Qumran is popularly known as the place where the Dead Sea Scrolls were found not quite long. The park can be found on the northwestern shore of the Dead Sea in the Judean Desert. You are going to find the park between Jerusalem and the major Dead Sea attractions like the Masada and Ein Gedi. Although the park is usually skipped by many tourists, it is a mind-blowing historical site with lots of thrilling adventures that you can try out. Some of the best things to know about Qumran National Park are stated below.
One of the best places to start exploring the park is at the visitor center where you can get an insight into the history of scrolls and settlement through an audio presentation. Some of the places that you can also explore at the visitor center are the aqueducts, reservoirs, scriptorium, cisterns, kitchen, pantry, assembly hall, kiln, pottery workshop, and cattle pen. The park with its surrounding landscape is a popular destination if you want to try out some sports like speolo, canyoning, and rappelling.
Things to do at the park
The Qumran National Park is a great destination to go for history and religious fanatics and the believers regard this park as a pilgrimage that must be made to learn more about the history of Christianity. Many people visit Qumran mainly to see the source of the Dead Sea Scrolls and you are going to discover some physical evidence of the speeches of Jesus in the Holy Land. To read the scroll, you can head to the Israel Museum where they are on display.
Another top thing to do here is to view the other documents that are found at the park which will give you an insight into the daily lives of the Essenes. You are also going to find artifacts that show the details of their existence in the area. Some of the artifacts that you are going to find are pottery, agricultural tools, aqueducts and cisterns that also helps to add originality to these texts. You should also make sure that you do not miss the mind-blowing audio-visual presentations where you can easily learn about the history of the region in an entertaining, concise, and accurate manner. The park is surrounded by numerous caves filled with diverse exhibits of focus and content that you can explore. It is best to buy a local map from the Visitor’s Center if you are planning to escape these caves. After you are done exploring the park, it is also recommended that you go sightseeing at the enormous desert fortress at Masada which is not far away. You can also plan your trip by heading to the Masada at first before you then visit the Qumran National Park.
The Qumran National Park is just about a 40-minute bus or car ride from Jerusalem. You are going to turn into Kibbutz Kala while driving along Route 90 that runs parallel to the Dead Sea.
The opening hours at the park are fairly regular. The site usually opens from 8 am to 5 pm from April to September while the entrance stops at 4 pm. From October to March, the site opens from 8 am to 4 pm while the entrance will stop at 3 pm. You should also keep in mind that the site closes an hour earlier during Fridays and the eve of Jewish holidays and you will not be allowed to enter an hour before it closes. A tour of the park is usually between an hour to two hours.
The entrance fee for adults is 21NIS while it is 9NIS for kids. You can also buy the combination ticket if you are planning to visit both the Qumran National Park and Enot Tsukim. The best thing is that the park is accessible to wheelchair users and there are aids available for visually impaired tourists can use.