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Passover in Tel Aviv

London
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Passover in Tel Aviv

Hello Israeli experts

I am sure I shall want to ask many other questions but firstly, I would like to eat!!

We have an apartment in Tel Aviv for 2 weeks and, as planning had it, we arrive on 29th March. It just so happens that my friend will arrive late afternoon and I shall arrive in the wee hours after midnight.

Firstly, is my friend going to find anywhere to eat? Where?

The following day 30th, we really would like to go somewhere very nice for a birthday celebratory meal. Possible? How many days over Passover are shops, restaurants closed, it at all after 29th?

Other ideas:

In principal, we want to just take in the atmosphere of Tel Aviv and Jaffa slowly.

As it is our first time to Israel but presumably not our last, we do wish to see other places but do not intend cramming everything in. I personally would prefer quality as opposed to quantity. If we miss places out, we miss them out.

Jerusalem is on the list. I am thinking of going by train in the morning and returning in the evening. If we need to do this a couple of times, then so be it.

I think Haifa is also possible by train - day return?

Would love to spoil ourselves at the Dead Sea at a Spa - any suggestions? Presumably we could rent a car and go for the day?

My next question is Kineret, river Jordan, Tiberias - I am planning on hiring a car for that area. Is it possible, even if we do it a couple of times, to go and return on the same day without rushing things.

Spring flowers,countryside,picnics come to mind.

Any suggestions at all ??

Thank you so much.

Tel-Aviv
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1. Re: Passover in Tel Aviv

The Passover holiday starts on the evening of March 29 and continues to April 5th. Only the 1st (Mar 29) and last (Apr 5 ) days are full religious holidays, i.e no public transportation like on Saturday. Everything is open as usual for the most part on the other days. But the schools and govt offices are closed and many Israeli families take the entire week off. Therefore the roads are generally jammed, the tourist sites are packed and the hotels are full. In addition, the Easter weekend is at the same time which means thousands of pilgrims adding to the mayhem.

Where is your apartment located ? Tel-Aviv is a big city. What type of food do you like ? "Time Out" Tel-Aviv has a good restaurant guide:

…timeout.co.il/activemagazine/…israel_31.asp

Jerusalem should be one of the must-do highlights of your tour, not just an option. You should spend at least 3 days there. There is good bus service to Jerusalem, the 480 from the north Arlozorov terminal and the 405 from the Central Bus Station. Travelling time is about an hour. The train is scenic but slow and you should do it once for the view. Train schedules are at:

http://www.rail.co.il/EN/Pages/HomePage.aspx

The train is the best way to go to Haifa and Akko (Acre) and the service is very good.

The Dead Sea is easily accessed from Jerusalem by bus and you should see Massada and Ein Gedi in addition to the spa. I recommend staying overnight. Thre are two excellent hostels at Massada and Ein Gedi:

www.iyha.org.il

The Galilee should not be done on day trips and renting a car is the most efficent way to do it. Budget 3-4 days for the north and it should be done after the holiday when you wont be driving bumper to bumper and have a chance of finding accomodation. This site lists many of the better attractions in the north (and the rest of the country):

http://www.parks.org.il/BuildaGate5/general2/company_search_tree.php?mc=378~All

Edited: 24 February 2010, 06:23
Medford, Oregon
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2. Re: Passover in Tel Aviv

I asked a similar question awhile back because we too are arriving in Tel Aviv early afternoon of March 29. Shoshi, a regular on these boards, gave me this helpful info:

Most restaurants in Tel Aviv will be open on the next day after the Seder. They will also serve pasta and bread like usual. This is Tel Aviv not Jerusalem or Tiberius. On the Seder eveing though all restaurants are closed but one that I know of. This is Indira on Shaul Hamelech and Ibn Gvirol. It is a nice Indian restaurant, food is not very spicy or hot. Pleasant to western palate. Indira phone number 03-6954437.

As for the evening when you arrive from Eilat. I guess you do not keep kosher (maybe not Jewish either) so you can shop at a chain called Tiv-Taam. You can get there all you need for a nice but cold dinner. Lots of cold cuts, wine, bread, salads, fruit and vegetables. Also disposable dishes etc... There are 12 branches called Tiv-Taam in the City. Those nearest to you are on Ben Yehuda 181, phone 03-5444409; Dizengoff 199 phone 03-5223000; Dizengoff 302 03-6044100. Open 7 days a week from 0800 till midnight. If the SEder dinner is not important to you this is a good solution.

israel
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3. Re: Passover in Tel Aviv

Wow, thanks for the compliment. The new OP has an apertment so going to Tiv Taam and doing some shoping can result in a cooked dinner too. They have a variety of ready to cook meat, frozen and fresh vegetables. Where is that apartment?

London
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4. Re: Passover in Tel Aviv

Thank you so much mbgg. I no doubt shall be back with more questions.

London
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5. Re: Passover in Tel Aviv

Thanks everyone for your replies.

I shall be on Moshe ben Ezra street.

Tel-Aviv
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6. Re: Passover in Tel Aviv

Moshe Ben Ezra is a small street parallel to Ibn Givirol running between Arlozorov and the Gan Ha'ir mall. Excellent location near Rabin Square. You will find several AM-PM or Tiv-Ta'am minimarkets on Ibn Gvirol that will be open on Shabbat or the holiday.

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7. Re: Passover in Tel Aviv

Excellent, thank you.

Any recommendations for a birthday meal on 30th?

Are evening meal times late in Tel Aviv?

israel
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8. Re: Passover in Tel Aviv

Evening meals start at 1900 and go on to the last customer, well pass midnight. About a birthday meal - what kind of food? There is a nice restaurant on the south side of Rabin square called Mear-Bar that I like. Its on Shderot Chen 52, phone 03-6956276. Book your place. The food is good and I like the place, nice and quiet. it has a porch too. Another restaurant nearby that is also good is Brasseri on Ibn Gvirol 70, but it is noisy, not suitable for a party. They are within walking distance from your apartment.

Tel Aviv, Israel
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9. Re: Passover in Tel Aviv

If you could tell us what kind of food you like then that would narrow the field a little. There are literally hundreds of restaurants in Tel Aviv serving every kind of cuisine from all over the world! And I would say that there isn't a time, day or night when you couldn't get a meal somewhere in Tel Aviv!

Note to those of you who do keep kosher. It gets harder every year to find a kosher restaurant open in Tel Aviv. You may find you have to eat in one of the hotels.

The religious authorities make more and more rules each year over and above changing all the pots, pans, cutlery etc. so for many restaurateurs it just doesn't pay to comply. Especially as they have to close anyway for the holydays and Shabbat. So they use the Pesach break to close completely, and paint and do any other renovations needed.

Shoshi, you mentioned Tiv Ta'am and it is indeed very popular but you might want to point out that the Israeli customer is very forgiving. There have been to date two separate TV exposés of the state of hygiene - or rather the lack of it - in their chain. One had a lot to do with cats roaming the food storage areas ... and the other showed how they took passed its sell by dated meats and put them in marinades to then sell for the barbecue!

One hopes that these practices are no longer done - but personally I stopped trusting them when the second exposé came out months after the first!

israel
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10. Re: Passover in Tel Aviv

Pamela - the state of hygiene that you mention and the TV programs were part of a war between merchants. Some was staged, some was fabricated. I buy there regularly. Also because they sell trife and open during weekends and holidays makes them a target. Anyway one can find there fresh bread during Passover, sold in a paper bag. Their meat products are very good too and the variety of items is outstanding. It is open during Passover,including Passover eve so the OP can buy whatever they need.