The Martyrs’ Trail is a short route that makes its way through a woodland that combines planted forest with local native trees. It begins at the Scroll of Fire Memorial and ends in the gully of the Kisalon Stream, at the B'nai B'rith Cave parking lot.
The Forest of the Martyrs enrobes the steep slopes of the Nahal Kisalon (“Kisalon Stream”) gully, which crosses the Jerusalem Hills. KKL-JNF began work on the forest in 1951 with the help of the B'nai B'rith organization, which raised funds to plant the trees. Scattered throughout the forest, which was planted after the State of Israel was founded to serve as the principal memorial site to Jewish communities that perished in the Holocaust, are monuments to the memory of European Jewish communities that were obliterated. In the 1950s this was KKL-JNF’s flagship project, but eventually the Forest of the Martyrs was replaced by Yad VaShem as the State of Israel’s main site for the commemoration of Holocaust and heroism.
The beauty of the area of the forest that we are about to walk through lies in its combination of cultivated trees and natural Mediterranean woodland, and in the remains of an ancient site along the way. In winter and spring a whole host of wildflowers bloom here and paint the forest with an endless variety of color. Especially prominent are the large white flowers of the sage-leaved rockrose (Cistus salviifolius) and the delicate pink blooms of Greek sage (Salvia fruticosa Mill). In wintertime these are joined by crowds of anemones and cyclamen.
Our route begins at the Scroll of Fire Memorial and descends towards the Yemenite Jewry Forest’s recreation area. The difference in altitude between the memorial site and the parking lot beside the B'nai B'rith Cave is around 300 meters.
The stretch of the route from the Scroll of Fire Memorial to the Nahal Kisalon Scenic Lookout
is suitable for experienced walkers. The remaining stretch, from the scenic lookout to the B'nai B'rith Cave, is classified as “extreme.”Please note:
The direct access route to the Scroll of Fire Memorial is currently closed. However, the site can be reached from inside Moshav Kisalon (though the route is not signposted). If the back gate to the moshav is closed, you can park beside it and walk the 200 meters to the memorial site.