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      Ideas for Pesach Vacation: Volcanic Park Opens in Golan Heights

      Not everything explosive in the Golan Heights is about gunfire; a new volcanic park provides a fascinating look under the surface.
      By Hana Levi Julian
      First Publish: 3/14/2013, 2:18 PM

      Volcano
      Volcano
      NASA

      Looking for something new and different to do this year during the Chol Hamoed Passover vacation? Think about northern Israel.

      Not everything explosive in the Golan Heights is related to gunfire – and on the intermediate days of the Passover holiday, a new volcanic park will provide a fascinating look at what else goes on under the surface of the ancient Land of Israel.

      The Avital Volcanic Park is located on the site of a dormant volcano that last exploded between 100,000 to 700,000 years ago.

      The explosion that rocked the site at the time is what formed the black basaltic rocks that now exist on the Golan Heights, scientists say.

      The new park is built on an abandoned quarry and includes a model of a volcano that allows visitors to visually experience a volcanic eruption.

      The Volcanic Park is a paleomagnetic site – this means the ancient basalt rocks in the area have changed the Earth’s magnetic field over time. 

      The rocks, spewed forth from the ancient volcanic eruption, are characterized by reversed magnetism. The term is borrowed from the field of geology and refers to the disruption of compasses when they are in proximity to the rocks.

      It is recommended to bring a compass with you and watch what happens as a result of this strange natural phenomenon!

      In addition, the park features a short hiking trail among the basalt rocks.

      It is also open to the public at night and offers a spectacular light and sound show that will illuminate the sky with a simulation of the eruption of a real volcano.

      For directions to the site and more information, call the Wassat Center for Golan Tourism at +972-4-689-4774 or visit the website by clicking here.