Israel - Tel-aviv

I grew up in tel-aviv so I might be a bit biased. On the other hand I don’t really like tel-aviv so I might be a bit biased.  every time I go back to visit my home town I try to find those things which made me love it when I was there, and I did.

Tel-aviv is yet one another of these schizophrenic cities , that doesn’t know if it is a village, a metropolitan, the Levant or the next thing, a never ending party or a relaxed seaside haven, a chaotic business center and a place where you can sit down for a strong cup of coffee and just breath for a couple of minutes.

Because of its strange nature, progress has come to tel-aviv in leaps and in pieces, and in some amazing coincidence it promoted a wave of restoration and trying to keep the city’s spirit.

There are very few places which are more pedestrian friendly than tel-aviv and this is something I appreciate dearly, and the nature for asphalt ratio is relatively high, making taking a nice stroll in the shadowed avenues quiet a nice experience.

If we are already talking about a nice stroll, walking down the promenade on the beach from the north of the city all the way to jaffa is one of the best ways to spend an evening, or at least to build up an appetite for dinner in one of the restaurants and bars on the way. And tel-aviv knows how to eat.

Sometimes they like to talk about it more than they should, imagining that this is the new York or paris restaurant scene, which it is no, but people who have a very uncertain future tend to enjoy life more, and you can see it. And taste it.



And dinner is when things start to wake up, as the city who labeled itself as ‘the city that never sleeps’ really does take on a different life when darkness comes, when the heat calms down and people start flowing to their watering holes, to the cafes, to the restaurants and local fast food eateries.

If you are fond of bars and crowds, the city is full of them, catering to every taste, to every age, to every music flavor and every trendy nonsense. When you live in existential stress, winding down is essential, and when you live in close groups and clicues different bars become a second home to different kind of people, and you can sample the human tapestry in one evening of bar hopping around town.

As in most cities, there is a north and a south, a rich and a poor part. As in most cities the rich part is nice. Really nice. Lawns and all. Villas. Cleaner air. And so boring. As in most cities by going to the ‘other’ part of town, the ‘wrong’ part of town, the soon to be demolished part of town, you find the real story and the real essence of the city.

Israel is an immigrant state with people flowing in from all over the world and in the south of the cities you can see it. Smell it.

And I do not mean in a bad way. Oriental spices? Go south. Authentic Russian dried fish and vodka? Go south. Best humus in town? Go south. Small neighborhoods with stone allies and wall mosaics? Go south. Markets full of exotic food and scents? Go south. Want to get mugged? Go south. Oh. Ok,  there are some disadventages. But joking aside it is safer than most western cities these days.

Tel aviv is a city of life. You feel it everywhere. It is not a choice there. You force life in it, because tomorrow you might blow up. If you can connect to this energy of raw life, you are in for the time of your life.



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