Chic. Colorful. Modern.
When travelers think of Israel, history-rich Jerusalem typically comes to mind first. But if you’re looking for a vibrant destination with a European feel that’s located right on the beach, don’t miss this young and modern city. In addition to buzzy nightclubs and a restaurant scene led by chefs like Haim Cohen, Ran Shmueli and Jonathan Roshfeld, you’ll find cool, walkable (and bike-friendly) neighborhoods and plenty of places to take in some culture. And yet, you can still find remnants of the past, including the “White City” area filled with Bauhaus architecture and the Jaffa, the oldest part of Tel Aviv. Here’s how to make the most of your stay.
Did You Know?
Tel Aviv has more than 4,000 Bauhaus buildings, which has been called the largest collection in the world. The architectural style originated in Germany, and the Jewish architects who emigrated during World War II brought it with them to the city. The aptly named Bauhaus Center offers tours in English every Friday at 10 a.m. (and you can also arrange private tours).
Make sure to arrive hungry at this foodie wonderland in South Tel Aviv, famed for its shops and restaurants carrying items from across the globe—including Iran, Turkey, Syria, Greece and Poland. You’ll be temped to sample it all, from dried fruits and nuts to marzipan to cured olives to sweet treats. It’s especially known for its amazing array of spices, which make for easy souvenirs to take back home. Don't miss Cafe Levinsky 41, a hidden gem known for coffee, tea and made-from-scratch flavored sodas with herbs and and homemade fruit syrups.
Image courtesy of: Sivan Askayo
"In addition to buzzy nightclubs and a restaurant scene led by chefs like Haim Cohen, Ran Shmueli and Jonathan Roshfeld, you’ll find cool, walkable (and bike-friendly) neighborhoods and plenty of places to take in some culture."
Old friends and co-owners Einat Agassi and Tamar Harel-Klein run this charming studio in Neve Zedek, where they make each piece of gold jewelry by hand with the help of a few goldsmiths. Expect to find dainty necklaces adorned with variegated turquoise or antique Seleucid coins, as well as rings with the tiniest of diamonds and bracelets made from semi-precious stones like aquamarine, jasper and tourmaline. Spend time exploring the neighborhood, which was originally established in the late 1800s; it’s now home to cute cafés, boutiques and art galleries.
Even non-vegans will appreciate the creative plant-based dishes coming out of this new, sunlit all-day spot. The counter is piled high with platters of fruits and veggies, and many of the dishes are so colorful, you won’t even need a filter for the inevitable Instagram photo. Don’t miss the sloppy Joes (made with beans and beets) and the acorn squash with coconut cream and quinoa.
This family-fun spot is the place to satisfy your hummus craving. Located in Jaffa, it’s been serving what many call the city’s best chickpea spread for decades. Expect to wait in line for a chance to sit down, especially on weekends—but it’s all part of the experience. During lunch, they offer a set menu that includes salad, hummus, chips, your choice of meat (go for the schnitzel) and a drink—all for about $13. Take note: they close when the hummus runs out.
EXPLORE: @Sivan Askayo
STAY: @The Norman, @Poli House
INDULGE: @Bana, @Abu Hassan