'Future of Israeli tourism is in Samaria'

Over 50,000 tourists visit tourist and nature sites in Samaria during holiday, many visitors from abroad.

Mordechai Sones ,

Nachal Kana in Shomron
Nachal Kana in Shomron
Flash 90

Over the course of Sukkot, more than 50,000 people visited the nature and tourism sites in Samaria.

The most popular sites were the "Country's Balcony" overlook with about 5,000 visitors on the three days of Hol Hamoed and Nahal Kana with a similar number of visitors.

Not only Israelis visited the tourist sites, but also tourists from all over the world. Travelers from Germany, the Netherlands, the United States, and even South Korea arrived. The most popular tourist sites were the Mount Kabir Nature Reserve, which was renovated for the holiday at a cost of NIS 1 million and the Mount Gerizim National Park.

American tourists in Kabir Winery
Itamar Weiss

South Korean tourists visiting the Tura winery and other Samaria sites explained how they got there: "We read about the area and its wineries in a Korean newspaper and of course the prophecy in the Bible, and we decided we must come see this special place ourselves."

Shomron Regional Council head Yossi Dagan said: "We're approaching the goal of becoming not only an Israeli but also an international tourism superpower. The future of Israeli tourism is in Samaria, where there are breathtaking tourist sites that are unmatched in Israel, and relatively new places for the Israeli hiker.

"We'll continue to work to bring more and more tourists here until the incoming stream of tourists becomes a flowing river, to bring a strong economy to the region and also become an important informational tool for Samaria," Dagan added.

The Samaria Regional Council has been active for three years in strengthening the tourism industry in Samaria, including upgrading existing tourist sites and holding tourist events during days when tourism in Israel is at its peak.