Tel Aviv attracts plenty of travellers every year as it offers a plethora of cultural attractions, gorgeous beaches, a lively nightlife scene, and outdoor activities available on the fringes of the city. But the White City has a few secrets up its sleeve, ready to surprise both unsuspecting first-time and repeat visitors who thought they’ve known everything the city has to offer.

    From an unlikely bar hub in a sacred religious setting to a cavernous public transport terminal with its own resident wildlife, there’s enough in Tel Aviv to keep even the most experienced of travellers on their toes.


    A colony of bats in Tel Aviv Central Bus Station

    Abandoned tunnels with intrigue galore

    • Φωτογραφία
    • Ασυνήθιστα

    Tel Aviv Central Bus Station is where you can certainly catch a bus from if you plan to travel around the city or further afield. But ask any local and they’ll tell you there are far more interesting things to see and do here. The bus station uniquely has its own bat colony!

    This maze of a terminal – once the biggest worldwide – only opened in 1993, but that came after some 3 decades of complicated construction, and its history since then has been no less fraught with complexities. As a result, it’s now a sprawling monster of a building that boasts, alongside numerous other abandoned or otherwise intriguing areas, the colony of bats in a disused tunnel that’s under the care of the Israel Nature and Parks Authority.

    Τοποθεσία: Levinsky 108, Tel Aviv-Yafo, Israel

    Ώρες λειτουργίας: Daily from 5am to midnight

    Τηλέφωνο: +972 3-638-4112


    φωτογραφία από Roi Boshi (CC BY-SA 4.0) τροποποιήθηκε


    Sorek Cave

    Stalactites galore and some respite from the heat

    • Φωτογραφία
    • Περιπέτεια

    Around an hour’s drive south-west of Tel Aviv itself, Sorek Cave is among the most impressive of the thousands that are found across Israel. Also known as the Stalactite Cave (although there are just as many stalagmites to be seen here), this spot in the Judaean mountain range has been turned into a government-run nature reserve since its discovery.

    Sorek Cave, which also goes by the name of Avshalom Cave, is as worth visiting to cool off at the height of the Israeli summer as it is to observe the stunning natural formations hidden away inside.

    Τοποθεσία: Avshalom Reserve, Beit Shemesh, Jerusalem, Israel

    Ώρες λειτουργίας: Monday–Thursday from 8am to 4pm, Fridays from 8am to 3pm, Saturday–Sunday from 8am to 4pm


    φωτογραφία από עומר מרקובסקי (CC BY-SA 4.0) τροποποιήθηκε


    Tel Aviv’s abundance of graffiti

    Street art at every turn

    • Φωτογραφία

    One thing Tel Aviv has no shortage of is graffiti – it’s on just about every street corner that you turn as you discover the city, including some inspired by Banksy and much with a political theme. But what other cities might treat as a nuisance is seen in Tel Aviv as part of the city’s charm, and that means it’s even possible to take a tour of the numerous sites that have sprouted their own graffiti art over the years.

    Numerous organised tours let you take in the more well-hidden street art that adorns walls and other structures down Tel Aviv’s side alleys, but in truth, it’s easy to take in much of the city’s graffiti scene on your own.

    φωτογραφία από Psychology Forever (CC BY-SA 4.0) τροποποιήθηκε


    Eating in the dark at BlackOut Restaurant

    Sensory arousal of the culinary kind

    Numerous ‘dine in the dark’ restaurants exist around the world these days, but BlackOut is the only one in Israel. Part of Old Jaffa’s highly commendable Nalaga’at Center – which also runs a full programme of theatrical performances put on by an entirely deaf-blind cast – BlackOut rightly emphasises that ‘when you don’t see anything, you see so much’.

    During 2 meal services, 3 times a week, the restaurant’s blind or visually impaired team guides you through a varied menu of creative dishes, with a selection of wines to match. Between the regular and premium menus, expect stir-fries, pasta, and more, plus a number of ‘surprise’ dishes. There’s also no shortage of decadent desserts. It’s certainly a meal you’re unlikely to forget in a hurry!

    Τοποθεσία: Retzif HaAliya HaShniya 6, Jaffa Port, Tel Aviv-Yafo, Israel

    Ώρες λειτουργίας: Tuesday, Thursday and Sunday from 6.30pm to 11pm (closed on Mondays, Wednesdays, Fridays, and Saturdays)

    Τηλέφωνο: +972 3-633-0825


    φωτογραφία από Talsab87 (CC BY-SA 4.0) τροποποιήθηκε


    Crazy parties outside the Great Synagogue

    It’s home to a raucous nightlife scene!

    • Ιστορία
    • Φωτογραφία
    • Νυχτερινή ζωή

    The Great Synagogue is a different kind of place of worship. Head to any other city, and the likelihood is that a religious centre won’t be the first destination you think of for seeking out the best and most boisterous drinking and clubbing scene. But if that’s what you’re looking for in Tel Aviv, then the Great Synagogue is exactly where you should make for.

    Sure, the action doesn’t take place inside the synagogue itself, but the entire neighbourhood around it is one giant parade of nocturnal fun, with bars, restaurants and clubs that range from achingly on-trend to relaxed and down-to-earth. On Allenby Street, there’s no shortage of venues for you to get the party started as soon as you land in Tel Aviv.

    Τοποθεσία: Allenby St, Tel Aviv-Yafo, Israel


    φωτογραφία από Yair Haklai (CC BY-SA 3.0) τροποποιήθηκε


    Ilana Goor Museum

    An all-around creative introduction to Israel

    • Ιστορία
    • Φωτογραφία

    Those looking for a cultural education to help them settle into a visit to Tel Aviv could do far worse than the Ilana Goor Museum. The museum is set in the ancient port city of Jaffa that forms part of greater Tel Aviv.

    The Israeli artist behind this eponymous museum opened it in 1995 in a 3 centuries-old building. It now houses a collection of Israeli and international artwork and curios that includes both her own work and that collected on her overseas travels. Step inside to explore the expansive selection of art and expose yourself to the juxtapositions that define modern-day Tel Aviv.

    Τοποθεσία: Mazal Dagim St 4, Tel Aviv-Yafo, Israel

    Ώρες λειτουργίας: Daily from 10am to 4pm (until 5pm on Saturdays)

    Τηλέφωνο: +972 3-683-7676


    φωτογραφία από Ilanagoormuseum (CC BY-SA 4.0) τροποποιήθηκε


    Sarona Templer Colony Clock

    European heritage and a dark past

    • Ιστορία
    • Φωτογραφία

    The Sarona Templer Colony Clock sits at the heart of a unique German community in the Sarona neighbourhood, now amalgamated into the city of Tel Aviv. There’s also a darker side to its history: despite having initially good relations with locals, many of Sarona’s southwest-German Templer settlers became vocal Nazi sympathisers in the run-up to World War II.

    The clock is considered to reflect Sarona’s distinctly European identity both because of its unmistakable European physical style and because of the way in which it was historically located at the heart of the Sarona community in an especially European manner. In a state of disrepair for a number of decades, the original clock was moved to the Sarona visitor centre in 2005 and a new working clock installed in its place.

    Τοποθεσία: Sarona Visitor Center, Aluf Albert Mendler St 14, Tel Aviv-Yafo, Israel

    Ώρες λειτουργίας: Monday–Tuesday from 9am to 5pm. Wednesday from 10am to 6pm. Thursday from 9am to 5pm. Friday from 9am to 2pm (closed on Saturdays)

    Τηλέφωνο: +972 3-604-9634


    φωτογραφία από Deror_avi (CC BY-SA 3.0) τροποποιήθηκε



    One of only 3 of its kind in the world

    • Οικογένειες
    • Φωτογραφία
    • Ασυνήθιστα

    Austrian-Kiwi artist and architect Friedensreich Hundertwasser made a name for himself with his passion for protecting the environment. It’s therefore fitting, in this anti-plastic age where we’re encouraged to refill our own water bottles wherever possible to avoid using disposable ones, that the mark he has left on Tel Aviv is in the form of a public water fountain – only of just three around the world that he crafted.

    Set in the historic Jaffa neighbourhood, the brightly decorated fountain takes on the unusual and iconic form of an open hand, with water spouting from its palm.

    Τοποθεσία: Kedem St 103-115, Tel Aviv-Yafo, Israel


    φωτογραφία από ד"ר אבישי טייכר (CC BY-SA 2.5) τροποποιήθηκε


    Fire and Water Fountain

    You’ll either love it or hate it

    • Φωτογραφία

    This is a controversial public monument if there ever was one. The Dizengoff Square Fountain, also known as the Fire and Water Fountain, is certainly an iconic sight in Tel Aviv – but ultimately personal preference will determine whether you’re in awe or it or think it’s over the top and frankly a tad hideous.

    Conceived by Israeli sculptor and experimental kinetic artist Yaacov Agam, after a period of neglect the fountain was removed from Dizengoff Square – off one of Tel Aviv’s most well-known streets in the north of the city – while it underwent renovation work, but it’s since been both returned and restored. Take time to soak up the unlikely sight of it rotating, spurting fire and water, and booming out a musical accompaniment.

    Τοποθεσία: Dizengoff St 87, Tel Aviv-Yafo, Israel


    φωτογραφία από Ori lubin (CC BY-SA 4.0) τροποποιήθηκε


    Gan HaGat wine press

    A millennia-old relic hidden in plain sight for 2,000 years

    • Ιστορία
    • Φωτογραφία

    Gan HaGat is an ancient wine press that you’d probably not expect to find when you start digging around in this local park in Tel Aviv. The city does have a thing about contrasting old and new side by side.

    The Gan HaGat – literally ‘wine press garden’ – is a low-key public garden that’s given short shrift by visitors and isn’t heavily featured on city maps. Tucked away inside the shrubbery, though, you’ll find the identifiable remnants of a 2,000-year-old wine press, discovered and excavated shortly after Israel gained independence.

    Τοποθεσία: Khaim Menakhem Bassok St, Tel Aviv-Yafo, Israel


    φωτογραφία από Bukvoed (CC BY 3.0) τροποποιήθηκε

    Chris Wotton | Συγγραφέας

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