10 secrets to go from tourist to local in Tel Aviv

Oh Tel Aviv, the sunny beaches, colorful streets and amazing food. The city has now become one of the must- visit destinations in the Mediterranean. A lot has been written about Tel Aviv and its attractions, but how do true Tel Avivians spend their time in the city? Here are 10 secrets to make any tourist a local.

Noa Rosin/Food reporter & Tel Avivian
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Romance Credit: Yaniv sade
Noa Rosin/Food reporter & Tel Avivian
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Markets –Tel Aviv markets are a must. Every market has its own unique atmosphere and products, and every Tel Avivian has their own favorite suppliers for meat, fish, vegetables, condiments, etc. Tel Avivs main market is the Carmel Market, which in the past years became an incredible culinary destination; alongside the vegetable and fruit stands emerged delis, bistros, bars and restaurants which are using the markets fresh produce to serve delicious food. The Carmel Market is now a place where locals hang-out and not just shop for groceries.

the marketsCredit: Yaniv sade

Brunch Time – Tel Avivians LOVE brunch. The weekend brunch became a symbol of well-being and enjoying life. If Friday eve is dedicated to family and Shabbat dinner, then Friday mornings (and Saturdays too) are dedicated to brunches and Tel Avivians second family – their friends. You can see them sitting in the morning sun, with a baby stroller and their dog, indulging in fresh pastries, hot shakshuka and strong cappuccinos. The more generous the brunch, colorful and versatile, the more locals youll see devouring it. Rothschild Boulevard, Rabin Square and Dizengoff St. are just some of the main areas to find your perfect brunch.

Juice City – like the rest of the world, the healthy lifestyle has flourished in Tel Aviv as well, with plenty of fresh food and juice stands all over the city. One of the most popular juice stands in town, Tamara (Ben Gurion Blvd. and Dizengoff St.), offers a huge range of combinations: fruit juice, vegetable juice, muesli, home-made popsicles (when was the last time you had an apple-beetroot popsicle?) and even a wheatgrass shot for an energy boost. Ask for your favorite mix and relax on a bench along the boulevard to watch the passing crowd. This is the Tel Avivian way.

Sporty Town – Tel Avivs amazing weather allows locals to work-out outdoors. The beachfront promenade (14 km long) and the nearby Hayarkon Park attract thousands of joggers, cyclists and other trainers every day. Put on your work-out gear and join the locals in their daily routine. If you want to step up your game you can always use the outdoor gym spots with fitness equipment, or join a beach volleyball game as spare players are always in need.

Hummus Delight - Lets make a long story short: youre supposed to eat hummus at 8 am, but youll find most Tel Avivians dipping pita bread into that amazing paste at lunch time (unable to return to work afterwards). If youll ask a Tel Avivian which is the best Hummus in town you wont get a clear-cut answer – its like asking a child about his favorite parent. But if youd like to try the best local hummus I would recommend Abu Hassan (14 Shivtey Israel St. Jaffa), Abu Aadham (7 Carlibach St.) or HaCarmel Hummus in the Carmel Market ( 11 HaCarmel st.).

Hummus Delight Credit: Yaniv Sade

Beach life – most Tel Avivians live in a walking distance from the beach and the beach is an integral part of life in the city. Each beach has its own character; two special beaches are the Dog Beach where locals bring their best friend with them to swim and roll in the sand, or the Drums beach where every Friday afternoon youll meet a drummers band which welcome the Shabbat with a lot of beat. This is the last chance to witness this 20 year old tradition as this coastal section is going under construction soon.

Beach life Credit: Yaniv sade

Romance – This is one of the most sweet and romantic places in town. Half an hour before sunset arrive at Haatzmaut Park (Hayarkon St. between Atarim Square and Nordau Blvd.), enter from the main entrance from Hayarkon St. and follow the main path, until youll see a small hill on your right facing the sea. Lay out a blanket on the grass and enjoy the quiet and Tel Avivs amazing sunset.

Dizengoff center – one trait that distinguishes Tel Avivians from the average person is the innate ability to navigate around Dizengoff Center without getting lost. This veteran shopping center, which consists of two main buildings connected by a system of bridges and underground passages, was designed inside as a spiral, which makes navigation quite the experience. In Dizengoff center you can find everything from fashion stores to tattoo parlors, a cinema and two gyms. Dont miss the food market every Thursday and Friday in building B.

White City- Tel Aviv is also known as the White City, due to its beautiful Bauhaus buildings, an architectural style that was common in the 1930. This old buildings which are currently going under massive construction are restoring the citys classic style. In 2003 UNESCO declared the White City areas as a world heritage site, and nowadays you can find free walking tours to view these interesting different buildings.

Night Life – Tel Aviv nightlife is endless. There are so many places to go to; its almost impossible to visit them all. Tel Avivians are night-hoppers, theyll start early in one place, hop to the next place, and so on. The best place to do so is on Dizengoff Street, start from the northern part going south, go along, and hop from place to place, from small corner bars, to 1920s themed bars, to a big club, thats the Tel Avivian way to party.

Noa Rosin, Food Reporter
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Noa Rosin, Food Reporter and Tel Avivian

Living, breathing and eating Tel Aviv.

Food reporter and TV host.  Her favorite Tel Aviv moment is Friday afternoon when the whole city shifts gear to weekend mode and says that the best part of being Tel Avivian is that no matter what time or day it is, Tel Aviv will always fulfil your wants and wishes.  

Noa Rosin, Food Reporter Credit: Yaniv sade