Mitzpe Shalom Lookout in the Golan

November 10th 2013

Day 5 - The Sea of Galilee - Ancient WatersMitzpe Shalom, also known as Peace Lookout or Peace Vista, offers what is hands-down the most spectacular view you’ll find in Israel’s Southern Golan. Located next to Kibbutz Kfar Haruv, from here you can readily spot the coastline of the entire Kinneret (Sea of Galilee). Across the Kinneret lies the city of Tiberias, easily viewed from Mitzpe Shalom. Up in the hills, it’s also possible to point to the city of Tzfat.

The tallest crest seen from here is Mount Meron, where Rabbi Shimon bar Yochai, author of the mystical Jewish text known as the Zohar, is buried. His tomb attracts hundreds of thousands of Jewish pilgrims on the holiday of Lag B’Omer as well as others who visit his tomb year-round. Kibbutz Kinneret, Yavniel, the Jordan Valley and Mount Tavor are all visible from the panoramic Mitzpe Shalom lookout point. It’s quite a comprehensive view!

Consider taking a short, 10-minute nature hike down from the lookout promenade, through the wildflowers to one of the springs that feed the Kinneret. Steps with railings have been installed to make the short but steep walk downhill a bit easier. The springs can be located by looking for the bamboo reeds that grow up from the water source. Keep your eyes open for figs growing near the springs. A small, square, man-made pool traps the spring water. This pool was originally built by the Syrian army so their sergeants would have a place to refresh themselves. Today, the man-made stone pool is a great place for hikers to rest.

For the intrepid traveler, paragliding flights from Mount Tavor to Mitzpe Shalom help visitors more fully appreciate the amazing green hills and fields in the Golan. While in the Mitzpe Shalom area, sit down to a savory kosher beef, lamb or chicken dinner at the Bikta (“hut”) restaurant. Specializing in smoking and aging choice cuts of meat, the Bitka restaurant offers an elaborate salad bar with every entrée. Enhance your visit to Mitzpe Shalom with a stay in one of the wooden cabins or romantic suites of the Peace Vista Country Lodge, located on Kibbutz Kfar Haruv. The lodge specializes in offering visitors the distinctive experience of floating in warm salt water pools located within a quiet cave.