Historic and Natural Places to See in Northern Israel

In the north of Israel, where it touches the Mediterranean sea, there is an amazing amount of history and nature to see. After exploring Galilee and it’s many religious sites along the Jesus Trail in Northern Israel I continued on to check out some historic and natural places to see in Northern Israel.

Three Faiths Lookout at Mount Precipice

Just 10 minutes out of Nazareth you will find yourself at the Three Faiths Lookout on the peak of Mount Precipice.

K in Motion Travel Blog. Historic and Natural Places to See in Northern Israel. Three Faiths Lookout

If the name sounds familiar, it’s the hill where an angry mob tried to throw Jesus off. Legend has it that he then leaped 9 kilometres over to Mount Tabor, which gave rise to its Arabic name Jebel al-Qafzeh (mount of the leap).

K in Motion Travel Blog. Historic and Natural Places to See in Northern Israel. Mount Precipice Plaque

The peak offers awesome panoramic views of the Jezreel Valley below. It would probably be quite amazing at sunrise and sunset.

K in Motion Travel Blog. Historic and Natural Places to See in Northern Israel. Jazreel Valley From Mount Precipice.

Historic and Natural Places in Northern Israel – Haifa

Haifa in Northern Israel is a beautiful port town looking out on to the Mediterranean Sea.

K in Motion Travel Blog. Historic and Natural Places to See in Northern Israel. View over Haifa Port

One of the main attractions in the town, besides the sea, is the Baha’i Gardens.

K in Motion Travel Blog. Historic and Natural Places to See in Northern Israel. Red and Purple Flowers at Baha'i Gardens

These gardens are set on several levels, with many places for quiet contemplation.

K in Motion Travel Blog. Historic and Natural Places to See in Northern Israel. Waterfall at Baha'i Gardens

They even have a place for worship.

K in Motion Travel Blog. Historic and Natural Places to See in Northern Israel. Place of Worship at Baha'i Gardens

You could easily spend an hour wandering around the gardens.

K in Motion Travel Blog. Historic and Natural Places to See in Northern Israel. Baha'i Gardens Path

The best part is that despite their obvious beauty, the gardens were quite void of people. Which was lovely!

K in Motion Travel Blog. Historic and Natural Places to See in Northern Israel. Baha'i Gardens

Another attraction is the Stella Maris (Star of the Sea) Monastery on Mount Carmel. Just down the road from the gardens.

K in Motion Travel Blog. Historic and Natural Places to See in Northern Israel. Monastery Ceiling

Its current incarnation was opened in 1836 by the ‘Order of the Brothers of Our Lady of Mount Carmel’, commonly known as the Carmelites.

K in Motion Travel Blog. Historic and Natural Places to See in Northern Israel. Inside Stella Maris Monasery K in Motion Travel Blog. Historic and Natural Places to See in Northern Israel. Stella Maris Monastery Interior

The history of the place is both sad and amazing. I’m not going to give too much away, but you can see some of it for yourself when inside.

K in Motion Travel Blog. Historic and Natural Places to See in Northern Israel. Stella Maris History Under the Altar

And even outside you can find a memorial to those who helped defend the Carmelites.

K in Motion Travel Blog. Historic and Natural Places to See in Northern Israel. Napolean Memorial at Stella Maris in Haifa

Historic Places to See in Northern Israel – Old Akko

Just 20 minutes north of Haifa is one of the oldest continuously inhabited settlements on Earth. It has been known by many names throughout its history but is currently known as Acre. When it was founded in the Bronze Age, it was known as Akko.

K in Motion Travel Blog. Historic and Natural Places to See in Northern Israel. Akko Old City Waterfront Wall

It is listed as a UNESCO World Heritage site and there are many ruins to be found around town.

K in Motion Travel Blog. Historic and Natural Places to See in Northern Israel. Old Akko City

There’s even an old partially intact battlement with canons overlooking the sea.

K in Motion Travel Blog. Historic and Natural Places to See in Northern Israel. Old Akko Battlement

Most people head to the Old Akko Market to get a little taste of yesteryear. The narrow, twisting and turning paths of the Market could easily lead you astray if you let them. Or you could just end up finding some really delicious food.

K in Motion Travel Blog. Historic and Natural Places to See in Northern Israel. Old Akko Market

If you manage to find your way through the market, you might end up at the waterfront.

K in Motion Travel Blog. Historic and Natural Places to See in Northern Israel. Whale at the Waterfront in Akko

There are a few overpriced restaurants near the waterfront, but if you keep walking past them, you can enjoy a view of Haifa Bay.

K in Motion Travel Blog. Historic and Natural Places to See in Northern Israel. Haifa Bay

Natural Places in Northern Israel – Rosh Hanikra

Less than half an hour north of Akko is the beautiful coastal town of Rosh Hanikra. It’s set on cliffs high above the Mediterranean Sea. It is also on the Israeli border with Lebanon. But don’t think that means you can get a glimpse of Lebanon while you’re there. Given the animosity between Israel and Lebanon, the border is a no-go zone patrolled by UN peacekeepers.

K in Motion Travel Blog. Historic and Natural Places to See in Northern Israel. Lebanon Border.

That means the big white fence marks the start of the buffer zone between the two countries instead of the actual border. Not far from there, you can find a steep cable car that descend to the Rosh Hanikra Grottoes.

K in Motion Travel Blog. Historic and Natural Places to See in Northern Israel. Rocks Near Rosh Hanikra Grottoes

The area is known for its striking white cliffs and rock faces that are regularly kissed by the Mediterranean Sea. Over time, the power of the water caused caves to develop at the base of the cliffs.

K in Motion Travel Blog. Historic and Natural Places to See in Northern Israel. Rosh Hanikra Grotto

You can walk around inside the caves and have a look around. There are several different caves, but the water is always amazingly blue.

K in Motion Travel Blog. Historic and Natural Places to See in Northern Israel. Rosh Hanikra Cave

Even as the caves get darker, you can still marvel at the blue waters.

K in Motion Travel Blog. Historic and Natural Places to See in Northern Israel. Dim Cave at Rosh Hanikra K in Motion Travel Blog. Historic and Natural Places to See in Northern Israel. Dark Cave at Rosh Hanikra.

The Golan Heights

The area spanning 1800 square kilometres east of the Sea of Galilee is known as the Golan Heights. Due to the fact that the area has been internationally recognised as Israeli occupied Syrian land since 1967, you could say you’ve been to Syria if you visit. Of course that’s not the main reason to visit. The place is scenically amazing.

K in Motion Travel Blog. Historic and Natural Places to See in Northern Israel. Banias Waterfalls Sign

Firstly, there are the Banias Waterfalls in the Hermon Stream Nature Reserve. They are the biggest falls in Israel. The stream that creates the waterfalls is fed by glacial water from Mount Hermon, on the border of Lebanon and (occupied) Syria. Yes, glacial water! Isn’t it beautiful?

K in Motion Travel Blog. Historic and Natural Places to See in Northern Israel. Hermon Stream.

There are four trails in the Reserve that contain natural and historical wonders. If you just want to see the falls, you can access them from the trail that starts at the Waterfalls Car Park.

K in Motion Travel Blog. Historic and Natural Places to See in Northern Israel. Hermon Stream Trail

If you like hiking downhill, then you’ll love going to the falls. Just remember that you’ll need to walk back up that hill to get back to the car park. The site of the falls makes it all worth it though.

K in Motion Travel Blog. Historic and Natural Places to See in Northern Israel. Banias Waterfalls

Natural Things to See in Northern Israel – Mount Bentai

A short distance from the Hermon Stream Reserve is a dormant volcano called Mt Bentai.

K in Motion Travel Blog. Historic and Natural Places to See in Northern Israel. Mount Bentai Sign

You might be thinking this is just another hill, but it’s definitely a bit different! Firstly, there’s no climbing required. You can drive almost all the way to the top. Secondly, They have pizza.

K in Motion Travel Blog. Historic and Natural Places to See in Northern Israel. Pizza Sign

Of course, the view over into Syria is pretty amazing too.

K in Motion Travel Blog. Historic and Natural Places to See in Northern Israel.. View From Mount Bentai

They even have some art made out of some recycled materials.

K in Motion Travel Blog. Historic and Natural Places to See in Northern Israel.  Mount Bentai Recycled Sculptures K in Motion Travel Blog. Historic and Natural Places to See in Northern Israel. Recycled Sculpture at Mount Bentai

But things start getting a bit weird when you realise that there are barbed-wire fences with warning signs everywhere.

K in Motion Travel Blog. Historic and Natural Places to See in Northern Israel. Looking Down From Mount Bentai

Then there’s this. Have you ever been on a hill that has a UN bunker on it? If that’s on your bucket list, the Mount Bentai is the place for you!

K in Motion Travel Blog. Historic and Natural Places to See in Northern Israel. UN Post on Mount Bentai

Just in case all the shenanigans on Mount Bentai confuse you, there are some signs to tell you where things are.

K in Motion Travel Blog. Historic and Natural Places to See in Northern Israel. Signs on Mount Bentai

Read more about Israel here and here

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41 Replies to “Historic and Natural Places to See in Northern Israel”

    1. I liked the view too. I remember thinking at the time, that when I finally make it to Syria, I can say that I sneaked a peak at it from Israel first.

  1. I’d never really considered Northern Israel as a must-see destination but it looks absolutely beautiful! Thanks for sharing – the Banias Waterfalls are definitely on my list!

  2. I have always wanted to visit Israel – it truly looks like a beautiful place. I will absolutely be referring back to this when I eventually visit the country!

  3. Gorgeous post! It’s my dream to come to Israel. My parents went a few years ago but sadly I couldn’t go at the time – it made me so envious. What a beautiful country. I’d love to explore all of the markets!

  4. What an interesting mix!

    I love the gardens, those gorgeous caves and all the spectacular views from up high. It is just so sobering that nearby there is such a volatile boarder, all the barber wire and a UN bunker there too! I wish there was a way to wave a magic wand and start to heal the hurt of both sides and start to make peace.

    1. Not just one volatile border, but two; Lebanon and Syria. Although the Syrian one is a little more subdued because of the DMZ near the Golan Heights. It was nice to look over Syria as it’s a place I want to visit in the future.

  5. Wow – the view from Mount Bentai is beautiful! I’d love to visit Israel and explore all of these places. I fell in love with the area while in the Middle East last year. Thanks for sharing!

  6. My sister and her family traveled to Israel a few years ago with their church, and I’m always interested in more photos of the place they enjoyed so much. Thanks.

    1. I haven’t made it to Iraq yet. I had originally planned to go next year but looks like that will be postponed to the year after.

  7. You always have such gorgeous photos. Forgive me if you mentioned this before but what camera do you use? Or is it just your mobile? Either way – stunning.

    1. I just use my mobile. I was blessed with bright clear conditions for my whole trip through Israel, so that probably helped a bit!

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