Nablus: The Uncrowned Queen of Palestine

Nablus, approximately 63 kilometers north of Jerusalem, is the second largest city in the West Bank.  It is thriving
industrial and trade center full of archeological sites and ruins in varying stages of excavation.  Visitors have been
particularly enthralled with the Roman Theater near the heart of the city.  It has a steady stream of visitors throughout
the year.
Nablus is known around the world for its exquisite olives, olive oil, and olive-wood products.  In the Old City, one can
wander for hours through the market. Nablus
is famous for its appetizing sweets. Sampling knafe, made from a delicate combination of melted cheese, shredded grain,
and a sugary honey sauce, is a must for any visitor to Nablus.
Another significant site is Jacob’s Well, 2 kilometers east of Nablus by the village of Balata. It’s the site where Jesuss
said to have asked a Samaritan woman to draw water from a well for him. Today Jacob’s Well is located in a Greek Orthodox
monastery and is open to the  public.
Soap in Nablus has been made for years from soda and olive oil. Although the anufacturing methods have changed slightly
over the years, soap made in Nablus is still renowned for its purity and is exported throughout markets in the Middle East.
Several traditional soap factories in Nablus offer tours of their soap-making process.  The soap is made from olive oil,
so it’s a slippery tour.  After the soap tour, you can test your samples at one of the city’s recently restored Turkish
The rooftops of Nablus and surrounding villages, such as Kor, often include a keyzan, which allows a person to look
outside without being seen. This distinctive triangular motif  is a natural air conditioner because it collects and cools
rain water inside its clay vessels.

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