February 25th 2016
One of the most enjoyable aspects of the Israeli terrain is the plentitude of hikes available across the country. From light trails for beginners to extreme sports cliff scaling, there’s every kind of hike you can imagine around these parts. If you’re visiting our beautiful country with a family, you may want to go for something in the middle. Here are a few family-friendly hikes that are right next door while staying in Jerusalem.
Latrun is an historical city because of its strategic location that was utilized in many battles throughout Israeli history. The area is also filled with exciting hikes that offer history, archeology, and beautiful nature scenes all along the way. There are caves, ancient ruins, and two mikvas (ritual baths) that are still in use today by the locals and some adventurous tourists.
Start this trek in Neve Ilan, a small and beautiful neighborhood only ten minutes outside of Jerusalem. This is an exciting hike because it has several paths for you to choose from. Whichever direction you follow, you’ll be lead back to the starting point, and all will delight you with some energizing rocks to climb and twisting paths to follow. While the trail is enough to get your heart pumping, it’s nothing that the family can’t handle.
Anyone who enjoys a delicious strawberry will love the Nachal Katlav hike. Named for the bushes that plentifully provide this adorable berry, the Nahal hike is a pleasant path that descends into the valley. Enjoy lovely grapevines that grow in the area, the old Bar Giora train stations, and an abandoned village. Head to the Nes Harim Junction on highway 386 to begin your journey.
Aptly named for the many springs and streams that wind their way through this trail, the Shvil HaMayanot is a beautiful hike that the whole family can handle. It only takes an hour to get to the end, and there is a stunning stream called Ein Hendek where you can stop to rest and enjoy lunch before heading back in the same direction you came from. Begin the path at Moshav Even Sapir, and enjoy the sights and fresh air.
Don’t forget to pack a lot of water (yes, even in the winter), sun hats, and a delectable picnic lunch for a delightful day out that everyone can enjoy.