Palmahim Beach National Park

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Hof Palmahim National Park is well known to beach lovers as a vacation and recreation site, but it is also a nature site, conserving the natural seashore, coastal kurkar ridge, and wandering dunes. The national park also includes Tel Yavne-Yam.

Hof Palmahim National Park was declared in 2003, and covers an area of 221 dunams, with three main components:

  1. The western kurkar ridge, a habitat with globally unique features that have enabled special and rare species of plants and animals to develop.
  2. One of the last remaining stretches of seashore in Israel that is still in its natural state. The seashore is home to many plants and animals, and also forms part of the habitat of the sea turtle, a species that is in danger of extinction throughout the Mediterranean basin.
  3. The remains of the ancient port city of Yavne-Yam. These are the ruins of a city from the Middle Canaanite period, surrounded by vast ramparts built in the Middle Bronze Age On the peninsular jutting into the sea are remains from First Temple times, as well as from the Persian, Hellenistic, Roman and Crusader periods.

At the site ancient waterworks and agricultural apparatus have been excavated, alongside the flowering sea daffodils and other typical coastal vegetation.

 

In addition to its importance in terms of both natural and human heritage, the sandy shore is a focus of attraction for many visitors and tourists as a free and attractive coastal strip in central Israel.

To the east of the sandy shore is a kurkar cliff. The estuary of the Soreq stream is to the north, part of the Soreq Stream Estuary National Park.

 

Main points of interest

  • Regulated bathing beach
  • The Yavne-Yam site
  • Typical coastal flora and fauna
  • The vast ramparts of the Canaanite city
  • The sea turtle farm

 

 

Lookout points

  • Lookout over the national park from Yavne-Yam cliff
  • Lookout from the top of the Canaanite ramparts

 

 Activities of the Nature and Parks Authority to improve service to visitors and conserve the site

The Nature and Parks Authority has prepared the beach for bathing, marked out walking trails, and is involved in the archaeological excavations in the national park. In terms of nature conservation, it rescues sea turtle eggs and, after the hatchlings emerge, releases them safely into the sea.

 

Flora

In the area of the dunes, white broom (Retama raetam) is very common, with its abundant white blossoms appearing in February. Another common shrub is the mugwort (Artemisia monosperma). These plants are also characteristic of desert dunes. Close to the shore the wind carries salt spray from the sea, and the plants here have become resistant to it: beach morning glory (Ipomoea stolonifera) tends to grow out flat, sea cudweed (Otanthus maritimus) develops a thick cover of hairs, and the sea daffodil (Pancratium maritimum) has a thick waxy layer covering its leaves. The coastal plants flower mainly during summer nights, because that is when the wind dies down and does not disturb the pollinating insects.

 

Wildlife

Within the national park is a rich world of wildlife, including large mammals such as the Palestine mountain gazelle (Gazella gazella), the jackal (Canis aureus), the red fox (Vulpes vulpes), and the wild boar (Sus scrofa). These animals enjoy both the hinterland of the dunes and the cultivated fields outside the park. There are also creatures that are unique to the sandy habitat, such as the sand snake (Lytorhynchus diadema), the Nidua fringe-fingered lizard (Acanthodactylus scutellatus), and the Günther's cylindrical skink (Chalcides guentheri).

 

​How to get here:

Turn off Road 4 at Gan Rave intersection, and from there to En HaKore intersection. Continue westward on Road 4311 to the very end. A few hundred meters after Kibbutz Palmahim (a good point for GPS), you will reach the shore. On the way, you pass by the Soreq Stream Estuary National Park.

The reference point of Hof Palmahim National Park is: 71709/648123

Other attractions

  • Visitors center
  • Chair hire
  • Sale of sunshades
  • Shaded areas on the regulated beach
  • Picnic tables
  • Lifeguard services during bathing season
  • First aid clinic – during bathing season
  • Locker hire, including USB charger for cellphones – NIS 10 per day   
  • Beach showers and toilets

 


 

 

Bathing hours

MonthDays Hours
April as of April 15Sun. - Fri.8 am – 5 pm
April as of April 15Sat.8 am – 5 pm
May until June 19 Sun. - Fri.8 am – 6 pm
May until June 19Sat.7 am – 7 pm
June 20 until end of AugustSun. - Fri.8 am – 7 pm
June 20 until end of AugustSat.7 am – 7 pm
SeptemberSun. - Fri.8 am – 6 pm
 SeptemberSat.7 am – 6 pm
October (until October 31)Sun. - Fri.8 am – 5 pm
 October (until October 31)Sat.8 am – 5 pm

 

Holidays

April 22, 2016 – ever of Passover: Bathing beach closes at 3 pm

October 2, 2016 – eve of New Year: Bathing beach closes at 3 pm

October 11, 2016 – eve of Day of Atonement: Bathing beach closes at 2 pm

 

Contact us

Telephone: 03-7265633, 03-7263902

 Fax: 03-7263902 

Email: gl-Palmahim@npa.org.il

 

Further details on activities and tours for groups only can be obtained from the Central District Guidance Unit at 08-6220835

 

Entrance fees

Prices of entry are for each separate day (until midnight).

There is computerized parking on the beach – collected throughout the day.

Take a ticket on entering the beach, and pay at the payment stations at your convenience before exiting.

Parking fee for private vehicles between February 2, 2016 and April 15, 2016, every day of the week:  NIS 10

 

Prices during bathing season 
 Details Weekdays Fri., Sat., eve of holidays and holidays
Private vehicleNIS 25NIS 30
Minibus / busNIS 50NIS 60
Active reserve soldiers ("Behatzda'a") – on presentation of certificate onlyNIS 19NIS 23
Nature and Parks Authority members – on presentation of certificate and ID onlyNIS 13NIS 15
Senior citizens – on presentation of certificate onlyNIS 13NIS 15
Nature conservation officer – on presentation of certificate onlyNIS 13NIS 15
Nes Tsiyona resident – on presentation of resident's certificate and ID only NIS 13NIS 15

Disabled – on presentation of certificate only

 (applies only to certificate holder – not to the vehicle)

Free of chargeFree of charge
Bereaved family (Yad Labanim)Free of chargeFree of charge
Disabled in terror attack – on presentation of certificate NIS 13NIS 15

 Discounts

Gan Rave residents – entry conditional on registration with local council.

To receive the discount, please go to the beach offices to encode the discount – before payment!

 

Annual subscriptions for cars are available

The subscription gives entry to Palmahim National Park only, at a cost of:

NIS 380 for first car

NIS 260 for second car 

 

Instructions for Matmon subscribers and people entitled to a discount:

Put the card into the ticket machine at the entrance gate to the beach, wait (without pressing anything) about three seconds until the parking ticket is automatically issued from the machine. It will already have the 50% discount, and all you need to do is pay it at the payment station.

Paying without arranging the discount means waiving the discount or exemption, and cannot be appealed. To arrange the discount – go to the beach office.

 

Entry for dogs

Dogs may be brought in under the following conditions:

  1. On a leash and with a muzzle the whole time, as required by Israeli law
  2. Dogs may not be brought onto the regulated bathing beach (the marked area 75 meters on either side of the lifeguard's post). This area can be bypassed to the north and south.
  3. Dog owners must clean up after their dogs.

 

 

Note:

This is a quiet beach and the use of amplifiers, sound systems and generators is prohibited.


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