Easy Hikes around Tel-Aviv to easily escape the city hustle
This section is brought to you with the kind courtesy of Ronit Slyper, the author of the book “Tripping out of Tel Aviv”. The book covers 30 hikes, all with easy access by public transportation from Tel-Aviv. Some of the hikes are near the city and others require up to 2 hours to reach. If you want more than the 3 hikes presented here, you can purchase the book with all 30 hikes.
Yarkon Springs and Tel-Afek Hike
Picture-perfect springs, a hike, and a fortress
- Distance: 6.5 Km
- Duration: 3-4 Hours.
- Starting point: PETAH TIKVA SEGULA Train Station. (20 Minutes)
Walk through the Baptist Village to the Yarkon National Park, a two-part park containing the beautiful springs that form the river, and, separated by a hike, the Tel Afek (Antipatrus) fortress. This hike is perfect for recommending to visitors: easy to get to, kid-friendly, and containing a decent-length hike, wading pools, and impressive historical ruins.
- Exit the train station, and take an immediate right – you will see a ramp heading east under the highway, parallel to the train tracks. Take the ramp under the highway, then turn left and walk carefully north along the east side of the highway (in the direction of traffic) until Natan Shifris St.
- Jag south, then continue east, following the sign for Yarkon Springs. After a minute, you will reach a yellow gate leading onto a broken paved road, with a sign for the Baptist Village. Head straight through the gate and continue until the road ends, then turn south to walk through the Baptist Village. At the end of the road, you will see signs for the park.
Pay the entrance fee and receive a park map. Explore the park using the map: Walk around the north edge of the Yarkon Sources area until you reach the Pillbox, then hike to the Tel Afeq fortress. The entrances between the two parts close in the evening, so check with the security guard in order to not get locked out.
Getting back to Tel Aviv: If you have another hour of hiking energy left in you, the fastest way back is to return to PETAH TIKVA SEGULA Train Station. Hike back to the Pillbox, but shortcut the Yarkon Sources by following the Israel Trail, which runs along the southern border of the area, then cuts under the railroad tracks to drop you just outside the entrance to the park.
Alternatively, walk south out the entrance to Tel Afeq; on Route 483 you will find the AFEQ JUNCTION bus stop. If transit times work out (check!), cross the highway and catch a 10-minute bus to ROSH HA’AYIN NORTH Train Station. If trains are no longer running, then take a bus (e.g. 7) from the north side of the highway into Petah Tikva, and any of numerous buses from Petah Tikva to Tel Aviv.
Apollonia National Park Hike
A crusader fortress defending wealthy Herzliya
- Distance: 3 Km
- Duration: 1-2 Hours.
- Starting point: HERZLIYA Train Station. (25 Minutes)
At the northwest corner of Herzliya stand the remains of a crusader fortress, with moat, cannonballs, and photo-ops with cutout Crusaders. After exploring the park, walk past the Sidna Ali Mosque, then head to a beautiful Herzliya beach. Optionally add to your hike by walking to the Herzliya marina (3km) or along the coast back to Tel Aviv (11km).
- From TEL AVIV SAVIDOR Train Station, take the train to HERZLIYA Train Station.
- From the station, take bus 29 heading to the Marina, and get off at SHA’AR HAYAM ST/HAESHEL.
- Walk west on Sha’ar HaYam St, then turn north onto Golda Meir St. Follow the signs to Apollonia National Park – the turnoff will be on your left after about 200 meters.
Explore the park. Afterward, exit the park and follow the road west and then south until you reach the Sidna Ali Mosque. Walk along the west side of the mosque, keeping an eye out for old tombstones. Make your way (not on any path) down the hill behind the mosque, until you reach a paved road heading downhill to the beach.
Getting Back to Tel-Aviv: Walk back up the road from the beach, continuing east on Yigal Yadin St until Golda Meir St, then south to GOLDA MEIR ST/HABROSH bus stop. take bus 29 heading north, back to HERZLIYA Train Station.
Finished Early? From the beach, walk south along the sand to the Herzliya Marina. Enjoy the boats and shopping mall, then take bus 29 from the Marina back to the train station. For an even longer beach walk, continue south along the coast to the Tel Aviv Namal (Port).
Nahal Poleg Nature Reserve
Wander among fields and dunes in the Sharon plain
- Distance: 5 Km
- Duration: 2-3 Hours.
- Starting point: BET YEHOSHUA Train Station. (20 Minutes).
Nahal Poleg, just south of Netanya, presents a surprisingly quick way to lose yourself (possibly literally) in nature, with pretty views and ice cream at the end.
- From TEL AVIV SAVIDOR Train Station, take the train to BET YEHOSHUA Train Station.
- Walk to the gas station on the south side of the parking lot. Adjacent to the west side of the gas station is a road with a gate; don’t take this road. Walk out of the parking lot and take the next road parallel, to the west.
Follow the above map. Many trails crisscross the region, however, so feel free to explore! At the endpoint, you will find restaurants, an ice cream parlor (not kosher), and a gas station supermarket.
Getting back to Tel-Aviv: Take the pedestrian bridge over Highway 2, to the YAKUM JUNCTION bus stop. Take a bus (e.g. 601) south to NAMIR ROAD/ARLOZOROV.