Rosh Hanikra is located in the northwestern corner of Israel, on the Israel-Lebanon border. This is an unusual geographical site where the Mediterranean hits the cliffs. From these white chalk cliffs you have a panoramic view of Haifa and the hills of Galilee.
It was the site used by Israelis and Lebanese in 1949, to sign the official armistice that ended the hostilities of the Arab Israeli War of 1948.
One of the Grottoes of Rosh Hanikrah
Soft Chalk Rock
The grottos were formed by the sea cracking away pieces of the rock during thousands of years helped by undersea shocks. The rain and seawater entered through the cracks and widened the grottos to what they are today.
These caves come in different heights, some of them 7 meters below sea level, others at 3 to 5 meters below current level. Another layer of sediment was even found above the railway tracks at 8 meters above the current sea level.
Israel built a 200 meters long tunnel that connects the grottos. When you arrive to the site a cable car takes you down to the cliffs and a small train takes you along the shore to Hof Achziv. An audiovisual presentation explains the story of this site.
Translated into English the head of the Grottos, is actually a Kibbutz near the beach and the Lebanese border. It was established in 1949 as a Kibbutz by former Hagana soldiers that had their base in nearby Kibbutz Hanita. They were joined by young Zionist pioneers from other parts of the country and many Holocaust Survivors just arriving from Europe.
Soft Chalk Rock Formations
Nature Reserve and National Park
The area around includes a number of nature reserves, The islands with 311 dunams declared in 1965, the Nature reserve with 500 dunams declared in 1969, and an additional 765 dunams in 1996. The beach - 230 dunams, declared in 2003 and the Rosh Hanikra National Park also has jurisdiction of 220 dunams in the area.
The grottos ceilings are home to bats and the cliff's grots are nesting grounds for rock pigeons and swallows. Near the water edge, it is possible to observe female seagulls as they gather food, abundantly found on the beach rocks. The crevice waters allow ideal living conditions for a multitude variety of marine life.
On a few full moon nights during the year, it is possible to observe a ravishing sight - hundreds of tiny new born turtles making their way to the ocean. The Beach constitutes a watery mating site. The eggs will be laid by the female at the sandy coves between the beach rocks.
When visiting you are closer to Beirut than to Jerusalem
Route Cairo – Istanbul
For centuries it was part of the route between Turkey Syria Lebanon to Africa. During their Mandate, the British built a railway that connected Egypt with Europe, via Palestine, Lebanon, Syria and Turkey. Rosh Hanikra was on its way. It was part of the Haifa Beirut Tripoli Line. During Israel War of Independence of 1948, Israeli troops bombed the bridge that went into Lebanon.
When visiting this site you may see the remnants of the bridge and enjoy a movie presentation called “Train Ride to Peace”.
Cable Car available for the visitors
New at the site: Kosher Restaurant, under the Supervision of Rabbi Shlomo Ben Eliyahu of Asher District. It features a wide selection of meats and Golan produced beers.
The view from the restaurant is awe inspiring.
Copyright Tuchman Israel Guide
2015 - 2018