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Sightseeing in Nablus - what to see. Complete travel guide

When traveling in Israel, many tourists prefer to include a visit to the northern West Bank and Nablus to their vacation plans. Nowadays, Nablus is a large Palestinian center. This ancient land is the epicenter of many events in the Bible – the holy book frequently mentions this region. The Samaritans, who once lived here, are now Muslim peoples. Many tourists in Nablus try to find an answer to an immortal question – who is the indigenous nation of this region? Are these the Arabs or the Jews? To find an answer to this interesting question, thousands of tourists arrive in Nablus every year.
It is a well-known fact that this settlement is very old, and the region is often mentioned in the Bible. The name of the city sounds as Shechem in Hebrew, and this is the term that the Bible uses to describe this region. According to the sacred book, this was an ancient Canaanite and then Hivite city, but sons of Jacob Simeon and Levi destroyed the Hivite settlement because the prince of this land raped their sister. In the Shechem area, the Jewish people met God and recorded the Book of the Law. Soon after that, Abimelech became the king of this land.
Historians have a bit different information about Nablus. This settlement emerged long before our age. At that time, this was a major cultural center and a sacred Samaritan town. Many descendants of the Biblical Samaritans still live in Palestine. In the 1st century, the Roman army attacked Shechem and captured the city after a series of fierce battles. After that, the Roman emperor Vespasian changed the settlement’s name to Flavia Neapolis. Several centuries later, the Arabians conquered the city and changed its name once again, this time to Nablus. This was not the last change of the rulers because the Crusaders captured the city and reigned in Nablus in the 11th and 12th centuries. Copyright www.orangesmile.com
In the Palestinian city of Nablus, tourists can visit the same-named mosque. The Great Mosque of Nablus is the oldest shrine in the city. The first building on this site appeared yet in the mid-40s of the 3rd century. This was an ancient basilica built by the order of the Roman emperor reigning at that time - Philip the Arab. When the Romans were defeated and the Byzantines became the new rulers in the city, they built a new Byzantine church on the ruins of the Roman one. That building also didn’t survive, and the Crusaders rebuilt it in the 12th century.
The Muslims conquered Nablus in 1187. These people also contributed to the look of the sacred building. They rebuilt it into a great mosque. For decades, the grey building with a green cupola, which is typical for the Muslim architecture, dominated the city’s skyline. However, a devastating earthquake in 1927seriously damaged the shrine. The mosque required restoration. The restoration works ended eight years after the natural disaster.
An-Nasr Mosque is another sacred building in Nablus with a centuries-old history. Tourists can find it in the old part of the city. It is impossible to pass An-Nasr by without noticing because the mosque has an eye-catching turquoise-colored cupola. On the second floor, there is a hall for prayers. All these peculiarities of the mosque make it stand out from other Muslim shrines because it is uncommon for a mosque to have this kind of layout. The building was constructed at the beginning of the 14th century exactly on the site where the Crusaders installed their small round-shaped church that changed several owners over the centuries.
After Templar knights, the former rulers from the Ayyubid dynasty, and the Mamluks, the shrine was converted into a mosque. The name of this mosque means “victorious” if we translate it from the Arabian. Just like the cathedral, this mosque didn’t survive in the earthquake that happened in 1927. The reconstruction works started in 1935. However, the following military conflicts interrupted the restoration, and so the mosque is still not finished. Despite its semi-ruined state, An-Nasr Mosque is one of the symbols of the Palestinian land, and so tourists always come to see it during their stay in Nablus.
The easiest way to reach Nablus is to arrive in Jerusalem first. The international airport of the Israeli capital regularly receives flights from different parts of the world. When traveling from Europe, the flight might last up to nine hours. After that, tourists need to continue their journey on a bus or train that goes to Ramallah. Upon arrival, you will need to make one more change to a transport that goes straight to Nablus. Tourists can always hire a taxi or rent a car for the period of their stay in the Palestinian land.

City tours, excursions and tickets in Nablus and surroundings

Reference information
Map of all castles
Survived castles around Nablus
♥   Castle 'Rabadh Castle' , 45.2 km from the center. On the map   Photo
Map of all parks
National and city parks around Nablus
♥   National Park 'Hare Yehuda' , 15.6 km from the center. On the map   Photo
♥   National Park 'Zur Natan' , 27.3 km from the center. On the map   Photo
♥   National Park 'Kefar Nahum' , 31.2 km from the center. On the map   Photo
♥   National Park 'Migdal Zedeq' , 32.7 km from the center. On the map   Photo
♥   National Park 'Mazoleum Mazor' , 35.6 km from the center. On the map   Photo

Sights around Nablus from our guide 'Extreme places on Earth'

Mini Israel

From the series “Famous Miniature Museums of Architectural Objects and Cities”
Especially for the arrangement of the park, special varieties of miniature plants have been brought out by the best gardeners of the planet. They are exact copies of plants and trees that can be seen in certain areas of the country.There are about 70000 unique plants in the park. Presented in the park, plants are very whimsical and a care for them is no less difficult than creating amazing mock-ups. Specifically for plant care a special irrigation system has been created in the park, the total length of its water channels is 50 km. … Read further

The Monastery of Mar Saba

From the series “The Most Remote Monasteries and Temples in the World”
Like many ancient monasteries, Mar Saba is far from major settlements. It’s situated in the dead area of the Judean Desert, the so-called Valley of Fire. The only opportunity to visit this unique religious landmark is to have a long trip through the vast desert. Women don’t have to refuse from the experience, as there are several viewing platforms for them around the monastery. … Read further

City of David

From the series “The Surviving Artifacts of Jewish Civilization”
The City of David is remarkable for its unique engineering constructions. That’s an ancient tunnel of Hezekiah that has been dug almost 3 000 years ago. During tours around the historic district, travelers armed with flashlights walk through the tunnel. Despite the fact that excavations in the historic district have been going on for almost 200 years, much of the artifacts are still hidden under a layer of earth. The City of David is very popular among travelers. Every day, it is visited by hundreds of people. There are comfortable hiking trails and viewing platforms, from which you can see ancient sights in all its glory and make spectacular photos. … Read further

Sightseeing in Palestine: things to see

The middle of the 7th century marks the start of the Arab reign for Palestine. This period lasted until the end of the 11th century. For more than 400 years, the country was a part of the Ottoman Empire. Only in 1994, several regions of the country united and formed the State of Palestine. The country was officially added to the world map. … Open
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Sightseeing in regions nearby Nablus

All about Nablus, Palestine - sightseeings, attractions, touristic spots, architecture, history, culture and cuisine. Prepare your trip together with OrangeSmile.com - find out the 'must see' things in Nablus, which places to visit, which excursions to take, where the breathtaking views are waiting for you. Planning your trip with this travel guide will help your to get the most out of Nablus in few days.
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