Hiking in the Galilee
Israel is one of the world’s well-kept hiking secrets. Israelis spend plenty of time trekking on the many marked trails throughout the back-country, but most tourists come and go without seeing any of the wild landscapes hidden away from the popular attractions. Despite the country’s tiny size, the diversity of its landscapes is incredible with over 6,000 miles of marked trails. The Galilee is a microcosm of the country, with hundreds of miles of marked hiking trails, and numerous, startlingly different biomes, all packed together within an hour’s drive of each other.
The Fauzi Azar Inn, centrally located in the Galilee, serves as the ideal Jesus Trail base camp and base for trekking in the Galilee. We’re glad to suggest routes and give tips and advice for less experienced hikers. There are plenty of marked hiking trails to explore, and the Jesus Trail is a scenic route leading from Nazareth to Capernaum, through scenic landscapes and many sites of religious and historical importance. The Jesus Trail Guidebook is an excellent guide to hundreds of miles of hikes, containing all the information needed to navigate the trails and find supplies and accommodations.
In the Galilee, you can hike in the rolling hills of the coastal plain, climb the looming, forested mountains of Carmel, Tabor, Gilboa, and Meron, trek through the gazelle-filled savannas down to Beit She’an, or follow a lush stream valley from the Golan Heights down to the Sea of Galilee. And you can do it all in day-trips from Nazareth, with its ideal location in the center of the region, halfway between Haifa on the Mediterranean and Tiberias on the Sea of Galilee. Camping in Israel is also a great and easy option, and in the north, food and water are never far away, so backpacking doesn’t involve carrying a week’s worth of supplies.
For someone who wants to truly experience the Galilee away from the beaten path of the tourist circuit, there’s no better way than trekking through the back-country, stumbling upon oases and wild gazelles, mountaintop views over three countries, and ancient cities lying in ruin. While hiking you’re sure to meet locals of many religions, ethnicities and walks of life, and have genuine, eye-opening encounters with the many peoples of the land. The Galilee is waiting, and we are always glad to help you get started.