We woke up early to take the train to Tel Aviv. We were advised that the bus would be much faster, but we enjoyed the scenic views and free wifi (when it worked).
We took a taxi to our hotel, the Prima Tel Aviv. We were excited to find that our room overlooked the beach. The hotel was also very conveniently located, so we checked in and then headed out on foot.
Our first stop was the Dizengoff Center, which is the city’s large Seventies-style mall. We stopped at the Vaniglia ice cream outpost, which merited a visit after I read about the Alfajore ice cream (my favorite Latin American cookie).
We walked through the Carmel Market (photos in the next post) and then veered off on Rambam street to check out the boutiques and garment district. We particularly liked Efrat Cassouto, which had very affordable, pretty, dainty jewelry, as well as a lot of bridal appropriate accessories.
We walked through the charming neighborhood of Neve Tzedek (also featured in tomorrow’s post) and from there strolled along the beachfront promenade to the ancient port city Jaffa, which is incorporated into Tel Aviv.
We wandered around the flea market, which was actually a collection of antique and junk furniture stores in one area. Next we stopped at the artist Illana Goor’s residence and museum compound. Unfortunately, we arrived 15 minutes before closing, so we skipped the museum and visited the gift store, where we saw Goor’s work and photos of her with various international celebrities.
We saw at least four wedding parties poising for photos in the scenic Old Jaffa neighborhood surrounding the museum.
We stumbled upon a lovely park with an archeological site, amphitheater, and tell (man-made hill). Atop the tell was the Ramses II’s Gate Garden and a lookout point with stunning views of the city.
Before leaving Jaffa we stopped for a very late lunch at Dr. Shaukshuka. Shakshuka is an Israeli dish comprised of eggs poached in tomato sauce. The meal was good, but the restaurant lost a few points for the gross washroom, which I think/hope is under renovation.
It was getting dark, so we walked back to our hotel to rest before meeting up with an Israeli friend. The hotel had a super impressive complimentary treats bar. I was full from lunch, but I enjoyed a refreshing beverage.
I was curious to see Tel Aviv’s famous club scene, but it was a Sunday night, so instead we went for a late, light dinner of tapas and drinks at the very hip Vicky Christina restaurant. The restaurant is located in the Station (aka HaTachana), which is a renovated railroad complex that contains a mix of American and Israeli chain stores and designer boutiques. The atmosphere and food at Vicky Christina were great! Afterwards, we stopped by Molly Bloom’s Bar, which is known for live music (but not on Sundays) and then headed back to our hotel.