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Issue #130 - 11/11
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Issue #130 November 2011 - Regions in Israel

 

Shalom friends,
Israel is a land of diversity – people, climate, religions, customs, food – we have so many different aspects in this place – some are due to people that have gathered here from all over the world, and some are due to the special location of the land of Israel. We have the desert in the south, the snow-capped mountains in the north, the Mediterranean Sea in the west and the Syrian-East African Rift in the east. Israel is a small country that has diverse geographical regions. In today’s issue we will meet the main regions of the land of Israel.
 
מִישׁוֹר הַחוֹף 
(Mishor haXof, the Coastal Plain)
The narrow Coastal Plain along Israel's Mediterranean Sea coast stretches from the northern border to the southern border, interrupted only by Cape Carmel at Haifa Bay. The region is fertile and has a Mediterranean climate. About 57% of Israel's population lives in the coastal plain, much of them in the Tel Aviv metropolitan area.
מישור החוף
הַגּוֹלָן 
(haGolan, the Golan)
The Golan Heights are located at the north-east of Israel. This elevated plateau is rich in history, archeological landmarks, scenic streams, mountains and waterfalls. The Golan is part of volcanic basalt fields that were created in a series of volcanic eruptions. The Golan Heights contribute significantly to the water resources of the region, providing about 15% of Israel's water supply. 

מפל סער. צלם: יוסי עזרא

 
הַגָּלִיל 
(haGalil, the Galilee)
East of the northern coastal plain lie the beautiful and green mountains and hills of Upper Galilee and Lower Galilee. The Galilee enjoys relatively low temperatures and high rainfall as well as many streams and waterfalls. As a result of this geographical condition, colorful wildflowers and wildlife thrive in the region. The natural beauty as well as numerous towns of biblical importance make the region a popular tourist destination.
גליל
(Har haKarmel) Mount Carmel 
Mount Carmel is a coastal mountain range in the north of  Israel stretching from the Mediterranean Sea towards the southeast. The range is a UNESCO biosphere reserve and a number of towns are located there, most notably is the city of Haifa, Israel's third largest city, located on the northern slope.

הר הכרמל. צלם: בן כהן

 

הַשָּׁרוֹן
(Sharon)
The Sharon Plain is the northern half of the coastal plain of Israel. Its largest city is Netanya. The Plain lies between the Mediterranean Sea to the west and the Samarian Hills to the east. It stretches from Haifa and Mount Carmel in the north to the Yarkon River in the south, at the edge of Tel Aviv. The Sharon has a very fertile land and is known for its citrus groves.

רמת השרון. צלמת: יהודית גרני-כל

 
 
הַשְּפֵלָה
(haShfela, the Lowland)
The Shfela is a region in south-central Israel of 10-15 km of low hills. In biblical times it was one of the regions allotted to the Tribe of Judah. Today it is a largely rural area with many villages engaging in agriculture.

נחל שורק ביבנה

 

הָרֵי הַשּׁוֹמְרוֹן וְהָרֵי יְהוּדָה
(Harey haShomron veHarey Yehuda, the Samarian Hills and the Judean Hills)
East of the coastal plain and west of the Jordan River lie the Samarian Hills with numerous small, fertile valleys, and the Judean Hills where Jerusalem and several other biblical cities are located.
הרי יהודה
בִּקְעַת הַיַּרְדֵּן
(Bik’at haYarden, Jordan Rift Valley)
The Jordan Rift Valley is a small part of the 6,500 kilometers (4,039 mi)-long Syrian-East African Rift. In Israel the Rift Valley is dominated by Israel's largest river - the Jordan River , the Sea of Galilee (כנרת, kineret) and the Dead Sea - the lowest surface point on the earth. South of the Dead Sea, the Rift Valley continues to the Arava (ערבה, arava) with no permanent water flow to the Gulf of Eilat.
בקעת הירדן
הַנֶּגֶב
(Negev)
The Negev Desert comprises of approximately 12,000 square kilometers (4,633 sq mi), more than half of Israel's total land area. Geographically it is an extension of the Sinai Desert, forming a rough triangle with its base in the north near Beersheba, the Dead Sea, and the southern Judean Hills, and it has its apex in the southern tip of the country at Eilat. The Negev is a rocky desert. It is a mélange of brown, rocky, dusty mountains interrupted by wadis (dry riverbeds that bloom briefly after rain) and deep craters.
נגב
 
In our previous newsletters, we met many of the regions. We will continue to visit some other regions of our beautiful and diverse country in the following newsletters.
 
לְהִתְרָאוֹת בְּיִשְׂרָאֵל,
Lehitra’ot beYisra’el,
See you in Israel,
 
שִׁירָה כֹּהֵן-רֶגֶב
Shira Cohen-Regev
Hebrew Teacher @ eTeacherHebrew