Cold-water springs gush right up from the ground here, forming the Dan River, which is one of the three principal sources of the Jordan River. The dense vegetation around the site is lovely. Swimming is not permitted. Excavations in the reserve, which include a pre-Israelite cult center, are ongoing. In 1993, an inscription bearing what may be a reference to the "House of David" was found here, an exciting discovery, as it would be the first extra-biblical mention of King David's royal family to be discovered. You can also see a very impressive, heavily reconstructed City Gate from the Israelite period (9th c. B.C.), as well as an earlier, arched, Canaanite-era gate, which may be the earliest evidence of the use of an arch ever uncovered by archaeologists.
There is also a 700-year-old Arabic stone flour mill. Reconstructed by the National Parks Authority, it is run by water power, and is near a 2,000-year-old pistachio tree, walking trails, and picnic areas. The nature reserve has wheelchair-accessible paths.
If you come by bus, it's a 30-minute walk from Kibbutz Dan bus stop. Buses run between Kibbutz Dan and Kiryat Shmona about every 2 hours. You can buy a combination ticket for all nature reserves in the area for NIS 40 ($10/£5).
In nearby Kibbutz Dan is a small nature museum, Bet Ussishkin (tel. 04/694-1704), with exhibits covering the flora, fauna, geology, topography, and history of the region. Bet Ussishkin also contains a Society for the Protection of Nature in Israel (SPNI) station where you can get excellent maps and information about hiking safely in the Golan. Important: You must check in at an SPNI station before hiking independently through the Golan Heights. You can also pick up information about seasonal bird-watching in the area here. Hours are Sunday through Thursday from 8:30am to 4:30pm, Friday 8:30am to 3pm, and Saturday 9:30am to 4:30pm. Admission is NIS 20 ($5/£2.50). Keep your receipt: The admission fee at Bet Ussishkin gets you a discount at the Tel Dan Nature Reserve.