5 Water Hikes in Israel You Won’t Want to Miss

It’s hard to escape the Mediterranean heat in the summertime in Israel.  You could spend each and every day indoors…

But if you would rather be out exploring our beautiful Land, there’s still a way to stay cool – go on a water hike.  In Israel, there are tons of beautiful trails to splash through.  All over the country, you can become one with nature without melting in the sun.

Just picture it – a cool rocky riverbed under a canopy of shade.  The sound of a stream splashing over rocks into mini waterfalls.  Frogs croaking, birds chirping, dragonflies rushing past, and fish nibbling at your toes.  All of that can be yours this summer while you explore the best water hikes in Israel.  Here are 5 of my favorites:

Nahal Arugot

This hike takes you about an hour south of Jerusalem, to the Ein Gedi Nature Reserve.  It’s true that Ein Gedi is hot in the summertime.  But if you drive just a little further into the park and take the Nahal Arugot trail instead, you can stay wet for almost the entire hike.

water hikes in Israel - Nahal Arugot
Aquamarine pool at Nahal Arugot.
Nahal Arugot is less crowded and more beautiful than the classic Ein Gedi hike at Nahal David. On the wet trail, you can walk right through the stream from waterfall to stunning waterfall.  The shade of the rock canyon will keep you cool as you hike. Remember that it’s always a little warmer at Ein Gedi than in other parts of the country, so don’t go during a heat wave.

Click here to read the full hike post. Reserve a spot in advance before you go.

Nahal Prat

This unbelievably beautiful desert oasis is only about a half hour from Jerusalem.  It’s the best water hike in the Jerusalem area.

Water Hikes in Israel - Nahal Arugot
Desert oasis near Jerusalem.
There are two ways to hike Nahal Prat.  You can walk it the easy way, by following the red trail on your left.  This little walk is great for kids.  Make sure to break away from the path and hike through the trees to find your own sweet spot where you can spend the day relaxing in the water.

You can also take the long trail on the right, which brings you to a whole world of desert oasis beauty.  Here, there are several larger pools to hang out in.  Hike out as far as you want, then go back the way you came.

Click here and here to read the full posts. Reserve a spot in advance before you go.

Nahal HaKibbutzim

Further north in the Jordan Valley is Nahal HaKibbutzim, a great place to really cool down. This water trail is more water than trail.  You actually have to swim through it – no hiking involved.

Nahal HaKibbutzim - Water hikes in Israel
Swimming down river.
Nahal HaKibbutzim is ideal for kids and teens.  They’ll love the waterslide/drainpipes along the trail.  The water in this little river is completely calm, so you can sit on the side and watch your kids play in nature’s own swimming pool.

Click here to read the full hike post.

Nahal Snir

Once you’ve made it up North to the Golan, there are many, many water hikes to choose from.  One of my favorites is Nahal Snir, a wildly beautiful water hike over giant tree roots along a rushing river.

Water hikes in Israel - Nahal Snir
Tangle of beauty at Nahal Snir.
The trail through Nahal Snir leads along the ever popular Israel Trail. As you climb over rocks, you’ll see an entire ecosystem of natural beauty under a cool canopy of shade.  Choose a spot on a rock to stop and relax for a while.  You can let the fish nibble on your toes as you dip your feet into the water.  This water hike is pretty popular, so get there early on a summer day.

Click here to read the full hike post. Reserve a spot in advance before you go.

The Banias Springs Trail

Everyone knows about Banias Falls in the Golan.  But many people aren’t aware that you can hike along the Hermon Stream from Banias Falls to Banias Springs.

This is probably the coolest, most beautiful of all the water hikes in Israel.  It really feels like you are walking through the mist of the Banias almost the whole way through.  Something about that magical mist turns this streamside hike into a little piece of paradise.

Banias Springs hike
Into the mist.
At the end you’ll reach the Banias Springs.  But make sure to slow down along the way, to dip your feet in the water and explore hidden mysteries of the Banias stream trail.

Click here to read the full hike post. Reserve a spot in advance before you go.

So, whether you’re headed for the stream filled North or hanging out in the Center of the country, there are water hikes in Israel for you to cool down on.  Don’t confine yourself to indoor activities during the summer season.  Go explore some green and beautiful water hikes instead – they’ll change the way you experience summer in Israel.

Water hikes in Israel

Check out the Water Hikes section of Hiking the Holyland for more wet summer fun. Don’t forget to reserve your spot on the National Parks website before heading out.

About the Author
Susannah Schild writes about hikes in Israel from her home right outside of Jerusalem. You can find more of her writing at hikingintheholyland.com
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