Ein Hemed National Park, run by the Israel Parks and Nature Authority, is located on the path of an old Roman road, which was still in use after the Crusader period. The road connected the coastal plain with the Jerusalem hills. During Roman times the springs were known as Aqua Bella – Beautiful Water or Ein Hemed in Hebrew (literally Pleasant Spring.)
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The Crusaders built a fortified farm here, with a structure that has been preserved and is very impressive. Because of its beauty, the Crusaders gave this spot and its main spring the Latin name Aqua Bella (“beautiful water”). The local inhabitants preserved the sound of the name with the Arabic name Hirbet (“the ruin of”) Ikbala.
The Nature and Parks Authority, which has developed and maintains Aqua Bella, has carried out work to control the flow of the water in the stream, and installed picnic tables in the shade. The authority has planted and cares for spacious lawns, and constructed toilets and faucets. As a result, this beautiful hidden valley has become a delightful place to visit.
This park is very popular during the holidays so we recommend to visit it on a weekday if you prefer it more quiet.
There is an entrance fee. Free parking is available. Wheelchair accessible route and wheelchair accessible picnic tables throughout the park.