Battir Village – the Free Space Ecomuseum!

Visitor Information Center organized a great guided tour to the Battir Landscape Ecomuseum! It was really a great experience in the nature of this beautiful village in a close distance to Bethlehem! The tour guide of the Ecomuseum – Hassan, created a really great atmosphere and gave us really a lot of useful information about Battir and the surroundings!
Battir is a beautiful small village with historic valleys containing a lot of human heritage going back even 4000 years. Nowadays the Palestinian inhabitants of the village are living in anxiety of losing their beloved land. The expansion of the wall and illegal settlements is endangering the place. However, the inhabitants are working hard on keeping their village and are organizing many unique projects. Battir also won a UNESCO prize for its cultural landscape.

Getting into a Byzantine Tomb

On your way we have seen many interesting sights like:

  • Court of the Seven Widows – historic buildings in the village’s center.
  • Battir Craft Factory, which sells hand made gifts, souvenirs and antiques.
  • Byzantine/Roman age tombs carved into the rocks of Wadi Maghrour
  • Islamic Shrine Shrine of Abu Yazeed Al Bustami.
  • Plenty of crops – Battir is famous for its eggplants 🙂 The village is celebrating a Eggplant Festival in October.
  • Wadi Battir – beautiful natural area of the valley of Battir.
  • Historic railway line connecting Jerusalem to Jafa. “Located below Battir village, the railway is on the Israeli side of the Green Line.”
  • Battir Spring – a source of fresh drinking water.
  • Ottoman oven for preparing stone for building

Ottoman oven for preparing stone for building in Battir

“A circle of concrete is closing in upon the ancient springs, canals and terraces of Battir.” As we can suppose the book Walking Palestine by Stefan Szepsi, which describes the walk and its path, is talking about the expanding Israeli separation barrier, which is also being built in the area of the village of Battir. Hopefully, the wall is never going to be built in this area, as it is planned… It would be a disaster for the the people of Battir, but as well for the village’s nature!

Visitor Information Center would like to recommend you visiting Battir while you travel to Bethlehem. The best time for hiking in the area is in spring – landscapes are full of flowers or in autumn – the harvest time. If you would like that the VIC help you in organizing a trip to Battir – just contact us 🙂


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