Exploring Israel: 4 Cities To Visit For First-Timers

Israel is a truly unique and diverse country. In addition to natural wonders and beautiful beaches, this country is overflowing with religious monuments and ancient sites. No need to tell you the capital of Israel is the sacred hometown of Jesus. Blessed with a warm climate, delicious cuisine, and amazing landscapes, this Middle Eastern country is one of the most popular world tourist destinations. Whatever your travel preferences and needs, you’ll find here everything, well maybe perhaps offline slots, since gambling is illegal in Israel. But who cares if you can go for a pilgrimage to Jerusalem, explore awe-inspiring ancient monuments, walk over bustling streets, eat hummus, and float in the Dead Sea?

For those who are traveling to Israel for the first time, we’ve rounded up a list of four must-visit cities.

Tel Aviv

Many experienced travelers recommend starting your Israel journey from this vibrant bustling city, the cultural and economic center of the whole country. It is the youngest (1909), but the largest city in Israel with a population of almost four million people. The major tourist attractions you shouldn’t miss in Tel Aviv are the Tel Aviv Museum of Art, Bialik House, Museum of the Jewish People, Yitzhak Rabin Center, as well as Tel Aviv Sea Port, Neve Tzedek neighborhood, and Carmel Market. The Tel Aviv Museum of Art is a cultural gem that features the artwork of big names like Claude Monet, Wassily Kandinsky, Marc Chagall, and Max Ernst.

If you are into contemporary art, visit the museum to see the works of Peter Doig, Elmgreen & Dragset, Gregor Schneider, and Amish Kapoor. The museum collection also boasts masterpieces of European art from the sixteenth to nineteen centuries painted by Antony van Dyck, Peter Paul Rubens, Jan Brueghel the Younger, and Canaletto. The most scenic and green Tel Aviv spots to roam around after cultural experiences are HaYarkon Park and Hilton Hill Park. Famous for its coastline, Tel Aviv has more than 13 gorgeous white-sand beaches to offer including Hilton Beach, Gordon Beach, Banana Beach, and Alma Beach. Other Tel Aviv draws are nightlife and culinary scenes.


No trip to Israel would be complete without visiting Jerusalem and especially its Old City. The Old City is home to many holy sights including Temple Mount, Western Wall, Tower of David, Via Dolorosa,  Church of the Holy Sepulchre, and Aqsa Mosque. You can also visit the Biblical Zoo, which has about 200 species of rare and endangered animals. If you want to feel the rhythm of local life, then be sure to go to the Mahane Yehuda market in the heart of Jerusalem.


Those who are interested in history should visit the Tomb of Absalom, the Israel Museum in Jerusalem, Israel’s memorial to the Holocaust victims Yad Vashem, Hurva Synagogue, Rockefeller Museum, and the Gethsemane Site.


Those who want to step back in time should head to the Old City of Jaffa. Located to the south of Tel Aviv, this ancient port city has been named after Noah’s son Japhet and even featured in the holy Bible as ‘Jafo’. A UNESCO World Heritage Site, Jaffa provides tourists and locals with many charming attractions and places, from St Peter’s Church, Clock Tower, and Ilana Goor Museum to art galleries in the Jaffa Artist’s Quarter, Jaffa Port, and Jaffa Slope Park.


A harbor town of authentic art galleries and cobbled streets, Jaffa is almost as authentic as its fabulous Flea Market which is open six days a week. Don’t forget to visit the city’s nightlife promenade, and if you want to spend your nights in a fun and active way, go to trendy nightclubs in the hipster Florentin neighborhood.


This Red Sea seaside destination is a must-see for all fans of beach holidays, as well as scuba diving and snorkeling. Major tourist attractions in this coastal town include the Botanical Garden, Coral Beach Nature Reserve, Eilat Bird Sanctuary, Red Canyon, Dolphinarium, Yotvata Hai-Bar Nature Reserve, and Timna Park. Since Eilat is located at the bottom of the Southern Negev Desert, its landscape is a beautiful blend of beach and desert views. Timna Park is a great place for a desert adventure.

End your Israel journey by walking over the Wishing Bridge in Jaffa and make a wish to visit this fascinating country for a second time. There is a lot more to explore in Israel, and we recommend you add these cities to your “advanced” Israel bucket list:

  1. Haifa.
  2. Bethlehem.
  3. Nazareth.
  4. Acre.
  5. Masada.
  6. Tiberias.
  7. Caesarea.
  8. Beit Shean.
  9. Ashkelon.
  10. Megiddo.