I traveled solo to Tel Aviv Israel and decided to live here for 1.5 years after that first trip. I did not expect life to turn out like this but here are some answers to your burning question, “Is Tel Aviv safe?”
📧 Hi Trisha! I just spent the whole afternoon reading all your Tel Aviv Israel blogs and I am impressed! So many short stories you have that made me convince that I can go alone. Your way of writing and presenting Israel is so sincere that these first-hand accounts are really convincing! I understand that you lived there but what are your tips for solo travel to Tel Aviv? I want to know more – I hope I can chat with you!Alix Kuppens, Denmark
Thank you for reading those narratives! I am glad you took the time! People don’t read these days anymore and I am happy that you are being very meticulous with your research about Tel Aviv Israel.
I get attacked a lot on the Internet for writing about Israel (like really really bad comments!) so I hope you keep an open mind. I also want to tell you that I am not a politics blogger so my Israel posts are all about traveling and living there.
My golden tip for traveling solo to Tel Aviv: CONSIDER YOUR SOURCE. Only take advice from people who have been there or who are living there. If you are going alone, I have LOTS of friends there that will welcome you.
If you want me to connect you to the locals, please send me a message on Instagram, and I will definitely make an intro to my Tel Avivian friends! Good luck and I hope you push through. Tel Aviv is one of the most solo female travel friendly cities in the world!
Good luck and I really really hope you push through!
🔗 Tel Aviv solo travel: quick links
- Best day trip from Tel Aviv: Jerusalem & Bethlehem (10 hours)
- Best social activity for solo travelers: Tel Aviv Market Tour
- Must-do: Masada, Ein Gedi and Dead Sea
- Book your airport transfer: Private transfer from Ben Gurion Airport
🗺️ Tel Aviv Israel Map
🙋 Is Tel Aviv safe?
What I always tell people when they ask if Tel Aviv Israel is safe: safety is objective and personal. For the 1.5 years I was living in Tel Aviv, I did not experience any gunning on the streets, explosions, or anything violent of some sort.
So I would say that personally, I found Tel Aviv really safe. You can also read my narrative about safety in Israel if you want more insights but honestly, I never experienced anything unsafe in Tel Aviv.
In the next few items, you will find a more detailed explanation of this question where I talked about more specific safety experiences (i.e. walking alone after midnight).
💙 Why I love Tel Aviv Israel
Black and white and no grey areas
The Israelis, in general, are black and white people. There are no grey areas. “Are you coming for lunch?” Yes or no is their answer. There is no maybe which leads you to more precise and straight-to-the-point thinking.
I myself have learned this while living in Israel: it is way easier to go along in life if you are clear. The Israelis are clear and will not give you answers they are unsure of.
So, let’s say, for example, you are planning a day trip to Jerusalem. Nobody will tell you “Maybe I am coming,” or “I will confirm later.” It is simply the most straightforward culture I have ever experienced in my life, and I LOVE IT.
Tel Aviv is the highest vegan per capita (restaurants) in the world
I am not vegan but vegan food in Israel is not your ordinary lame salad or your usual beyond meat burger that you have at home. Food here is always tasty and even if you are not vegan, you will frequent vegan restaurants and you won’t even feel the need to order meat.
Tel Aviv boasts a vibrant and thriving vegan food scene that caters to the diverse palates of both locals and tourists alike. The city’s progressive culinary landscape offers an impressive variety of plant-based delicacies that celebrate the flavors of Mediterranean, Middle Eastern, and international cuisines.
From delicious street food staples like falafel and hummus to innovative fine dining experiences, Tel Aviv’s vegan offerings are a testament to the creativity and culinary expertise of its chefs and restaurateurs.
The vegan culture in Tel Aviv is characterized by a strong emphasis on fresh, local, and organic ingredients, which are thoughtfully incorporated into dishes that are as visually appealing as they are delicious.
In addition to the vast selection of dedicated vegan eateries, many traditional restaurants have embraced the plant-based movement and expanded their menus to include vegan options.
This widespread adoption of veganism has contributed to Tel Aviv’s reputation as a global gastronomic hotspot for vegans and food enthusiasts alike, who are drawn to the city’s unique fusion of culinary innovation and rich cultural heritage.
Everyone is in Tel Aviv!
I am of Asian descent and when traveling solo, I usually find myself as the only Asian girl traveling on her own. But in Israel, everyone in different colors, shapes, sizes, cultures, and backgrounds is here!
It is one of the most diverse cities I have visited and it’s beautiful to see different people in the world come together. I also loved hearing different languages all the time on the streets, in the markets, in restaurants, and in hotels.
Israelis also speak English pretty well (because of their mandatory military training), so I didn’t have any difficulties being here. Of course, I did learn Hebrew and can speak Hebrew well. However, if you are just traveling, there is no need to learn Hebrew.
Tel Aviv is a melting pot of diverse cultures, with a rich history that spans thousands of years. The city’s unique blend of ancient and modern elements can be seen in its architecture, historical sites, and museums.
You can explore ancient Jaffa, a port city with a storied past, or visit the UNESCO World Heritage-listed Bauhaus-inspired White City to appreciate the city’s distinct architectural styles.
A city with a beach
There are 3 places that I have lived in that have the same layout as Tel Aviv: Puerto Vallarta (Mexico), Rio de Janeiro (Brazil), and Barcelona (Spain). If you are looking for a place that has both city life and beach life, Tel Aviv has this combo!
Tel Aviv’s gorgeous coastline boasts miles of pristine sandy beaches, perfect for sunbathing, swimming, and watersports. The city’s beachfront promenade, lined with cafes, bars, and restaurants has stunning views of the Mediterranean Sea and is the ideal setting for a leisurely stroll or a vibrant night out.
Thriving Art Scene
The whole city is a piece of art. From the neighborhood of Florentin and Jaffa (which, btw, you shouldn’t miss when in Tel Aviv) to the markets, restaurants, and cafes – Tel Aviv is a big canvas that has every type of art you can imagine.
And mind you; these are not just murals. There are many creative art installations. For example, one friend of mine converted his apartment into an art gallery so when you pass by his house, it is always open and you can see the gallery from outside!
The Israelis are truly unique and true to their art, and here, you will see the most outrageous and never-before-seen art installations in your life.
Additionally, Tel Aviv is home to renowned institutions such as the Eretz Israel Museum, the Tel Aviv Museum of Art, and the Design Museum Holon. The flourishing street art scene, particularly in neighborhoods like Florentin, adds a vibrant touch to the urban landscape.
The city that never sleeps
During my first solo travel to Tel Aviv Israel, I had many experiences when we entered a club at 2:00 AM and ended up leaving at 11:00 AM. The underground club scene in Tel Aviv is so unique and I have never seen anything like it anywhere.
Known for its energetic nightlife, Tel Aviv offers a wide variety of entertainment options to suit different preferences. From trendy bars and clubs to intimate live music venues, the city’s nightlife scene caters to an eclectic mix of party-goers and music lovers, making it a popular destination to DJs, music enthusiasts, and bar owners all over the world.
💃🏽 Solo travel to Tel Aviv Israel experiences
I walked alone at night. A lot
… and most of the time, I was a little bit tipsy. I do not really recommend you to do this but I was already very Tel Avivian and deep into the Israeli culture to be that confident to do this.
Walking alone at night sober is definitely OK, and it does not matter even if you walk after midnight. In Mexico, my friends will never let me walk alone at night because they’re too overprotective and Mexico has this notorious safety reputation.
In Tel Aviv, it’s not that my friends don’t care about me but they are 100% sure that nothing bad will happen to me on the streets if they let me walk alone.
Dude, where’s my bike?
The thing with Tel Aviv is, you are going to start the evening at one restaurant and 8 hours later, you will find yourself visiting and hopping to 5 different places. More often than not, I park my bike at the restaurant and after the night ended, I will forget about my bike.
Which is totally normal in Tel Aviv. The next day, I will post in a group and ask “Has anyone seen this bike,” and most people will respond even if they don’t know you. However, like many European cities, bicycles are easily stolen in Tel Aviv and I lost at least 2 bikes when I was living there (unless you have an electronic bike).
It is easy to make friends with Tel Avivians
Now that I live in Mexico, I MISS MY FRIENDS SO MUCH! I have made so many meaningful relationships here; these types of friendships last. They are not my travel friends – we keep in touch and I am updated with their lives.
If it’s your first time to travel to Tel Aviv and you are alone, I guarantee you that even without Tinder or Bumble, you will find friends at a bar or anywhere in seconds. I mean that, in seconds. The population of Tel Aviv Israel is so young that everyone is outgoing, friendly, and warm.
A small conversation in Tel Aviv can make you friendships that will last forever so go ahead and chat, be friendly, and be open-minded! Just avoid talking about politics at all costs – more on that later…..
Shabbat dinner experience with a family
Shabbat dinner is a traditional Jewish meal held on Friday evenings in Israel and around the world to welcome the Sabbath, a day of rest and spiritual rejuvenation. It is a time for family and friends to gather, reflecting the importance of community and togetherness in Jewish culture.
The meal typically starts with the lighting of the Shabbat candles and the recitation of blessings over wine (Kiddush) and challah, a braided bread.
The dinner menu often includes traditional dishes, such as gefilte fish, chicken soup with matzo balls, and roasted chicken or brisket. Side dishes like kugel, salads, and vegetables complement the main courses. Desserts, such as babka or rugelach, add a sweet touch to the meal.
Of course, from living in Israel, I had many Shabbat dinners in different homes and cultures, but the most memorable to me was my first.
It was with a local family in the southern neighborhood of Tel Aviv, and it was one of my best Shabbat dinners, mostly because that family is so special to me because I lived with them.
Alright, Shabbat dinners are not all about food. If you are new to Jewish culture, you need to read about this if you want to go visit a family. What I found out is that every family and household has a distinct Shabbat dinner – some are longer than others.
Shabbat dinner is more than just a meal; it is a spiritual and cultural experience that fosters a sense of unity and provides an opportunity for rest, reflection, and connection with loved ones.
Mimuna, Purim, Pesach, Burning Man, and other festivals in Tel Aviv
The Jewish calendar, at first, was quite weird to me. In March, I found myself shopping for Halloween costumes because of Purim. I was like, “Halloween in March, seriously?!”
On the week of my birthday (September 20th), it’s always New Year’s in Israel which is called Rosh Hashanah. I love that my birthday week falls during this Jewish festivities because I never had to plan a birthday party: everyone’s planning it for me and there were so many parties to go to!
There’s the Pesach (Passover) which is the longest dinner of my life. I have been to many Pesach dinners and you’ll really die of hunger (depending on how long each family’s ceremonies are) so make sure to eat before coming to a Pesach dinner.
There are so many more events that I have been to in Israel, but my point is, the Jewish calendar is so amusing that I did attend all these events just to see how it goes. The timings are so odd (i.e. Halloween in March) that makes the Jewish culture more interesting.
✨ Tips for first-timers to Tel Aviv Israel
Do not talk about politics at all costs
I do not know if you know but the Israelis, like all of them, are known for their overly progressive politics that some of you may not agree about. Like many cultures, every single Israeli has a political view that you will be confused about what to believe in or what to take.
From living in Tel Aviv, I have learned not to listen to ANYONE, not even to my close friends regarding politics because it just confuses me and politics is not really my strong fort.
If you want to know about this, read history books, learn what happened during the holocaust, and focus on facts. Much of what happened in the past has a big influence on what is Israel now but don’t listen to individuals because you are going to be overwhelmed and confused.
Best time to visit Tel Aviv Israel
Best areas to stay in
Tel Aviv’s center (near Ha-Carmel Market) is very centric and expensive. To be honest, it does not matter which neighborhood you stay in Tel Aviv because this is a walking city. You can also rent a bike during your stay but honestly, it is a small city so you won’t really be far from landmarks no matter you are.
Choose between Jaffa or Florentin for cheaper accommodations and a livelier and more artistic crowd. If you decide to stay in the center, check the areas of Allenby and Rothschild but expect higher prices.
Tel Aviv is expensive
Israel is an expensive country in general so you may need to be really smart about planning your solo trip to Tel Aviv. It is considered one of the more expensive cities in the Middle East.
Prices for accommodation, dining, and entertainment can be relatively high compared to other cities in the region. However, the cost of living and traveling in Tel Aviv can vary depending on your preferences and travel style.
Budget travelers can find affordable hostels (check Florentin for hostels!), street food, and free or low-cost attractions, while those seeking a more luxurious experience will find plenty of high-end hotels, restaurants, and activities.
Use travel apps
Download useful apps like Moovit for public transportation, Waze for driving directions, and Gett for taxis to make navigating the city easier. These apps are in English, and it is very helpful.
Remember that Israel is also the Silicon Valley of the Middle East so expect these apps to be easy to use and has a state-of-the-art interface that will make any non-Israeli navigate it with ease.
Get a Rav-Kav card
Rav-Kav is a public transportation card that allows you to use buses, trains, and the light rail system at discounted prices.
A Rav-Kav card is free, but you need to load it with credit to use it for public transportation. You can get the Rav-Kav card at various locations, such as train stations, central bus stations, or Rav-Kav service points. There are also dedicated stands and kiosks in some shopping malls and at the airport.
You can load the Rav-Kav card with different types of passes, depending on your travel needs. For example, you can choose between a daily, weekly, or monthly pass or load it with a pay-as-you-go option called “stored value,” where you pay per ride.
The price for each type of pass may vary depending on the regions you plan to travel to and the duration of your stay.
My best advice for Rav Kav: consider the “pay-as-you-go” option or a daily pass. The cost of a daily pass within Tel Aviv and its surrounding cities is around $5.50 USD.
The pay-as-you-go fare for a single ride within Tel Aviv is about $1.90 USD. Keep in mind that prices may change, so it’s advisable to check the most up-to-date information when you arrive in Tel Aviv.
🚫 Safety in Tel Aviv Israel tips
Tel Aviv is safe but still keep your belongings secure
While Tel Aviv is generally safe, pickpocketing and petty theft can occur in crowded areas. Use a money belt or hidden pouch to store your valuables, and avoid displaying expensive items like jewelry or electronics.
Use registered taxis
Only use registered taxis with meters, such as Gett or those found at official taxi stands. Avoid accepting rides from strangers or unmarked vehicles to ensure your safety. Registered taxis in Tel Aviv are usually easy to identify. They typically have some common features, which include:
- Color: Most registered taxis in Tel Aviv are white or pale yellow, making them easily distinguishable from private cars.
- Taxi roof sign: Registered taxis have a yellow illuminated sign on the roof, which displays the word “מונית” (taxi) in Hebrew and sometimes also in English. When the sign is lit, the taxi is available for hire.
- Official markings: Registered taxis have a unique identification number and the taxi company’s name displayed on the side doors. There may also be a licensing sticker or emblem on the front windshield or rear window.
- Taxi meter: All registered taxis are required to have a visible and functioning meter inside the vehicle. Make sure the driver turns on the meter at the beginning of your ride to avoid being overcharged.
- Driver’s identification: The taxi driver should have their official ID card with their photo and name displayed on the dashboard or near the driver’s seat.
Again, if you have the Gett app, you don’t have to worry if a taxi is licensed or not. Just use the app as it is the safest and fairly priced.
Avoid discussing politics
Tel Aviv is a diverse city with a wide range of political opinions. It’s best to avoid discussing sensitive political topics to prevent misunderstandings or conflicts with locals. Read more about this above, where I shared my experiences about discussing politics in Israel. Do not do this at all costs.
Be mindful of bicycle lanes
Tel Aviv has a well-developed network of bicycle lanes. Stay aware of your surroundings and avoid walking or standing in bike lanes, as cyclists often travel at high speeds and can cause accidents if you’re not paying attention.
Observe local customs during Shabbat
From Friday evening to Saturday evening, many businesses close, and public transportation is limited due to Shabbat, the Jewish day of rest.
Be respectful of local customs by not smoking, using electronic devices, or playing loud music in public spaces during this time. Although in Tel Aviv, they are not so strict about it but really, some older people mind.
Know the emergency numbers
In case of an emergency, dial 100 for the police, 101 for an ambulance, or 102 for the fire department. Save these numbers in your phone or write them down and keep them handy.
Tel Aviv has public wifis but always use VPN!
Cybersecurity threats are a concern worldwide, and Tel Aviv is no exception. Avoid using public Wi-Fi for sensitive tasks like online banking or sharing personal information. Use a VPN to protect your data when connecting to public networks.
Do not use your browser in Tel Aviv without a VPN! My recommendation is NordVPN – always connect to your home country, and not in Israel when using Nord.
Stay hydrated and use sunscreen
My very first trip to Israel was in August 2016 and I have seen many people collapse on the streets because it was too hot!!! Tel Aviv’s hot climate, especially in summer, can lead to dehydration and sunburn. Carry a reusable water bottle to stay hydrated, and apply sunscreen regularly to protect your skin from harmful UV rays.
Get in touch with me and I will introduce you to the cool kids!
If you feel like we have the same energy and you love the way I travel, YOU WILL DEFINITELY LOVE MY FRIENDS. I know that traveling alone to Tel Aviv feels scary but I promise you, it is one of the best destinations for solo female travel.
Just write to me on Instagram and I will definitely make an intro to my friends! You’ll love them, I swear!
⁉️ FAQ: Solo travel to Tel Aviv Israel
Can you wear leggings in Israel?
Yes, you can wear leggings in Israel, particularly in cosmopolitan and secular areas like Tel Aviv, where the dress code is generally more relaxed and Western-style clothing is common. When visiting religious sites or more conservative neighborhoods, it’s essential to dress modestly out of respect for local customs and traditions.
Can I use US currency in Israel?
While the official currency of Israel is the Israeli Shekel (ILS), certain establishments, such as hotels, tour operators, and some souvenir shops, may accept US dollars (USD) as a form of payment. However, this practice is not widespread, and most businesses and services will only accept the local currency.
It is best to exchange your US dollars for Israeli Shekels before or upon arrival in Israel. You can exchange money at banks, exchange bureaus, or withdraw local currency from ATMs, which are widely available in cities and towns.
Keep in mind that using US dollars may result in unfavorable exchange rates or additional fees. It is generally more convenient and cost-effective to use Israeli Shekels for your purchases and transactions while in Israel.
Is tipping customary in Israel?
Yes, tipping is customary in Israel, and it is generally expected in certain service industries, such as restaurants, bars, and taxis. Here’s a brief guide to tipping etiquette in Israel:
- Restaurants: It is common to tip around 10-15% of the total bill in restaurants, depending on the quality of service. Some establishments may include a service charge in the bill, typically around 12%. In such cases, you may choose to leave an additional tip if the service was exceptional.
- Bars and cafes: In bars and cafes, it is customary to tip around 10-15% of the total bill. If you’re ordering a small item like a coffee or a soft drink, you can round up the bill or leave a few extra shekels.
- Taxis: For taxi drivers, it is customary to round up the fare to the nearest 5 or 10 shekels or tip around 10-15% of the total fare, depending on the quality of service.
- Hotel staff: For hotel staff, such as porters and housekeeping, you can tip around 10-20 shekels per bag or per day, respectively.
- Tour guides: For private tour guides, it is customary to tip around 50-100 shekels per day, depending on the quality of service and the size of your group.
While tipping is customary in Israel, it’s important to remember that it’s ultimately a personal choice based on your satisfaction with the service provided. You can adjust the amount you tip according to the quality of service and your own preferences.
Do US citizens need visa to Israel?
US citizens do not need a visa for short-term tourist visits to Israel, which typically last up to 90 days. Upon arrival, US citizens will receive a B2 tourist visa stamp in their passport or on a separate entry card, depending on the airport’s practice. This visa is granted to tourists and is valid for stays up to 90 days within a six-month period.
To enter Israel, US citizens must have a passport that is valid for at least six months beyond the date of entry. It’s also advisable to have a return or onward ticket and proof of sufficient funds for the duration of your stay.
Please note that entry requirements are subject to change, and it’s essential to check the most up-to-date information with the Israeli consulate or embassy before your trip. Additionally, if you plan to visit other countries in the region, be aware that some may have restrictions for travelers with an Israeli visa stamp or entry card.
What is the dress code in Israel?
When dressing modestly, both men and women should cover their shoulders and knees. For women, this means avoiding tight or revealing clothing, such as short skirts, shorts, or low-cut tops. In this case, you could wear leggings under a longer tunic, skirt, or dress to maintain a modest appearance.
It’s always a good idea to carry a light scarf or shawl with you, which can be used to cover your shoulders or legs when entering religious sites or conservative areas. By dressing appropriately and respecting local customs, you can ensure a more enjoyable and respectful travel experience in Israel.
Do tourists wear shorts in Israel?
Yes, tourists can wear shorts in Israel, particularly in secular and cosmopolitan areas like Tel Aviv, where the dress code is more relaxed, and the climate can be quite warm, especially during the summer months. Wearing shorts is also common in beach areas and popular outdoor tourist spots (i.e. Dead Sea).
When visiting religious sites, such as synagogues, churches, or mosques, or more conservative neighborhoods, it’s important to dress modestly out of respect for local customs and traditions.
In these cases, both men and women should cover their shoulders and knees. Opt for long pants, skirts, or dresses to maintain a modest appearance.
🇮🇱 Israel Travel Planning
✈️ What’s the best platform for booking flights to Israel?
Kiwi.com is one of the most trusted sites for booking cheap flights to Israel. They compare all prices for all airlines! Also, try WayAway if you want to get cashback for every booking.
🏥 Is travel insurance mandatory in Israel?
YES! You need to get into the habit of buying travel insurance, not just for Israel. SafetyWing, is my digital nomad/remote worker insurance, while I use Ekta Traveling for short trips (from $0.99 per day).
🚗💨 Is it safe to rent a car in Israel?
ABSOLUTELY! Use Discover Cars or Rentalcars.com for the best car rental deals in Israel. Remember to book online prior to arrival and don’t do it in person as cars run out fast!
🛏️ Where can I find affordable hotels in Israel?
Booking.com is a great platform if you want boutique hotels. Budget travelers should still book using Hostelworld.
Trisha is one of those people who left their comfortable life to travel the world and learn about life. Her style is to stay in one place she likes for 3 months (or more) to know what it feels like to eat, cook, speak, and sleep in another culture that isn’t hers. She’d like to believe she’s not traditionally traveling but she just chooses to be somewhere else all the time. In no particular order, her favorite cities in the world are Barcelona, Buenos Aires, Hong Kong, Mexico City, and Tel Aviv.