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Nablus - نابلس

Nablus, located between Mount Ebal and Mount Gerizim in the northern West Bank, is a Palestinian city home to about 150,000 inhabitants, most of whom are Muslim. Nablus is a commercial and cultural hub in the West Bank, home to one of Palestine’s largest universities, An Najah National University, and the Palestinian stock exchange.

Named Flavia Neapolis by the Roman Emperor Vespasian in 72 CE, Nablus got its current name after being conquered by Umar ibn al Khattab and the Rashidun Caliphate in 636. In 1099, the Crusaders took Nablus and held it for almost a century until being defeated by Saladin’s Ayyubid forces in 1187. Under Ottoman rule, Nablus was named capital of the surrounding district and became a center of trade.

Nablus has been under the control of the Palestinian Authority since 1995. There are three cultural centers in the city aimed at promoting and preserving traditional Palestinian dance, music and art as well as developing new educational facilities.

Nablus is famous for its kanafeh, a sweet pastry made with Nabulsi cheese, semolina dough and a sugar syrup, and its handicrafts, particularly a soap made with local virgin olive oil. In 2009 bakers in Nablus set a Guinness World Record by making the world’s largest ever kanafeh pastry. With 600 kg of cheese, 300 kg of sugar and 35 kg of pistachios, the final product was 75 meters long and weighed 1,350 kg. 

Overnight

Type of Accommodation

Hotel

Name

Al Yasmeen Hotel

Website

www.alyasmeen.com

Notes

In villages it is important that you are dressed modestly at all times: this means wearing loose, opaque clothing that covers the shoulders and knees. Women should carry a lightweight scarf with which they can cover themselves when entering mosques or other holy sites.

Due to its Muslim population, you will not be able to find alcohol in Nablus.

While well-stocked pharmacies are easily accessible in much of the West Bank, you might not be able to find some desired medicines in small villages. For this reason, we recommend that you bring with you high SPF sunscreen, aspirin or other pain relievers, antihistamine, disinfectant, insect repellent, antibiotics and intestinal antiseptics. You should also have a hat, water bottle, backpack and comfortable shoes with you at all times to ensure your health and comfort while walking.