We will cross the Yarkon on the Concrete House Bridge, then go a bit further and reach the Yarkon Trail on the north bank. We will turn right and pass an old orchard house, from where we can get a glimpse of the Yarkon Source National Park on the other side of the river.
After another 1.3km we will reach the Train Bridge, which crosses the Yarkon. We will pass underneath it and discover the new Yarkon Source Bridge. If you are already tired, you can cross the bridge here, get to the pillbox station and proceed back to the parking lot. You will have “saved” approximately 1km but missed a lot more.
Instead, we will proceed on the dirt road another 150m and turn right to the riverbank. A giant eucalyptus marks the spot of another meander, which is called the Lotus Meander and is named after the large yellow water lilies that grow there. The flower is easily recognized by its large leaves that float on the surface of the water and by its large yellow flowers that appear on the water from March to September.
Photo: KKL-JNF Photo Archive
We will return to the dirt road and turn right (away from the bridge). We walk another 300m, which will take us around a pool until we reach a wide dirt road and a sign to the Water Lily Pool. We will then turn right to get to the pool, which is adjacent to the fence around the Yarkon Springs site. The large pool, which is surrounded by reeds and other riverbank vegetation, is almost completely covered with yellow water lilies. From here the Yarkon River begins to flow, depending on the amount of water it is allocated. The Water Lily Pool serves as a safe haven for the flora and fauna that live in the wild on the Yarkon. This is the most sensitive spot on the river, and it is therefore important to protect it from environmental threats. This is why the lower pool was dug, which we passed earlier. The lower pool was meant to widen the area of water in the Yarkon channel and protect the pool of water lilies from pollutants.
We will continue around the pool and reach a dirt road, where we will turn right and walk another 400m until we reach the Yarkon Source Bridge, but we will be on the other side of the river than before. The pillbox station there protected the Yarkon Bridge from sabotage in the days of the Arab uprising (1936 – 1939).
Now we have two choices. We could enter the Yarkon National Park through a wicket in the gate, and then proceed along the Yarkon and exit on the other side—a pleasant way to conclude the hike, but it requires a fee.
The other option is to walk left on the dirt road about 500m, cross under the iron rail, right to the underground pass and continue another 30m on a dirt road that passes through a cultivated field (signs for the Yarkon Trail will help you find the way). We have reached the entrance to the National Park. From here we can already see the parking area, about 150km ahead, where we parked.