Where To Stay In Tel Aviv: A Local’s Recommendation

Looking for where to stay in Tel Aviv shouldn’t be hard: the city is packed with good accommodation options for any budget and interests. Different parts of the city, however, have a different appeal and your choice of accommodation in Tel Aviv should be based on what you plan to do once in the city, and what you generally like doing.

Picking Where To Stay In Tel Aviv

If you’ve been following me for a while, you already know I am pretty much a local of Tel Aviv: this is my second home, and I love it to bits. I have been there more times than I can remember, for prolonged periods of time, and have many local friends.

My go to place in town used to be Abraham Hostel, and I still visit and hang out whenever I can. Abraham has the perfect combination of being in a good, central location; attracting a varied audience (youngsters, families, etc) and it has some great social spaces, making it easy to meet other travelers. Its social spaces are venue for events and parties for both travelers and locals. In other words, it’s probably the best place to stay in Tel Aviv if it is your first time in the city. 

Read my full review of Abraham Hostel Tel Aviv here.

If you are worried about picking the best location for your accommodation in Tel Aviv, let me assure you that there is no need to panic. Tel Aviv isn’t a very big city, and it is fairly easy to get around and no matter where you are in town, you are at easy distance from the beach. What you should worry about, however, are the prices. Accommodation in Tel Aviv is as expensive as London, Paris and New York – so you need to search wide and far for a good deal.

The good news is that you never need a car in Tel Aviv – not unless you want to spend hours looking for a parking spot. Locals complain about poor public transport, but honestly, it’s not bad at all. The bus system is efficient and there are buses and trains that connect the city to the airport (well, except on Shabbat, when you have to used shared taxis called sherut); there are easy to navigate bike lanes; and even on a very bad day traffic is not nearly as bad as it is in Rome.

Continue reading, and I will tell you where to stay in Tel Aviv.

where to stay in Tel Aviv
Looking for where to stay in Tel Aviv? Check out my tips

Where To Stay In Tel Aviv: The Best Places To Stay By Area And Interests

Florentin

Best for artists and hipsters

This is one of my favorite areas of Tel Aviv, the best spot in town for a drink or a night out with friends. It’s also a great area to base yourself if you’d rather stay out of the main tourist circuit and want to experience an artsy, eccentric environment: some of the nicest restaurants in Tel Aviv are located in Florentin, and the area is famous for its street art.

Join a guided street art tour to admire art pieces such as 27 Club, which portrays Kurt Cobain, Amy Winehouse and Jimi Hendrix among others; and The Peace Kids, a mural representing Israelis and Palestinians holding hands. You can book your tour here or here.

Florentin owes its artsy feel to the artists and youth that, at the beginning of the 1990s, started moving in the abandoned buildings, turning what used to be a strictly industrial area into a bohémien one. Don’t miss Levinsky Market, a fantastic place for grocery shopping and street food (local and international).

This part of town is well connected to the rest of the city by bus, and you’ll find some of the most budget friendly hotels in Tel Aviv. Here is a selection:

accommodation in Tel Aviv
With its narrow cobbled alleys, Jaffa is truly charming. And it has some of the nicest boutique hotels in Tel Aviv

Jaffa

Best for history and culture lovers

Jaffa isn’t technically Tel Aviv, but a whole different city (that’s why it’s called Tel Aviv – Yafo). Yet, they are attached to one another and it’s easy to move between the two. You can stay in Tel Aviv and walk to Jaffa, or the other way around.

Jaffa is packed with narrow, cobbled alleys and crumbling buildings (check out my Instagram feed to see what I mean) and a lovely area to base yourself if you are looking for a more historical area, full of atmosphere.

This is where Tel Aviv started. This harbor town was already mentioned in correspondence from Egypt in 1440 BC. Nowadays, Jaffa is an excellent area for travelers and but locals, who enjoy the feel of being in a smaller town (though packed with boutique shops, coffee shops bars, restaurants, and right by the beach) and slightly cheaper than the rest of the city.

Make sure not to miss the old train station, HaTachana; the Alhambra Cinema (a beautiful art déco building dating back to 1937); Al-Bahr Mosque; the Clock Tower; St. Peter’s Church; the historic home of Simon the Tanner, and the famous flea market.

There are free guided walking tours of Jaffa that depart every day from the Clock Tower at 11:00 am and 2:00 pm.

These are the best places to stay in Jaffa:

airbnb in Tel Aviv
It’s no secret that Neve Tzedek is my favorite neighborhood in Tel Aviv

Neve Tzedek

Best for shopaholic and trendsetters

Neve Tzedek is home to many lovely boutiques and art galleries, walking distance from everything (you may have to walk a bit longer for some places, but it’s totally doable): the beach, the bars and clubs in Florentin, Rothschild Avenue and even Jaffa.

Neve Tzedek is packed with bauhaus buildings, which are typical of Tel Aviv. The colorful buildings have the backdrops of the skyscrapers in the distance. Among the places of interest there are Nachum Gutman Museum and the Rokach House, where you can learn a bit more about the history of Neve Tzedek.

It’s a great place to stay if it is your first time in the city and you are worried about navigating the transportation system. However, it’s where most boutique hotels in Tel Aviv are located, so prices are quite expensive.

One of the nicest things to do in Neve Tzedek is attending a show at the Suzanne Dellal center. Make sure to check the timetable and buy tickets in advance.

These are the best places to stay in Neve Tzedek:

where to stay in Tel Aviv
Tayelet is the perfect place to stay in Tel Aviv if you are looking for easy beach access

Tayelet

Best for beach bums (and families)

Tel Aviv has a beautiful, long, sandy beach where you can relax and swim in the summer, but which is a fantastic place to hang out in any season. Fitness junkies go there to run, bike, skate, play volleyball and more; families take the kids for a walk (and take the dog along); and as soon as there is a wave, surfers all get in the water. Sunset from the beach are fabulous.

Rent a bike from any of the rental spots in town and bike along the Tayelet for a bit of fresh air. And if you really want to get all local, go for a game of matkot (a beach tennis kind of game) at the beach.

Tayelet is home to some of the best hotels in Tel Aviv. Here are the ones I recommend:

where to stay in Tel Aviv
A lot of good hotels in Tel Aviv are located near Habima

Lev Ha’ir – The Heart of Tel Aviv

Best for local vibe and nightlife

Lev Ha’ir means “heart of the city” in Hebrew. This part of town is where you’ll find the busy Dizengoff Street and Rotschild Boulevard, and the legendary Dizengoff shopping mall. It’s located between Neve Tzedek, Florentin, Sarona, the Old North and Kerem Hateimanim. It’s one of the most lively areas of Tel Aviv, where Habima (the National Theater) is located, as well as the White City, a UNESCO World Heritage Site with more than 4000 Bauhaus buildings. It’s also packed with coffee shops and bars.

Among the places of interest there are the Pagoda House; Kiryat HaSefer park; the Great Synagogue of Tel Aviv. Shopaholics may also go to Sheinkin Street, which is packed with boutiques. Finally, in recent years, Lev Ha’ir has become the cultural and nightlife center of Tel Aviv.

Lev Ha’ir is where most political protests take place.

These are the best places to stay in the Heart of Tel Aviv:

Make sure to check out my post The Best Bars In Tel Aviv For The Best Tel Aviv Nightlife.

Basel And The Old North

Best for Families

Located in the heart of the Old North, Basel is where to stay in Tel Aviv for easy access to the beach (Hilton Beach is at a stone’s throw), nice shopping and lots of nice small cafés. The ease of access to the beach make it a favorite of families traveling with children, who will find a great selection of larger hotels. These are some of the best:

Reading

Tel Aviv Port

Best for day and night fun

Found at the very end of Tayelet, Tel Aviv Port is one of the most fun parts of town. The waterfront is a nice place to hang out throughout the year and you will find some of the best seafood restaurants in Tel Aviv, as well as lots of budget eateries. The boardwalk makes it easy to bike and skate, so this is a popular weekend spot for local families too.

Here are the best places to stay in Tel Aviv Port:

Allenby

Kerem HaTeimanim – The Yemenite Quarter

Best for a local experience

Kerem HaTeimanim was built by Yemenite migrants at the end of the 19th century, and it actually is the first part of Tel Aviv that was built outside of Jaffa. This is where I always hang out when I am out with my friends Eyal and Aya, who – guess what – are Yemenite Jews.

Here, among the chaos of Shuk HaCarmel and Allenby Street, there are some lovely smaller streets with beautiful old buildings. Besides, this area is close to the beach, close to the action, and has retained all its authentic character.

One of the nicest bars to hang out in the area is Minzar, open till late every day. It serves good food at reasonable prices. The menu changes daily.

Here is where to stay in Tel Aviv Kerem HaTeimanim:

Have you ever been to Tel Aviv? What are your suggestions for where to stay in Tel Aviv?

Further Readings

Are you planning a trip to Israel? Make sure to read these other posts:

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