Despite the global recession, Israel’s economy is booming, and Tel Aviv, with an influx of 3 million international visitors every year, is its seaside cultural and commercial Headquarters. Tel Aviv is a cacophonous mixtape of heritage that offers an exciting melting pot of cuisines, cultural traits, accents and world-views. It is often called ‘The City That Never Stops’ and we can promise it will amaze, delight, and have you begging for more with its variety of high end restaurants, trendy cafes, cool bars, wild nightlife, amazing architecture, white sand beaches and crystal blue water.
Nachlat Binyamin Art Market – The Nahalat Binyamin market is one of Israel’s biggest arts and crafts markets with ceramics, toys, paintings, framed photos and Judaica pieces. It is an excellent place to browse for original Tel Aviv souvenirs, all handmade and sold by their creators.
Architecture Tour – Tel Aviv’s 4,000 Bauhaus buildings collectively called the White City and are recognized by UNESCO as a World Heritage site, for more info go to the Bauhaus Center Tel Aviv. We would urge those who have any interest in architecture or Tel Aviv history in general to sign on for the tour: ‘Tel Aviv Architecture Walk’ with Yigal Gawze. Yigal is an Architect and a photographer and provides a constant stream of insight into the inter-relationship between modernist architectural design, historical development patterns, and the cultural forces which shaped the growth of Tel Aviv. As a Tel Aviv resident, he also shares his observations regarding current development trends and the city’s struggle to respect its architectural legacy. Altogether a fascinating and invaluable experience.
Sarona Market – What used to be a German Templer colony during the 19th century is becoming one of the newest, freshest, and most happening places in the heart of Tel Aviv. A complex that combines culture, entertainment, and leisure altogether with many boutiques, restaurants, cafes, green areas, cultural centers, chill-out areas and street performances. The highlight of the complex is – Sarona Market, a 1,500 meter (4,930 ft) long covered market, the largest indoor food complex in Israel.
Tel Aviv Beach – One of the greatest things about Tel Aviv is its proximity to the Mediterranean sea, which gives the city a Miami or Rio style sense of ease and openness. From April to September, Tel Aviv’s beaches attract thousands of bathers from Israel and abroad. There are 8 major beaches, each with its own crowd and character, for example: Jerusalem Beach for hipsters and hippies, Nordau Beach for religious people, Dog Beach for animal lovers, Gordon & Frishman Beach for tourists and Hilton Beach for the gay community.
HaCarmel Market – It’s a large lively marketplace that spreads all over Carmel street. The shouting vendors add to its lovely atmosphere, have in mind that it gets crowded where thousands of locals along with visitors stroll around the colorful stalls buying food supplies, fish, meat, cheese, vegetables, fruits, flowers, pastries, souvenirs, fake t-shirts and even dead sea products. It’s open daily except Saturday.
Neve Tzedek Neighborhood – Probably Tel Aviv’s prettiest neighborhood, it regularly attracts swarms of visitors, all keen to stroll the many narrow streets and marvel at the amazing architecture of the area. There’s also some great little galleries and shops, and cute little cafes and restaurants to check out.
Azrieli Center – The Azrieli Center is a group of three buildings on the east side of Tel-Aviv. It serves primarily as a business center, which is the largest in the Middle East, but also offers one of the biggest shopping centers in Israel and an Observatory. The shopping center is overwhelming with its mass of shops, but the selection is amazing. There are plenty of coffee shops and small snack stands, but if you are in for a meal you could try 2C restaurant in the Azrieli Observatory.
Tel Aviv Port & Market – The Tel Aviv Port (Namal Tel Aviv in Hebrew) host some of the city’s richest and trendiest cafes, restaurants, bars and stores. Enjoy the Port Markets: An outdoor farmer’s market with local products every Friday and an indoor market (Open daily) that provides imported and locally manufactured for different culinary aspects such as food stalls of the best chefs in the country, cooking classes and wine tasting, a professional library and cookware shop completes the experience and turn it into an Israeli culinary scene, open daily from 8am to 8pm.
Tel Aviv Museum of Art – The new Tel Aviv Museum of Art was opened in 2011, designed by architect Preston Scott Cohen and Amit Nemelich, is a dynamic structure made of 430 polished cement panels. The building hosts visiting exhibitions, in addition to a permanent collection of highlights spanning 100 years of Israeli art. The Tel Aviv Museum is part of the city’s main cultural complex, and neighbors the Cameri Municipal Theatre and the Israel Opera.
Hayarkon Park – Stretching for hundreds of acres along the tranquil Yarkon River is Tel Aviv’s green sanctuary in the midst of the big city. The park attracts families, youngsters, joggers and almost anyone who feels like a breath of fresh air. Rent a bike, take a boat or just take a walk, the park has hidden beauty spots where you’d never believe the busy city is so close.
Old Jaffa – Thousands of years of history come together in Jaffa, one of the world’s oldest cities and the birthplace of Tel Aviv. Old Jaffa, with its Old Port, markets, restaurants and unique atmosphere, is a top destination for visitors of the city. Enjoy shopping at the Jaffa Flea Market, tasting legendary humus, or browsing through galleries and Museums. Most impressive is the Old Port, which is one of the oldest active ports in the world. Jaffa is mentioned in the Old Testament as the port from which the prophet Jonah embarked on a ship before being swallowed by a fish. In modern times, the port served as the main export and import hub of the region, including for the famous Jaffa oranges. Today, local fisherman still use the harbor and the main hangars of the port have been restored and include art galleries, cafés, restaurants, shops, and the famous NaLagaat Center which is a unique artistic complex operated by the deaf and blind community.
Dizengoff Center Food Fair – An indoor market located in Dizengoff Center ,every Friday morning for over 15 years ,provides a meeting place for cultures that have converged from around the world and gives a chance to sample a range of Middle Eastern and other far-flung cuisines such as Moroccan, Yemeni, Persian, Tunisian, Druze, Israeli, Iraqi, Asian, Italian and more. Meals to eat on the spot, served in disposable dishes, range from about $5 to $15.
Just So You Know…
- Go to Dizengoff Square a large plaza at the confluence of six streets with antiques and secondhand vintage market.
- Check when is the next Tel Aviv Street Party it’s fun and free.
- Every June the Tel Aviv White Night festival sees hundreds of amazing events throughout the night across the city.
- Visit Florentin Neighborhood and feel the captivating combination of Industrial and residential, young and old, trendy and poor.
- Tel Aviv is a very gay friendly city, it has one of the largest gay communities per capita and one of the most colorful Gay Pride Parade in the world that taking place every June.
- Grab A Bite: Orna & Ella highly regarded bistro with a versatile and unique menu, Giraffe is the most well known Asian-Fusion restaurant in Tel Aviv, Catit famed for its sweet-potato pancakes and strikingly handsome waiters,Brasserie is sophisticated but with neighborhood feel and open 24/7, Tony Vespa is the best pizza in Tel Aviv, Dallal is a converted 19th century houses linked by courtyards and an open-air bar, Container is an industrial warehouse on the quay with abundant spirits and live music, Manta Ray with seafood in a rustic-chic setting beside the beach, Benedict 24-hours-a-day tasty and plentiful breakfast, Messa a mediterranean–middle eastern haute cuisine enlivened with french and Italian touches.
- Favorite Bars: BuXa an underground art gallery and bar hosting DJs and live bands every night till the sun comes up. Malki a trendy bar with variety of beers, delicious cocktails and great atmosphere. Levontin 7 an indie dance club/venue, Nanuchka a Georgian bar and restaurant. Kuli Alma a music and art-focused nightlife institution with live Dj’s and vegetarian menu, Hoodna with live music ,Radio EPGB underground rock bar, Lima Lima with classic Hip-Hop or Electronic music, Mendalimos neighborhood dance bar, Otto Bar good vibes and fun crowd, Port Said is extremely popular for it’s good drinks and delicious unpretentious food, Molly Blooms Irish Pub, Abraxas an underground haven offers guest DJs and live performances, Shalvata chill out bar overlooking the Mediterranean waters at Tel Aviv’s Port.
- Go Clubbing: Haoman 17 the biggest and most established Mega-Club in Tel Aviv, The Comfort 13 with alternative music, Cat & Dog sleaziest hangouts start late around 3am and last long after the sun comes up, The Block a quality underground club with an an impressive line-up of DJ’s, The Breakfast a relaxed basement venue with top resident DJs, Penguin a dark and appealing underground den with a moody atmosphere.
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