Isfiya is home to the three-story, lemon-hued shrine (maqam) to Abu
Abdullah, one of three religious leaders chosen by Caliph Al-Hakem in
996 CE to proclaim the Druze faith.
The turnoff to the Abu Abdullah shrine is at a large
church west of the main road (672) though Isfiya. Follow the road to the
right and down the hill. The shrine is on the left.
Isfiya and Dalyat al-Carmel
are two adjacent Druze towns on Mount Carmel. Together, their population
numbers 21,000, each with a small number of members of other faiths.
Abdullah was entrusted by the early Druze leader Hamza with the duty of
assisting the oppressed, and is also said to have been the first Druze
religious judge (qadi).
Behind the complex, which is adorned
with Druze flags, is a grove of very old oak trees. The largest of these
grows next to the shrine itself, a long room with wooden doors carved
with sheaves of wheat, and containing a small tomb marker covered with
bright yellow cloths. The floor is covered with a yellow and green,
wall-to-wall floral carpet and the walls are adorned with pictures of
Druze leaders. The front yard of the building serves as a picnic area,
and features an old, stone-lined well around a spring, Ein Alak.
The Druze make their annual celebratory visit the "ziyara", here on November 15.
For group visits call 052-351-0504.