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Nablus

It is well watered, and its affluent vegetation gains effect by contrast with the barren hills that tower on either side. One of these hills is the ancient Mount of Blessings and the other the Mount of Curses.
– Mark Twain, 1867

The Abraham Path’s route through the Nablus Region begins in Nablus City.  Biblical narratives refer to this city by the name Shechem and mention that Abraham passed through it on his journey south.  Present-day Nablus remains a fascinating place – from the small enclave of Samaritans preserving their ancient culture atop Mt. Gerizim to the mosques and markets to be found around each bend of the charming Old City’s winding streets.

After thoroughly exploring Nablus City and all its intrigues, walkers leave the city’s urban sprawl and pass a number of small communities scattered across the central hills of the West Bank, enjoying views of hills thick with olive trees as they go.  From these hills where so many stories of Abraham and his family take place, the trail descends through the spectacular Wadi Auja towards the largest oasis in the Jordan Valley: Jericho.


Stages

Stage 1: Nablus City to Awarta (10.2km)
Stage 2: Awarta to Duma (18.6km)
Stage 3: Duma to Kafr Malek (14.9km)
Stage 4: Kafr Malek to Auja (14.4km)

Itineraries

Suggested Itineraries:
Day Hike: Kafr Malek to Auja (Stage 4) offers an excellent day hike with rock scrambling through Wadi Auja, nice views, and refreshing springs (14.4km, moderate-difficult).

Four Days: Walk the full four days of the Nablus section to experience the bustling historic city of Nablus, the ancient biblical site of Tel Balata, beautiful remote country scenery, and the veritable oasis of the Auja springs. Family stays and a Bedouin tent offer overnight accommodations and meals.

Blogs
Nablus region blogs:

Read stories from the Nablus region
in the Abraham Path blog

Video

Downloads

Download maps and GPS files (PDF, Google Earth and GPX)

Accommodations

Accommodations

Nablus city has a range of hotels from budget hostels to more upscale offerings. After Nablus, each stage end has a homestay or, in Auja, the option of an ecological guesthouse.

Stage Location Name Type Price # of beds Contact Info (+972) Amenities
1 Nablus Beit al Sham Hs dbl $84 USD 8 rooms (0)59-7874555,
perrine@darna-nablus.ps
meals
1 Balata Camp Yafa Cultural Centre Hs  dm 50 NIS 2 apts (0)2324553,
yafaculturalcenter@gmail.com
1 Nablus Asia Hotel H 28 rooms (0)2386220
1 Nablus Bait Al-Karama H baitalkarama@gmail.com meals
1 Nablus Crystal H 13 rooms (0)2332485,
crestal_motel@windowslive.com
breakfast
1 Nablus International Friends GH 200 NIS 3 rooms (0)2381064,ifriends.house@gmail.com,
1 Nablus Al-Yasmeen H 30 rooms (0)2333555,
info@alyasmeen.com
restaurant
1 Nablus Al-Qasr H Sng $75/Dbl $95/ 33 rooms (0)2341444 restaurant
1 Awarta Umm Ahmad F $40 p/p Half board Umm Ahmad: (0)599587351
2 Duma Habib’s house F $40 p/p Half board Habib: (0)597175694
2 Duma Anwar’s house F $40 p/p Half board Anwar: (0)599136831
3 Kafr Malek Umm Qusai F $40 p/p Half board (0)599398586
4 Auja Bedouin Tent F  Ali Abu Kharbesh: (0)597427434
4 Auja Auja Guesthouse Gh 11 private, 5 dorms Fadi Jueejat: (0)2-231-0424
info@aujaecocenter.org
wifi, kitchen, bike rental

Accommodations key

F – Family Stay
G – Guesthouse (small locally-owned establishment with private rooms)
H – Hotel
Hs – Hostel (accommodation offering dormitory options)
T – Bedouin Tent (usually dormitory-style sleeping on mats on the floor of a large tent)
S – Shelter (a few areas have free hiker shelters, which are a simple room with cots that hikers can use)
C – Camping (a paid or free place to put down a tent, may or may not have facilities)

Transportation

Getting to the Abraham Path in the Nablus Region

The airports nearest to the Nablus Region are Ben Gurion International Airport (TLV) near Tel Aviv and Queen Alia International Airport (AMM) in Amman. No direct transportation is available from these airports to the Nablus Region; the easiest travel route is through Jerusalem.

Once you have reached Jerusalem, there is a system of buses and shared taxi vans (called servees taxis) that run between the cities and towns of the West Bank.

Transportation from Ben Gurion Airport to Jerusalem

There are a number of ways to reach Jerusalem from the Ben Gurion Airport.

  • Bus: Shuttles run regularly from the airport’s public transportation depot to nearby Airport City. There, passengers can switch to Egged bus line 947 running to Jerusalem’s Central Bus Station. These buses run roughly every half hour and cost about 25 NIS.
  • Train: Trains depart every hour from the airport to Jerusalem’s Malha train station. From the train station, travelers can take bus lines to various other parts of the city.
  • Shared Taxi (Sherut): Shared taxis depart constantly throughout the day from the airport and will take passengers to any address in Jerusalem for roughly 70 NIS.
  • Private Taxi: Private taxis are available at the airport and operate with fixed prices to all major cities.
  • Car Rental: Several rental car companies are available 24/7 at the airport. Costs range from $30-60/€22-44 per day with gas/petrol costing about $8/gallon or €1.6/liter. Note that most car rental insurance offered by credit cards is void in Israel. Insurance from most Israeli rental cars is void in Palestinian Territory areas A and B; if you plan on using your car to travel to the Nablus Region, be sure to check on the policies of the rental company you select.

Transportation from Queen Alia Airport to Jerusalem

From Queen Alia Airport, the easiest way to reach Jerusalem is through the border crossing at Allenby Bridge (also known as King Hussein Bridge). For more information about the logistics of the border crossing itself, see visa information on our Getting There and Away page.

From the airport, take a private taxi to the crossing (~35 JD). Once you have completed the exit/entry processes, you can take either another private taxi to Jerusalem (negotiable, ~300 NIS) or a shared taxi bus to a depot near Jerusalem’s Damascus Gate (~40 NIS).

Transportation in the Nablus Region

From Jerusalem, there is a network of Palestinian public buses and shared taxis (servees taxis) that generally run from sunrise to sunset. There is no formal schedule for these buses and taxis; they usually leave when they are full. These buses depart from two bus stations near Jerusalem’s Damascus Gate.

From Jerusalem, take bus 18 to Ramallah’s main bus station (~8 NIS). From Ramallah, you can take another bus to Nablus (~17 NIS).

Note that Nablus is also accessible from a number of other cities in the West Bank. Direct bus lines run to Nablus from Jenin (~17 NIS) and Jericho (~40 NIS).

Once you arrive in Nablus, you can take shared taxis to most of the villages along the Abraham Path: Duma, Aqraba, and Awarta are all accessible from Nablus. Prices for transportation to these villages range from 7-15 NIS.

Join a Walk

Join a Walk in the Nablus Region


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Sites in the Nablus Region:

Jacob’s Well

The unlikely pair of Father Justinus Mamulus, a Greek Orthodox priest, and Jamaal Sarhain, a Muslim from a nearby refugee camp, have worked together for the last 30 years to transform the church ruins on the site of Jacob’s Well into a peaceful, inspiring sanctuary.

Mosques of Nablus

There are numerous mosques scattered throughout Nablus, but the religious map of the city’s labyrinthine core reveals itself in its full glory and complexity only to those who walk slowly and search patiently.

Nablus City

Grown around the remains of the Roman city Neapolis, the town’s biggest attractions are in its more recent Old City – busy street markets, bathhouses, soap factories and mosques.

Mt. Gerizim

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The enigmatic Samaritan community on Mt. Gerizim has kept their unique religion and heritage alive for thousands of years.

Turkish Baths

Nablus is well known for its traditional hammams, the perfect setting to soothe one’s tired and aching muscles after a strenuous walk. No one can resist the warm steam, refreshing baths, and relaxing massages that are very popular in this part of the world.