As soon as summer hits, everyone hits the beach. Considering summer is about 10 months a year here, that’s a lot of time spent sea-side. It also means that these Cool Cousins have literally spent years of their lives on the soft white sand that lines the city and they know what what to do if you get antsy after laying on a towel for hours...you might want to heed their recommendations.
Surfing or SUPing at Dolphinarium Beach
Israelis love surfing - and when I say surfing I mean buying surfboards, surfing shorts and wax, and then complaining that there are never good waves around here. This beach just below the deserted and soon-to-be-demolished dolphinarium offers surfing lessons, board rentals and a nice store with very young and friendly staff that will turn you into a surfer, even if only for an hour or so. It's actually not a bad place to learn the sport - the waves are gentle, the water is warm and the no-longer-so-new craze of Stand-Up Paddleboarding (SUP) is a very good way to be introduced to the ocean. Two clubs will compete for your dollars: Galim and The Israeli Surf Club. Both are professional and prices are the same. The latter is closer to the water and a little more posh. On any given weekday it's probably the best place to start the day. The regulars here have their coffee and then hit the water with a board, a SUP, a kayak or even a snorkel and a fishing gun. Do they ever work? Who supports their lifestyle? Well, that’s just one of Tel Aviv’s many mysteries. September and October, March and April are perfect months at the beach. But in a way, it’s always perfect. Every Friday at sunset a regular group of drummers comes together above Dolphinarium beach and plays for the sun that’s setting into the sea. If you bring along a drum they’ll be happy to add you to their circle, which usually also includes beers and a joint passing between the drummers.
Lee, Ballroom dancer & Omer, Architect
Walking to Reading Beach
There isn’t much to say about the beaches - Tel Aviv lays on the coast of the Mediterranean and you can reach the beach from any point in town by walking West. Thing is, everyone likes the beach and it tends to get really crowded. We find that the Reading Beach (right behind the Reading Power Station) is less populated. We don’t need to tell you how to spend a day at the beach. Bring a blanket, a towel and sunscreen and chill out. What’s extra special about the Reading Beach is its location - it’s at the back of the power station, right next to a small airport (Sde-Dov). It requires a nice walk, starting at the Tel Aviv Port and going North alongside the airport with the sea to your left. We would recommend visiting there early in the morning, or an hour before sunset.
Anna, Founder of Telavivian
Manta Ray is the most perfect beachfront restaurant, located on the soft sand and waves of the Mediterranean. This is a scenic place to eat and relax; it is not only about the great view, but also the wonderful fresh fish!
Pole Position, bicycle shop owners
South of the port of Jaffa is a park that up until recently was Jaffa’s dump. Today there are large lawns, shaded areas, and the feeling that you escaped the chaos of the city for a moment. The park overlooks the stunning sea and Jaffa and you can also catch some terrific views of the coastline of Tel Aviv. We recommend that you pick up takeaway hummus from the famous Abu Hassan hummus, find a nice corner and have a picnic.
Amit, Art Director
Jaffa Port and its surrounding area is one of the most historical and beautiful parts of Tel Aviv. All along the port, there are many restaurants which serve seafood, meat and mostly authentic Arabic-Israeli food. Jaffa Port is a very romantic place for a walk with your companion. My boyfriend and I like to have a walk there on Saturday afternoons. We normally buy fries and beer and walk around the port until we find a good spot to sit at, with a view to the sea.
I’m not a big fan of the Tel Aviv Port area - it’s extremely touristy and always full of people (especially on weekends, so do yourselves a favour and stay away on Friday and Saturday), but if I happen to be here I won’t pass on the excellent herring sandwich at Sherry Ansky’s stand. THis farmers’ market is tiny so it’s hard to miss: whichever entrance you come from, herring served in a crispy baguette, on a bed of creme fraiche and fresh chilli pepper… to die for! And if herring is a bit too hard core for you, there’s also smoked salmon and sprats, which have much more refined flavors. All the fish are made there, and you can also buy some to take home with you.