Over two million Israelis visited Keren Kayemeth LeIsrael Jewish National Fund (KKL-JNF) parks and forests during the weeklong Passover holiday, the organization said Saturday.
KKL-JNF said the figure was an all-time record.
It also said its workers collected 500 tons of trash left at parks and forests.
The Israel Nature and Parks Authority, meanwhile, said 1.2 Israelis visited the parks and nature reserves it manages over Passover, including 100,000 on Saturday.
Among the most visited sites were Ashkelon National Park, Masada, Yarkon-Tel Afek, Ein Gedi and Banias, according to the Parks Authority. KKL-JNF said its most visited sites included Ramat Menashe Park, Blue Valley Park, Goren Park, Ilanot Forest and Hamalachim-Shahariya Forest.
The Parks Authority also said it rescued 22 hikers who were either hurt or deviated from the trail.
Passover, which began the evening of March 27, ends Saturday at nightfall.
Raya Shurki, the authority’s community director, was quoted saying by Channel 12 news that the holiday was given “new significance” this year, after sweeping lockdown rules were in effect over last Passover to stem the spread of COVID-19.
Passover is normally marked by mobs of families enjoying the outdoors, but this year crowding was heavier due to the inability to go abroad, and the major easing of COVID-19 restrictions as morbidity rates have continued to steadily decline in the country.