The main group of springs is Ein Afek (Kurdani) which gush at the foot of the biblical town of Afek. The springs and the mound are located within the boundaries of the Ein Afek nature reserve.
The springs of the river gush at an altitude of barely 5m above sea level. They are only 4km from the sea, as the crow flies, and in order to overcome the barrier of the sand dunes on the coast, and because of the low gradient, Nahal Naaman has to wend its way north three times as far to reach Akko. It is therefore not surprising that these conditions created large swamps around the springs.
The Naaman swamps, which once covered an area of around 1,600 hectares, were rife with malaria. KKL-JNF purchased the land north of Nahal Naaman in 1925, and in 1938 the kibbutzim of Kfar Masaryk and Ein Hamifratz were founded on the KKL JNF land (later also Kibbutz Afek). The kibbutz settlements struggled with the swamps in order to prevent flooding of cultivated areas. They drained the springs into canals and turned Naaman River into a channel, which accelerated the flow of water in the river, and this is still how it is today.
In the time of the British mandate, the swamps were drained even more. In 1942 the spring water was conducted to Haifa Bay for cooling at the refineries. The swamps became cultivated fields and fish ponds. The remnants of the swamps were declared nature reserves, which preserve the flora and fauna of the Naaman swamps.
In recent years, the Ein Afek springs have dried out completely because of wells that drain the springs of the Nahal Naaman. Some of the water from the wells is conducted to the Ein Afek reserve, and from there it flows into Naaman River. Water is also channeled from the fish ponds and from the runoff of the cultivated fields, and Naaman River has once again become a perennial stream.
In 2007, KKL-JNF, with the support of its friends worldwide, partnered with the Western Galilee River and Drainage Authority, the Ministry of Environmental Protection, the Ministry of Agriculture and Rural Development, the Israel Nature and Parks Authority (INPA) and the Asher Regional Council. The channel of the stream was deepened, and 15,000 tons of residue were removed. The garbage dump that used to “decorate” the south entrance was eliminated. KKL JNF treated the eucalyptus groves by the stream, installed picnic tables and benches, and paved the paths on both riverbanks. The Naaman River Authority constructed the bridges and the information signs, and now there is a beautiful place where local residents can spend leisure time, ride bicycles and do power walking by the river.