What to do in “Isfiya”, Israel
The village of Isfiya is the second largest Druze village in Israel. According to archaeological remains, the site has been inhabited since the Bronze Age. The current Druze settlement began in Isfiya some 400 years ago during the reign of the Lebanese Druze prince Fakhr al-Din al-Mani.
According to one story, the name Isfiya originates from the Arabic word Assaf, which means stormy weather, which describes the weather in the village in the winter.
Events & Attractions:
Isfiya is a religiously diverse village. It contains three Druze prayer places, a Chalwat, two churches – Maronite and Catholic, a monastery and a mosque.
The village is home to the tomb of Druze religious leader Abu Abdullah, who was one of the founders of the Druze religion.
The remains of a Jewish village called Husifah, which existed in the Mishnaic and Talmudic periods, were found in the village, including the remains of a synagogue with a mosaic decorated with a wheel with zodiac signs.
Another fascinating find is the “Isfiya Treasure” – a bundle of 4,560 silver coins from the first century CE. The village has 12,000 residents, most of them Druze and a few Christians and Muslims.
The Al-Nakab Theater operates in the village. The theater was founded by the playwright and director Saleh Azzam, whose works have won prizes in festivals in Israel and around the world. The theater features Arab and Hebrew plays and activities for youth and children.
The Festival of Lights is held every year in the village, which is a fusion between Hanukkah and Christmas.
Transportation in the village is based on private vehicles, inter-city buses, city buses and taxis.