Nahal HaShofet offers various trails. Most of them are cyclic, and one of them is accessible. Trails and stunning nature make Nahal HaShofet a popular place. Let’s begin exploring!
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Nahal HaShofet is located near Menashe Heights, not far from Yokneam.
When driving on road #66 from Yokneam towards Megiddo after Hazorea, you will see a turn right towards “Ramat Menashe Park” and “Nahal HaShofet.” Follow the signs, and you will reach Nahal HaShofet.
Alternatively, you can search for Haruvim Parking at Nahal HaShofet in Waze.
Here is an interactive map of the area:
Nahal HaShofet has a variety of trails. And KKL-JNF created a circular wheelchair-accessible trail. This path goes through many of the attractions, and because it is accessible, it became popular among families with small children.
Note: you can click on the map to enlarge it.
Here is an interactive map from israelhiking.osm.org.il where the most popular trails are marked:
- As you can see, the longer trails include the short path (wheelchair-accessible trail).
- The color I used to mark the trails is not the actual color on site.
- All the marked trails start and end at Haruvim Parking.
And here are the details of those trails:
|#||Name||Color of the Trail on the Map above||Description||Distance (km)||Total climb and descent (meters)||Notes|
|1||The short path – wheelchair-accessible trail||Blue||Circular trail that takes you through different POI.||2||78||This is by far the most popular option.|
|2||Longer trail #1||Red||Short path + En Parur, Tel Parur (optional) + flowers (on season)||5.5||190|
|3||Longer trail #2||Green||Short path + flowers (on season)||5.2||155|
The trail contains about 30 kilometers of riding in the unique landscape of the Biosphere region “Ramat Menashe” within the Megiddo Regional Council. Most of it crosses the KKL-JNF Forest following remarkable landscape and sceneries. The trail includes about 22 km of “single-tracks”, and the rest are forest roads. The trail is built of two rings that meet in a mid-point, allows switching between them. The trail is designed as a one-way direction and suited for mid-range class riders.
Source: sign on site.
Blue ring: 17,100 meters and ascent height is 370 meters.
Yellow ring: 12,760 meters and ascent height is 212 meters.
KKL-JNF’s Forest Hotline: 1-800-350-550
When to visit?
As you can see from the following sign, there is water at Nahal HaShofet all year round. Thus you can visit anytime. But if you want to enjoy cooler weather and see flowers, I would suggest visiting towards the end of Winter and Spring.
Timewise, if you plan to visit on a Saturday or during holidays, you should keep in mind this is a popular place. Therefore I would suggest either arriving early or visiting during weekdays.
Few Words About Nahal HaShofet
Nahal HaShofet is a short river that rises between Moshav Ein HaEmek and Kibbutz Ramat HaShofet. This is the site of the river’s most important spring, Ein Rehaniya.
The river flows through a landscape of rounded hills and crosses Kibbutz HaZorea before entering the open spaces of the Jezreel Valley, where it becomes a canal that empties into the Kishon River. The river flows through Ramat Menashe for about seven kilometers, and through the Jezreel Valley for about another three kilometers. Nahal HaShofet’s catchment basin is soon to be declared a core heritage site in the Ramat Menashe Biosphere Reserve.
The Wheelchair-accessible Trail
And now I will take you through the most popular path. It is a two km accessible trail. And it is also suitable for baby carriages.
At the Haruvim parking you will see signs to the short trail.
The path descends at first along Nahal Sanin, a short tributary of Nahal HaShofet in which water flows until the end of summer. Dense foliage adorns the river banks.
Further on, Nahal Sanin meets up with Nahal HaShofet, and the path continues along the bank. The flowing stream creates a small waterfall and a pool. A nearby lookout platform provides a view of this beautiful spot, which is dotted with field elms (Ulmus minor), a tree that grows only beside the water and which is rarely found in Israel. In the winter the elm sheds the asymmetric serrated leaves that make it easily identifiable for the rest of the year.
The Dam – Hydro Metering Station
Our route takes us past a small dam that is part of the station that monitors water flow in the stream, and past two small caves, before bringing us to a beautiful grove where the remains of a flour mill can be seen. This is the end of the route.
As you can see, though big parts of the trail are shaded, not all of it. Thus, in any case, take sunscreen.
A small part of the wheelchair-accessible trail is not paved. Thus I would advise not to visit immediately after heavy rains.
As you continue with the trail, you will see the following marking attached to a tree.
We will continue in the opposite direction and then return to this point. So we will cross the bridge over Nahal HaShofet to visit the nearby cave.
If you choose trail #3, then you continue with the trail toward Hazorea. You can also make a picnic at the groove near the cave.
And now, we will return to the bridge and the sign. At that spot, you take the other path, the uphill road (to the left). And within several minutes, you will reach the flour mill.
This Ottoman-era flour mill was operated by water. And here is a sign with additional explanations.
A short walk uphill will lead you to the next POI.
Ein Choshrat (Ein Ami)
This beautiful spring flows from a tunnel into a square pool hewn into the flat white rock. The rock above has been hewn into the shape of an arch. From here the path makes its way along the side of the hill back to the Carob Recreation Area.
Near Ein Choshrat (Ein Ami), you will see a sign. If you turn left, then you return to the parking. And if you turn right, then after 750 meters, you will reach Wilfrid Israel Museum. Here is a quote from the official site:
The Wilfrid Israel Museum of Asian Art and Studies began life with a collection of Near and Far Eastern art bequeathed to the kibbutz by Wilfrid Israel (1899-1943), friend and patron of its young founders. Israel was the last heir of a Berlin Jewish business dynasty and an ardent pacifist in his youth. He became one of the leading figures in the rescue of Jewish children and youngsters from Nazi persecution before and during the Second World War.
If you want to visit the museum, then check its opening hours in advance.
We will take a left and return to the parking. Also, note that in the following image, there is a wooden trail to the right. For some reason, it was closed, so we followed the road.
Nahal HaShofet has a lovely short route. Families with children love this trail since kids can play in the water, explore caves, and enjoy nature. Moreover, if you have a baby, you can use a stroller.
Have you ever been to Nahal HaShofet? Tell us about your experience in the comments below.
That’s all for today, and I’ll see you in future travels!
Additional ResourcesHere are several resources that I created to help travelers:
- Israel Trip Planner is the page that will help you to create your perfect travel route.
- National Parks And Nature Reserves page lists and put all national parks on the map. There is also a top list, information about ticket types and campsites.
- If you are looking for things to do, here are the pages for Jerusalem, Tel Aviv, Haifa, Sea Of Galilee, and Makhtesh Ramon.
- Wondering what events are there in Israel? Here is the Events And Festivals By Season guide.