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Stefan Szepesi
Stefan Szepesi is the author of Walking Palestine; 25 Journeys into the West Bank. Formerly a diplomat in Jerusalem he now leads the Abraham Path Initiative, and regularly writes, blogs and speaks about walking and walking in the Middle East.

Entries by Stefan Szepesi

10 Pictures to Jolt Your Mind On Palestine

(28) Comments | Posted May 11, 2015 | 4:30 PM

How can one convince travellers of destinations in the Middle East that are not only safe, but also staggeringly beautiful and inspiring? Our feet can do the talking in Palestine.

1. The West Bank in Spring

A barren and burning desert...

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Walking to Petra: 7 Pillars of Beauty

(2) Comments | Posted March 22, 2015 | 9:20 AM


Rated among the 15 best treks in the world by National Geographic, one anticipates a great deal in walking across southern Jordan to Petra. Seven reasons why this section of the Abraham Path still exceeds anyone's expectations.

1. Descending Wadi Dana

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My Night at Mar Saba

(0) Comments | Posted February 11, 2015 | 7:41 PM


Here I am; not walking but waiting. It is a sunny winter afternoon and I sit under the imposing tower of one of the most spectacular monasteries in the Middle East. This is the Lavra of Mar Saba, one of those...

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Five Reasons to Walk the Holy Land

(0) Comments | Posted December 18, 2014 | 3:39 PM

Christmas is upon us and thousands of tourists and pilgrims descend on Bethlehem, Jerusalem and Nazareth. Most of them step on and off tour buses and squeeze in and out of large hotels. Here are five journeys that get you off the beaten tarmac and experience the Holy Land on...

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Paths of Catastrophe

(0) Comments | Posted September 25, 2014 | 4:20 PM


In Plugstreet Wood we are alone. Beneath a circular opening in the thick canopy one can hear nothing but silence. Our backpacks rest aside. We walk past lines of graves. Most stand a feet or two apart. Where death occurred on the same...

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Across the West Bank On Foot

(0) Comments | Posted May 9, 2014 | 2:44 PM

There are few places in the world where a good walk can be as stimulating to body and soul as the Palestinian West Bank. That may be a surprise to many, but six years after I took up hiking its valleys and hillsides, these high rewards remain. Here, perhaps like...

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Ascending Abraham's Nemesis

(0) Comments | Posted December 30, 2013 | 3:58 PM


At the summit of Mt. Nemrut, a king has surrounded himself with the gods. These are our last two days of exploring new stages of the Abraham Path in southeastern Turkey.

The climb up makes me realize it...

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Abraham's Kitchen

(0) Comments | Posted December 19, 2013 | 12:35 PM


The spiritual heart of Urfa is buzzing with tranquility. Each visitor here goes about his own peaceful business. This is our fifth day of exploring the Abraham Path and our first city walk of the journey; we take it...

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Wandering Between Sacred Foxes and Abraham

(0) Comments | Posted December 15, 2013 | 3:45 PM

It is day two of my seven-day walk-and-talk with a group of seven friends. Our purpose: to test new sections of the Abraham Path between Urfa and Harran in southeastern Turkey and then climb up into the mountains north of the mythical Euphrates river. We come...

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Walking Towards the Sun God

(0) Comments | Posted December 13, 2013 | 11:09 AM

On the third and fourth day of our journey on the Abraham Path, we venture into the Tektek Mountains, a curious title for a desert landscape of nomads, desolate temples and ruins of empires long past. But no mountains. Apparently tektek means "particular," perhaps to signify particularly rocky...

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A Gathering at the Home of the Friend

(0) Comments | Posted December 10, 2013 | 3:42 PM

For travelers with a sense of the world map, southeastern Turkey does not strike them as a place they immediately crave to visit. It borders Syria to the south, where a terrible civil war rages on, and more eastwards is Iraqi Kurdistan, a word combination that would puzzle any travel...

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A Walk Away From Fear

(1) Comments | Posted October 7, 2013 | 12:18 PM

In her book Wanderlust, on the history of walking, Rebecca Solnit writes that perhaps "the mind, like the feet, works at three miles an hour" and that if this is so, "then modern life is moving faster than the speed of thought, or thoughtfulness." Walking is the time-tested engine of...

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