The silly proverb claiming “Every day is a holiday if you live your nights like the Yemenites” actually makes sense. The “Kerem”, the Yemenite village in the heart of Tel Aviv City, is the most chilled, most authentic, and most easygoing area of town. This is why it’s the coolest neighbourhood of Tel Aviv.
This up-and-coming neighbourhood is patched with cool clubs, local favourite bars and pubs, hummus restaurants offering many different kinds of the national favourite chickpea-and-sesame cream, and coffee places hosting both young hipsters and an old religious crowd, sharing this picturesque quarter in peace and harmony.
Note: This is an edited version of my full write-up, for the detailed blog giving all the info on the hotspots I mention in the post click here.
It’s been a while since I decided that one day I would get into the Kerem-groove and move into this slightly surreal melting pot, a village surrounded by skyscrapers and fancy projects, yet always remaining rural and country-like. About a month ago,a special opportunity came along and my boyfriend and I found a romantic and cozy apartment with a jackpot sun balcony.
All this right on the same street as our favourite hummus restaurant. Ever since then, if we don’t necessarily need to, we never really want to leave the area – and we don’t even have to, since everything that one can think of is right here, hidden in the narrow alleys and curvy streets of the Kerem.
Now on www.unlocktelaviv.com blog I listed my 7 reasons why this neighborhood deserves your special attention – regardless of whether you’re thinking about living here or just visiting for a fab vacation.
This awesome club and bar in Malan Street, just next to the “shuk”, aka the market place, offers an easy vibe, fun music, cheap drinks, and a dance floor called “Ghosttown”, tempting everyone to strike a pose.
“Yom tov” means “Have a nice day”, and kicking off a morning at this flea-market-like coffee shop, the wish comes true right away. The tools and bits and decorations are so randomly picked, they actually make sense all together: this is the true “balagan”, the Hebrew expression for the charming mess we love so much about this country.
Beer Bazar is a typical Tel Avivian start-up success story: it started off as a counter selling locally handcrafted beers, and by now it has several locations and a “flagship” bar of two floors, looking over the Kerem with a cozy balcony.
Hummus is a serious business in the Middle East – everyone has their favourite hummus places, and people can get into serious fights over which is the best one.
The Kerem is also a home of international cuisine; not only of classic Middle Eastern delicacies. The recently opened Balienjira offers the very best of the Ethiopian and Eritrean kitchen.
Several streets of the neighborhood are basically connecting the city’s main food market with the beach – wherever you happen to be in the Kerem, you can never be far away from the seaside.
The easiest way is to walk out to Geula Street – with a quick stop for a drink at Sheleg, an open-minded and LGBTQ friendly café near the corner of Allenby Street. Geula will bring you directly to the sandy shores of the Mediterranean.
Drum Beach by the Dolphinarium is famous for its colourful graffiti and random, spontaneous street performances by local drummers, often joined by tourists.
And for the ones who prefer it fancy, the luxurious Royal Beach tower’s terrace is the best spot for chilled drinks and hot dates.
The Kerem is in the very centre of the city, therefor it’s surrounded by lots of exciting and fun streets to discover. Right by the entrance of the Carmel Market, on Magen David Square, you’ll find Pasta Basta, a friendly and cheap Italian bar “DIY” style; pick your kind of pasta, sauce, toppings, and flash it down with their house wine. HaMinzar, the city’s non-stop bar is also nearby, just like Salon Berlin; a trash-smash favorite with happy hours between 6 and 8.
This blog post of mine was originally written for and featured on www.unlocktelaviv.com blog. You’re new in the city? For contact infos and details on each place click on the names of the venues in the titles. Connect to Unlock Tel Aviv blog on Facebook and Instagram as well @SeaNRent_UnlockTelAviv. Find more insider tips for LGBTQ visitors to the neighborhood in the upcoming issue of Time Out Israel’s English edition, and if you decided to hire me for a personalised adventure in Israel – may it be vegan, Israeli fashion, or kabbalistic spirituality experience – contact me on firstname.lastname@example.org