For those who arrive by car, the main entrance to the forest is from the junction of Nahal Raba Street and Kibbutz Galuyot Street. We enter via the main forest road, which is indicated by posts marked in green, and it leads us to the forest’s sites and hidden corners.
Note: One section of the forest, in the east, is intended for walkers and cyclists only, and vehicles are forbidden there. The road follows the route of Nahal Raba, which is one of the tributaries of the Yarkon River. This river is dry for most of the year, but heavy winter rains can cause it to flow abundantly, flood part of the road and altogether impart a European aspect to the forest. When the river is in spate or in flood, do not enter the water!
Further on, we reach a recreation area shaded by eucalyptus trees, ; picnic tables and playground equipment are provided. Continuing eastwards, we cross the riverbed and arrive at another picnic area beyond which the road is closed to motor vehicles. From here we can set off on foot to see the forest flowers and the Wildflower Trail. We walk round the gate and continue along the main forest trail, which leads us to the beginning of a footpath that continues for a kilometer. There is a signpost at the start of the path, and the route is marked in red all the way along.
This path, which provides pedestrian access to the Neveh Afeq neighborhood, is circular: it climbs up the hill, before taking us back down to our starting point. It is beautiful at all seasons of the year, but most especially so when the flowers are in bloom.
A whole host of cyclamen flowers, red and white anemones, tulips, bee orchids and asphodels can be seen amid the cypress trees, interspersed with the leaves of sea squills (Drimia maritima), whose tall stalks bloom in autumn in many parts of the forest. As we progress, we find ourselves among pine trees, and the sides of the footpath are edged with rocks that nature has eroded into something resembling works of art. In the winter, the small-flowered Pancratium flowers here. We cross a woodland trail and continue to climb the path up the hill until we reach the lookout point at its summit.
At the top of the hill, there are the remains of an ancient settlement dating back originally to the Byzantine period, now known by the Arabic name of Khirbet ad-Dawir. The remnants of several buildings can still be seen, some of which have several courses of bricks intact. To the east of the site, a square cistern has been hewn into the rock and plastered, and visitors should take care not to stumble over any of the other holes or obstacles at the site. Styrax trees (Styrax officinalis) grow on the hill, and the nearby KKL-JNF observation point offers a view of the entire region: to the east we can see the hills of Samaria, which are easily identifiable as they are almost totally bare, with only a few trees remaining to remind us that they were once the site of natural woodland. To the north we can see Kafr Qasim and the Trans-Samaria Highway, with the city just visible to the south. From here, we descend the marked path until we reach the dirt road we crossed earlier.
At this point we turn right and join up with the continuation of the flowering footpath. We take the marked path down the hill amidst carpets of anemones. At this point in the path, we are walking on natural stone steps that can be slippery after rain, so please take care! The pine trees around us are covered with a variety of climbing plants, such as winter-flowering clematis (Clematis cirrhosa) and rough bindweed (Smilax aspera). We continue on down the gentle slope amidst carpets of anemones and cyclamen until we reach our starting point once more.