further on, we reach the adventure site where we can lounge in a tent with a cup of tea or coffee before sliding down the flying fox or rappelling from a height of eighteen meters, all under the supervision of professional instructors. From here, we continue on to Solomon’s Pillars, whose vast height dwarfs us, and the Nehushtan Lake.
An oasis with pedal boats
Timna Lake, which extends over an area of around fourteen dunam (approx 3.5 acres), is an artificially created body of water that lends the site the aspect of an oasis and provides drinking water for the animals that live in the park. Scattered around the lake perimeter are tourist facilities, sites that offer activities for all the family and a desert caravanserai hand-constructed from wooden beams and natural stone. Timna Park includes six trails for off-road vehicles; two are suitable for the whole family, while the other four are for experienced users only.
Visitors who prefer more gentle pastimes can explore the lake by pedal boat or fill a bottle with colored sand. The caravanserai beside the lake serves light meals such as baked pita bread with lebane (sour cream cheese), tea and coffee. Guests can rest on wooden pallets, mattresses or mats as they observe the activity on the lake.
The site offers well-equipped sleeping and camping facilities including large overnight tents, mats, mattresses, hot showers, toilets and perimeter lighting.
The lake compound has recently undergone renovation: sunshades have been replaced, palm trees have been planted, oasis vegetation has been added and a network of trails has been created. A new entrance lobby is now being planned, with a new building, an installation, a cafeteria and a gift shop.
The tabernacle reconstruction
Near the lake visitors can visit a reconstruction of the Biblical tabernacle that allows them to appreciate the colors, dimensions and form of this sacred structure built by the Israelites in the Sinai desert. The reconstructed tabernacle contains an altar, a copper laver, a shewbread table and a candelabrum, and the guided tour re-enacts the Biblical story of the Israelites in the desert.