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Ein Uzan- hidden in the bush *

עין אוזן Ein Uzan Photo: zstadler

Ein Uzan – עין אוזן is an attraction of nature and animals in Bar Giora. When standing in front of the heavy thicket of the Pistacia lentiscus (mastic) shrub above Ein Uzen, it is hard to imagine that the dome-shaped shrub “hides” the spring. A narrow path that crosses through the bushes leads to the opening of a rock-hewn cave and descends to the site of the spring.

Mastic – pistacia lentiscus shrub Photo: Rafaelji

The well is dug to a depth of about 1.5 meters, is actually a vertical niche that leads to a large horizontal pit and the water flows in its floor. In the spring the water rises to about 1.5m, but in the summer it goes back down.

Inside the cave, there is an entrance space and another room that can be reached with scuba gear. The water is clear and clean and the water in the spring is pleasant. On rainy days the spring is full and the entrance to the second room is dangerous and forbidden since you can not tell if there is room to get your head out of the water.

Wheelchair accessible? No
Is there a parking? Yes
Is it suitable for children? Yes

Ein Uzan Opening Hours: 24/7 Entrance: Free of charge.

Ein Uzan Photo: idobi 

Bar Giora

Bar Giora (בַּר גִּיּוֹרָא‎) is a moshav in the Judean Mountains in Israel. Located between Beit Shemesh and Jerusalem. Bar Giora was established on land belonging to the Palestinian village of Allar, which became depopulated during the 1948 Israeli War of Independence. It is situated northeast of the Allar village site.

The village was initially founded by the Herut movement in 1950 by immigrants from Yemen. The Yemenite immigrants, dissatisfied with conditions in their new village, abandoned the village after a short stint of 2-3 years, and in 1954 the village was resettled by immigrants from Morocco.

The village changed names often: It was first named Allar-Bet, later to be called Ramat Shimon. The village was also called Eitanim, until residents eventually settled on the name Bar-Giora, after Simon Bar Giora. Simon bar Giora (died 71 CE) was the leader of one of the major Judean rebel factions during the First Jewish–Roman War in 1st-century’

Bar Giora Photo: idobi 


Allar (علار‎) or ‘Allar el-Fawqa was a Palestinian Arab village located southwest of the Old City of Jerusalem near Wadi Surar (“Valley of Pebbles”), along Wadi Tannur. The name was shared by the twin village of Allar al-Sifla (“Lower Allar”) or Khirbat al-Tannur.

An 1870s map of the area of Allar, Jerusalem from the PEF Survey of Palestine. This map is part of a series of historical maps used for comparison, showing the same area, made with help from Palestine Open Maps. Public Domain

Habitation in the village spanned centuries and is attested in architectural remains and documents from the Crusader, Mamluk, Ottoman and Mandate Palestine periods. Allar was depopulated during the 1948 Israeli War of Independence and the area was incorporated into the State of Israel, with the moshavs of Mata and Bar Giora established on its former lands. One domed stone structure still stands. 

‘Allar, Mandate survey, 1:20,000 Public Domain
‘Allar, 1945 Public Domain
In 1863 Victor Guérin described a maqam north east of the village, called Khirbet Cheikh Houbin. He noticed it contained ancient fragments used in the building.
Maqam of Sheikh Ahmad al-Hubani – Orest2000 

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