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Christmas Gift Guide

Warning signs

Past the Qalandia checkpoint

Graffiti walls

In Ramallah

PinchPoint's Spermania

Hard at work making games

Developing the next gaming hit

My guide for the day

Staying hungry

Yamsafer's call center

Hanging out above Ramallah

Looking to grow Palestinian tech

At the central market

A call for protesters

Selling drinks on the street

Central market fruit stand

During my Road Trip visit to Israel, I spent a day in Ramallah, in the West Bank, to learn about the small but growing tech scene there.

An entrance to the territory -- the Qalandia checkpoint, north of Jerusalem -- includes a series of these red signs warning Israelis to stay out.

Caption by / Photo by Ben Fox Rubin/CNET

After going through the checkpoint, the scene is busy, dusty and filled with concrete walls Israel built for security.

Caption by / Photo by Ben Fox Rubin/CNET

Israel constructed a concrete barrier more than a decade ago to prevent terrorism from the West Bank. Palestinians have since drawn graffiti on many parts of the wall.

Caption by / Photo by Ben Fox Rubin/CNET

Down the road, I found Ramallah, a modern city filled with towers of glass and limestone.

Caption by / Photo by Ben Fox Rubin/CNET

Khaled Abu Al Kheir is co-founder and CEO of PinchPoint, a Palestinian mobile gaming company. His firm got a lot of notice last year with the debut of its first title, Spermania, a racing game about a cartoon sperm.

Caption by / Photo by Ben Fox Rubin/CNET

Mousa Hamad, an intern at PinchPoint.

Caption by / Photo by Ben Fox Rubin/CNET

Yasmin Eid, a PinchPoint artist, is busy drawing a cartoon chicken.

Caption by / Photo by Ben Fox Rubin/CNET

My guide in Ramallah, Nuha Musleh, serves up lunch at her art gallery on the outskirts of the central district.

Caption by / Photo by Ben Fox Rubin/CNET

Faris Zaher, CEO of hotel-booking startup Yamsafer, says his company outlasted many competitors from Jordan and Dubai because "We're hungrier."

Caption by / Photo by Ben Fox Rubin/CNET

Inside the company's call center, where Yamsafer employees field travelers' requests and questions.

Caption by / Photo by Ben Fox Rubin/CNET

Here, a handful of Yamsafer workers take a break while looking out at Ramallah from their company's 11th-floor offices.

Caption by / Photo by Ben Fox Rubin/CNET

The leaders of Mashvisor, a real-estate analytics company founded late last year, want to help build up the Palestinian tech scene.

"It's still a young ecosystem, it's small," CEO Peter Abualzolof said, "but companies like Yamsafer are definitely leading the way."

Caption by / Photo by Ben Fox Rubin/CNET

Ramallah's central market is hectic, filled with people, storefronts and noise.

Caption by / Photo by Ben Fox Rubin/CNET

Here, a man on a megaphone calls for people to attend a protest that night.

Caption by / Photo by Ben Fox Rubin/CNET

A handful of men wearing bright-red outfits sell sweet drinks to drivers.

Caption by / Photo by Ben Fox Rubin/CNET

Here's one of a handful of fruit stands lining the sideways in the market.

Caption by / Photo by Ben Fox Rubin/CNET
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