Hamat Gader
A Great Spa Experience

Be pampered at the Hot Springs

Hamat Gader is located in the Yarmouk River valley near the Sea of Galilee. It features several mineral springs with temperatures of             up to 50 C.

The name means literally the Hot Springs of Gadara referring to a site known today as Umm Qais in Jordan just 4 Km away on the other side of the border. It is actually located in the three country border between Syria, Jordan and Israel.

This popular site is operated jointly by four Kibbutzim of Southern Golan Heights, Mevo Hama, Kfar Haruv, Afik and Meitzar. It offers luxurious facilities combining experiences for all tastes. It welcomes families, groups and couples.

The Hot Springs reach a temperature of 50 degrees Celcius

  • The Bath Complex
    The thermo mineral waters at a steady temperature of 42 C have the two most important qualities heat and mineral rich waters coming down at a rate of 500-700 cubic meters per hour. The waters coming from the depths of the Earth are soothing and relaxing and ideal for a quite vacation of a few days or much more.

  • Crocodile farm
    In 1981 more than 120 crocodiles from Florida were bought here to open the farm and in the subsequent years many more species from Africa and South America joined the crowd. Today it delights visitors that can see them (at a distance) how these predators enjoy themselves.

  • Mini Nature Reserve
    At the mini nature reserve you can watch the ibex, reindeer, deer, ostrich, baboons, raccoons, iguana and many others. Also you may enjoy the Parrot Shows featuring trained parrots of the species Jaco, Macaws, Amazon parrots and Cockatoos.

    At the Petting Zoo kids and grownups alike can enjoy petting rabbits, hamsters, gazelles, racoons, ferrets, goats, ibex, fawns, etc. You can consult the staff concerning pets.
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This is a great spa experience in the Galilee

Getting there

It is located on the South Eastern side of the Sea of Galilee. If you are driving from the Centre of Israel take the Highway 6 (Kvish Shesh toll) Northbound towards "Yokneam". At the end of the Highway take road 70 Northbound up to the Junction of road 77 Eastbound towards Tiberias.

Arriving to Tiberias take road 90 along the lake of Galilee Southbound until you arrive to a crossing with road 98 eastbound. Follow the signs to Hamat Gader.

Spa Village Hotel Hamat Gader, Galilee

The spa offers the following facilities, a large swimming pool filled with healing water, Jacuzzi beds and recliners for body massages, water jets to loosen neck, shoulder and back muscles; a pampering bubble pool; huge water fall for relaxing the whole body; pleasant wood-lined rooms for a wide range of massages and alternative therapies.

It offers an extremely diverse range of 15 treatments and massages including: Swedish; 4-Hands Swedish; Shiatsu; Thai; Aromatic; Crystals; Hydrotherapy; Reflexology; Reiki and others.

All treatments and massages are administered by highly qualified and experienced professionals. Special massages are available for pregnant women. Its newest attraction, called Splash, is a water park including swimming pool and slides and is especially refreshing in the hot months.

Sports facilities include a mini-soccer field, beach volleyball on sand, football fields and basketball courts.

The Crocodile Farm in Hamat Gader

The History of Hamat Gader

The original baths were constructed by the Romans in the second century. You may see reminders of the constructions by the Byzantines and then by the Arabs. In the Roman times it was well known as a recreational site. The springs were also used for healing purposes.

It was the second largest bath complex of the Roman Empire. Today’s visitors are amazed at the halls and baths that still remain preserved. You can see why Hamat Gader has been a center for health and curative experience since ancient times.

On the third century a Roman Theater with about 2,000 seats was built on the premises and two centuries later a large Synagogue was built.

For a long period in history due to earthquakes and plain abandonment the springs were forgotten and covered by thick layers of mud.

Google Map of Hamat Gader near the Sea of Galilee

Contemporary History

In 1923 when the borders of the French Mandate of Syria and the British mandate of Palestine were drawn, Hamat Gader was on the British side, but at the end of Israel’s War of Independence even though it remains under Israeli sovereignty it was occupied by the Syrians that prevented any visit by Israelis to the site.

Remember that at that time the Syrians had the Golan Heights and strategically the upper power to control the area. Certain attempts to regain control of the place failed, sometime with the loss of Israeli lives.

In June of 1967 on the Six Day War, the site was captured by the Israel Defense Forces. Since then it has been developed as a Health Resort and an alligator and birds reserve.

Image Credits:
The images are courtesy of the hotel

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