Hiking in the Holy Land

One of my highlights during April was hiking in the West Bank. A group of hikers was trekking the Nativity Trail from Nazareth to Bethlehem and I joined them for a day, beginning at the Huwara Checkpoint at Nablus to the hilltop village of Duma just a little North-east of Ramallah. It was about 20 kilometers of fairly easy hiking. The was even a 72 year-old woman in the group who kept up fairly well with the group.

En-route we passed through several villages and saw some beautiful vistas to the east, all the way to the the mountains of Jordan. The terrain was hilly with only a few steep slopes. We carried light day-packs and plenty of water, and had lunch at a shepherd's hut perched on the side of a hill.

Hiking the Holy Land is a wonderful way to get a feel for the country, its people, and the pastoral lifestyle that many of them still live. The guides are knowledgeable and there is an opportunity meet many kinds of people from all walks of life. In addition to exploring the countryside there is also an overnight stay in Nablus and a tour of the Old City.

Despite the Occupation many Palestinians still live in isolated communities that have seen the coming and going of many conquerers who leave ripples in their wake, but have not disturbed the generational traditions of the people who live on the land. If you are visiting the country on a biblical tour, heritage tour, or just coming to visit, consider hiking in Palestine to get some fresh air, incredible views, and meet the people of the land. The 11-day treks  include overnight says with village families and Bedouin. See you on the trail . . . .

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