Frequently Asked Questions

Area D Hostel can put you in touch with the best tour guide in Hebron for budget travellers

A family enjoying Hebron

Is it safe to travel in the West Bank?
Absolutely! Hundreds of tourists enter the West Bank every day, many without even knowing it! The road from Jerusalem to the Dead Sea is entirely within the West Bank. Bethlehem is the West Bank’s biggest tourist draw, but an increasing number of independent tourists come to explore Ramallah as well on a daily basis. Despite the media’s natural focus on shocking, violent acts, the political situation in the West Bank has remained calm and stable for several years, and there are no known incidents of serious crimes committed against tourists.


Are American tourists welcome in the West Bank?
Yes! Ramallah is home to a large American expat community (journalists, aid workers, interns, etc.), but the Ramallah area is also well-known for its high population of Palestinian-Americans. Some of these Palestinian-Americans have returned here to live and work, while some merely visit their families for shorter stays. In general, the Palestinian people are happy to distinguish American individuals, whom they respect for visiting their land, from American regional policy, which they largely oppose.


Are Jewish tourists welcome in the West Bank?

Yes! Ramallah is also home to a handful of Jewish expats and a few left-wing Israelis. The Samaritan community, next to the city of Nablus, are referred to by their neighbors as “Palestinian Jews” (though their religion is somewhat separate from Judaism). Palestinians, many of whom are Christians, have a long tradition of respect for different religions and have no problem distinguishing individuals of the Jewish faith from Israeli government policies.


Why is Area: D not in the Lonely Planet?

Because you’re using an old version! The new version is out as of July 2015, and we are proud to now be Lonely Planet’s “Top Choice” for Ramallah, a status also highlighted on their website.

Falafel and a smile

Falafel and a smile

Why are there so few hostels in Ramallah?

Tourism in Ramallah has focused more on up-scale tourists rather than budget travelers. The local community is not yet fully aware of the economic and advocacy potential that comes with backpackers, but we aim to change that!