Exterior of the Yasser Arafat Museum in Ramallah.

© Gina Gorny/Getty Images/iStock

Yasser Arafat Museum

Top choice in Ramallah

Next to the ornate tomb of the late Palestinian leader Yasser Arafat is a new museum that bears his name. Divided into two parts, the first half traces Arafat's life alongside that of his Fatah movement and other Palestinian factions.

Those less interested in Palestinian politics may prefer the second section, where Arafat spent his final years under Israeli siege from 2001 to 2004. The restored facility includes his bedroom, where khaki green uniforms still hang in the wardrobe.

A final exhibit shows the various toxicology reports that claim that Arafat may have been poisoned before he died in a Paris hospital in 2004, reminding visitors of the role he still plays in Palestinian politics even after his death.

On the way into the museum lies Arafat's mausoleum, cast in Jerusalem stone and guarded by two stern-looking Palestinian soldiers (who nonetheless do not object to photos).

The Muqata'a complex is a government building, so security is tight: expect to be trailed by museum ‘staff’ and bring ID or you won’t be allowed in.

It is around 1km from Al Manara on the road to Birzeit and Nablus, an easy walk from downtown.

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