Guide to Israel’s Natural Thermal Springs
There are so many reasons to visit Israel, including the hot springs that are spread throughout the northern half of the nation. Located on the Mediterranean, the country rarely sees temperatures below 50 degrees Fahrenheit and has beautiful outdoor vistas, some of which are the homes of geothermal springs where visitors and locals alike can soak.
Whether you’re traveling to see ancient sites or visit the beach town that is cosmopolitan Tel Aviv, you can take a break from your busy agenda at one of the many Israeli hot springs.
Hot Springs in National Parks
Hamat Tiberias National Park has snaking hiking trails, the ruins of a Turkish hamam, and a synagogue with perfectly preserved historical mosaics. The spring pools, of which there are many, are rich in sulfate and potassium.
Because the underground water is superheated, the park service has built steam vents so that bathing in the water is safe for visitors. There is a public bathroom and primitive picnic facilities, but these are rustic. Summer and winter accessibility differ, so make sure you check hours before visiting.
At the Ein Kedem Spring Baths you can enjoy views of the Dead Sea while utilizing the nearby hot springs. The Spring Baths are part of the Ein Gedi Nature Reserve, which has its own hotel accommodations if you’re looking to stay near the baths, of which there are many.
Some of the pools are small, barely big enough for two people to sit side by side. Others are larger than swimming pools and steam in the mornings. Be aware that you will probably not be walking around the springs barefoot, as the entire coast is made up of pebbles and larger rocks.
Other Springs in Reserves and Parks:
- Uzi Spring
- Majrase Nature Reserve
- בריכת טחנת הקמח
- Ma’ayan Harod National Park- Gideon’s Spring
Hot Springs Spas
In central Israel, you’ll find Ga’ash Baths and Spa (Merhazaot Ga’ash), where pampering and relaxation is both part of the motto and guaranteed. The springs are spread out over more than four acres of greenery, and an emphasis is put on the spring areas always being in the path of fans for a refreshing breeze while swimming.
One of the truly unique things at Ga’ash Baths is the high-pressure massage showers that are powered with thermo-mineral water.
If you’re looking for sand and sun alongside the hot springs experience, your best bet will be visiting H̱ammé Zohar on the coast. Here they have what is referred to as a “tent resort” that includes reclining beach chairs, fresh water showers to clean the skin after a soak, and a solarium.
The spring is huge, more like a lake than a simple pool of water for bathing. If you’re feeling parched while taking in the spring, you can visit the refreshment stand for a drink.
There are some amazing festivals, both in summer and winter, that you may want to schedule your visit and hot springs patronage around. However, be aware that summers in the nation can get extremely warm and any hot springs customers will want to bring drinking water with them.
Winters are certainly cooler but are often the season of rain and fog/heavy dew. While in Israel, don’t forget to try some fresh, organic Israeli cuisine, bountiful due to the extended growing season.
Learn more about visiting Israel, on our sister site La Vida Nomad.