Nahal Teninim – Nature Reserve and Roman Aquaduct

If you love nature and history, but don’t want to hike, Nahal Teninim is a great place for the whole family.

Nachal Teninim (Aligator stream)
is a wonderful national nature reserve and is home to an amazing Roman Dam and Aquaduct that brought fresh water to Caesarea.

. Around every corner was a new surprise… either the ancient rock quarry, a byzantine flour mill, waterfalls, flocks of sheep or the amazing ancient dam and aquaduct.

It’s just an hour away from Villa Rimona Zimmers on Highway 4 just south of Zichron Yaakov. Great to combine with a trip to the Carmel Caves or Zichron Yaakov itself.
Here is the official website in English with times, prices etc.

Carmel Prehistoric Caves

The Carmel Caves are a fascinating visit for the whole family. They are located on Highway 4 between Zichron Yaakov and Haifa.

If you love nature, you’ll enjoy the stunning cliffs and flowers. It’s just a short walk up a simple path with guardrails to the three caves that have been occupied since prehistoric times.

The third and largest cave has a short sound and light show. You can pick the language of the show.

After, or before you visit the caves, there are picnic tables in the shade at the base of the cliff near the gift store.

The caves are a unesco world heritage site

It’s just 60 minutes from Villa Rimona. We combined it with a visit to another national park at Nachal Teninim just south of Zichron Yaakov on highway 4.

Rosh HaNikra Grottoes with Villa Rimona Zimmers

Many people who stay at Villa Rimona come to visit the Eastern Galilee and the Golan. However, we are the same distance from the Grottoes at Rosh HaNikra as we are to Mount Hermon in the Golan.

Combine a visit to this natural wonder of Israel with a trip to Haifa, Acco or Nahariya. The whole family will love this adventure which combines a breathtaking short cable car ride down the cliff, exploring the grottoes and the beautiful expanse of the mediterranean.

You can walk up to the border fence with Lebanon and visit the old railroad tracks which crossed over into Lebanon during the British Mandate.

Also you can rent golf carts to explore the beaches south of Rosh HaNikra.

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Tractoronim – Off Road Ranger Cars in the Upper Galilee

So many of our guests at Villa Rimona Zimmers ask us about going Tractoronim.

Tractoronim are ATV’s (All Terrain Vehicles) which are usually like 4 wheel motorcycles. There are many places that offer tours of 1 – 2 hours through nature trails and kibbutz fields throughout the north.

We decided to try our luck at a place in Ramot Naftali in the Upper Galilee above the Hula Valley. Instead of renting a tractoron (ATV), we chose a “Ranger Car” which was much more skirt friendly. You sit upright in it, side by side like a regular car.

Needless to say, we had a great time. The highlight was making Turkish Coffee outside on the cliff overlooking a breathtaking view of the Mount Hermon and the Hula Valley.

Ramot Naftali is one hour north of Villa Rimona Zimmers. Book a night or two with us and use Villa Rimona as your base to explore the Upper Galilee. This is a great activity to combine with a trip to the Hula Valley Nature Reserve.

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Dalton Winery and Wine Tasting

One of our favortie brands of Israeli wines is Dalton. They make a wonderful selection of non-mevushal wines. Recently we were in Tsfat and decided to take the 12 minute drive north to visit the Dalton Winery and Visitor Center.

The masgiach was available to discuss the wines with us in English and pour us the samples (remember I mentioned the wine is not mevushal?). The merlot was very good, it didn’t have the “earthy” after taste that many Israeli wines have. However the Cabernet Sauvignon was superb.

When it’s just the two of us, we usually don’t finish the bottle, so we were happy to see they were selling the small 375 cc half bottles.

This is a great quick stop if you are heading up to Meron or Tsfat and are looking for gifts for your Israeli hosts, or just some good wine to take home with you.

Just 60 minutes north of Villa Rimona Zimmers

People wishing to take the full tour the facility are requested to call the winery in advance on 04 698 7683 x 2 or

The winery is open every day (except for Shabbat and Holidays) between 10am-4pm, last tour is at 4pm, and on Fridays 10am-1pm, last tour is at 1pm. The tour and a tasting take about 45 minutes.

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Derech HaEtz – Wood Adventure in Shadmot Devorah

This is a great kids’ activity in the Galilee. It’s only 10 minutes from Villa Rimona Zimmers in Yavniel. Recently I took my 4 year old grandson and we had a great time.

The highlight is making your own wood project. My grandson chose to make a katamaran sailboat, but other options include a tractor, airplane or pull toy.

Start out in a play room and then watch a short film in Hebrew about rain forests. Next stop is a rhythmic drum session. You can explore a large wooden maze, enjoy a couple of holes of mini golf, play areas, a splash slide and more.

Then you’ll have to be your own DIY madrich to help your child with the project which involves some gluing, coloring and nailing. Since we made the boat, we got to sail it on the miniature model of Lake Kinneret!

Open in the summer from 10 am to 5pm (last guests let in at 3pm)

Here’s the official website for more info.

Here are the directions to Derech HaEtz from Villa Rimona Zimmers in Yavne’el

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Combine this visit with the Honeybee farm next door
or the Marzipan Museum a few minutes away in Kfar Tavor

Book your stay in the Galilee at Villa Rimona Zimmers today.


Mount Hermon in the Summertime

We took a trip in July up to Mount Hermon (pronounced “Chermon”). Most people visit the mountain in the winter during snow skiing season. The Ski season is very short in Israel and the place is packed in the winter.

It’s a whole different experience in the summertime. The weather is stunning. It’s easy to park and the cable car up the mountain is half price. When you get to the top of the mountain the views are breathtaking.

There will be guides up there if you’d like to hike a bit. You can’t wander around on your own because it is technically a closed military area with outposts overlooking Syria.

It’s a 90 minute drive from Villa Rimona Zimmers in Yavne’el in the Galilee. You can combine a visit to Hermon with a trip to the Hula Valley Bird Sanctuary, Banias, Tel Faher, De Karina Chocolate Factory, Talmudic Village in Katzrin and more…

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Tel Faher – Golani Lookout on the Golan Heights

Tel Faher - Six Day WarThe fiercest and decisive battle in the Six Day War to take the Golan Heights was at Tel Faher. It was a Syrian Army stronghold. A network of bunkers were built into the side of the mountain making it almost impossible to breach.

The Barak Division of the Golani Brigade attacked the site and lost over 30 soldiers in the fierce battle and eventually overran the Syrians who fled. This stopped the constant shelling and firing upon the Jewish farmers in the Hula Valley.

Today Tel Faher is called Golani Lookout
and is situated on the road leading from Mount Herman to the Banias. It’s a highly recommended stop to appreciate the view and what those brave soldiers did for us during the Six Day War.

The kids can explore the bunkers and you can have a picnic lunch looking at the view of the Hula Valley.

It’s free.  You can combine it with a trip to;
Mount Hermon
DeKarina Chocolate Factory
Katsrin Talmudic Village and more.

It’s only about an hour and twenty minutes away from Villa Rimona Zimmers in Yavne’el in the lower Galilee by car.

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De Karina Chocolate Factory – Ein Zivan, Golan Heights

After visiting the waterfalls on the Golan Heights, or the Talmudic Village  in Katsrin,  this is a great stop for the whole family.

De Karina makes delicious chocolate and liquers and they offer a fun tour and workshop, and you’ll take home your very own hand made chocolates.

If you are a chocolate lover you’ll enjoy their pralines. There’s a coffee shop on site where you can try chocolate spiked coffee beverages.

De Karina Chocolate Factory, Golan HeightsThe workshop is a lot of fun for kids of all ages (including grown ups). It’s a bit pricey, but good value for all the chocolate you get to take home with you.

The liquer is some of the best we’ve tasted – both the chocolate and coffee flavors. Ein Zivan is a bit out of the way, but it’s a great place to stop if you plan on seeing the Peace Vista, Winding Highway 98 and Hamat Gader in the Golan Heights.

The products are strictly kosher and the factory/shop is closed on Shabbat.

Call them directly for more info at 04-699-3622. They are open 9am – 5pm on Sunday through Thursday and 9am – 3pm on Fridays and before Holidays.

De Karina Chocolate Factory is located at Ein Zivan about 50 minutes from Villa Rimona Zimmers.

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Family Hike to Eshkol Forest in the Galilee

Between Yavneel and Menachemia is one of the Galilee’s best kept secrets … Levi Eshkol Forest Park.

On the way you’ll see stunning vistas of the Kinneret, Jordan River, the Golan Heights and the Jordan Valley. Watch out for the cows at the natural oasis and avoid a natural landslide due to a recent earthquake.

For families it’s best to drive part of the way and continue on foot, but if you want to make a day of it, you can hike all the way from Villa Rimona.