MY TEL AVIV

V I S I T   T E L   A V I V 

 

I had wanted to visit this city for such a long time, that I had heard so many incredible and different things about. Israel is the name of a country that lights up peoples eyes when spoken. Reaktions, perceptions and stories are different: but everyone has a perspective to tell. I was intensely curious to collect my own story to tell. 

V I S I T   T E L   A V I V 
 
I had wanted to visit this city for such a long time, that I had heard so many incredible and different things about. Israel is the name of a country that lights up peoples eyes when spoken. Reaktions, perceptions and stories are different: but everyone has a perspective to tell. I was intensely curious to collect my own story to tell. 

My exitement about visiting Tel Aviv was confirmed by the experience I made in a vibrant, open minded, clean and friendly city. I felt safe and comfortable in Tel Aviv, the locals spoke english and were very helpful whenever I needed any help to get around. Every place I actually visited I can recommend - there was no disappointment. So below is a short list of places that I saw and that I can recommend. The fantastic thing is that they are all reachable by foot. The first day upon arrival I actually took a walk from my Hotel all the way to the Beach Marina - passing trendy concept stores, frozen yogurt & healthy snack places, espresso bars and lots of street art.  In the night I was able to walk after dinner to do bar hopping - from basement grungy bars to airy rooftop locations: Tel Aviv has everything to offer within walking distance. Navigating with a data package on my phone I was easily able to find everything. 
Warning: I recommend patience at the airport. Israel applies a security system that often involves lengthy interrogations about travel purpose and personal situation of a traveller. Especially for people who travel to israel alone, have exoting names (like mine) and lots of stamps in their passport - be prepared to answer questions about every place you have travelled to - the purpose of your visit, who you travelled with etc. Be prepared to answer questions as to why you are visiting Israel, where you are staying, and where you wish to travel inside Israel. The guy at the security actually asked me: "Why you come to Israel, why don't you go to Italy... Italy is beautiful too no?" These questions are abit estranging especially as I have of course been to Italy many times, but this is just not registered in my passport as its EU zone. I am not used to answering to these kind of interrogations, and having my motives to visit a beautiful country that I heard so many amazing things about be questioned. It was the same thing when I left Israel. I was questioned again extensively for 1 hour, I was thorougly checked, my luggage was checked, I was fully scanned etc.
I understand that the region is unstable and that these procedures are for the benefit and safety for both locals and tourists visiting Israel, so I was not upset by this procedure. But I advise anyone to bring lots of patience when passing the airport in Israel - especially if you are bringing a passport covered in stamps. 
 
PLACES: 

THE NORMAL HOTEL
The hippest hotel currently and recommended to me from many sides. Beautiful boutique hotel in the center of Tel Aviv, held in baby blue and white with spacious high ceiling rooms and a rooftop swimming pool area. The Normal Hotel also has perhaps one of the best Asian Restaurants on its top floor (which I unfortunately did not get to try). Its a little city hideaway, with a lovely outside breakfast area. There was some construction happening in the neighborhood that woke me up in the morning, but apart from the the experience at the Normal Hotel was perfect, and it definitely deserves its good reputation. 
http://www.thenorman.com

NORTH ABRAXAS
Lilienblum St 40, Tel Aviv-Yafo, Israel
My favourite Restaurant that I visited during my stay. A casual streetside place with open kitchen and loud music. Food gets served on parchment paper directly on the table. No plates and fuss - when I asked for salt this too was dropped in a pretty heap of fleur de sel directly on my table. I loved it. I recommend you sit at the bar, and book early! Its packed. I especially loved the whole roasted veggy dishes - in genereal the food in Tel Aviv is unmatched when it comes to the vegetarian options. The beef carpaccio I ordered did not blow my hair back - so I stayed with delish vegetable dishes from that point onwards. The team is young and friendly, walking around offering shots every 10 minutes or so. Its a very vibrant eating experience that leaves you hungry for more - nightlife. Thankfully the Bars are just around the corner in walking distance. 

RADIO 
An underground Bar that reminded me a bit of the Zurich location Gonzo. Its entrance is hidden and it just seems like walking into a cellar, past a bunch of curtains and funny smells - but finally you end up in that dingy cellar with dimmed red light and rock music. The drinks are good - the people beautiful. I had one drink before craving to see the nighttime sky again though. 

SPEAK EASY 
This place I actually found by accident. On Rothschild Boulevard I spottet a rooftop location and wanted to check it out. I was made to wait 10 minutes downstairs at the door but finally let in. The wait was worth it. Not overly crowded (thanks to the limited entries downstairs) but well filled and buzzing. I got my favourite drink here: Margarita with Mezcal - they called it Spicy Buddha. I knew I was going to come back here the next night - I love rooftop bars on warm nights. Its something we don't get often at home. 

CLARO
I came here for Lunch. Its a lovely garden location with stripped industrial chic interior. It reminded me of the Tim Mälzer Restaurant Bullerei in Hamburg, for anyone who has visited that. Spacious large hall filled with long tables and great vibe. I had lunch in the lounge area on the outside though encircled by trees and sunshine. The food on the menu is very mediterranean. There is even a dish that served pork. I saw things on the menu like 'Spätzli' as well. Overall its a good mix, and something to everyones taste. I had some veggy salad with feta & roasted broccoli (see pic) which was served on a wooden slate. 

POPINA
A 'casually fancy' french Restaurant with again an open kitchen, easy vibes - a young handsome chef that was drinking Gin & Tonic and shaking hands all night. Very helpful waitor - the food was great except for a let down on a salad everything wowed my expectations. A lot of vegetarian and vegan dishes on a one pager landscape menu separated into sections according to the preparation method: Steamed, seared, grilled or roasted. I recommend a seat at the bar that wraps itself around the open kitchen for a front row cooking experience!

 

 

 

 

 

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