In recent years private bodies have seized control of the shores of Lake Kinneret - the Sea of Galilee. This issue has made its way onto public agendas and many green organizations have engaged in attempts to restore this national treasure to its legal owners – the citizens of the State of Israel. KKL-JNF, too, has joined battle by developing a cycle route around the perimeter of the lake.
KKL-JNF, in conjunction with the Jordan Valley Regional Council, the Ministry of Tourism and the Government Tourist Company, inaugurated a 6.5 kilometer initial section of the cycle route, from Kibbutz Maagan to Shezaf-Rotem beach, north of Kibbutz HaOn. In the future, when the route is complete, cyclists will be able to ride around the entire perimeter of the lake. The trail will be suitable for bicycles of all kinds, and will provide free access to the beaches. An additional route, for mountain bikes and off-road cycling, is planned for the surrounding hills. The Society for the Protection of Nature in Israel has also provided a path for hikers and walkers, which likewise encompasses the entire Kinneret perimeter, and which will allow the general public free access all the way around the lake’s waterline. These trails are designed to allow the public to “reclaim the Kinneret.”
Photo: KKL-JNF Photo archive
A Kinneret hills perimeter project is planned for the future. This will entail the preparation of 114 kilometers of trail, and will include a route for off-road cycling through woodland in the hills above the Kinneret, at a height of up to 100 meters above sea level. The trail will incorporate a number of subsidiary paths that will provide cyclists with access to local communities. The plan is to divide the paths into four days of cycling, with each trail representing its own Biblical or historical story. These trails, too, will meet up with the Israel Hiking Trail, and will provide a memorable sporting experience amid magnificent views.