(photo credit: HADAR YAHAV)
While some Israelis prefer to fly abroad so they can post selfies on Instagram showing them lounging on picturesque beaches, other people are lucky enough to have heard about a special gem located right here in our small country. All you have to do to get there is type “Ein Tina” in Waze and set off for one of the most beautiful water spots on the Golan Heights.
There are a couple of relatively short trails that are perfect for hiking on hot summer days, since at the end you reach a refreshing spring flowing with cold water and a stunning view of the surrounding hills.
As you make your way up to the spectacular waterfall at Ein Tina, also known as Ein Nutra, you’ll pass under the shade of eucalyptus trees and climb over interestingly shaped rocks. Located in the Hula Valley between Kibbutz Gonen and Kibbutz Gadot, the trail leading to Ein Tina is pretty straightforward and does not involve any complicated climbing. As a result, it’s a great place to hike with small kids, or to experience as a romantic getaway for couples looking to escape the daily grind and get out into nature for a few hours. You definitely want to wear hiking shoes or closed water shoes, since you will be getting pretty wet.
Before heading out on the trail at Ein Tina, though, it is extremely important that you make sure all the electronic devices you bring with you on the hike are safely sealed inside a waterproof plastic bag.
The first stop along the path is a large pool, which means that you can get wet and cool down soon after you start hiking, so make sure your bathing suit and water shoes are easily accessible. This is also a great spot for a picnic and a rest, since the next part of the hike is a little more challenging.
If you don’t really feel a desire to get wet yet, instead of walking through the pool, you can walk around it on the path to the left of the pool. But there’s really not much sense to this, since you’re going to get completely wet soon enough anyway. So I recommend putting your bathing suit and water shoes on and getting wet from the get-go. In the first pool, the water is relatively shallow, and it is exciting crossing the pool against the flow.
If you’re hiking with small children, I recommend going over the safety rules before you enter the water. Water safety is of extreme importance, and children should know that in a few minutes you will be reaching an area with a waterfall, which involves lots of excitement and action – which means that it might be hard for parents to keep track of their children. It’s great fun to jump from rock to rock, but the rocks are quite slippery when wet, and it’d be a shame to get injured when you’ve barely even started your day’s hike.
Walk along the path for another 10 minutes until you reach a fork in the road. If you prefer not to have to spend too much time in the water, or if you have very small kids with you, I recommend taking the path to the right. If you’re up for a more challenging hike and love the idea of getting wet while you walk, then you’ll probably enjoy yourselves more on the path to the left. It’s important to know, though, that the drier path on the right can be steep at times, and parts of the trail are winding and thick with shrubbery. And keep in mind: when you reach the waterfall, you’re going to be hot and ready to get completely wet anyway, so you might as well get wet as you walk, too.
If you decide to take the more challenging path to the left, you’ll get to enjoy climbing over the basalt stones on your way to the waterfall, which is a lot of fun. You’ll also walk through the flowing water, whose flow is much stronger here than before. The rocks are a bit slippery, so pay close attention. This is a really enjoyable trail and is well worth the extra effort.
In the end, it doesn’t really matter, though, which path you choose, since they both reach the final destination – the waterfall – in about 10 minutes. Once there, you can enjoy frolicking in the water with your friends and family. Although it appears that the water flows out naturally from the spring, in actuality it is channeled into the pool from a huge pipe. Only a small amount of the water from the spring reaches the pool, while the rest of the water is siphoned off for agricultural use. You’ll have an incredible view of the Golan Heights from the waterfall area, and, of course, this is the ideal place for taking selfies.
When it’s time to make your way back to the parking area, you can pick either of two options. The first one is to take the drier path and walk on the dirt path beneath the shade of the eucalyptus trees back toward the first pool. Of course, you can stop again for a quick dip in the water or a picnic, before heading back to your car. Alternatively, you can walk along the path that begins just a few meters from the huge waterfall pipe. This path will take you quickly and easily back to the parking area.
Level of Difficulty: Easy
Length: 2 km.
Time: Up to two hours of walking
Directions: Drive along Road 90 and turn east on Road 91 at Mahanayim Intersection. At Gadot Intersection, continue north onto Road 918 until you see a dirt path, which will lead you to the Ein Tina parking area.
Translated by Hannah Hochner.
Join Jerusalem Post Premium Plus now for just $5 and upgrade your experience with an ads-free website and exclusive content. Click here>>