One of the most remarkable features of the Shomron is its vast and sweeping vistas of verdant rolling hills, craggy rock outcroppings and terraced landscapes. This pastoral scenery, seemingly unchanged since Biblical days, presents a mosaic of rocky hilltops and fertile valleys, dotted with groves of age-old, silver-green olive trees. The terraced hillsides, first developed by farmers in ancient times, blend into the natural landscape. From every hilltop, the perfumed mountain air and dazzling views excite the senses.
While city dwellers in Israel's over-crowded center (coastal plain) live cheek-to-jowl in concrete jungles, vying for scarce living space and parking spots, enduring traffic jams, pollution and high prices, Shomron residents for the most part enjoy a quieter and more simple life, free from big-city pressures, competition and high costs of living.
Ironically, not only is the Samarian countryside not far from the busy central region but it indeed lies just east of it. Thanks to new and upgraded road infrastructure, travel to and from the center is quick and painless, giving Shomron residents the advantage of both serene country living and easy access to the big city. See this cool computer simulated Shomron fly-over. This will give you a good idea how barren and wide open this area is and how much potential it holds for land-scarce Israel.
The Shomron Regional and Local Councils' landmass (approx. 2800 sq. km.) equals over 13% of pre-1967 Israel and nearly twice that of Israel's over-populated coastal Gush Dan region (1470 sq. km.). It is also geographically centered, providing important
territorial contiguity between the densely populated urban centers to the west and the strategic Jordan Valley buffer zone to the east.
Just how empty is the Shomron? Jewish built-up settlements areas take up a mere 1.5% of the land while Palestinian built-up areas cover roughly 5-6%. This means that at least 90% of the Shomron landmass is uninhabited, allowing for plenty of living space and elbow room for both Jews and Arabs.
Plentiful Shomron land also means much lower real estate prices. While a duman of buildable land in the super-heated Sharon region real estate marketplace may easily go for $1 million or more, that same dunam in the Shomron, depending on where, will cost just five to ten cents on the dollar, sometimes even less. Raw agricultural Shomron land typically trades in the $5,000 per dunam range.