Orlando >Arts & Entertainment > Holy Land Experience
This controversial $16-million Christian theme park takes you back to first-century Jerusalem..
Many local Jewish groups have taken offense at the opening of this theme park (funded by Zion's Hope executive director, Dr. Marv Rosenthal) which, they claim, aims to convert Jews to Christianity. But park officials say their aim is to draw Christian families to this "living biblical museum," which features realistic re-creations of first-century Jerusalem, including Herod's Temple, the Qumran Caves (where the Dead Sea Scrolls were found), Jesus' tomb and the Via Dolorosa (the street where Jesus walked before his crucifixion).
Oh Mah Gawd!
After dropping down $17, park visitors pass through the gates of the walled city and are ushered into an open market where they can mingle with merchants, priests, soldiers and other costumed characters of Jerusalem's early days. The Wilderness Tabernacle, a holy spectacle of sound-and-light, is three-fourths the size of the actual Old Testament tabernacle and features demonstrations of ancient rituals.
Shop for various religious-themed knickknacks and curios at the Old Scroll Shop, the Sycamore Tree or Methuselah's Mosaics--the holy trinity of gift stores.
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