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Gaza

Situated on the western Mediterranean seashore 32 km north of the Egyptian border, Gaza is considered one of the most ancient and historic towns in the world. Strategically located on the Mediterranean coastal route, ancient Gaza was a prosperous trade center and a stop on the caravan route between Egypt and Syria.

The city was first inhabited by the Canaanites and occupied by Egypt in the 15th century BC. Several hundred years later, Gaza became a chief Philistine city. Gaza is mentioned a number of times in the Bible, especially as the site where Samson brought down the Philistine temple on himself and his enemies.

Captured by the Muslims around 600 AD, Gaza is the site where Prophet Mohammed's grandfather was buried. Consequently, the city became an important Islamic center. In the 12th century, it was occupied by the Crusaders but returned to Muslim control in 1187.

Today, Gaza is the economic center for a region where citrus fruits and other crops are grown. The city is famous for its hand-woven carpets, wicker furniture, and pottery.

Famous for its fresh seafood, Gaza has numerous restaurants along the beach as well as public parks where visitors can enjoy the pleasant Mediterranean breeze. Nightlife in Gaza is also picking up and several beach hotels offer visitors enjoyable evenings of music and dance.

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