Israelis harvest crops four times a year – locals enjoy fresh produce all year long. Our list has the city's eight most amazing markets.
The gem of Tel Aviv markets – the biggest and busiest marketplace where you can get literally everything – from ripe strawberries and freshly squeezed lemonade to sneakers and beach tennis gear. By the way, it's conveniently located en route to the sea. Though it's full of traditional bazaar noise and bargaining there is no feeling of being duped. All vendors are friendly, can swear in perfect English, know lots of funny stories and can even treat you to their yummy goods.
Nachalat Binyamin Market
Tuesdays and Thursdays, 10 am - 5 pm: your destination is the old part of the city, Nachalat Binyamin street. Mission – to get some cool stuff at an arts and crafts fair where it seems like all Tel Aviv talents came to sell their creations. An ideal place to get some souvenirs – beautiful ceramic hamsas, mosaic pottery, glass and gems jewelry. I love getting charming magnets with small falafels, humus or shakshouka from one pretty girl.
The most picturesque flea in Tel Aviv with old stuff from Europe – ancient rarities brought here by locals, some good old VHS on the pavements, leather bags, satin purses (hello from the last century), vinyl, shoes, jewelry, silk nighties of someone’s granny, old cameras, music instruments and piles of other things smelling of cardamom and being sold by swearing Arab vendors. The place is opened Sundays through Fridays from 8 to 7.
Farmers' Market in the port
The Farmers' Market was started by Michal Ansky, a famous local gastronomist who was the first one to promote organic food in Israel. The market boasts a variety of cheeses, organic fruits, vegetables and wines, as well as olives, tahini and khalva. Have you ever seen a purple carrot? The farmers' market offers carrots in four different colours! If you happen to be near the port on Friday, do visit the market - it gets twice as big!
Not as big and popular as Carmel but more relaxing – it's not pedestrian so cars disrupt crowds and noise. The place located between Herzl and Ha'aliya streets is famous for spices and Mediterranean delicacies from Turkey, Romania and Greece. Grab some spices, Turkish bourekas pastry, pickles, exotic sausages, fish, olives, rose petal tea, Indian saffron or za'atar spice – come Friday afternoon before Shabbat – the place is a vibrant and vivid scene.
A small market by Carmel used to be known for cheap falafel places and now it's all about cheap clothes. Go there for a labelless T-shirt for two dollars or a "Louis Vuitton" for ten. Nobody asks questions here and not everything is sold legally so the motto of this place is "Ask me no questions and I'll tell you no lies." They have no designer stuff but you can always find nice flip flops, a light scarf of a nice boonie hat.
Every Thursday and Friday the first floor of this mall becomes a farmer's market – you can try cuisines from all parts of the world and bring home or enjoy on the spot homemade cutlets, salads and soup or just stuff your plate with everything, sit on the wooden floor and try to guess what you are eating.