If you are looking for a city to surprise you or just a pit stop before you travel the Holy Lands, look no further than Tel Aviv.
Feeling the sunshine on my shoulders in mid October, biking along the boardwalk while being mesmerized by the Mediterranean Ocean, and the endless feast of hummus. Honestly, this alone should be enough for you to book your plane ticket to Tel Aviv right now.
How To Get Around:
When we landed in Tel Aviv, we learned how expensive taxi’s are here. They have an app called Gett, similar to Uber, but they use actual taxi’s instead of private cars and it can still be pretty pricey. Make sure you confirm that they take credit card and ask them to show you the machine before you get in the car (we had to figure this out the hard way)!
Where To Stay:
We originally had booked a room at the Ritz Carlton in Herzilya, but learned last minute that we would be spending around $100 in transportation every time we wanted to come to Tel Aviv, so that was a definite no.
We ended up booking a room at the dreamiest hotel ever, thanks to Marriott points. We stayed at The Jaffa Hotel, located right in Old Jaffa. It had only been open for about 2 months after renovating it from a former hospital and monastery. If you love old historical architecture and crave aesthetic pleasures, then this is the hotel for you. A six-minute walk from the Mediterranean allows for this hotel to be a central location for when you need to slip away from the hustle and commotion of Tel Aviv.
Make sure to take yourself on a tour to every floor and soak in the sun at the stunning pool patio. Do yourself a favor and add the breakfast buffet to your reservation every morning! I’d be remised if I didn’t tell you how amazing it is and especially the jam that they make and jar themselves! This hotel completely made our stay in Tel Aviv an experience we will remember for a lifetime!
What to Do:
- Ride bikes along the beach boardwalk! Our hotel had these complimentary, but there are so many options in the city. Between bird scooters (yes, they have those in Israel also!) to electric bikes; we were probably some of the only people in the city riding bikes that you had to manually pedal yourself! The boardwalk is about 5 miles long, all paved and a fairly smooth, even ride.
- Visit the Old Jaffa Port! We watched the sun set and sparkle off Mediterranean Sea, mesmerized by all the fishing and sail boats at the port that we decided to get dinner to soak in the view. There are a lot of restaurants along the Old Jaffa boardwalk, but our favorite was Old Man and the Sea! The service starts with about 20 salad, dips, hummus, and fresh lemonade. From there you choose 2 entrees, which makes the starter salads all complimentary! We loved the fresh fish they recommended, but make sure you come hungry because it is a lot of food!! And they serve complimentary coffee and a little dessert if you have any room left! If you are looking for a fun and affordable food experience in Tel Aviv, this is it!
- Take yourself on a walking tour! The city is fairly easy to wander around and definitely feels safe! Almost all the locals speak English if you get lost, so don’t use this as an excuse to stay cooped up in your hotel all day! We visited the Carmel Market, wandered down Rothschild Blvd, and stopped by Levinsky Market (visit Levinsky 41 for some instagrammable vibes).
I hope you enjoy Tel Aviv as much as I did! It truly is a city that has so much life and so much history!