Bethlehem

 

 

A  town in the West Bank which is  about 10 km south of Jerusalem. It has a population of around 30,000 people, predominantly Muslims and Palestinian Christians. The Christian community here are one of the oldest in the world. The city extends up to the neighbouring towns of Beit Jala and Beit Sahour. Bethlehem was occupied in 1967 by the Israeli army and since 1995, under the Oslo Accords, the city has come under the Palestinian Authority’s administration.

 It is also a city which dates back more than three thousand years with many architectural and historical treasures. A stroll through its old streets with its numerous churches and mosques and ancient relics allows you to experience the charm of a small sized town, where you will encounter the typical Palestinian culture. This pretty little town in the heart of the hills is home to the Cave of the Nativity where Jesus was born, it contains the Basilica of the Nativity which was rebuilt by Emperor Justinian (527-565) on the site of the fourth century Constantinian basilica which was gravely damaged during the revolt Samaritan in 529 AD. The traditional site of the Nativity is venerated in the cave which is situated beneath the choir stalls. Nearby The Milk Grotto and the Shepherds’ Field in Beit Sahour, the palace of Herod and the Monastery of Mar Saba are a true testimony of history and rich architecture.

 

 

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