Security or land grab you decide - but the Separation or 'Apartheid' Wall as some Israeli activists call it - is an inescapable part of a visit to this part of the world.
Will interest cognoscentis of concrete architecture or grafitti ...
Look out for an original Banksy - a girl holding balloons - just the Ramallah side of the Qalandia checkpoint.
Many locations - within the border of the West Bank and around illegal Israeli settlements.
The stretch near Al Quds university is particularly 'impressive'.
Dheisheh is one of the largest Palestinian refugee camps - in reality a compact town of narrow lanes and tall buildings - 'the only way to build is up' said our guide Khamsi.
Khamsi took us from the Ibdaa centre - whose name means 'creativity' - from near the entrance and took us on what turned into a grafitti tour.
The grafitti is mostly of Handala - the cartoon refugee boy - cartoons include Handala clutching a sword the blade of which is a pen nib and him flying with a Palestinian flag.
Dheisheh is calm and the people friendly.
An important place to visit if you want to understand one part of the story that makes up the current history of this complex land.
Ibdaa Centre, Dheisheh Camp, Bethlehem
Lonely Planet says catch a service from Bab iz-Qaq in Bethlehem (3NIS).
I travelled with Rawda and Issa Khouriya who run a guesthouse near Ramallah and are happy to arrange trips at reasonable cost if you are staying with them. See their entry on this site.
No self-respecting Guardian reader should visit Israel and the Palestinian territories without experiencing the brutalist modern architecture of the massive checkpoint at Qalandia between Ramallah and Jerusalem.
You can visit Ramallah from Jerusalem - catch the no. 18 bus from the bus station close to the garden tomb by the Damascus Gate - and be whisked past it. You're not a security risk leaving Israel.
Catch the bus back and it's a different matter. Keep your ticket 6.50 NIS (about £1.20) as you'll be leaving your bus at Qalandia and getting onto another one on the other side.
Queue with your fellow passengers and admire their patience as they wait to go through the turnstiles.
Feel for the people trapped in the turnstiles between 'groups'. A woman carrying a toddler was stuck for 20 minutes despite calls to the guard to let her out while I was there.
Wait for the Stasi-like guard to check your passport only to discover it's a bored Israeli teenager dismissively shrugging you through.
Admire the chutzpah of the Israeli 'welcome' notice - 'have a pleasant stay in our country!'
Be thankful that you're a tourist and you don't have to do this every day to earn a living.
On the main road between Ramallah and Jerusalem. You can't miss it.
A Palestinian Christian village perched high in the hills above Ramallah. Jesus stayed here with his disciples to escape the intense atmosphere in Jerusalem. Nothing changes!
Taybeh has three churches, a brewery and a ruined Crusader church.
The Crusader church is built high and gives long views over the rolling hills around.
The brewery welcomes visitors, has a small shop and will show you a video of how come there's a brewery making modern beer in Palestine.
You will need to drive either from Jericho or Ramallah.
Taybeh is 15km north east of Ramallah. I travelled with friends but Lonely Planet says you can catch a servis for 10 NIS (around £2).
The students at the nearby high school recommend the ice cream at Baladna's. So do I!
I sheltered here from the rain and looked out on the busy main street and enjoyed five scoops of different flavours in one bowl. Wide choice - natural ingredients.
Refreshing and cleaned the palate - followed by an extra large traditional coffee.
A great way to while away an idle half hour or more.
Cost around 23 NIS - about £4.
Follow the main street from Al Manara towards the old city. Baladna is on the right.
A modern spacious and airy home from home just 8km from central Ramallah.
All mod cons including wireless internet alongside traditional Palestinian cuisine make this a place to refresh your batteries after exploring this fascinating land.
Rawda and her husband Issa will also take you on any tour you'd like. Their local knowledge keeps you safe and saves you money from some of the higher prices charged foreigners at some tourist attractions.
Have visited the Separation Wall, two refugee camps, Bethlehem and Jericho with them.
Highly recommended if you want to make your first visit to Palestine.
Jifna Ramallah, West Bank, Palestine
Contact: Rawda Khouriya
Tel: 00972-2811485 Mob 00972(0)599587476
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