Step into the lively streets of Tel Aviv and Jaffa, the two cities that blend into one. You’re going to find it pulsating with energy, culture, and history. Forget taking a bus tour for sightseeing. The best way to experience it is to go on an exciting bike tour, either with a tour guide or on your own, that takes you through the heart of these cities. Explore their iconic neighborhoods, picture-perfect scenic routes, and the most frequent cultural hotspots. The incredible juxtaposition between thousands of years of history in Old Jaffa to the modern skyscrapers and beaches of Tel Aviv make this a truly unique experience hard to find anywhere else in the world.
This article will cover some of the incredible sights to see and stops to make along your bike journey. Tel Aviv and Jaffa’s small geographical footprint makes it possible to cover all of the mentioned locations and more in just one day with a bicycle. However, if you want to feel truly like a local, we recommend getting a bike for the duration of your visit here.
While it’s not like the European cities of Amsterdam or Copenhagen, Tel Aviv-Jaffa is one of the world’s premier bike cities and the huge network of bike lanes makes it possible to make any journey on two wheels! Get ready to pedal your way through the sun-soaked streets, and let the city’s fun vibes guide you to unique and memorable experiences.
Jaffa’s Old City and Port
This first stop weaves together a tapestry of fascinating history and enduring old worldly aesthetic that’s hard to ignore. The narrow, winding streets of the Old City offer a genuine journey into the roots of Jaffa, showcasing ancient architecture that sets the scene for Tel Aviv’s beginnings. Stopping here is like stepping back in time, and you can almost hear the stories echoing through the centuries in those weathered stones.
Exploring Jaffa’s Old City and Port isn’t just a pitstop on a bike tour; it’s a chance to immerse yourself in the ancient history and down-to-earth charm that defines this captivating corner of the world. Make sure to check out The Clock Tower in the middle of Yefet Street built out of limestone from the Ottoman Palestine period.
Local tip: For our favorite view in all of Israel make sure to stop at HaPisga Garden. We recommend buying supplies at the nearby Jaffa Market and packing a picnic lunch to sit and soak up the landscape views from this prime spot. The incredible skyline of Tel Aviv and Jaffa and the panoramic Mediterranean Sea views make this a can’t-miss on your journey!
Rothschild Boulevard – City’s Beating Heart
Rothschild Boulevard in Tel Aviv is the city’s beating heart, and it’s a spot you don’t want to breeze by on your bike tour without parking and taking it all in. Lined with chic Bauhaus buildings, it’s got a cool mix of history and more modern vibes. As you cruise down, you’ll spot Independence Hall and other historic landmarks as well as businesspeople biking in suits on their way to the office.
Whether you’re into people-watching or just want to take a breather, Rothschild Boulevard is that sweet spot where the past meets the present in the coolest way possible. Make sure to stop at Habima Square at the North end of Rothschild Boulevard for a break on your journey to see the National Theatre of Israel and one of the main gathering points for locals looking to protest or sit for a glass of wine.
Local tip: Don’t miss out on the coffee kiosks scattered along the middle of Rothschild Boulevard – they’re not just a caffeine fix, but a Tel Aviv ritual. These kiosks have been dishing out strong brews and local gossip since the 1960s. Grab a cup, mingle with the regulars, and soak up the urban energy while savoring the flavor of Tel Aviv’s coffee culture – a perfect pitstop to refuel.
Carmel Market – Culinary Delights
A overwhelming and exciting maze of stalls and flavors makes this a tour gem. Picture this: colorful displays of fresh produce, aromatic spices lingering in the air, and locals haggling for the best deals. It’s a feast to overload all your senses. As you move through, the market’s constant energy is going to pull you in – from the lively chatter of vendors to the tantalizing sizzle of street food being prepared.
Take your time exploring the diverse offerings, grab a quick bite like a fresh fish sandwich from the stand at HaCarmel Street 50 or our favorite shawarma in the city from Mifgash Rambam, and soak in the marketplace atmosphere. The Carmel Market isn’t just a shopping stop; it’s a cultural journey you don’t get to see as much anymore, a sensory delight that adds an extra layer of flavor to your Tel Aviv bike tour.
Local tip: lock up your bike outside of the market at an agreed-upon meeting point and explore this area on foot. You’ll thank us later – these small streets full of hungry patrons make this a little too busy for biking. Plus you’ll want to move slowly to take in all of the smells and flavors of the market.
Tel Aviv’s Beaches
Hit the brakes at Tel Aviv’s beaches – a sandy haven that’s a must-stop on your bike tour. The bike lane runs for about 15 kilometers uninterrupted from the Port of Jaffa along the coast beyond Tel Aviv to Park HaHof near Herzliya. As you cruise along the promenade, you’ll catch the salty breeze, the laughter of beachgoers on the boardwalks, and the inviting stretch of golden sand. Take a break, take a dip in the Mediterranean, or tan on the sandy beach – just make sure to use some sunscreen! Tel Aviv’s beaches aren’t just for sunbathing; they’re your escape into the coastal aspect of Israel, a chance to unwind and enjoy the city from a different perspective.
Local tip: There are a variety of beaches along the Tel Aviv coast depending on what you are looking for. If you want to kick a ball or throw a frisbee with the young crowd in their 20s head to Trumpeldor Beach. If you want to relax with some peace and quiet head up North past The Port of Tel Aviv to Secret Beach. If you want to dance with music from a local DJ make your way to Hilton Beach. If you are with the kids and want a family-friendly spot try out Aviv Beach. All of these beaches are equally sandy and beautiful so you can’t go wrong!
Hayarkon Park– Natural Oasis
Now, let’s roll into Hayarkon Park – a serene oasis that’s a breath of fresh air on your Tel Aviv bike tour. You have lush greenery, a winding river, peaceful lakes, and a break from the city buzz. It’s not just a park; it’s your escape into nature. As you pedal through, you’ll discover a variety of gardens and tranquility spots, and maybe catch a glimpse of some local wildlife. Take a moment to relax by the water or explore the endless paths – Hayarkon Park is your ticket to a different side of modern city Tel Aviv, where nature takes center stage, and the urban hustle takes a backseat. It’s the perfect pitstop to recharge and soak up some outdoor goodness.
Local tip: Make this your last stop on the journey and take a ride on the hot air balloon (TLV Balloon) next to Park Lake. This ride will take you high up into the sky and allow you to get a 360-degree view of Tel Aviv, Jaffa, and the surrounding areas. This is a perfect way to see how far you’ve ridden and reminisce on the amazing journey!
Tel Aviv Extra Activities
Tel Aviv Street Art: Cruise through Florentine Neighborhood any day of the week to discover colorful murals, graffiti, and urban art installations. If you are in Tel Aviv on a Tuesday or Friday head to Nachalat Benyamin Street off the beaten path near the Carmel Market for a street art fair full of local vendors with handmade goods.
Sunset Ride Along the Promenade: If your adventure extends into the evening, take a leisurely sunset ride along the Tel Aviv Promenade. Revel in the magical hues of the sunset over the Mediterranean, creating a picture-perfect moment to cherish.
Book a Bike Tour: If this all sounds a little overwhelming and you prefer to have someone curate the adventure for you, check out Yalla Bikes. Their expert guides will build a custom route for each tour depending on what you want to see and how much time you have to explore. Leave the map at the hotel and let them guide you through a perfect afternoon or day in Tel Aviv in Jaffa at your pace for an unforgettable day of cycling fun.
Uncover Tel Aviv-Jaffa’s vibrant charm and let the city locals guide your bike tour. These are just a few of the amazing stops you can make along your journey. From historic Jaffa to the modern elegance of Tel Aviv, each stop promises a unique experience in this dynamic city by the sea. Get ready for a ride filled with laughter, discovery, and the infectious spirit of Tel Aviv and Jaffa.
This article originally appeared on The World Overload. Featured Photo Credit: Unsplash