This is a fascinating hiking trail that passes through marlstone landscapes where many phenomena are revealed – the results of weathering and erosion forming desert ‘pavements’, high groundwater, views of Kikar HaYarden (Jordan Square) and a vista across the Jordan River to the Kingdom of Jordan.
To reach the trail: from the parking-lot at the Deir Hajla Monastery, continue eastwards on a dirt road until reaching the marlstone hills, and then descend into the wadi. The decline can be identified by tall palm trees growing in the gorge. During the descent to the stream, crypts or cells of hermit-monks can be spotted, called “Lauras” (or “Lavras”). Here, the monks would isolate themselves during the week and, on the weekends, would meet at the monastery for collective prayers and to renew their food and water supplies for the following week of isolation.
From there, the route returns westward via Wadi Nahil, in which many salt-bush shrubs grow, continuing to the water-well and from there, back to the monastery parking-lot.
The track is mostly flat and exposed to the sun. Needless to say, you will need a hat, sunscreen and water.
Note: the trail is over the marlstone hills, so beware of slipping and sliding.
Pay special attention when on the Lauras, which are also composed of marlstone, and do not enter them. There is a risk of subsidence and crumbling.
- Trail Length: approx. 2 kilometers
- Trail Duration: approx. 1-2 hours
- Suitable for families
- Recommended Season: spring/autumn/winter
- Trail Map: #8
- Starting and Ending Point: Deir Hajla Monastery parking-lot (Route 90)
The itinerary, as described above, is a recommendation only, and those who choose to take this trip do so at their own discretion and responsibility. The Regional Councils will not be held accountable in the event of any adverse consequences that may ensue.