About Ein Hemed
Ein Hemed (or in Latin, “Aqua Bella,” which means “beautiful water”) is located just outside Jerusalem in near the villages of Bet Nekofa & Abu Ghosh.
Ein Hemed is one of the numerous springs that are dotted around the Jerusalem Hills and is located on the Kisalon Stream.
As long ago as 850 years ago, it was a Crusader way station on serving the traffic towards Jerusalem and there are still significant ruins of a Crusader farm house with the park complete with olive press.
Although there is no longer a lot of water in the spring or stream (presumably due to human activity as well as poor rainfall in recent years), Ein Hemed is a lovely pastoral spot of green. There are a few children’s tools, plenty of places to wander amongst the trees and water spring system, kick a ball and run around. Of course, Ein Hemed is also a popular place for a barbeque (mangal). There are seasonal flowers and some tours are available on reservation.
The park’s clear water attracts wildlife, and Ein Hemed is particularly known for its rich diversity of fauna, such as several songbirds, a variety of mammals and rodents. Foxes and jackals are usually spotted in the park.
Ein Hemed stays green all year round. It is also known for its diversity of flora — an interesting combination of plants growing wild and plants grown by man. This interesting combination has led the park to becoming a botanical beauty spot and a popular recreation site surrounded by nature. You can see a variety of trees, notably centuries-old oak, teberinth, carob and olive trees. There are a variety of bushes as well — rock rose, sage, wild majoram, and weaver’s broom.
Many parts of the park have wheelchair access. Children will be happy with the playground, areas to run around and explore amongst the trees, bridges and the crusader building.
Ein Hemed is also a popular location for events such as weddings (in the midst of nature), outdoor concerts and during the holiday seasons there is often a “happening” featuring arts and craft activities, jugglers and clowns and so on. The tall trees over the stream make for an impressive back-drop for the acrobats.
Ein Hemed is a convenient stop (just like in Crusader times) on the way to or from Jerusalem; it is an ideal place for a few hours of relaxation and is worth a special trip or a getaway.
Getting to Ein Hemed
Ein Hemed is located next to the main Jerusalem Tel Aviv Route 1 Highway. Exit at Hemed Interchange and follow the signs (from Jerusalem you need to cross the bridge.)
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