2 Days in Tel Aviv - A Mediterranean Getaway

Travel Itinerary

0 ratings

Amanda Newman
Itinerary by: Amanda Newman
3 months ago
Traveller
Duration: 2 days

Shalom! Welcome to Tel Aviv, a warm seaside city situated along the Mediterranean. Tel Aviv prides itself in its international community as well as a home for artists and creators alike. Here is a solid itinerary of all the things I recommend doing. Just keep in mind that Israel closes almost all businesses down on Friday and Saturday because of Sabbath. Also keep in mind most things in Tel Aviv are family-friendly - so apart from the bars, these activities can be enjoyed with the family. Most Tel Avivians speak English so language barriers are not as common as expected. Dress casually because Tel Aviv is a casual city most people wear T-shirts and shorts on a daily basis. The lax attitude is felt around the city, making it a great vacation spot in the summer to unwind and truly enjoy the long summer days. Temperatures can easily reach 100 degrees F (38 C), which means that you should bring appropriate summer wear and lots of sunscreen. Tel Aviv can be experienced in a few days and that is why I chose a 2-day itinerary because while a longer stay is always welcomed and appreciated, Israel is a gorgeous country with other cities and sites to be enjoyed. It is not unheard of for some unscrupulous tax drivers to try to make unfair deals, so it’s best to download the app Gettaxi. The app is in English and works like Uber. Public transportation is plentiful but you do need a pass called a “Rav Kav” to be able to get on the bus. You can purchase and load a “Rav Kav,” at a “Superpharm.” The bus costs 5.6 shekels and is valid for each bus ride you take. In terms of safety, I have never felt safer in any other city in the world like Tel Aviv. People and businesses are open and out deep into the hours of the night and crime is relatively low. Everything in Tel Aviv is walkable. I recommend doing as much walking as possible to get the full view and feel of the city. If you don't want to walk, taxis are abundant as well as public transportation. People are always willing to help and are always excited to greet tourists. Photo :https://pixabay.com/photos/tel-aviv-jaffa-israel-sun-beach-3621085/

Day 1

Exploring the Local Markets and Cuisine

On Day 1, I recommend that you get to know the local food, take a dip in the warm sea, and explore some of the handful of markets that Tel Aviv has built itself around.
10:00 - 12:00
Manta Ray
Nahum Goldmann St 4, Tel Aviv-Yafo, Israel
Manta Ray is a beachfront restaurant situated steps away from the sea. Acclaimed cook Ronen Skinezis has brought the restaurant a cult-like following with tourists and locals alike. The restaurant is a casual eatery with a gorgeous view of the sea through its panoramic window. Famous for its breakfast, Manta Ray is a popular choice among Tel Avivians looking for a good way to start the morning. Along with the breakfast menu, they have a morning cocktail menu which pairs nicely with the fresh food. The menu boasts Mediterranean cuisine with an Israeli palate. Don't be afraid to try local cuisine which is marked with lots of spices, lemon and oil. Make sure to try the Shakshuka, a traditional middle eastern breakfast food with poached eggs cooked into a spicy tomato sauce. Photo: https://pixabay.com/photos/kagyana-strapatsada-gdarta-2955104/
Article By: Amanda Newman
Standard 40.00 - 100.00 ILS

Notes

Appropriate tipping is anywhere from 12%-20%.

Getting there

You walk along the Tayelet (boardwalk). It's about a 15-minute walk from the Shuk Hacarmel

Travel time
0 hours 15 minutes
12:30 - 13:30
Shuk HaCarmel
HaCarmel St 11, Tel Aviv-Yafo, Israel
Shuk Ha Carmel - simply called Carmel Market in English - is an outside market with lots of fresh fish, spices, and fruit. The market can be described by one word in Hebrew: "balagan." Balagan can be best translated to mean chaos. Balagan is embraced in Israeli society and can be best seen when traveling through the markets. It is an integral part of the culture and community and you can better understand the people by seeing the shuk. Shuk is Hebrew for market. https://pixabay.com/photos/the-market-fresh-grocery-store-food-3147758/ Make sure to bring sturdy shoes as the market is crowded and busy with families haggling and shop vendors pushing their fresh foods on market-goers. Bring loose change as credit cards are not an appropriate method for purchasing items. I mentioned before it is chaotic, which is not a bad thing, but it is important to understand that it is part of the culture and this type of energy is often embraced and welcomed by Israelis so it is nothing to be turned off by or looked down on. Photo: https://pixabay.com/photos/to-dye-spices-saffron-powder-bags-1028428/
Article By: Amanda Newman
Standard 5.00 - 100.00 ILS

Notes

Shuk HaCarmel is meant to be walked - so wear appropriate walking shoes. Bring loose coins and bills, credit cards are not accepted. Shuk HaCarmel is Hebrew for the Carmel Market.

14:00 - 15:00
Gordon Beach
Retsif Herbert Samuel St, Tel Aviv-Yafo, Israel
Right before leaving the market, you should grab some fresh fruit to take along to the beach. Enjoy the journey from the market to the beach. I advise walking if you are in shape to do so. It's about a 20-minute walk, and you can walk along the boardwalk in Hebrew it's more commonly referred to as the "Tayelet." Gordon beach is a favorite among locals because of the stunning warm Mediterranean water and amenities surrounding the beach. You can rent beach chairs for a few shekels each. There are showers as well as beach bars scattered across the area making it a convenient place to visit. Of course, no beach day is complete without the popular game called Matkote. Matkote is similar to ping pong. Feel free to join any of the many Israelis playing on the beach, as this game is a favorite pastime. Keep in mind any type of glass is prohibited on the beach. And of course a friendly reminder that before leaving, clean up after yourself because the beach is beautiful and we want it to stay like that! Photo: https://pixabay.com/photos/tel-aviv-beach-ocean-mediterranean-5159163/
Article By: Amanda Newman

Notes

Tel Aviv can reach temperatures in the high 90's F (upper 30s C), so it is important to drink lots of water and protect your skin. Keep in mind jellyfish are native to the sea so it's important to check if jellyfish are in the area.

15:30 - 16:30
Jaffa Port
Nemal Yafo St 1, Tel Aviv-Yafo, Israel
While you often hear about tensions in the middle east among different ethnic and religious groups, coexistence can be best seen in Jaffa. Jaffa is home to Muslims, Jews, and Christians for over thousand of years making it a great example of what peace can look like in the region. Jaffa Port is a 4000-year-old historic port with an active modern community living and working in the area. It's a beautiful wharf with artists and vendors selling alongside each other. Restaurants line the street, and old hangars have been transformed for artists to show off their talents. Jaffa is a real example of how communities of different backgrounds can coexist. You will see many different cultures working and living side by side. Take lots of pictures as it is truly a unique experience to be among such history that has been utilized and transformed into a modern-day hub. Photo: https://pixabay.com/photos/jaffa-skyline-old-town-old-city-1273497/
Article By: Amanda Newman
Standard 30.00 ILS

17:00 - 20:00
Jaffa Market
Olei Zion St, Tel Aviv-Yafo, Israel
By day, the market is a colorful and vibrant shopping center. You can weave through the streets finding vintage gems sold by excited market vendors. This market differs from Carmel Market because it is mostly vintage clothing and furniture that is sold here whereas Carmel Market has more of a focus on food. Make sure to haggle prices because you will often be told a higher price than the value of what you are buying. The market is also loud - it’s part of the culture of the city - so it’s nothing to be overwhelmed or turned off by. Jaffa Market has been open for more than 100 years and it serves as an economic backbone to the neighborhood. As the night unwinds, the market transforms into a handful of unique bars and restaurants. The streets become crowded with people of all ages getting a beer or shmoozing over a glass of wine. Try some of the local favorites like Ramses, Shaffa, Onza. It’s truly unique to see how the markets turns from street vendors selling an array of knick-knacks to fully functioning bars. Photo: https://pixabay.com/photos/flea-market-junk-antiques-2759041/
Article By: Amanda Newman
Standard 50.00 - 100.00 ILS

Notes

Make sure to bring change because credit cards are not accepted in the shopping market

20:30 - 23:00
Teder Bar
בית רומנו, Derech Jaffa 9, Tel Aviv-Yafo, Israel
Teder is a casual bar that attracts an eclectic group of people of all ages - looking for a good way to end the day. Make sure to grab the local beer. Goldstar is a lager made locally in the city Netanya. Grab a slice of their famous pizza to go along with the beer and enjoy the live music played. You can check their website to see what type of music is playing that night. Either way, the bar is suitable for all ages and you can meet people from all of the city gathered there -ready to kickstart the night. Photo: https://pixabay.com/photos/concert-crowd-party-disco-5736160/
Article By: Amanda Newman
Standard 30.00 - 80.00 ILS

Notes

Bars serve age 18+ in Israel. It's important to take your ID. Any ID will do, so no need to take a passport.

Getting there

From Jaffa it's about a 15 minute taxi, a 30 minute bus or a 30 minute walk

Day 2

10:00 - 12:00
Neve Tzedek
Shabazi St 64, Tel Aviv-Yafo, Israel
Neve Tzedek is a neighborhood just off of Rothschild Street. Neve Tzedek is a community deeply immersed in art and culture. The upscale neighborhood reminds me of a European holiday, with cobbled streets and bakeries baking fresh pastries. The homes and restaurants lining the street are quite picturesque and it feels like a romantic getaway from the bustle of the city. For breakfast, I recommend Dallal Bakery. Try Israeli-style coffee and freshly baked croissants. Photo: https://pixabay.com/photos/bread-bake-flour-food-eat-bakery-4046506/
Article By: Amanda Newman
Standard 50.00 - 200.00 ILS

12:30 - 14:00
Barbunia
Ben Yehuda St 163, Tel Aviv-Yafo, Israel
Ezra Mermelstein founded the legendary restaurant in 1992 and since then the establishment has been a sweet ode to fish lovers alike. Barbunia is a casual seafood restaurant. I only recommend this restaurant to people who like fish because that is all that is on the menu. There are 2 sections to the eatery, either a bar option or the restaurant option. My favorite place to sit is at the bar. With a dive bar vibe, the bar has a nostalgic feel to it. Make sure to ask for the special of the day as the specials are always unique and true to the spirit of the eatery. My personal favorite is the fried calamari which I can confidently say is the best in Israel with a perfect lightness and crispiness to it. Photo: https://pixabay.com/photos/calamari-deep-fried-marinara-sauce-1045797/
Article By: Amanda Newman
Standard 100.00 ILS

Notes

Smoking inside is allowed. If you do not like smoke then I advise eating in the restaurant instead of the bar

14:30 - 16:30
Nahalat Binyamin Street
Bicicletta, Nahalat Binyamin St 29, Tel Aviv-Yafo, Israel
Nahalat Binyamin Street is located in one of the oldest neighborhoods in Tel Aviv. The street has a special charm to it as it brings out the old 1930's Bauhaus architecture of Tel Aviv. Bauhaus was inspired and created in Germany and eventually made its way to Israel, inspiring many of the buildings built throughout Tel Aviv. The buildings are often recognized by their linear and geometrical forms. Make sure to check out the art market open on Thursdays and Fridays, or try one of the many bars or restaurants around the neighborhood. Some personal favorites of mine include Bicicletta and The Prince. The area is a hip artistic hub in the city giving life and breath to the neighborhood reminding everyone of the true spirit of Tel Aviv. Photo: https://pixabay.com/photos/cocktail-moscow-mule-cup-cucumber-3665605/
Article By: Amanda Newman
Standard 60.00 ILS

18:00 - 20:00
Hilton Hill
HaYarkon St 205, Tel Aviv-Yafo, 6340506, Israel
This is a favorite summer tradition of mine since first moving to Tel Aviv. The sunset is like no other sunset I have seen - with orange and pink skies washed across the sky. The warm night envelops you with sweetness and excitement buzzing in the air. People eagerly watch the day overcome by the summer night. Grab a blanket so you can lay comfortably on the grass and bring some wine and fruit for a romantic date. Live music is sometimes played spontaneously adding another layer to the night. Plenty of people watch the sunset together on the hill so make sure to get there at a decent hour to find a good spot. It's not overcrowded but there are plenty ovpeople trying to get the best view - so make sure you arrive in a good time. I would advise arriving an hour and a half before the sunset to get a good position. Photo: https://pixabay.com/photos/sunset-tel-aviv-sea-evening-water-381021/
Article By: Amanda Newman

20:30
Sarona Market
Aluf Kalman Magen St 3, Tel Aviv-Yafo, Israel
Sarona Market is a classic tourist must-see market in the city. That are significant differences from Shuk HaCarmel and Jaffa Flea Market: Sarona offers a more upscale experience. The market is filled with curated shops selling fresh spices, imported cheese, and aged wine. While it is more expensive than going to Carmel Shuk, the market is indoors - making it perfect for a rainy day activity or if you need an activity with wheelchair access. The shops inside the large Hagar-like building cover around 8,700 square meters making it a pleasant date night option. Open 7 days a week, Sarona Market is a great Friday or Saturday activity because it's open on Shabbat when most things in the city are closed. Outside of the market is a famous open kitchen restaurant called Claro. Claro serves Mediterranean-inspired food as well. International clothing stores like Levis, Asics, and Tommy Hilfiger are outside the main market - so if you want to do a little shopping before or after, this is a great option. Photo: https://pixabay.com/photos/wine-shop-winery-restaurant-design-2732982/
Article By: Amanda Newman
Standard Free

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About the author

My name is Amanda! I am an expat living in Israel. I hope my itineraries are useful and I look forward to the great adventures waiting out there!

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