The Youth of Ramallah

 

Anyone who has visited Ramallah in recent years has discovered a newly developed and progressive Ramallah. With plenty of new cafes, nightlife, events and hotels, Ramallah has turned into a central attraction for young Palestinians.

 

Ramallah has undergone many significant changes in the last five years. The economy is thriving and the city itself has become very different from other cities in the Judea and Samaria region. Likewise, the culture and leisure in the city has made a significant leap forward, with development of new cafes, shops and nightclubs, which are very similar to those found in Tel Aviv.

Following the development of nightlife in the city, many young Palestinians have become more and more attracted to the city, especially on the weekends. Some of the restaurants in Ramallah even cater to the nightlife, turning the restaurants into a type of nightclub on Thursdays and Fridays. Not only that, young Palestinians are also coming to Ramallah for other reasons, including the fact that in Ramallah they sell alcohol as opposed to other places in Judea and Samaria. In other cities, such as Jenin and Tulkarem, it is prohibited to sell alcohol because it is against the religion. Therefore, the youth want to go out with their friends in Ramallah in order to drink, where the law allows it.

There are many luxurious hotels in the city, which are also frequented by Israeli Arabs who want to enjoy places of entertainment, shopping malls and festivals that the city has to offer. There are also foreign tourists that visit Ramallah, although it is not large in comparison to the local population.

 

Ramallah has also begun to thrive in other leisure areas in recent years. The city has upgraded fitness centers and there are more than 10 swimming pools that fill up to capacity, especially on the weekends.

Another thing noticed in recent years is the rise of higher status for women in the city. Women are starting to receive higher positions in companies, and they are no longer only responsible for household chores but can also fulfill themselves in new areas of life. Ramallah has changed into a city that resembles Palestinian secularism. The issue of nationalism among young people is not forgotten, but does not occupy a central place in everyday life.

In fact, with all the changes of the city, life of the young Palestinian in Ramallah is not so far off from the life of a young Israeli in Tel Aviv.  With all of the developments of Ramallah, young Palestinians are beginning to pursue a life of a steady income and livelihood, combined with a little spare time, they can spend time with friends in cafes and training in fitness centers. This chase has been fulfilled before by the young Tel Avivian.