Explore the most popular Hiking trails in HaDarom with hand-curated trail maps and driving directions as well as detailed reviews and photos from hikers, campers and nature lovers like you.

no shade
6 days ago

Masada hike - Israel IE with Yale SOM

no shade
1 month ago

We are here!

Awesome experience!

3 months ago

This is a really wonderful multi-day desert hike. The scenery is amazing and the Bedouin overnight stays are lots of fun!

3 months ago

Short. Heavy Traffic. Nice climb

A world wonder

amazing trail, went on it downhill in 90 degree weather. took about 35 minutes

The waterfall at the end makes it all worth it. Easier hike but can get really warm in the valley.

6 months ago

Worth every step. Take extra water and a hat- all sun.

8 months ago

Amazing hike! You must go before sunrise

8 months ago

Nahal Barak is a classic desert hike that has great desert scenery, some class 4 scrambling and then climbs down into a canyon that depending on the time of the year could be dry or have some nice pools to swim across. There are ladders permanently in place from the Israel National Parks Authority. The trail head is off Route 90, you will see a small brown sign telling you where to turn off, but it comes up on your quickly. You turn onto a dirt road that in most times is fine for the average vehicle. However, depending on the rainy season and any recent flash floods the trail could be damaged and require a 4x4 vehicle. Most of the year you can drive about 7 km down the road to a barely marked, but pretty obvious parking area. After this point there is a jeep road, but it is not in great condition. Most hikers will need to hike from here. If you can make it to the parking lot then the hike itself is a 7km hike in and out.
This is a great area for spotting wild Gazelles in the parking lot area. As you progress on along the wadi river bed/jeep road the canyon walls will slowly begin to come closer together. This area is well marked. About 2.5 km in you should see the canyon walls really starting to come together ahead of you and a green and white marker telling you to go up. Turn left and begin the ascent, easy scramble up on top of the canyon walls. The trail is easy to follow. You wind around on top of the canyon, until you see the blue and white markers.
This starts the descent into the canyon. Much of the year it is a dry canyon, but water stays in many of the pools for months out of the year. Ladders are in place to take you down into the pools. Be prepared to swim across the pools, so have a dry bag for your phones and such. The canyon itself is not long, but it has three or four sections with ladders, metal hand holds and rope in place to help you descend. The biggest drop is about 40 feet. The pools are not deep enough to jump down to, you must use the ladders and assist devices in place. However, there are times of the year the only way to cross the pools is to swim across.
Eventually the canyon flattens out and the encroaching walls widen. You will come back to the green and white sign that took you up. This signals the end of the canyon and walk back out the way you came in. The trails is always beautiful with great desert landscapes. You must hike in with all of your water. In the summer you need to go early enough to have some shade of the northern canyon walls providing respites of shade.
The hike itself took us about 2 and 38 minutes, we were able to drive to the end of the car friendlyish road, so our total hike was 7 KM. We had only two people so that speeds up waiting at ladders. Larger parties will need to take more time to descend. we wadded through the pools, if there is more water, the swimming will take longer as well. We went in early July started at 6:30 am and used about 1-1.5 liters of water each, but had canyon wall shade to cool things off. Recommend a minimum of 2 liters of water each person, but would go higher as there is absolutely no potable water along the trail and the hike in and out could be longer if road conditions are not friendly. This is a great hike, mostly easy flat trail for the first 2.5km and the last 2.5km out.

8 months ago

Just completed this loop last week. Trail is not well marked to start from either Roman Ramp or snake path, but once you are on the trail it is well marked. Starting from the snake path you start like you are going up the snake path like everyone else, as the mountain's plain begins to get give way to the rocky sides of the moutain you see a wide path to the right, it is just inside the borders of the ancient roman wall. This is where you turn. There are no markers here, but as long as you are going along parallel to ancient roman wall you know you are on the right trail. Soon you will see a marker identifying with the red and white markings. Keeping going until you see the turn to the green and white marked stones, this is where you ascend around the northern side of Masada and see Herod's winter palace above you. The turn is just at the roman camp "D". This is a well marked trail, climbing upward, with hand holds on ocasion, constatnly climbing up. Eventually you level off just east and below the modern concert seating used for outdoor concerts under the stars. You should end up right at the base of the roman ramp, but you need to go opposite of the flow of people going up the roman ramp, back towards the parking lot for several meters and look for the red and white marked train. It is just west of the water storage shed and can take a few minutes to find, once again this area is not well marked. Walk along and then Climb up the red and white trail which takes you up the back side of Ma'ale Eleazar. There is a little bit of loose rock and scree, but fairly manageable. As you ascend you will crest at the junction with the black and white trail. Turn left here and walk along the crest of Mt Eleazar with views of Masada to your left and the Dead Sea and Jordan in front of you. As you walk along the black and white trail you will come to a sign that warns of a dangerous descent. This is the hardest park of the trail. However if take your time and are deliberate with your footing this will be no problem. The trail is obvious, but it is steep with jagged rocks and some scree. Just don't rush this part of the trail and you will be fine. At the bottom you will be at the bus ramp for the visitors center. Walk in and reward yourself with a cold drink.

I did this trail in July, but we started at 5:00 and were rewarded with a beautiful sunrise on the trail. I am 56 and my wife is 51 and we did the trail in 3 hours and 10 minutes. There is water in the roman ramp parking lot and visitors center at snake path, otherwise there is absolutely no water. We brought 3 liters each and it was plenty for the entire trail, didn't need to fill up. Unless you have hiked in the desert before and are comfortable with the environment don't hike this in the summer. Temperatures can get 100-110 degrees Farenheit.

The hike is really amazing and gives you a different perspective of Masada. The canyons that trail off the sides around them are very beautiful. The lighting and views are spectacular. This is an "A+" hike.

8 months ago


11 months ago

Awesome short duration intense hike. If you have not hiked or been active take the gondola instead. Take one or more water up with you and the same amount goi ng down. If planning to walk down after hiking up be sure to take a good break of 60 minutes. I made it up in 31 and down in 21. I took one shade/water break early and a few quick water breaj s up, sat with a man for a minute who almost turned back about 2/3 of the way butf I heard he finished after an hour. it was about 95*F when I hiked Mesada. I'd love to do it again some day. Be ready, and if hiking back down be sure footed and know your quads will get a good workout. Bring water!

Saturday, February 03, 2018

Amazing track

Friday, January 12, 2018

Amazing trail discover the beduin life ....

Thursday, December 14, 2017

I just returned from Israel and hiking this trail was on my bucket list. I had a difficult time convincing my group leader that I was trained and had prepared well to climb Masada. He tried to get me to ride the cable car up and hike down, which I refused this option. Hiking down is much more difficult and dangerous for me. I’m 62 yrs young and its too hard on my hips and knees! It was breathtaking with views of the Dead Sea that are spectacular. This hike would be grueling in the summer heat, and the worst part for me was it is totally sun exposed with no shade. I took my worship flags with me and I flagged all the way up Masada, praying for the peace of Israel and protection for the Jews. I’m grateful for the opportunity. I will definitely hike it again when I return!

Sunday, October 15, 2017

great walk!

Monday, July 10, 2017

Current favorite trail I've done. I went, mistakenly, at midday which made it that much harder, but the ruins at the top make it very worthwhile. Took the tram down.

Tuesday, June 27, 2017

Beautiful for sunrise hike!!

Sunday, May 14, 2017

Done in 35min, start early

Friday, April 28, 2017

I did this hike 2 years ago on a spur the moment decision. I was waiting in line to go up the tram and 2 of my friends decided they were going to hike it so I decided to join them. I had never hiked any kind of mountain previously. I would say that at this time I was not in the best shape and I struggled a lot with this climb. I completed it and was so proud of myself. I will be returning in 4 months and am hoping to do this again. I am in much better shape now than I was then.

Sunday, April 23, 2017

Great views.

Sunday, February 19, 2017

The hike was hard and the heat was about 102 but it was so worth it. I'd do it again in a heart beat. The views, the culture, there's nothing like it.

Wednesday, October 19, 2016

Truly a spectacular hike site for views and for culture. The hike isn't terribly long, but it is rather vertical, so young children are certainly discouraged and no pets. The top is completely open so if you're going in the summer (even arriving for sunrise) please be aware it is very warm and be sure to bring water. There are place on top to refill them. Highly recommended if you have the time.

Wednesday, August 17, 2016

hard but so worth it

paddle sports
Saturday, July 02, 2016


Thursday, July 30, 2015

07/24/2015 - Hiking up Masada at sunrise has been on my bucket list for over a decade. It was a thrill to be able to do it. The path consists of a number of switchbacks that make it's way up 350 meters over 2 km. It's a tough climb in the heat. Even at 5:30 AM it was hot, so doing this hike in the winter would make it much easier. The reward at the top overlooking the Dead Sea to Jordan and the surrounding desert make this location a dream. Learn about the history of the site before going and the reward is much greater.

More on my hiking blog at cairnguru.com

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