You might know it as “Miami of the Middle East” or the “Mediterranean Capital of Cool”, for Tel Avivians, it’s Israel’s cultural and commercial capital.
Savvy, non-stop attitude and casual center for nightlife, cuisine, culture, and liberalism.
The west of Tel Aviv is lined by miles of sandy Mediterranean beaches dotted with hotels, museums, and refurbished zones, such as the ancient Port of Jaffa and Neve Tzedek. Tel Aviv is a UNESCO city, which means there is a lot to explore.
Cultural Center You can enjoy drama and dance theaters, concert halls, strewn across the city. Israel’s international music scene is growing and the biggest superstars of our times regularly come to perform. Tel Aviv rolls out the red carpet for the VIPs, with shining bright lights, the Mediterranean breeze blowing and Israel rocking along to the music.
You can also visit venues such as Ozen Bar, The Block, Levontin 7, Rothschild 12, the Barby , Pasaz and Zappa play host in Israel for intimate gigs from local musicians and singers, to some of the biggest names in dance and world music.
The Tel Aviv Museum of Art, Independence Hall, and the Bauhaus Museum which tell the story of Tel Aviv, and in particular of its unique architecture: in 2003, Tel Aviv was designated UNESCO World Heritage Status for its White City. The area around Rothschild Boulevard in the north of the city which has the world’s largest collection of international, or Bauhaus styled buildings. The area has recently been restored and is one of the trendiest neighborhoods of the city. The architecture of Tel Aviv also features some prominent eclectic style buildings.
Since the 1980s gentrification has taken place in many of the formerly poor southern neighborhoods of the city to create what are now the trendiest quarters of this cool city such as Neve Tzedek, and increasingly, Florentin. These more Middle-Eastern style neighborhoods are at the heart of the Tel Aviv nightlife. Other areas to go, live, and be seen are the ultra-cool Sheinkin Street with its cafes and boutiques and the redeveloped Tel Aviv Port (Namal Tel Aviv) in the north of the city. Nearby, Hayarkon Park is a green oasis in the city.
Examples of this are the new breed of restaurants, such as the Montefiore Hotel Restaurant (Israeli- Asian), ever-popular restaurant located within the Montefiore Hotel. Eclectic Asian-influenced cuisine with sleek, classically elegant decor. Recommended to sit at the bar where the best eye-candy is likely to be seated; or outside, on the gorgeous patio space overlooking Montefiore Street. Or check out Onza (Israeli-rustic), farm-to-table-style restaurant in the Jaffa flea market created by Chef Yoshi Shitrit of Kitchen Market , and Dalida (Eastern European), restaurant in the Levinsky Market serving Eastern European-inspired cuisine and a lively atmosphere
Tel Aviv these days is a hi-tech hub, with high rise towers such as the Azrieli Center Circular Tower, consisting of a shopping mall, top end business hotel, gym, great restaurants and an observation gallery with almost 360 degree views of the sea and city.
Sarona One of the places to check out and off the beaten track is Sarona, a newly renovated complex in the heart of Tel Aviv, once a German Templar Colony, then a British fortified military base, now a beautifully landscaped complex, in which 33 original Templar buildings dating up to more than 140 years, have been painstakingly restored, and today house boutique stores, artist galleries, quaint cafes, and some of the city’s hottest Italian and tapas restaurants, wine bars and shopping for luxury clothing brands and fashionable jewelers.
American Colony Venture to the south of the Tel Aviv towards Jaffa to find one of best-kept secrets in Aviv. It is a small and quaint area with cobblestone streets – explore the history of Christian American families from Maine and the New England region decided to follow their faith and vision and settle in Palestine in 1886, enjoy the wooden homes, a stained-glass church, and a juxtaposition of high-end architectural projects, next to deteriorated & abandoned buildings. A recent interest in the area has seen an growth in interest to restore and develop the area.
There is a stained glass window church, cafes abound, art studios, and boutique clothing shops and nearby hip Florentine. It’s also just around the corner from Jaffa, the sea, Neve Tzedek, and the New Station with shops, events, open air restaurants and bars, so there is a lot to take in.
Jaffa Port Market About 2 minutes’ walk from the centre of Jaffa is the port and a converted hangar, with high quality food stalls, gourmet bakeries, an oyster bar, and authentic Middle Eastern foods such as hummus, to high quality sausages. The Port Market also hosts an array of design oriented shops.
It’s small, quaint and fits perfectly. Also, every Friday 9am-2pm, the Jaffa Port Farmers Market sells fresh quality produce to locals preparing for their weekend meals. There are venues for special events, bars and restaurants here including “Blackout” where all staff are deaf or blind and meals are served in complete darkness.
Yitzhak Rabin Center The Yitzhak Rabin Center in Tel Aviv weaves the history of the State of Israel through the life story of one of its most devoted sons. In fact, it is the only official memorial dedicated to this monumental man.
One of the newest museums in Israel, the Yitzhak Rabin Center brings together a piece of history and modern technology by integrating sensor-activated audio guides. The museum really consists of three main sections, the inner corridor, the outer corridors, and the audio guide. The outer corridor tells the story of Yitzhak Rabin’s life: who he was, the positions he held, the problems he faced and the decisions he made. Every so often, a pathway to the inner corridor appears leading you through the story of Israel at the same point in time. To add further context, each outer corridor features important news snippets from around the world. After you finish your visit, be sure to take a walk on the large balcony and enjoy the beautiful view overlooking Tel Aviv.
Ask your guide or hotel to call ahead to make a reservation
Chelouche Gallery for Contemporary Art Close to the busy Carmel Market alongside Bauhaus apartments and pillared buildings in the heart of the White City that look like they were transplanted from Saint Petersburg, at number 7 you’ll come across the Twin Houses, which is home to the Chelouche Gallery for Contemporary Art. Originally built in the 1920’s by the architect Joseph Berlin, the classic, open, and polished exterior welcomes visitors just before they enter the bright and surprisingly cozy gallery interior.
Chelouche Gallery may be the largest gallery space in Israel, but it is laid out in such a way that it feels quite compact. A visit can be quick, but won’t necessarily be, as it is easy to linger a long time on just a few pieces in these carefully curated exhibits.
The gallery has an upstairs event space where they often host chamber music concerts on Sundays. The musical director is the lead violinist of the Israeli Philharmonic. The entire complex is devoted to the arts and the building and courtyard are charming and quiet spots in a busy city.