Architecture Tour in Tel Aviv (Self Guided), Tel Aviv

Tel Aviv is a very young and quickly growing city. It is also well-known for its thoughtful urban planning. Today, Tel Aviv is a playground for famous architects who have designed and built high-tech skyscrapers, while preserving the legacy of the old city of Jaffa by helping to restore it. Tel Aviv is included in UNESCO’s architectural heritage list as the White City. Take this amazing tour to appreciate the architectural highlights of Tel Aviv.
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Architecture Tour in Tel Aviv Map

Guide Name: Architecture Tour in Tel Aviv
Guide Location: Israel » Tel Aviv (See other walking tours in Tel Aviv)
Guide Type: Self-guided Walking Tour (Sightseeing)
# of Attractions: 11
Tour Duration: 2 hour(s)
Travel Distance: 4.0 Km or 2.5 Miles
Author: max
Sight(s) Featured in This Guide:
  • Israeli Opera Building
  • Cameri Theater
  • Frederic R. Mann Auditorium
  • Helena Rubinstein’s Pavilion for Contemporary Art
  • Habima National Theater
  • Pagoda House
  • Hotel Montefiore
  • The Great Synagogue
  • Shalom Meir Tower
  • Neve Tzedek
  • The Hassan Bek Mosque
1
Israeli Opera Building

1) Israeli Opera Building

The Israeli Opera Building is part of a greater architectural complex called the Tel Aviv Performing Arts Center. The Cameri Theater and the Central Municipal Library are part of the same complex, with the Tel Aviv Museum of Art and Dubnow Park located nearby.
2
Cameri Theater

2) Cameri Theater

Cameri theatre is one of the popular tourist attractions in Tel Aviv. It was established in the year 1944. This important municipal theatre in Israel stages at least ten new productions every year. Apart from this, the theatre also holds repertoire from past productions.

This theatre is frequented by at least 900,000 spectators annually and has 34,000 subscribers. It was in 2003 that Cameri Theatre was shifted to a location inside the Tel Aviv Performing Arts Center complex.

There are a total of five auditoriums in this new theatre venue. With a capacity of 930 seats, Cameri 1 is the largest followed by 430 seats in Cameri 2, 250 in the Black Box and 160 in the Rehearsal Hall.

The theatre conducts various social action programs including the Theatre in Education for universities, high school students and special needs audience and Peace Foundation for the young Palestinians and Israelis.

To encourage people to watch theatre productions, Cameri offers ticket subsidies for senior citizens. Simultaneous translations into Russian, English and Arabic make it easy for everyone to understand the plays better. Israeli theatre is promoted in the country and abroad through the Institute of Israeli Drama founded by Noam Semel, Cameri’s director general.

Capture the intrinsic spirit of Israeli art and culture by visiting this theatre on your trip to Tel Aviv.
3
Frederic R. Mann Auditorium

3) Frederic R. Mann Auditorium

Also known as the Culture Palace, the Fredric R. Mann Auditorium in Tel Aviv was opened at Habima Square in the year 1957. This performing arts venue is home to the Philharmonic Orchestra. It was here that the inaugural concert of Leonard Bernstein was held. At this concert, pianist Arthur Rubinstein was a soloist. The center also hosted a performance by Bob Dylan during his 1993 European tour.

The auditorium was opened formally by the State of Israel and Tel Aviv city officials on 1st October 1957. Construction of this auditorium was a challenging process that required import of experts and materials from abroad. This auditorium is named after Frederic R. Mann of Philadelphia, its chief benefactor.

Today, the auditorium is frequented by thousands of tourists. They come here to enjoy its sophisticated ambience and a range of cultural programs. This hall is known especially for its flexible functionality and for its size. It has hosted performances of many well known musicians including Izhak Perlman, Leonard Bernstein, Isaac Stern, Daniel Barenboim, Yehudi Menuhin and Arthur Rubinstein.

International and national assemblies and conferences are held at this auditorium too. Do not miss a visit to this wonderful auditorium that is Israel’s cultural hub.
4
Helena Rubinstein’s Pavilion for Contemporary Art

4) Helena Rubinstein’s Pavilion for Contemporary Art

There are many popular museums and art centers in Israel visited by tourists. One of them, the Helena Rubinstein’s Pavilion for Contemporary Art was opened in the year 1959 to house the growing collections of the Tel Aviv Museum of Art. This Pavilion has featured the work of all prominent and popular Israeli artists at some point of time.

The Pavilion is named after Helena Rubenstein, a queen of the cosmetic empire. She donated generously toward the construction of this building. The Heychal Ha Tarbut or Halls of Culture complex consists of the Habima Theatre and the Mann Auditorium. As a part of this complex, the Pavilion holds a distinctive identity and is a popular tourist attraction.

Tel Aviv Museum’s entrance ticket includes admission to certain exhibitions here. Art lovers are exposed to various artists and different styles here. Helena Rubinstein’s Pavilion for Contemporary Art is in other words an ideal platform that allows visitors to appreciate the evolution of Israeli art through ages.

Tourists making a trip to Tel Aviv do not fail to visit this museum. Helena Rubinstein’s Pavilion is closed during transition of exhibits. It is therefore highly recommended to call ahead before you visit to avoid any disappointment.

Hours: Monday, Wednesday, Saturday: 10 am - 6 pm; Tuesday, Thursday: 10 am - 9 pm; Friday: 10 am - 2 pm
5
Habima National Theater

5) Habima National Theater

Habima National Theatre is the first theatre in Israel that staged Hebrew language plays. As the name suggests, this is the national theatre of the country and is located at the center of Tel Aviv in Habima Square.

Habima National Theatre was founded just after the 1905 revolution in Moscow by Nahum Zemach. It was in the year 1958 that Habima won the Israel prize for theatre and since then it is considered to be the country’s national theatre.

Visit this theater to see for yourself how it has been captivating the imagination of the audience with its productions. Co founded by Aaron Baskin and Hannah Rubina, Habima continues to foster newer generations of theatre artists.

This theatre is also well known for its plays that confront Israeli-Arab relations, addresses issues related to war and peace and on tensions that exist between the secular and religious Jews. Plays also examine women’s status, question bureaucratic corruption, deal with lives of foreign workers living in Israel and explore Jewish history and themes.

Many classical plays produced at Habima National Theatre epitomize Israel. They infuse innovation and creativity in such a manner that major issues of the day are skillfully portrayed. Habima is a place you must visit to enjoy the very essence of Israeli history, culture and performance art.
6
Pagoda House

6) Pagoda House

Pagoda House was built during Tel Aviv's architectural boom in the 1920s. This architectural pearl, in the heart of Tel Aviv, was built in 1924 in a combination of Western and Eastern styles, known as the Eclectic style. The building was designed by architect Alexander Levy. For many years it had been forgotten, until a new wave of renovations took place in Tel Aviv. Today, Pagoda House belongs to an American, who purchased it in the 1990s.
7
Hotel Montefiore

7) Hotel Montefiore

Hotel Montefiore is located in the very heart of Tel Aviv. It has three floors, and like many other buildings in the neighborhood, was built in the Eclectic style. This neighborhood is older than the White City quarter, making it exclusive and unique. It is a stylish and fancy place to stay in Tel Aviv.
8
The Great Synagogue

8) The Great Synagogue

Tel Aviv is a wonderful city that is visited by a lot of tourists every year. Here you can find the attractive Bahamas style architecture. This vibrant and lively city has many tourist attractions including the Great Synagogue.

This majestic synagogue is located on Allenby Street. It was originally constructed in the year 1926 and was renovated in 1970. The Great Synagogue practiced Orthodox Judaism and is still an active center for worship. Just enter this synagogue and you will be taken right back to ancient times.

The Great Synagogue has a huge, dominating dome with stained glass painted windows. These stained glass windows resemble those that are found in the European synagogues. The stunningly magnificent glass windows are arched and help the synagogue stand out among the neighboring buildings.

Today, this synagogue is open for public viewing through the week between 10 am and 5 pm except on Saturdays when it opens at 7:30 am and closes by 11:30 am. If you are in the city on Saturday, you can attend the prayers held here as it is open to all. The only requirement is to come in a decent dress with your head covered. Do not miss out on a visit to the Great Synagogue to enjoy its intrinsic beauty.
9
Shalom Meir Tower

9) Shalom Meir Tower

One of the grand, majestic and beautiful office towers is the Shalom Meir Tower, located in Tel Aviv, Israel. This is a popular tourist spot visited by thousands every year. The tower holds the distinction of being one of the first tall towers to be built in the country. It was completed in the year 1965 and was then the tallest tower in the Middle East.

To construct this mammoth tower, fifty thousand cubic meters of concrete, thirty five kilometers of water pipes, 4000 tons of steel and five hundred kilometers of wiring were used.

There are a total of 34 floors in this 142 m high building. There is a small commercial center and a bar restaurant here. The restaurant accommodates around 200 people and is on the ground floor. In the year 2003-04, residential apartments were constructed on the top three floors.

One of the innovative features of this building is its tile façade. This façade in cream hue was especially made in Italy. Nachum Gutman, a famous Israeli artist created the huge mosaic mural wall at the promenade.

This impressive building is a must visit spot on your vacation to the wonderful city of Tel Aviv. With so many interesting places to see, you must certainly spend quite a few days here.
10
Neve Tzedek

10) Neve Tzedek (must see)

Neve Tzedek lies outside the Jaffa walls. This neighborhood was a habitat for writers, artists and businessmen in the early years. Since those immensely prosperous days, Neve Tzedek was neglected for a long time.

Recently, realizing the value of this place, it has been completely transformed and is now one of the most luxurious and fashionable districts in Tel Aviv. The architecture of apartments and homes in this area reflects its ancient, rich history.

The intricately woven, small lanes take you on a nostalgic trip back to those good old days. Founded by Elazar Rokah, head of the Ezrat Israel Company, one of the first structures erected in this area was a hospital. Neve Tzedek is what it is today due to the combined efforts of Elazar Rokah and another investor, Aharon Chalouch.

Visit this neighborhood and you can still find the residences of both investors. All homes in this area reflect the heritage of people who first lived here. It was in the 1900s that many writers and artists came to Neve Tzedek and settled down. Some of the noted personalities who lived here include Hebrew artist Nahum Gutman and Nobel Prize winner Shmuel Yosef Agnon.

Tourists who come to Tel Aviv visit this luxurious and popular spot to enjoy the unique ambience that includes the actively bustling streets, charming shops that sell handmade goods, and the trendy bars and cafes.

Why You Should Visit:
Quaint & cozy district where you can buy amazing bijoux and jewelry.
Good for a walk (no disturbing traffic), shopping, having coffee or enjoying some delicious frozen yogurt.

Tip:
If you have a full day and are not afraid of walking: start at the east corner of Neve Tzedek (64 Shabazi st.), walk all the way down at Shabazi st. to the Ha'Tachana (Old Station Railway) and from there to Jaffa Port or to the Jaffa flea market.
11
The Hassan Bek Mosque

11) The Hassan Bek Mosque

Hassan Bek Mosque is located in Manshiah neighborhood, Jaffa. This building was constructed in the year 1916 by the Ottoman Turkish ruler of this area Hassan Beque during the First World War. It is today a popular tourist attraction frequented by thousands of visitors. One of the characteristic features of this mosque is the white stone it is built with. The white facades on the wall are divided into small sections by the narrow engaged piers.

A portion of the mosque was destroyed in the year 1983 and was fixed during renovation in 2001. This mosque is well known for its unique Ottoman style architecture. This style contrasts greatly with the nearby contemporary high rise buildings.

Arab snipers used the high towers of the mosque as a strategic point during the War of Independence. Hassan Beque Mosque and Ezel Museum were the two structures that survived the complete destruction of Manshia neighborhood during the sixties and seventies.

As you drive down from Tel Aviv coastal area or downtown towards Jaffa, it is hard not to notice this beautiful, grand mosque. It is located on the fast road to Jaffa between the Mediterranean Sea and Neve Tzedek. The mosque today belongs to the Moslem Waqf who keeps it open occasionally for prayers.

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