Culture of Palestine

Fakheri Zayed

More stories from Fakheri Zayed


This image is in Jerusalem, it was when Fakheri Zayed visited Palestine with her family in 2009.

Palestine’s culture is influenced by the many diverse cultures and religions which have existed in historical Palestine. Palestinians are guided by Islamic principles and Arabic cultural values. 

As a Palestinian, I always try to remember to embrace my culture, remember my roots, and who I am. Being Palestinian has never been easy, but growing up I started to realize that I should love my culture because it’s very unique. Being Palestinian is very special to me, and very valuable. I believe we must stay touched by our heritage. “The land we carry in our blood,” Palestinian poet Mahmoud Darwish expressed it as.

Palestine embroidery, tatreez, is very common in Palestine. Tatreez is a skill women practice and decorate with. Embroidery patterns are traditionally cross-stitched on dresses. (thobes) Every embroidery pattern has a story to tell.

Henna is a part of Palestinian Heritage. Henna nights, before a wedding, allow the women to bond together when they make the henna paste. The women decorate each other’s hands with various patterns. Then the henna gets piped onto the hands of the bride and groom. Natural henna represents the connection with the earth and happy occasions.

A traditional dish Palestinian’s eat is Mansaf. It is rice with lamb served with yogurt or jameed (hard-dried milk). Another Palestinian delicacy is Knafeh, sweet cheese, and shredded phyllo dough drizzled in sweet syrup. The flavor is so rich and it just melts into your mouth. 

Palestinian weddings are huge with hundreds of guests. The music played at weddings honors the bride and groom. It expresses happiness for them. The best part is the dabke. It is a very dynamic step dance performed. It is not an easy dance to perform as it requires skilled footwork. 

Palestine culture is very beautiful, and seeing it with your own eyes is even more. It is something that will never be forgotten, and remains to be remained to stay for a long time.