What to See at Tel Aviv, Israel
We have been in search of famous tourist destinations around the world. To name a few of those recognized worldwide: Singapore, Hongkong, Malaysia, Sydney, New York, and London. There are also cities that are developed, have great architectural influence, and a unique natural beauty that are less common. One city that is worth mentioning is Tel Aviv in Israel.
The city of Tel Aviv ranks as the fifth most visited city in the Middle East. It had been dubbed as “the City that Never Sleeps” and a “party capital” due to its nightlife.
Tel Aviv, also known as Tel Aviv-Yafo could be found along the Mediterranean coast of central-west Israel. It is about 60 kilometers northwest of Jerusalem. The city consists mainly of flattened sand dunes, cliffs, and the Yarkon River.
Generally the climate at Tel Aviv is Mediterranean.
People experience the coldest during the months of December to February. Temperatures could drop from 9 to 17 degrees Celsius. August is the warmest month with temperatures ranging from 24 to 30 degrees Celsius. Despite these temperature ranges, people could experience at least 300 days of sunshine. Rainy season starts from September to May.
Tel Aviv comprises mostly of Jews (about 91.8 percent of the total population) coming from Europe, North America, South America, Australia, Africa, India, and Arabian Peninsula. Other groups include Muslims and Arab Christians. The predominant language of the city is Hebrew. Although there are some who could speak other languages.
Just like any other developed city, Tel Aviv has developed a systematic and organized transportation system.
To get to the city, one could travel by plane and arrive at Greater Tel Aviv’s Ben Guiron Airport which is 15 kilometers southeast of the city. It is an international airport serving to more than 14 million passengers. Airline companies operating here include El Al, Arkia Israel Airlines, Israir Airlines, and Sun D’Or International Airlines. Another airport option would be Sde Dov which is within the city. But this airport only caters to domestic flights.
Once inside the city, the main mode of transportation would be by train. There are a total of four train stations located within the city: Tel Aviv Central, Tel Aviv University, HaShalom, and HaHagana. These trains do not operate on Saturdays and holidays.
The major highway of the city is Ayalon Highway or Highway 20. From here there are exits to other highways.
There are three bus companies operating in the city: Dan Bus Company, Metropoline and Kavim. These buses serve the city and neighboring areas.
Taxis are also available. What is unique to their taxi system is their guidelines. A group of taxis would share the same route number and route that they could operate. Taxi fares could either be standardized or metered.
Tel Aviv is also a bicycle friendly city. The municipality encourages its citizens to use bicycles. As a matter of fact, Tel-O-Fun was lunch in 2011. There were 150 bicycle stations built which provided bicycle rental within the city.
Places to see
1. White City
A place that should not be missed is Tel Aviv’s White City. It became popular due to the unique Bauhaus buildings. These buildings were inspired by German Jewish architects who migrated to the city in the year 1930’s. Tel Aviv had been recognized as the largest (more than 4000 buildings) collection of Bauhaus buildings.
Modernist building on Ben Yehuda Street, in White City
In 2003 the area was recognized by UNESCO as a World Heritage Site. The international organization said Tel Aviv is “an outstanding example of new town planning and architecture in the early 20th century.”
2. Great Synagogue
Because of their religion, there are a lot of synagogues (approximately 544). The most popular is the Great Synagogue built in 1930’s. It was once a popular place of prayer and worship. But now, few people visit the synagogue including public figures who celebrate their Jewish wedding here.
3. Shalom Tower
Adjacent to the Great Synagogue is the Shalom Tower. It was built during the years 1963 to 1965 as an office tower. It was the first skyscraper of the country. There are a total of 34 floors with height of 120 to 130 meters.
4. Azrieli Center
After establishing Shalom Meir Tower, many skyscrapers were built. One of which is Azrieli Center.
Azrieli Center consists of a single base, a large shopping mall with three towers. The first tower, the Circular Tower, stands at a height of 187 meters or 49 floors which is the tallest.
The topmost floor was an observation deck which gives a perfect view of Tel Aviv. The second tower, Triangular Tower, stands at 169 meters and has 46 floors. The third and last tower, the Square Tower stands at 154 meters and was the last to be built.
It occupies a total land area of 34,500 square meters.
5. Rabin Square and Tel Aviv City Hall
There is also a city square open to public at Tel Aviv called Rabin Square. It was established in the year 1964. Just like other public squares, it had been the venue for rallies, demonstrations, parades and public events such as Independence Day.
To the north of the square one could find Tel Aviv City Hall. The city hall followed a Brutalist architectural design and was establish in 1966.
Recently there were criticisms on the aesthetic appearance of the square and city hall. Many planned to renovate the area to complement surrounding modern day skyscrapers. These plans were rejected in preservation of Tel Aviv’s history. To compensate an ecological water pool and a recreational area were built.
6. Parks and beaches
Aside from the famous Rabin Square there are other developed parks (Hayarkon Park, Charles Clore Park, Independence Park, Meir Park and Dubnow Park) within the city. About 19% of the land is used as urban parks.
Aside from the parks, Tel Aviv is also famous for its beaches. Year after year it had ranks as one of the best beaches worldwide.
Beach at Tel Aviv
7. Jaffa Clock Tower
The Jaffa Clock Tower dates back to 1900 to celebrate the 25th anniversary as ruler of Ottoman Sultan Abd al-Hamid II. This is just one of the many clock towers built for the same reason. It is a three story tower build using limestone. At the top, two clocks and a plaque were placed. The plaque gives recognition to Israelis who died during the 1948 Arab-Israeli War.