Discover one of a kind crafts at Nachalat Binyamin, take in Tel Aviv’s vista from Azrieli Observatory, stroll through Old Jaffa’s Kedumim Square and visit HaTachana, the Middle East’s first train station.
Located next to Carmel Market, Nachalat Binyamin is the largest arts and crafts market in Israel, showcasing items from around the country. What started as a small market in 1987 has grown to include over 200 vendors. All pieces are required to be original, handmade works and sold by the artist for a one of a kind experience. Bauhaus buildings surround the market as part of the White City.
Kedumim Square is the main square of Old Jaffa. Below it is the Jaffa History Museum, an archeological site with third century catacombs and artifacts from the time of Jesus. To the East, lies the Mediterranean Sea and to the North West is St. Peter’s Church, the main Franciscan Church of Jaffa. During the summer, the Square hosts performances including Old Jaffa Nights music festival.
Azrieli Center contains three modern buildings, including an observation deck and one of Israel’s largest malls. Azrieli Center Circular Tower, completed in 1999, features an indoor observation deck, high end restaurant and over 4,000 windows. In 2003, the tower held its first annual run-up competition. Participants ran up the 1,144 stairs to the tower’s roof and the winner had the chance to compete in to Empire State Building run up. Azrieli Center Triangular Tower, also completed in 1999, is largely occupied by Israel’s biggest telecommunications company. Construction of the third building, Azrieli Center Square Tower, was completed in 2006. The lower floors house Africa Israel’s Crowne Plaza Hotel. Azrieli Center Mall is one of Israel’s largest with a small amusement park and pedestrian bridges. A fourth building, Azrieli Sarona Tower is planned to be the tallest skyscraper in Israel once completed.
HaTachana, The Station in Hebrew, is the Old Jaffa railway station. The Station is a popular and historic site with cafes, restaurants and boutiques in the midst of refurbished rail cars and train tracks. HaTachana has twenty-two historical Ottoman Empire buildings including Red Home, a brick factory and villa owned by German Templars. A local artist trade show with live music takes place every Thursday, an urban organic market, Orbanic, every Friday and free circus performances every Saturday. There is also a 3D ride children can take to experience what the train station would have been like.
Built in 1892, HaTachana was the first train station in the Middle East, travelling the 35 miles from Jaffa to Jerusalem in six hours. Theodore Herzl and German Emperor Wilhelm II were among its passengers. Under the British Mandate, the station became a British military camp. When the British Mandate ended, the Israeli Defense Forces took it over but it soon fell into decay. In 2005, Tel Aviv began renovating the station and in 2010 it was reopened to the public.