Nablus, north of Jerusalem, is a thriving industrial and trade center full of archaeological sites within its unique Old City. It is also renowned for its exquisite olive oil soap production and appetizing sweets such as kunafeh. The city was established in 72 AD by the Roman Emperor Vespasian west of Shechem (currently Tell Balata) that was destroyed that same year. The archeological site of Tell Balata, dating back to the second millennium BC contains the remains of a Middle Bronze Age city with a massive city wall, two impressive gates, a fortress temple, and domestic houses.

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 their urban sprawl and pass several small communities scattered across the Central Highlands of the West Bank, enjoying views of hills thick with olive trees as they go. From these hills, the trail descends through the spectacular Wadi al- Auja toward the largest oasis in the Jordan Valley: Jericho.