Rosh Hanikra is a fantastic and unique geological treasure in the northernmost point of the Israel Mediterranean Coastline, inside the Western Galilee region. This place is featured by caverns and caves that result from thousands of years of seawater erosion.
This location is close to the border between Israel and Lebanon, and it is a fantastic and breathtaking place with beautiful landscapes and unique points to be visited. The grottoes of Rosh Hanikra have a special connection with the sea and the mountain. It is a feature of this magical place the sound of the sea every time the rough rocks address the seawater in different directions, changing the speed of the waves and water fluxes and pushing the water in various points of the grotto. At the same time, the sculpted structures form unusual and weird shapes and lights inside the cave.
Rosh Hanikra is a kibbutz, which is an agricultural settlement with an economy mainly based on agriculture and tourist. A famous resident of this place was Sacha Baron-Cohen, well-known for his comical personage Borat, and lived in this kibbutz working as volunteer for a period. In the future, Rosh Hanikra could become even more important than only its geology thanks to a tunnel in the cliff-face in which visitors will enjoy a rail link between Cairo-Haifa-Beirut, once it is completely ready. This location is situated meters away from Lebanon. The grottoes of Rosh Hanikra include in their trails an audiovisual presentation, and the place has a restaurant and general tourist amenities. It is recommended to spend a couple of hours whilst enjoying the unique scenery and ambience that are both gifts of nature.
The Grottoes of Rosh Hanikra
Rosh Hanikra owns unique and astonishing stone structures and geological formations that are a junction between the sea and the mountain. The site dates back to the past world. Rosh Hanikra is a unique geologic formation, the conjunction point between the sea and the mountain. During the British Mandate, a paved road was built between Haifa and Tripoli in Lebanon, crossing Rosh Hanikra. Moreover, the British dug a trail within the cliffs, and the remnants of this railroad are still visible nowadays. However, the main attraction of Rosh Hanikra is its grottoes, which are extraordinary geological structures shaped over several years of tectonic displacements. The crashing sea waves continue the erosion process even today, gradually crunching the rock.
In former times, the grottoes were only reachable by sea, though nowadays, they are reached by means of a car cable, which is the shortest and steepest line in the world, since it rises 70 metres above sea level at a 60-degree angle. From the car cable, there is a marvellous panorama of all the area, especially the harbour in plain view, which includes three small islands that host a species of waterfowl. At the entrance of the caverns, there is the main hall with a modified rail tunnel with an audiovisual guide illustrating the grottoes’ history in different four languages: English, Hebrew, Arabic and Russian.
A 200 metres path proceeds from the entrance to different caves, crossing all the natural mineral formations and with turquoise water that floods in and out of the open sea. Safety rails mark and protect the pathway; nevertheless, it is important to be very careful because of the waves splash. This location is preferred by divers; even though, in order to dive, it is required the presence of a licensed professional guide because of the configuration of the rock formations. The diving site depth is seven metres, and many animals live in this magical place, such as different Osteichthyes, crabs and Carettas. Moreover, inside the grottoes, there are fruit bats and hyraxes. The circular path is partly lightened, and it is not accessible by wheelchairs nor strollers. Along the path, different plaques inform the visitors about interesting descriptions and tales.
For an absolutely unique experience, it is recommended a nighttime lantern tour that usually takes place in July and August for admiring the grottoes in a completely different way. After visiting these fantastic water-carved caverns, it is suggested to travel back and enjoy the beautiful landscapes expanding up to the border with Lebanon. For another amazing place to visit, you can take a ride in the boardwalk car for a spectacular panorama of Achziv beach. The Keshet cave is located twenty minutes from Rosh Hanikra, and the place is absolutely fantastic with a unique geological formation featured by a stone arch that initially was the roof of the cave.
Some information about Rosh Hanikra
The kibbutz dates back to 1949, and it was founded by a group of soldiers coming from the Kibbutz Hanita, with members of the Zionist youth movement and Holocaust survivors. It was built in the village of al-Bassa that was deserted during the 1948 Arab-Israeli War. The kibbutz has farming of avocados and bananas besides raising turkeys. In 1974, the members of the kibbutz founded the Rahan Meristem, which is a biotechnology company that introduced the first commercial tissue culture laboratory of Israel. The company realised large scale procedures, in-vitro and clonal propagation of more than two hundred plant genera, including fruit, industrial, ornamental, and vegetable crops.