When doing the INT, we mostly followed the structure set out in the Israel National Trail Red Guide Book. Our designated rest days were different though, mostly as we based them around having family and friends to stay with or interesting places we wanted to visit. We are keen campers so barely used the trail angels although you could easily do most of the north and central section without needing a tent. For the desert section, I’ve noted where I got water from. Rest days are in red. Here’s my day by day itinerary for the Israel National Trail:
Itinerary for the Israel National Trail
Day 1: Camped in the woods west of Kiryat Shemona
Day 2: Camped next to trail near Nahal Dishon nature reserve
Day 3: Camped in designated camp area H. Humeima just before Mt. Neria
Day 4: Camped near the spring (drity, lots of noisy people all night) Ein Koves (Blue trail up from Naham Amud)
Day 5: Camped on the top of Mount Arbel (Overlooking Galilee)
Day 6: Stayed in friends house in Kibbutz Degania B
Day 7: Rest day with a friend in Kibbutz Degania B
Day 8: Stayed in and open ‘warehouse’ maintained by trail angels in Kefar Kisch
Day 9: Camped in the woods opposite the supermarket in Mount Yona
Day 10: Meant to camp in the ruins of Hanezirim Mill but full of motorbikes and locals so walked to the woods west of Nofit and camped on a flat section next to the dry riverbed (it was a bit rocky so took a while to find a good spot)
Day 11: Camped at the top of Mt Carmel in bench area at Forester’s wood
Day 12: Stayed in Gils family home (family came to collect us from Shfeya junction and dropped us back on Day 15)
Day 13: Rest day with family in Zichron Yaakov
Day 14: Rest day with family in Zichron Yaakov
Day 15: Camped on beach Tel Afar
Day 16: Camped on beach near Natanya (nicer than the bench area near the train station)
Day 17: Stayed in friends house, just of the trail near Park Yarkon
Day 18: Stayed with trail angel (the Pearl) family in Mazor (note, their house is quite a walk from the tail)
Day 19: Got a bus from Modi’in Lookout, 20 min direct to Abraham Hostel.
Day 20: Rest day in Tel Aviv. Stayed at Abraham Hostel.
Day 21: Camped in a nice bench area in Ein Messila
Day 22: Camped by Ein Tamar on a good flat area. There are rats in the area so keep all your items inside your tent.
Day 23: Stayed with a friend overnight, collected us from Tel Azeka Junction and dropped us back the next day.
Day 24: Family came to collect us from Beit Guvrin national park and dropped us back day 26
Day 25: Rest day with family
Day 26: Camped in a small wooded area west of Tel Keshet. Very quiet and peaceful.
Day 27: Camped in bench area outside Dvira. Disturbed in night by a group drinking and smoking.
Day 28: Camped next to road in woods east of Mount Hiran
Day 29: Meant to camp in Tel Arad but very pricey and you don’t get much for your money. Instead we camped in a bench area in Arad Park. Made for a very short walk into Arad the next day.
Day 30: Stayed at Dead Sea Adventure Hostel. An easy 15 minute walk from the trail.
Day 31: Rest Day. Stayed at Dead Sea Adventure Hostel.
Day 32 (31 in blog): Camped at Be’er Efa NC. Had arranged for water caching to be dropped here.
Day 33: Was meant to camp at Metzad NC Tamar. next to a quarry but was dirty and disgusting, moved on and camped outside the area. Had arranged for water caching to be dropped here.
Day 34: Camped at Makhtesh Katan NC – large group camping there, moved on down the dirt road, flat section next to road away from the noisy children. Had arranged for water caching to be dropped here.
Day 35: Camped at Oron NC outside factory. Was very noisy throughout the night and was sleeping in a dust cloud. Running water available here.
Day 36: Camped at Mador NC. Very nice campsite, little shade. Had arranged for water caching to be dropped here.
Day 37: Stayed with a friend in Kibbutz Sde Boker. Ordered a jeep from Akev NC to save us the additional hike to the Kibbutz as was very tired.
Day 38: Rest day. Stayed with a friend at Kibbutx Sde Boker.
Day 39: Camped at Hava NC. Very nice campsite. Had arranged for water caching to be dropped here.
Day 40: Camped at Mitzpe Ramon Field School who let hikers stay for free. Running water, toilets and lots of deer!
Day 41: Camped at Gevanim NC. There was a large noisy organised group there but also rangers in the area so no other options for camping. Had arranged for water caching to be dropped here.
Day 42: Camped at Tzvira NC. Beautiful and isolated campsite. Had arranged for water caching to be dropped at the previous NC, Gev Holit, but decided to do extra miles as we had covered the distance quickly.
Day 43: Stayed at the Spice Route Khan bedouin camp. 50NIS for a bed in a sharked bedouin tent. Good shower and kitchen facilities.
Day 44: Rest day. Stayed at the Spice Route Khan bedouin camp
Day 45: Camped at Barak NC. Nice flat circle areas for tents, was popular with locals.
Day 46: Camped at Tzihor NC. Nice area although a little close to the road. Had arranged for water caching to be dropped here.
Day 47: Stayed at Neot Smadar, a Kibbutz. They take in hikers and feed you 3 meals a day in return for a days work. It was interesting to see the place and the food was delicious but it is worth noting it is a long tough days work!
Day 48: ‘Rest day’ (or rather work day) at Neot Smadar Kibbutz
Day 49: Camped south of Shaharut outside the Eilat Massive nature reserve. Was a wild camping spot so had 2 days worth of water.
Day 50: Camped in Raham Etek NC after Timna Park. Very nice spot. We collect water at the entrance of Timna Park.
Day 51: Camped at Mount Yehoram NC. Surrounded by a road but has nice mountains in the background. Had arranged for water caching to be dropped here.
Day 52: Arrived in Eilat at Coral Beach. You have to pay entry here but if you take a left and walk 200m you will get to a nice, free beach where you can go in for a celebratory swim. We stayed the night in the Shelter (a bus ride and short walk from the beach). They give 1 free night to everyone who completes the trail. Note that it is a religious hostel so your stay will come with a free bible and an invitation to join a service (you don’t have to participate!).
For more information on the Israel National Trail, you might also be interested in:
An honest review of the Israel National Trail
A guide to the Israel National Trail
22 tips for thru hiking
Israel National Trail: budget breakdown
24 pictures that will make you want to walk the Israel Nationals Trail
Israel National Trail: Kit List
My Israel National Trail Itinerary
Do you have any other questions about doing the INT that I haven’t answered? Just let me know in the comment box below.