The Basalt Canyon in Nahal Tavor Nature Reserve

This is one of the most beautiful hikes in the Galilee. It is a circular hike that is slightly difficult in parts and somewhat strenuous at its end because of the incline, but is highly recommended including for families.

Nahal Tabor I.jpeg

THE HIKE

 

Time: About 3 to 3½ hours.

Distance: Just over 8 Km.

Type of hike: Circular.

Difficulty: Most of this hike is easy walking. However, there are some slightly difficult parts with climbing over rocks. Also, one area where you climb up rungs on a cliff, but this is not at all dangerous. There are four river crossings on rocks, but these also are not difficult. Towards the end of the hike is a fairly steep and long climb up a rocky path. A pair of walking sticks can be helpful for this hike. 

Directions: Enter “Kibbutz Gazit” into Waze. This will bring you to the entrance to the kibbutz. Follow the green signs to נחל תבור and this will take you through the kibbutz and past the cowsheds. Turn left here. Exit the far side of the kibbutz by following the sign לשמורת נחל תבור until you come shortly to parking areas on either side of the road.

I

THE HIKE:

  • From the parking lot there is a fork just ahead of you, both branches of which are red-marked. Take the right fork. After a while on your right you will see a picnic area and observation point. It is worthwhile going through the grey gate to this observation area. After this, return to the red-marked trail. Ignore the green trail on your left and continue down the hill until you come to the stream. This is a distance of about 2½ Km and should take you about ¾-hour. There is a parking area here, picnic benches, a map and a sign explaining the vegetation and wildlife that can be seen along the stream.

 

  • Turn left along the blue-marked trail. This is easy going. There are some stream crossings. It is worth looking before and after the markings to choose the best way to cross. This part of the hike is extremely beautiful and is framed by the basalt cliffs on either side. There are two small waterfalls and a pool towards the end.

 

  • Towards the end of the river part of the hike the going becomes a bit more difficult and there is a section in which you will need to climb up on some rungs in the rock, but this is not difficult or dangerous.

 

  • Shortly after the fourth stream crossing, the blue trail climbs up the side of the canyon. The path is rocky and only minimally difficult, but is quite long and steep. So, take it gradually, especially in hot weather. On your right, you cannot miss the view of Mount Tabor. At the top of this path is the observation area תצפית לשון המלך with two stone picnic benches and views of the stream below.

 

  • Just before this observation area is a signpost. Turn to the right (facing the observation area) on the blue-marked trail signposted to Gazit.

 

  • The blue-marked trail turns into a black-marked trail. At a Farewell sign it becomes a red-marked trail. Follow this trail to your car.

Nahal Tabor II.jpeg
Mt Tabor.jpeg

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View of Mount Tabor from the ascent path.

Trail along Nahal Tavor. To follow your location on your smart phone, click on https://israelhiking.osm.org.il/share/a0kfWeJGdn. Click on the black box with a cross at the top left of the map and it should change color to green. It is not necessary to download the free app unless you wish to.

Places of interest in the area:

You cannot miss Mount Tabor in the distance towards the end of the hike. It is possible to drive up to the top of the mountain and hike around its summit. Consider also the Marzipan Museum at Kfar Tabor, the Silk and Honey Farm and the Archeological Museum at Ein Dor (all are on the same webpage). They are only a short distance from here.