January 13th 2015
Tel Aviv pulses with the beat of urban life, with enough going on here to keep visitors entertained for weeks on end. With a population that numbers over 400,000, Tel Aviv is the second largest city in Israel. Only Jerusalem has more residents. Tel Aviv is the technological, economic and cultural center of Israel. Here is our list of the most important sites to visit when you’re in town.
The Day the State of Israel Was Born
On May 14, 1948, David Ben Gurion stood in what is now Independence Hall in Tel Aviv and announced the establishment of the State of Israel. Originally the home of Meir Dizengoff, the first mayor of Tel Aviv, the museum at Independence Hall is dedicated to remembering the declaration and the creation of the State of Israel. Don’t miss the film that describes the events of that day and the history of the building.
Tel Aviv’s Most Invigorating Market
Bordered by Magen David Square and Allenby Street, the Carmel Market (“Shuk HaCarmel” in Hebrew) is open Sunday through Friday. It’s Tel Aviv’s busiest and most colorful marketplace, especially known for home accessories, flowers and souvenirs along with more standard market fair such as fruits, vegetables, meats, baked goods, cheeses and fish.
Before There Were Airports
Jaffa Port was once the place where immigrants, visitors, tradesmen and pilgrims first set foot upon arrival in the Holy Land. Today, Old Jaffa Port (“Namal Yafo” in Hebrew) is an artists’ quarter, where craftspeople sell their wares, ranging from hand-made jewelry to fine art. Restaurants, cafés, organic produce stands and performing art spaces contribute to the scenic marina atmosphere.
Commemorate by Living It
Located in Ramat Aviv, just north of the Tel Aviv city limits, the Palmach Museum is one of Israel’s new generation of experiential museums. Here you’ll follow the journey of a unit of Palmach soldiers, young men and women who served as underground fighters during the pre-state British Mandate era, through a series of multi-media presentation spaces. You’ll experience history as it played out in the years preceding the founding of the State of Israel, and you’ll get to know some of the most important personalities of the time.
These sites will give you a place to start picking up the local vibe. But don’t stop there. There’s so much more to explore in Tel Aviv-Jaffa.