The Lake Parking Lot, Carmel – Visitors Guide

The lake parking lot, also known as the disappearing lake, is a popular picnic spot on Carmel. It is also a starting point for many trails.

Map

The lake parking lot is in Mount Carmel National Park and Nature Reserve, near Beit Oren. The easiest way to reach it is by entering its name into Waze.

Directions for drivers: Link to Waze and Link to Google Maps
Directions for public transport: Link to Moovit

View TripHelp

Interactive map of the area:

Offers:

  • Hotels, hostels, and apartments in this area:
Booking.com

Entrance Fee

Free.

Parking

Free parking.

Opening Hours

Always open.

Picnic and Barbeque

The lake parking lot is a popular place for having picnics and barbeques. I held a barbeque several times, and this place has all the needed facilities. There are restrooms, water taps, shaded picnic tables, nearby trails, and the disappearing lake.

The Lake Parking Lot
The Lake Parking Lot

The Disappearing Lake

As mentioned above, the lake parking lot is also known as the disappearing lake. Oren Stream passes near this parking lot. And after the rains, an artificial pond built by the Nature and Parks Authority becomes full. This seasonal lake can be seen in winter and spring. Hence it was called the disappearing lake.

Cell Phone Reception

Before going over tracks, I want to mention that we did not have cell phone reception during our visits. As a result, digital hiking maps were useless. Thus bring hiking paper maps.

For additional info about hiking maps, see Overview of Israel Hiking Maps.

Trails

There are various trails by Oren Stream and the lake parking lot. Let’s go over the most popular routes.

Here is an interactive map from israelhiking.osm.org.il, where the trails are marked:

And here are the details of the most popular trails:

#NameColor of the Trail on the Map aboveDescriptionDistance (km)Total climb and descent (meters)Notes
1Take the red trail to the ruins of Horvat Rakit. Continue with the red path till Mount Shokef. Then use the blue track to reach Alon Spring. And using the green and red trails, return to the lake parking lot.GreenTake the red trail from the lake parking lot. Then switch to the green path and return using the blue and black trails.2.4134You can make this trail a little longer by visiting Kdumim Quarries and Carmel fire monument.
2The lake parking lot and Carmel fire monumentBlueStart with the red trail and then switch to the green and black paths to visit Kdumim Quarries and Carmel fire monument.1.698It is a one-way track suitable if you have more than one car (or will be hitchhiking).
3Long loop trailRedTake the red trail to the ruins of Horvat Rakit. Continue with the red path till Mount Shokef. Then use the blue track to reach Alon spring. And using the green and red trails, return to the lake parking lot.7.36523It is an example of a loop trail. Since there are many paths, you can create your track.

Notes:

  • “flooding is a danger in winter, spring, and fall. Follow weather reports and do not walk in streambeds or cross them in cloudy weather. On rainy days be careful of slipping.”
  • As mentioned, we did not have cell phone reception during our visits. Thus bring hiking paper maps.

Since we mentioned the Oren River, the loop Finger Cave Trail is another popular option. And you can find additional trail options at Little Switzerland.

Trails at The Lake Parking Lot
Trails at The Lake Parking Lot

The Red Trail

This section will describe a short hike we did during the Passover vacation. We took the red path from the lake parking lot and headed towards Alon Spring.

Red Trail at The Lake Parking Lot
Red Trail at The Lake Parking Lot

You can walk as much as you want or till your kids complain and return to the starting point.

Red Trail at The Lake Parking Lot
Red Trail at The Lake Parking Lot

Another plus of a short trail is combining it with a picnic.

The Red Trail
The Red Trail

At the end of March, the lake was almost dry. You can see part of the disappearing lake in the background of the next photo.

Oren Stream
Oren Stream

The red path crosses the stream and continues on the other side.

It took us about ten minutes to reach the lake.

Though there is little water, the vegetation is still green and lush. Thus Passover suits for hiking.

Here are several additional photos from that hike:

Completing this part of the trail took us less than an hour.

Oren Stream
Oren Stream

Summary

The lake parking lot offers facilities for barbeques and various lovely trails. Therefore, it is one of the popular spots at Carmel Nature Reserve.

Have you ever visited the lake parking lot? Tell us about your experience in the comments below.

That’s all for today, and I’ll see you in future travels!

Stay Tuned!

   

Additional Resources

Here are several resources that I created to help travelers: And if you have any questions then check out Useful Information For Tourists To Israel.  
Did not find what you were looking for? Leave a comment below, and I will do my best to answer your questions.

Lev Tsimbler

Lev from israel-in-photos.com. You can contact me at hi@israel-in-photos.com

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